Mauritius Open 2023 Tips: Six selections to finish the year

 | December 12 | 

16 mins read

Jamie DP World

The DP World Tour closes out 2023 on the island of Mauritius, with the seventh edition of the Mauritius Open at its new host course, La Reserve Golf Links. Our expert golf tipster Jamie Worsley is back with his usual comprehensive preview and six selections for success. 

Mauritius Open Betting Tips

  • 1.5 pts Renato Paratore each way (1/5 - 6 Places) - 30/1 
  • 1 pt Matthew Baldwin each way (1/5 - 6 places) - 45/1 
  • 1 pt Kristian Krogh Johannessen each way (1/5 - 8 places) - 80/1 
  • 1 pt Matteo Manassero each way (1/5 - 6 places) - 80/1
  • 1 pt David Ravetto each way (1/5 - 8 places) - 90/1 
  • 1 pt Luca Filippi each way (1/5 - 6 places) - 150/1 

TOURNAMENT HISTORY

The Mauritius Open debuted in 2015 and after initially being staged in May, it moved to this end of year slot in 2017; becoming the last event of the year in 2022. Like the previous three weeks, it is co-sanctioned between the DP World Tour and South Africa’s Sunshine Tour.

The tournament alternated back and forth between Le Chateau Golf Course and Anahita Golf Club every year from 2015-2019 and then returned from a covid-enforced two year break last year; this time at Mont Choisy Le Golf. La Reserve Golf Links provides us with a fourth different host course in just seven editions.

Past Winners:

  • 2022: Antoine Rozner -19 (Mont Choisy Le Golf)
  • 2019: Rasmus Hojgaard -19 (Le Chateau Golf Course)
  • 2018: Kurt Kitayama -20 (Anahita Golf Club)
  • 2017: Dylan Frittelli -16 (Le Chateau Golf Course)
  • 2016: Jeunghun Wang -6 (Anahita Golf Club)
  • 2015: George Coetzee -13 (Le Chateau Golf Course)

Antoine Rozner won his third DPWT title in the event last year, with the most dominant display in the history of the Mauritius Open; beating Alfredo Garcia-Heredia by five strokes. He returns to defend this week.

THE COURSE

La Reserve Golf Links is a brand new course, officially opening at the start of this month. It is located at Heritage Golf Club - the same golf resort where 2015/17/19 host, Le Chateau GC is situated – and was designed by prolific South African architect, Peter Matkovich, with Louis Oosthuizen lending a hand as co-designer.

Matkovich is also the designer of the Le Chateau course, as well as last year’s host, Mont Choisy Le Golf.

La Reserve is an open and exposed links-like course which offers spectacular views of the Indian Ocean on almost every hole. It will play as a par 72, measuring 7331 yards; containing just eight par 4s (311-495 yards), five par 5s (542-617 yards) and five par 3s (170-215 yards).

This undulating course has elevation changes throughout, with most holes playing downhill through the man-made dunes.

Though the fairways are generous, they are protected by penal pot bunkers and larger waste bunkers, with lengthy native grasses and some robust rough offering additional protection.

All of this is in-play around the predominantly raised infinity greens, which are bordered by some severely steep drop off areas that will prove an instant penalty if your approach are inaccurate.

Much like Mont Choisy last year, the course uses paspalum grass from tee-to-green.

We’re a little in the dark as to exactly how La Reserve Golf Links will play this week and how difficult the pros will find it. I suspect the conditions will be a huge factor in determining the latter, as the openness of the setup leaves it at the mercy of the elements. However, with five par 5s, most of which look gettable and two potentially drivable par 4s, I think we may see decent scoring if wind doesn’t play much of a part.

THE STATS

Key Stats:

  • SG: Approach
  • SG: Around-the-Greens
  • SG: Putting (Paspalum)
  • Par 5 Scoring

There’s a lot of rain on the way this week - both pre-event and during the tournament – which should make course conditions receptive and with that I’m going to look towards the stronger iron players in the field.

Though the wind in the forecast isn’t too severe, there’s enough of a breeze to make things tricky around this exposed course. Greens will be missed and the challenges that await around them means this week’s contenders will have to show some impressive short-game skills; an ability to putt well on paspalum also a benefit.

CORRELATING EVENTS

The obvious place to look for clues here are those previous renewals of the Mauritius Open, particularly the 2015/17/19 editions at Le Chateau Golf Course and last year’s event at Mont Choisy Le Golf – both courses designed by Peter Matkovich.

We also have the benefit of several other modern links/links-like courses being used on the DPWT. This includes most renewals of the Scottish Open since 2011, including current host The Renaissance Club; along with Yas Links, host of the Abu Dhabi Championship since last year; the Dutch Open at Bernardus Golf and this year’s SDC Championship host, St Francis Links.

The Made in Denmark/HimmerLand at the HimmerLand Resort should also work, as another short, exposed, links-like setup and the Qatar Masters at Doha Golf Club has always been a place where strong links players have enjoyed success.

