Joost Luiten 20/1
After a so so showing in France and missing the cut at the US PGA tipsters were waiting to see how Joost would fare in Wales and he showed he didn’t disappoint. His tied fourth in the valley added to his tasty formline of five top 11’s in his last six events. Considering that also includes his win at The Lyoness Open and tied second at Carton House at the Irish and it’s easy to make a case for the Dutchman. A word of caution though; Joost is not perennially a name that features in Crans Montana and has a recent best of 15 in 2011.
Miguel Angel Jimenez 25/1
If Joost Luiten doesn’t have a pedigree at the Omega European Masters, Miguel Angel Jimenez certainly does. The Mechanic won here in 2010 and hasn’t been outside the top 11 in the last five stagings (T11 2012, T9 2011, win 2010, 4 2009, T3 2008). Now fully recovered from leg break (ironically when skiing) Miguel has shown this season he can still contend with big performances at the BMW PGA Championship (T4), The Open (T13) and at the WGC in Firestone (T4). Missed the cut in Wales, but dont worry about that, Crans Sur Sierre and Celtic Manor are very very different!
Brett Rumford 28/1
Brett Rumford is having a second coming after his early season double at the China Open and Ballantines. He followed up his tied sixth at Gleneagles with another top 10 at The Wales Open (T8). The Aussie is also a former winner here; he beat Philip Archer in a playoff in 2007. Has a best since of tied 13th in 2010 but brings much improved form in this week hence the shortened odds.
Peter Uihlein 40/1
You might be wondering why a guy that just finished second in Wales and is already a European Tour winner this year is out at 40/1 but the bookies have their reasons. Chief among them will be the worry that the massive hitting American will struggle to keep the ball in bounds off the tee. However having missed cuts at Gleaneagles and before that at the US PGA and Reno Tahoe Open, the Titleist chiefs boss will bring huge confidence from his Wales performance. Don’t count him out.
Fredrik Andersson Hed 80/1
It’s hard to pinpoint long odds value that you really could see featuring each way but Freddie The Head made a nice cameo at Gleneagles (before bombing out in the final round) and has course form. The veteran tied second last year behind runaway winner Richie Ramsey and tied sixth in 2011.
Best Of The Rest
Jaco Van Zyl is a guy who is usually on my radar around here having tied third in 2011 and top 15’d again last year. His form of late is poor however and he’s out at 66/1 and better on the exchanges.