KLM Open 2024 Tips: Five big each-way shots for Amsterdam

 | Wednesday 19th June 2024, 12:34pm

Wednesday 19th June 2024, 12:34pm

Jamie DP World

Following a two-week absence due to the US Open, the DP World Tour continues its European Swing this week, with the KLM Open at The International in Amsterdam.

As always, here is Jamie Worsley with his KLM Open predictions, including six selections ranging from 28/1 to 150/1...

KLM Open Betting Tips

  • 2 pts Alex Fitzpatrick each-way (1/5 - 8 places) @ 28/1
  • 1.5 pts Niklas Norgaard each way (1/5 - 8 places) @ 33/1
  • 1.25 pts Rasmus Neergaard-Petersen each-way (1/5 - 8 places) @ 45/1
  • 1 pt Dan Bradbury each-way (1/5 - 8 places) @ 60/1
  • 1 pt Joe Dean each-way (1/5 - 8 places) @ 150/1

TOURNAMENT HISTORY

The KLM (Dutch) Open has been in existence for over 100 years and has been a mainstay on the DP World Tour calendar since the tour’s beginnings in 1972.

Three players have lifted this trophy on three occasions in the DPWT era, including two of the greats of European golf, Seve Ballesteros (1976, 1980, 1986) and Bernhard Langer (1984, 1992, 2001). They were then joined by England’s Simon Dyson in 2011, who had previously won the title in 2006 and 2009.

The star-studded list of winners for this historic event also includes Jose Maria Olazabal (1989), Payne Stewart (1991), Colin Montgomerie (1993), Miguel Angel Jimenez (1994), Lee Westwood (1999) and Martin Kaymer (2010). Whilst Joost Luiten is the most recent home favourite to taste victory, winning the title in 2013 and 2016.

Last five winners:

  • 2023 – Winner: Pablo Larrazabal (-13); runner-up: Adrian Otaegui (-11)
  • 2022 – Winner: Victor Perez (-13, playoff); runner-up: Ryan Fox (-13)
  • 2021 – Winner: Kristoffer Broberg (-23); runner-up: Matti Schmid (-20)
  • 2019 – Winner: Sergio Garcia (-18); runner-up: Nicolai Hojgaard (-17)
  • 2018 – Winner: Ashun Wu (-16); runner-up: Chris Wood (-15)

Pablo Larrazabal was a convincing winner of the event last year, converting his 54-hole lead with a two-shot victory over fellow Spaniard, Adrian Otaegui, to become a nine-time DPWT winner. He will defend his title this week and would become the first player since American, Bob Byman in 1978 to win back-to-back titles in the event.

THE COURSE

The KLM Open rarely stays in the same place too long and after three years at Bernardus Golf, it returns to The International in Amsterdam this week.

Completed in 2012, this course was designed by Bruno Steensels, in collaboration with Ian Woosnam and previously hosted the 2019 edition of the event, which was won by Sergio Garcia.

There will be one notable change to the setup from that 2019 renewal this week, as the previously par 4 11th hole has been converted into a 127-yard par 3 instead. Presumably as the ‘challenge a pro’ hole that has been a feature of recent KLM Opens.

This means that the course will play to a par 71 this year, measuring 6914 yards. It possesses 9x par 4s (341-475 yards), 5x par 3s (127-233 yards) and 4x par 5s (527-589 yards).

Located in the heart of Amsterdam, bordering Schiphol Airport and two motorways, the course has somewhat of an unusual setting.

This undulating, exposed course is linksy in style, with manmade dunes and often large, abundant bunkers framing most holes.

Dramatic elevation changes aren’t common though there are a few elevated tee positions, predominantly into the sloping fairways, where players can cop many an uneven lie. Said fairways are around average in width overall - some very generous and some narrow - and most are doglegging. They’re protected by imposing, strategic bunkering and fescue rough, which can result in some tricky lies.

The International really heats up around the huge and elevated putting surfaces. Many have several tiers, and are littered with severe slopes and excessive contouring. Although, they possess some fun potential pin positions, with players able to find swales and hollows that will see the ball run directly down to the flag.

They are full of run-offs and false fronts that can send the ball wandering off into collection areas and with some very deep greenside bunkers, they are well protected.

With water in-play on around nine holes in total – including three of the last four and four of the last six -  and the course possessing numerous short par 4s and reachable par 5s, there is a major element of risk/reward that runs throughout the venue.

Combine that with the open and exposed nature of the course - which means it is very susceptible to wind - and with interesting routing that requires players to hit shots into ever-changing wind directions, we could be in for a fun week in the Netherlands.

THE WEATHER

Conditions are forecast to be pleasantly warm and largely dry throughout the week. Though with constant winds of between 10-15mph, along with gusts up to 25mph, wind management will be a factor on this exposed course.

KEY STATS

  • SG: Approach
  • SG: Off-the-Tee/Driving Distance
  • Scrambling
  • 3-Putt Avoidance

Official tournament-specific stats aren’t readily available for the 2019 version of the event, though with just one edition staged here, I’m not sure they’d be all that telling anyway.

