There are just three events left for this season's DP World Tour and for this one, we are heading off to the Doha Golf Club for the Qatar Masters. This is a really good event every year and the scoring can certainly go one of two ways.
Last year’s winner was Ewen Ferguson, with a score of seven under par, which he achieved in really windy conditions. The year previous, Eddie Pepperell won this event with 18 under, when the weather was much calmer, so it all depends on the draw.
There is no rain currently expected, although the forecast does look windy this week, so you could see a variety of scores. However, one thing is certain, you need a proper ball striker round here, and one that can remain as consistent as possible all week.
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The Doha Golf Club plays host to the Qatar Masters once again this year and it promises to be a superb event. This 7466-yard golf course, with four par 5s, is located in the Qatar desert and the scoring can go one of two ways depending on the weather.
In calm conditions, players are able to take advantage of their length off the tee with plenty of run, but when the wind gets up here, it can be brutal, as seen during last year's event. But either way, it’s set to be a great contest.
My strongest selection for the week is Jordan Smith, who is a seriously talented player and it’s only a matter of time before he takes his third DP World Tour title. He went really close in the French Open a couple of weeks back, finishing in a tie for second, and then played steady enough in the Andalucia Masters after a tough opening round of 74.
Jordan is a real power player, who has a lot of length off the tee, which is going to be essential round here. He always seems to play very well in this part of the world, having won the Ras Al Khaimah in the UAE and having some good finishes at the beginning of this season. Although he missed the cut here last year, the weather was extreme, so you can put a line through that performance. He’s coming into this event swinging well, and at 20/1, I think Jordan Smith is the best bet of the week.
Matt Wallace has played some good golf this year without winning, but he is another who has found some decent form of late, with two Top 10’s in his last five tournaments.
His latest was in the Alfred Dunhill, where he finished in a tie for sixth after the event was cut short to just three rounds, which is a shame because who knows how it would have panned out if all four rounds had been played. He is a proper ball striker who should relish this course, provided the weather doesn’t get too harsh.
Matthieu Pavon finally broke his maiden by winning the Spanish Open just two weeks ago, and has Top 10s either side of that too. Regardless of that, he would have made my squad anyway, as he is ideally suited to this course. The downside, is that his recent form has made him shorter in the market than I’d have liked.
He is quite a big hitter off the tee and considering he is full of confidence at the minute, I can see him playing his best golf in Qatar and having another good week. Matthieu Pavon ticks a lot of the boxes for this week's Qatar Masters.
Matthew Southgate has been finding himself at the right end of the leaderboard of late and he is dangerous at this sort of course. He is starting to find some momentum recently and seems to play significantly better at the longer courses, which can only work in his favour this week.
He has managed to bag four Top 10’s this season and his best performance came just two weeks ago at the Alfred Dunhill, where he finished in a tie for second. He hasn’t won on the DP World Tour yet, but he is coming into this event in good form and he is definitely capable of winning. The 40/1 is about right for Matthew Southgate and he is an interesting contender this week.
Gavin Green has made my squad a few times this year and not quite managed to get the job done for us, but this week in Qatar he has to have a good chance. His form ties in nicely with that of Jordan Smith, and even though he is a touch less consistent, he has all the attributes to play seriously well on this golf course.
I have always thought a lot of Gavin Green, and feel he really should have won on Tour already, but there is still time. With the quality of his game, I think he could go well this week and he makes the squad as a 50/1 each way punt.
I am going to take a swing at one here (pardon the pun) and give Marc Warren the opportunity to bag us some profit. Now, he is a 250/1 shot for a reason and will need his game to be right on point this week, but he is a player that crops up from time to time, and could feature here.
He is actually a very experienced player who has been on the European circuit for nearly 20 years now and has picked up four good wins along the way too. It is meant to be a bit windy out in Qatar this week, so I’m hoping that his experience will shine through and reflect in his scoring. There are definitely worse 250/1 shots out there.
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