The DP World Tour continues its Global Swing Series with the first edition of this week's Bahrain Championship at the Royal Golf Club, Al Mazrowiah, Bahrain. The 132-field, with the top 65 including ties making the weekend, will all be competing for a share of the $2.5M prize purse, with the winner collecting the Bahrain Championship title and a winning cheque for $425,000.
Last week, we had all our selections at the Ras al Khaimah Championship up there challenging, but in the end, Rasmus Hojgaard finished runner-up with Callum Shinkwin, tipped at 70/1 EW, finishing T4th. It really should have been a full house for place money, but Zander Lombard bogeyed a couple of his final few holes and finished just outside the money.
Royal Golf Club will be playing 7,261 yards long this week; it’s a par 72 Desert track that will require a putting masterpiece. With this being the first edition of the Bahrain Championship on the DPWT, there is no defending champion. The weather forecasts a battle of the elements, with gales peaking at 30mph amidst stormy conditions.
The Bahrain Championship will be screened on Sky Sports Golf for those in the UK, with live coverage starting at 8:30 am on Thursday. So, let's move on with this week's betting tips for the Bahrain Championship.
Rasmus Hojgaard at 17/2 EW Boylesports 1-8 places
For my first and main selection, again like last week and the week before, I'm siding with Rasmus Hojgaard at 17/2 EW Boylesports 1-8 places. Why not? The young Dane is getting closer and closer after finishing runner-up at the Ras al Khaimah Championship on Sunday. That's now half a dozen Top 20 finishes on the trot for Rasmus Hojgaard, and without being disrespectful, some of those fields were much more competitive than this week.
The first edition of this Bahrain Championship will require a putting masterpiece, and who better to rely on than one of the best on the DPWT for mastering the dance floors. It could be Rasmus who's dancing all the way into the Royal Golf Clubhouse with the winning scorecard on Sunday afternoon.
Yannik Paul at 18/1 EW PaddyPower 1-7 places
For my next best selection, I'm going to recommend Yannik Paul at 18/1 EW PaddyPower 1-7 places. The 29-year-old from Germany ticks so many boxes this week despite the fact that it’s uncharted territory. He's started his 2024 campaign in tremendous style with a Top 10 finish at the Dubai Invitational, then missed the cut at the Dubai Desert Classic before ending the month with a T4th finish at the Ras al Khaimah Championship. That's two Top 10 efforts at three attempts, and it's still only January.
Precision putting and accurate approach play will be the order of play at Royal Golf Club, and Yannik Paul can be trusted in both those departments. He's ranked 13th in the DPWT for Greens in Regulation, 20th for Average Putts per Round, and a very impressive 6th on tour for Stroke Average. With nobody inside the world Top 50 bracket this week in Bahrain, the door could be wide open for Yannik Paul to double up on his only win to date when claiming his maiden DPWT title at the Mallorca Open.
Sebastian Soderberg at 22/1 EW 1-8 places Boylesports
For my final pick in the desert, I'm going to advise Sebastian Soderberg at 22/1 EW 1-8 places Boylesports. The 33-year-old Swede has begun 2024 just how he ended 2023, with more consistent golf. He's made the cut at all three DPWT events this year, finishing no worse than 41st; that was at the Dubai Desert Classic, but 23rd at the Dubai Invitational to begin the year and T9th last weekend at the Ras al Khaimah Championship are definitely signs that Soderberg arrives in Bahrain with form in the bag.
He had half a dozen Top 10 efforts throughout 2023, with two of those being at his final three events at the end of the year: T3rd at the Mauritius Open and 6th at the Nedbank Golf Challenge. What stuck out when doing my homework were the Swede's Approach and Putting stats. Sebastian Soderberg ranks 8th on the DPWT for SG Approach the Green, 7th for One Putts, 12th for Average Putts per Round, 3rd for Birdies per Round, 8th for SG Total, and 8th also for SG Tee to Green; those are consistent figures.
It may come as a surprise to many, but this talented Swede hasn't won on the DPWT since winning the European Masters in 2019. It's about time he won again, and it could be this weekend amidst tricky conditions that should suit his game.
Bahrain Championship Tips
- Rasmus Hojgaard at 17/2 EW Boylesports 1-8 places
- Yannik Paul at 18/1 EW PaddyPower 1-7 places
- Sebastian Soderberg at 22/1 EW 1-8 places Boylesports