Sergio Garcia appeared to excel in approach when winning here and most of the top-5 also looked solid in this area. This makes complete sense when we’re looking at large, multi-tiered greens, into which players will need to be precise to hit the correct spots and not leave themselves lengthy putts with lots of movement.

Sergio also drove the ball well and whilst The International is only short, it was striking how many players at the top of the leaderboard were more length than accuracy. With Garcia, Nicolai Hojgaard, Matt Wallace and Callum Shinkwin – all whom finished top-5 - long drivers.

With the windy conditions this week and run-offs around the greens, we’ll likely need players who scramble well to contend. Whilst with the size and contours of the greens, 3-putt avoidance could also be a key stat.

CORRELATING EVENTS

Comp form is scarce but there were a whole host of courses that looked potentially helpful guides to finding the winner this week.

Whilst patently not an authentic links, it’s certainly linksy in style and I think form across the Scottish Open, Alfred Dunhill Links Championship and events at Hillside should all be considered. As well as the Hero Open at Fairmont St Andrews, another modern, links-like layout.

Other courses of a similar ilk include the host of this event for the previous three years, Bernardus Golf; host of the SDC Championship in South Africa, St Francis Links; and Yas Links, which has been host of the Abu Dhabi Championship since 2022, and possesses similarly large and quirky green complexes.

Golf in the Middle East in general should work with the exposed nature of the courses there. The Qatar Masters at Doha Golf Club and the Oman Open at Al Mouj Golf Club stand out especially, as both are rolling courses with large, undulating greens.

I’ll head back to Europe now and with lots of water in-play, manmade mounds and thick fescue rough lining the fairways, I think the Open de France at Le Golf National, the Made in HimmerLand at the HimmerLand Resort and the Italian Open at Marco Simone Golf Club could work. Whist the European Open at Green Eagle Resort is also open, watery and has sloping, tiered greens that are tough to navigate.

THE FIELD

The top-ranked player in this field is two-time PGA Tour winner, Luke List at #75, who accepted a sponsors invite to play this week. He is one of four players from inside the world’s top-100, joined by Sebastian Soderberg (#88), Matt Wallace (#92) and Rasmus Hojgaard (#96).

Pablo Larrazabal is the defending champion and there are a further five former winners in attendance: Kristoffer Broberg (2021), Ashun Wu (2018), Joost Luiten (2016, 2013), Ross Fisher (2007) and Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano (2005).

Germany’s Matti Schmid makes his first DPWT start of the year; Danny Willett will make just his third start since returning from injury; the current leading player on the Challenge Tour, Rasmus Neergaard-Petersen gets the chance to test himself at a higher level; former world #1 amateur, Takumi Kanaya gets a rare chance to shine at this level; and look out for high-ranking Dutch amateur, Lars van der Vight, who won the prestigious Spanish Amateur at the beginning of March this year.

KLM Open Odds

*Please click on the link above to be taken to the main KLM Open market on Betfred.com (or app) for all the live betting prices on this tournament

SELECTIONS

Market leaders: Matt Wallace 14/1, Rasmus Hojgaard 14/1, Tom McKibbin 16/1, Sebastian Soderberg 16/1, Bernd Wiesberger 18/1, Laurie Canter 18/1

The very top of the betting is strong and many look well-suited to this test. Having said that, the same can be said about plenty others this week and it looks a typically wide open DPWT event.

I’m going to look just beyond those main market leaders and after recording the best finish of his season in his last start in Sweden, I’m taking Alex Fitzpatrick to make that DPWT breakthrough in the Netherlands.

2 pts Alex Fitzpatrick each-way (1/5 - 8 places) @ 28/1

After impressing on the tour at the back end of last year, Fitzpatrick has shown a great level of consistency in 2024. In 10 starts on the tour, he has finished inside the top-25 on six occasions and recorded a best of 4th in the Scandinavian Mixed last time out.

What has been noticeable about his performances this year is that much like brother, Matt, he has managed to find some length and hasn’t had to sacrifice any accuracy to achieve this. This has taken him from ranking outside the top-100 on tour off-the-tee last season, to ranking 25th currently this. Combined with a strong short game, that sees him rank 3rd in scrambling and 21st in 3-putt avoidance, he has a strong selection of stats for the test that awaits this week.

Fitzpatrick has some strong links form from his junior days and showed his affinity for that style of golf with a top-20 in last year’s Open Championship, which will serve him well here. He also finished 13th on his solo attempt at Le Golf National in 2022 and finishing 3rd in the Netherlands on the Challenge Tour in the B-NL Challenge Trophy last year, he has displayed a level of comfort in this part of the world before.

1.5 pts Niklas Norgaard each way (1/5 - 8 places) @ 33/1

Niklas Norgaard has gone closer than ever to making his tour breakthrough in recent stars and can rely on his excellent driving ability to overpower The International this week.

The Dane has looked solid on tour in the previous couple of years, recording several top-10s but his two best finishes on the DPWT have come over the course of his last three starts. He finished 2nd and one shot back of Nacho Elvira in the Soudal Open in Belgium three starts ago, and followed that up with a 4th-place finish in the European Open on his next start.

