Preview: European Tour’s Alfred Dunhill Links Championship

Charl Schwartzel current official PGA TOUR headshot  (Photo by Caryn Levy/PGA TOUR) *** Local Caption *** Charl Schwartzel

Charl Schwartzel current official PGA TOUR headshot (Photo by Caryn Levy/PGA TOUR) *** Local Caption *** Charl Schwartzel

Preview – European Tour – Alfred Dunhill Links Championship – Carnoustie, Kingsbarns, Old Course – Scotland –

The European Tour returns to action this week at the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship in Scotland.

Last season’s Players and U.S. Open champion Martin Kaymer headlines the field as a past champion from 2010. Kaymer, the betting favorite at Sky Bet with 10-to-1 odds to capture the title, needs to make up some ground in the Race to Dubai standings with just a few events remaining before The Final Series.

European Tour favorites Ernie Els, Charl Schwartzel and Graeme McDowell are competing this week along with several American players making the trip including Brooks Koepka, Stewart Cink, Pat Perez, Scott Piercy and Sean O’Hair.

Celebrating its 15th anniversary, the event features a three-course rotation including Carnoustie, Kingsbarns and The Old Course with a cut coming after Saturday’s third round.

Several players in the mix for the Race to Dubai – Danny Willett (2nd in the europeantourlogo15standings), Branden Grace (5th) and Shane Lowry (6th) – tee it up this week. Five of the Top 25 players in the Official World Golf Ranking are here including Koepka, who is the best-ranked in the field at No. 17.

Golf Channel has television coverage all week.

FANTASY: Look for Koepka, a former European Tour winner, to be spotlighted this week. He has a shot to be an emergency captain’s pick for the U.S. team at the Presidents Cup next week in Germany, if Jim Furyk (wrist) can’t go. Willett has had a banner year. He has a pair of wins in 2015 including the Omega European Masters in

Race to Dubai heats up

Race to Dubai heats up

July. Look for a refreshed Lee Westwood to play well.

BETTORS: While Kaymer is the betting favorite (10-1), look for value in a pick like Grace at 16-1. He won this title in 2012 and has two European Tour victories this season, but his last was in January. Schwartzel (20-1) has been trending lately, but has struggled to close. This could be his week. For a long shot, take Lee Slattery at 100-1. Slattery won in Russia in early September and contended again in September coming up just short at the KLM Open.

Other Golf News:

  • Thongchai Jaidee’s victory at last week’s Porsche European Open moved the Thai to 32nd in the latest world rankings up 12 places. Jaidee’s triumph was his ballhole7th career European Tour title and moved him to 8th in the Race to Dubai standings.
  • Davis Love III and Darren Clarke are gearing for the 2016 Ryder Cup – about one year away. The Captains are already planning the competition, which will be hosted at Hazeltine in Minnesota.
  • The Tour Finals – a four-tournament series – climaxes this week at the Tour Championship at TPC Sawgrass in Florida. Several past major champions are in the field including Lucas Glover and John Daly.