Volvo Golf Champions betting guide

The first European Tour event of 2014 – the Volvo Golf Champions – takes place this week at the Durban Country Club in South Africa.

The tournament was inaugurated in 2009, and entrance is restricted to players who recorded a European Tour victory in 2013, as well as those who have notched more than 10 wins throughout the course of their European Tour career.

As such, a number of the circuit’s leading lights have opted to travel to South Africa to start their years.

The likes of Charl Schwartzel, Miguel Angel Jimenez, Thomas Bjorn, Louis Oosthuizen and recent Callaway signing Matteo Manassero all feature in the 38-strong field.

Durban Country Club measures just 6,700 yards, so those employing effective course management and finding fairways are likely to do well this week.

Schwartzel is the 3/1 favourite this week, and despite his exemplary record in South Africa, those odds just aren’t good enough with such a high-quality field in place.

Miguel Angel Jimenez
, at 16/1 with Ladbrokes, is a man made to defy convention and make an indelible stamp in golf’s history books. The extrovert Spaniard turned 50 last week, but anyone who thinks that milestone will slow him down is misguided. He won in Hong Kong last November on a course with a number of parallels to Durban Country Club, and his game is ideally suited to this type of layout.

Matteo Manassero, at 25/1 with Ladbrokes, is another player who should be well suited to Durban Country Club. He is one of the tour’s most accurate players and his comparative lack of length won’t be an issue. What’s more, he ranked 8th in Putts Per Round on the European Tour last season, so he’s excellent at converting birdie chances. Granted, it might take him time to get used to his new equipment, but 25/1 is too good to miss out on.

Dawie Van Der Walt
, at 100/1 with Ladbrokes, is extremely well priced given his recent form and past record in South Africa. The burly South African claimed the 2013 Tshwane Open and notched a second European Tour victory in his last outing at the Nelson Mandela Championship, both on home soil. He isn’t used to playing in such esteemed company, but such high odds on a player clearly in top form just can’t be ignored.

Volvo Golf Champions betting tips:

4pts each way on Miguel Angel Jimenez at 16/1 with Ladbrokes
3pts each way on Matteo Manassero at 25/1 with Ladbrokes
2pts each way on Dawie Van Der Walt at 100/1 with Ladbrokes