The European Tour heads to Cyprus and the sunshine this week to The Aphrodite Hills Resort, Paphos for The Cyprus Open.
Again just like the PGA tour this is the penultimate event before The Masters and the first time a European Tour event has been held in Cyprus as a result of all the re-shuffling post lockdown.
This shorter par 71 course shouldn’t be much of a problem for the 105 contenders so expect a low scoring affair with wide fairways and large greens to aim at, so power will be key.
The weather is forecast to be pleasant throughout with sunny and warm conditions and only a moderate breeze to contend with so the course is there to be attacked all weekend. With four par 5s and five par 3s you kind of get the picture just how easy this lay out is.
Last week I selected both Adri Arnaus 25/1 EW on the European Tour and Jon Rahm EW 10/1 on the PGA, whilst neither won they both collected the place money, Armaus finishing T5th and Rahm 2nd so well done to anyone who selected them.
Again this week I’m going to look for value especially with the field not being a strong one.
For my first selection I like the look off Sami Valimaki at 33/1 with bet365.
The tall Finn who turned pro last year has already won an event on the European Tour; The Onan Open and I feel there will be lots more to come.
He has already proven he can hold his nerve, beating Brandon Stone in a play-off and this 22-year-old can go on to rise up the world rankings.
He was 6th at The Celtic Classic, 2nd at The Welsh Open, 10th at The Andalucia Masters and 13th most recently at The BMW Championship at Wentworth where his greens-in-regulation figures were the best in the field.
This lad is full of confidence and already has aspirations of being No.1 in the world as expressed in many of his interviews. This course is set up for Valimaki to go on and make it win number two on the European Tour.
For my next selection I’m going to suggest Andy Sullivan (18/1 Betfair).
After such a long time off the pace Sullivan has recaptured some impressive recent form, winning The English Championship and following that up with three Top 10 finishes in his last nine tournaments.
He was most recently T3rd at the BMW Championship in a competitive field and with this event not nearly as strong he can definitely improve further on his recent form by adding another title to his name in Cyprus.
Another to consider is a golfer I’ve had each-way success with recently. Joakim Lagergren (40/1 Betfair) has earned some decent place money in three of his last eight tournaments.
He was T5th at the Irish Open when I advised him, also at 40/1 each-way. Lagergren can also back that up with T3rd at the Portugal Masters and 4th at The Barsebank Resort Masters. Lagergren’s only European Tour victory happened on an Island course in 2018 at The Sicilian Open.
He will be well suited to this venue and with his recent form he is hard to ignore especially to be in the place money yet again.
Sami Valimaki to beat Antone Rozner
For my final selection I’m going to include my first pick Sami Valimaki to beat Antone Rozner in a 72-hole match bet at 10/11 with bet365.
I feel Valimaki will shine in this Tournament over the weekend and would select him to beat anyone in a 72-hole match bet so you can change players with various firms.