He drove the ball superbly in each of those efforts and whilst he’s always looked good in this area, he’s been better than ever in 2024, ranking 2nd. He’s also enjoying his best season in approach, ranking 52nd and with scrambling numbers solid, he has the tee-to-green prowess to handle this test.

Norgaard has put up many decent performances at the comp courses mentioned. The best of them is that 4th in Germany two starts ago but he also recorded top-10s in the Made in HimmerLand and Dunhill Links, whilst he has finished in solid positions of 21st and 31st on his previous starts in this event.

Danish golf is flying right now and I’m hoping he can bottle some of that positivity to earn the biggest win of his career this week.

1.25 pts Rasmus Neergaard-Petersen each-way (1/5 - 8 places) @ 45/1

Speaking of in-form Danes, Rasmus Neergaard-Petersen has taken the Challenge Tour by storm this season and having performed well in his limited starts on the DPWT, I’m taking this former top-30 amateur to be among the leading contenders this week.

Rasmus turned pro in June of last year after a stellar amateur career that took him as high as #27 in the world. He had many highlights in his time at this level, including back-to-back German Amateur Championship wins, whilst on the American collegiate scene he recorded a win in the General Hackler Championship – an event won by players such as Will Zalatoris and Cameron Young in previous years – in 2022 and he also finished 2nd in the prestigious Western Amateur Championship in 2020, losing out to one-time #1 amateur and current PGA Tour professional, Pierceson Coody.

He instantly made an impact at this level when turning pro last year, finishing 7th in the BMW International Open on his first DPWT start as a professional. He then maintained consistent form for the rest of the year, recording several other top-20s across the DPWT and Challenge Tour.

Neergaard-Petersen failed to earn a full DPWT card at Q-School at the end of last year, which meant he would have to tee it up on the Challenge Tour this season. He has been utterly dominant there, recording two wins, six top-10s and eight top-25s in just 10 starts. Almost ensuring his place on the DPWT next season.

It’s hard to be certain exactly what he’s about, but he has shown glimpses of quality across the board and both wins on the Challenge Tour have come on completely different setups. The second of those, at Saadiyat Beach Golf Club in the UAE Challenge, suggests he may enjoy this week’s test and with his top-25 in last year’s Alfred Dunhill Links Championship strengthening this belief, this uber-talented individual looked a very backable price here.

1 pt Dan Bradbury each-way (1/5 - 8 places) @ 60/1

Dan Bradbury’s powerful ball-striking game looks a good fit for this challenge and though the putter has largely failed to cooperate, the rest of his game is looking strong enough that he won’t need to putt lights out to contend.

There is no doubt that Bradbury’s second full season on tour has been disappointing but he has looked better over recent starts. After finishing 30th on his first start of the year in the Dubai Invitational, he then fired off six missed cuts in a row. He broke this run four starts ago in China, finishing 48th and two starts ago in the European Open he recorded his best result of the year, finishing 22nd. Before narrowly missing the cut on his latest start in the Scandinavian Mixed.

The reason for this underwhelming collection of form has been his woeful time on the greens. He’s hit the ball superbly for most of the season, ranking 1st in approach, 2nd tee-to-green, 3rd in greens-in-regulation and 30th off-the-tee, but ranks outside the top-135 in every putting category; from strokes-gained to 3-putt avoidance.

However, despite missing the cut in Sweden, Bradbury did produce his best putting performance of the year, ranking 29th for his first two rounds, and if able to repeat that, this usually high-class ball-striker can achieve the best finish of his year at The International.

1 pt Joe Dean each-way (1/5 - 8 places) @ 150/1

Joe Dean won the Dutch Junior Open all the way back in 2012 and I’m hoping that positive experience can help him to another impressive DPWT performance this week.

It’s been eight long, tough years since Dean turned pro – during which time he’s had to take a regular job as a supermarket delivery driver to make ends meet - but after finishing 25th at last year’s Q-School, he finally earned himself status on the DPWT for this season, and boy has he taken advantage of it.

After missing the cut in Qatar on his first start of the year, Dean finished a brilliant 2nd in the Kenya Open, earning the biggest cheque of his career. However, his position at Q-School put him far down the pecking order for starts and he’s found further chances hard to come by.

He had to wait another month before playing in the Indian Open, where he missed the cut and then it was another two months before his next start. But he again took brilliant advantage of the opportunity, finishing 5th in the Soudal Open two starts ago. That’s two top-5s in just five starts this season and putting him currently at #59 on the Race to Dubai Rankings, he’d comfortably earn full playing privileges on tour for next season if he were to stay around that position.

Having said that, he will want to make sure of that place and I fancy him to do so with another strong performance this week.

Dean’s two top-5s this season have both been engineered by quality driving – where he’s long – and excellent putting, ranking 2nd on the greens in that runner-up finish in Kenya. In addition, he’s got plenty of positive experience of links golf from his amateur days and with that win in the Netherlands from 2012, The International looks an ideal spot for him to record another high-level finish.

You can find all Jamie's latest Golf Betting Tips over on our dedicated golf Insights hub.

Share Article

(Visited 981 times, 1 visits today)