The European Tour heads to India this week for the Avantha Masters, staged at the Jaypee Greens Golf Club in Dehli.
A host of famous names have made the trip to Asia to take part in a tournament that is gaining more traction every year.
Now in its fifth year, the Avantha Masters – which started life as the EMAAR-MGF Indian Masters – has attracted the likes of Thongchai Jaidee, Bernd Wiesberger, Simon Dyson, Alvaro Quiros and Colin Montgomerie.
South African JBE Kruger won the tournament last year to record his first European Tour title, and he returns to defend this time around.
At 7,347 yards, the course isn’t short, but wide fairways, minimal rough and four reachable par 5s suggest low scoring will be a feature of the tournament.
The lack of any world-class names means there is no outright favourite, and this could be a week for one of the Tour’s lesser lights to make their mark.
I’m expecting Gaganjeet Bhullar, at 25/1 with Labrokes, to feature this week. The talented Indian made quite the impression at the back end of last season, and his length will be advantageous around this golf course. He finished eighth at the Challenge Tour’s Gujarat Kensville Challenge earlier this season and enters the tournament off the back of a top 25 last week on the Asian Tour. This season, he ranks first in Driving Accuracy and 10th in Greens in Regulation on the Asian circuit.
Gregory Bourdy, at 33/1 with Ladbrokes, is a good option this week. The Frenchman often plays his best golf in humid, sub-topical conditions, and can be dangerous when he finds some form with the putter. He’ll also be confident after a good start to the 2013 season, finishing tied for third at the Alfred Dunhill Championship and second in his last outing at the Africa Open.
Andy Sullivan, at 40/1 with Ladbrokes, has made a great start to life on the European Tour. He missed the cut two weeks ago at the Tshwane Open, but has already notched two top tens and a 12th-place finish in just six events this season. He generally performs well outside Europe and will fancy his chances of a maiden victory at the Avantha Masters – a tournament with a relatively weak field.
Kristoffer Broberg, at 66/1 with Ladbrokes, is worth keeping an eye on this week. The Swede won four tournaments on the Challenge Tour last season, proving he has the talent and aptitude to mix it with the best. He finished second at the Alfred Dunhill Championship and put together four solid rounds at the Tshwane Open. Much like Sullivan, he’ll be quietly confident of challenging for the title this week.
Peter Whiteford, at 125/1 with Ladbrokes, is a good each way bet. The Scot posted four under-par rounds at his last event, the Tshwane Open, and is a highly rated young golfer with a good golf swing. What’s more, he led the Avantha Masters in 2011 before being disqualified on Saturday for failing to take a one-stroke penalty after his ball moved on the 18th fairway.
Avantha Masters advised bets:
2pts each way on Gaganjeet Bhullar at 25/1 with Ladbrokes
2pts each way on Gregory Bourdy at 33/1 with Ladbrokes
2pts each way on Andy Sullivan at 40/1 with Ladbrokes
2pts each way on Kristoffer Broberg at 66/1 with Ladbrokes
2pts each way on Peter Whiteford at 125/1 with Ladbrokes