Dutchman Ready to Strike in Germany

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The European Tour heads to Germany this week and there could be a Dutchman lifting the trophy high at the end of it!

Joost Luiten

This week’s European Tour golf will have a different feel as the Porsche European Open in Hamburg has had to be reduced to a 54-hole event due to Germany’s Covid-19 travel restrictions and it is a later start as action will commence on Saturday.

Paul Casey will be defending the title he won in September 2019 and should be confident not only because he finished seventh on his only other visit to Green Eagles but he will also be reflecting on a job well done when he was fourth at the US PGA Championship last time out.

Casey is 6/1 for a repeat success while talented Mexican Abraham Ancer is 15/2 for glory.

Austria’s Bernd Wiesberger, who was fifth last year and heads to the tournament having posted a five-shot victory at last week’s Made in Himmerland, can be backed at 14/1.

Luiten in Rich Vein of Form

It may be wise to steer clear of short prices in the shortened format, particularly as a 19th spot in the Irish Open in 2019 is Ancer’s only professional European experience.

So despite the fact his 26th at The Masters was his worst performance in his last 10 outings, it would be a leap of faith to back him this week.

Instead, it could pay to follow consistent performer Joost Luiten at 40/1, even though he missed the cut on his only previous appearance at the course.

The Dutchman, who has won six times on the European Tour, was 15th in Denmark last week and that came after some other good recent performances.

He was seventh in the Kenya Savannah, 12th in the Austrian Open and eighth in Gran Canaria and he was excellent for three rounds at the Tenerife Open before he was forced to withdraw with a stomach complaint, carding a first-round 66 which included a hole in one.

Luiten is ranked third on the Tour in greens in regulation and is an attractive price to add to his trophy haul.

Happy Memories for Smith

Jordan Smith is available at 40/1 and the Englishman looks like another attractive betting proposition.

Smith will have fond memories of Green Eagles after he claimed the title in 2017 when he overcame Alexander Levy in a playoff, and his recent form suggests he can make his mark in Hamburg once again.

He built upon a 17th-placed finish at the British Masters with third spot at the Made in Himmerland last week and Smith should be brimming with confidence after posting weekend rounds of 67 and 65.

Meronk Can Make His Mark

Poland’s Adrian Meronk is also worth supporting at 33/1. He was 31st last week but recent third places at the British Masters and Tenerife Open suggest it will not be long until he is in the winner’s circle on the European Tour for the first time.

He is ranked third in strokes gained: off-the-tee and to be 11th in par-five scoring when the North Course has three long holes in the final four could prove handy.

*All odds correct at time of writing

A vastly experienced journalist, Ian has worked the beat on a number of local newspapers and covers a number of different sports for the Racing Post

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