The PGA Tour is also in Asia this week, and a host of big names have made the journey to Malaysia for the third edition of the unofficial CIMB Asia Pacific Classic.
Tiger Woods is the main draw and the overwhelming favourite this week at Kuala Lumpur’s MINES Resort and Golf Club, but he will face stiff competition from a strong international field and a collection of 2012 PGA Tour winner.
The PGA Tour has also announced in the build-up to the tournament both the CIMB Classic and the WGC-HSBC Champions will be official Tour events as of next season.
That means they will reward Fed-Ex Cup points, provide full exemptions for the winners and count as one of the 15 events that players need to compete in to qualify as PGA Tour members.
The MINES resort hosted the tournament in both 2010 and 2011, with respective winning scores of -18 and -23, so expect to see plenty of birdies again this year.
Jeff Overton, at 20/1 with Ladbrokes, deserves some consideration this week. He is in good form, finishing 13th at the JT Shriners and eighth at the Frys.com Open. He also shot a course-record 62 in last year’s second round en route to a second-place finish. The 2010 Ryder Cup star is 15th in Birdie Average and second in Par 5 Performance on the PGA Tour.
Brendon de Jonge, a 25/1 with Ladbrokes, is a decent price this week. His last three results on the PGA Tour have been a tie for 28th at the BMW Championship, outright second at the JT Shriners and a tie for fourth last week at the McGladrey Classic, where he closed with a 65. He is also eighth in Greens in Regulation and 10th in the All-Around Ranking.
Martin Laird, at 33/1 with Ladbrokes, should be very well rested coming into the week. He hasn’t played any European or PGA Tour golf for almost three weeks, and will be confident returning to a venue where he finished tied third in 2010. His length will also be an advantage on a course that should yield plenty of birdies.
Greg Chalmers, at 50/1 with Ladbrokes, is a good price this week. The Australian is in good form, having finished inside the top 16 in three of his last four outings, including a top ten at last weeks ISPS Handa Perth International. He is also 17th in Strokes Gained – Putting and 11th in Scrambling, and will be confident after comfortably retaining his PGA Tour card for 2013.
Jbe Kruger, at 125/1 with Ladbrokes, warrants an each way bet this week. Granted, he hasn’t set the world alight with his recent performances, but the South African often plays well in Asia. Indeed, he won his first European Tour tour even in India earlier this season and followed that with a tie for 11th at the Maybank Malaysian Open and a tie for 18th at the Volvo China Open.
CIMB Classic advised bets:
2pts each way on Jeff Overton at 20/1 with Ladbrokes
2pts each way on Brendon de Jonge at 25/1 with Ladbrokes
2pts each way on Martin Laird at 33/1 with Ladbrokes
2pts each way on Greg Chalmers at 50/1 with Ladbrokes
2pts each way on Jbe Kruger at 125/1 with Ladbrokes