The European Tour heads down under this week for the inaugural ISPS Handa Perth International on Australia’s west coast.
Among the golfers making the long trip are 2012 Ryder Cup player Jason Dufner, his compatriot Bo van Pelt and 2011 Masters champion Charl Schwartzel.
There will also be a big emphasis on tour card retention, and many players in the field will need a big week to breach the all-important top 115 in the Race to Duba standings.
The tournament will be contested at the Lake Karrinyup Country Club just outside Perth, widely regarded as western Australia’s premier golf course.
Players will be required to work the ball off the tees, but the fairways are sizeable and, as a par 72 standing at less than 7,150 yards, there will be many birdie opportunities on offer.
The bookmakers have installed Dufner as the favourite, but he simply isn’t worth considering a 6/1, especially playing in his first competitive tournament since Ryder Cup heartbreak.
Greg Chalmers, at 12/1 with Ladbrokes, has to be considered a favourite this week. He is coming off a successful PGA Tour campaign and won back-to-back tournaments in his native Australia at the end of last season. He has one of the best short games in golf and will come into the week relaxed and with high expectations.
Lorenzo Gagli, at 50/1 with Ladbrokes, is worth considering this week. He needs a decent finish to guarantee his 2012 European Tour card, but will be confident after a good run of recent results. The Italian has finished inside the top 30 in three of his last four events and will be looking to push on in an event with a weaker field than normal.
Steve Webster, at 66/1 with Ladbrokes, is well priced this week. The Englishman has been struggling all season, but shot 68-64 over the weekend at the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship to secure his 2013 playing privileges. He will be confident and relaxed and that should translate into a good showing this week.
Mikko Ilonen is another player generously priced this week at 80/1 with Ladbrokes. At 84th in the Race to Dubai, he will be looking for a big finish on infiltrate the top 60 and earn his place at the season-ending DP World Tour Championship. He has finished 27th, 22nd and 27th in his last three tournaments, with a cumulative total of 28-under-par.
Michael Hendry, at 125/1 with Ladbrokes, is a good each way bet. The New Zealander will be unknown to most, but he currently leads the PGA Tour of Australasia Order of Merit and has won four times in 2012.
ISPS Handa Perth International advised bets:
3pts each way on Greg Chalmers at 12/1 with Ladbrokes
2pts each way on Lorenzo Gagli at 50/1 with Ladbrokes
2pts each way on Steve Webster at 66/1 with Ladbrokes
2pts each way on Mikko Ilonen at 80/1 with Labrokes
1pt each way on Michael Hendry at 125/1 with Ladbrokes