Finally, form on actual links courses, such as those used in The Open Championship and Alfred Dunhill Links Championship can be seen as nothing but a positive.

THE WEATHER

As mentioned, rain is set to fall throughout the week and whilst it isn’t predicted to be too heavy at any point, it should still take its toll on the course and soften it up.

There is forecasted to be a constant 10mph during the event and with gusts at up to 22mph, the players won’t have everything their own way.

THE FIELD

This week’s field isn’t bursting with star power but is interesting nonetheless, with another strong mix of DP World Tour and Sunshine Tour competitors. It gives an excellent opportunity for someone to earn a potentially career-altering victory.

Frenchman, Matthieu Pavon is one of several Frenchmen who call Mauritius home. He is the top-ranked player in the field this week and only member of the world’s top 100 in attendance at #96.

Pavon’s compatriot and our defending champion, Antoine Rozner is the next-best ranked player in the field at #128 and is one of only two former winners set to tee it up, joined by 2017 winner, Dylan Frittelli.

Monday’s Alfred Dunhill Championship winner, Louis Oosthuizen is back in action at the course he helped design; another Mauritius resident, Marcel Siem is looking to finish 2023 off with a win in comfortable surrounds and Sweden’s Sebastian Soderberg tees it up for the first time in this new season.

SELECTIONS

Louis Oosthuizen is the clear 7/1 favourite and followed by the French duo of Matthieu Pavon and last year’s winner, Antoine Rozner at 14/1 and 16/1 respectively.

This event doesn’t have the strength at the top that we’ve seen in the three events in South Africa in the last three weeks; with that much more open look to the field I’m going to avoid this area of the market.

I did consider the in-form and talented youngster, Jayden Schaper at the 25/1 mark but I think that’s short enough for a player who for all he has threatened, has still yet to win a professional event at any level.

I’m going to start a little bigger in the betting and after following up his runner-up finish in the South African Open with a 20th-place finish in last week’s Alfred Dunhill Championship, Italy’s Renato Paratore looks well placed for a perfect finish to his year in Mauritius.

1.5 pts Renato Paratore each way (1/5 - 6 Places) - 30/1 

After failing to regain his full tour card over the course of his limited starts on the DPWT last season, the Italian was once again left heading to Q-School. Following an opening 73 - which left him languishing in 94th after round one of the marathon six-day event – he rallied over the next five days, shooting every round under par and comfortably regained that tour card, with a closing 65 vaulting him up to 11th place.

Paratore started the new season with a narrow missed cut in the Joburg Open three weeks ago, though improved significantly two starts ago, finishing 2nd in the South African Open; three shots adrift of winner, Dean Burmester.

His typically excellent short-game looked strong there and he complimented it with quality in approach. Whilst not quite as strong as the previous week, he again gained strokes in approach in the Alfred Dunhill Championship and combined with a field-leading putting display, he recorded a second top 20 in a row, finishing 20th at Leopard Creek.

Paratore finished 2nd at Heritage Golf Club in 2019, at Matkovich’s other design, Le Chateau Golf Course. A 4th in Qatar in 2018, along with top 10s in the Dunhill Links and at Hillside in the 2019 British Masters show his ability on links/links-like courses and suggest this two-time DPWT winner can pick up win #3 this week.

1 pt Matthew Baldwin each way (1/5 - 6 places) - 45/1 

Matthew Baldwin returned from a four-week absence to finish an impressive 15th at Leopard Creek last week and as a player with some really strong form on similar courses, I’m taking him to build on that to record a second DPWT win of 2023.

Baldwin has had a largely consistent year on tour but there’s no doubt that 2023 peaked back in March, as he produced an outstanding performance to run-out a remarkable seven-shot winner in the SDC Championship at St Francis Links - for his first DPWT win at the age of 37.

Though he didn’t quite match the level of that effort over subsequent starts, he only missed five cuts in his next twenty and on his latest start before the break, he finished a commendable 26th in a strong field at the Nedbank Challenge.

Baldwin understandably made a slow start to last week’s Alfred Dunhill Championship, firing a 2-over 74 to sit 104th after round one. However he made the cut comfortably after shooting -4 in round two and following two more under par efforts in rounds three and four he rose up to a 15th-place finish.

His tee-to-green game looked in a good place there, particularly in approach, which is no surprise for a player who ranked 22nd in this area on tour last season. He should relish the receptive conditions and if firing from the start – unlike last week – he can have a big say.

Hailing from Southport, Baldwin is no stranger to windy conditions on linksy golf courses. With results such as a 5th in the Scottish Open and top 10 in Qatar added to his win at St Francis Links producing an attractive collection of correlating form, he has much in his favour to walk away with another title this week.

1 pt Kristian Krogh Johannessen each way (1/5 - 8 places) - 80/1 

Norway’s Kristian Krogh Johannessen didn’t quite enjoy the debut season he would’ve liked or many would’ve expected, but after retaining his place on the tour thanks to a top-10 finish at Q-School he’s back for another crack this season. With recent performances more encouraging than bare results suggest and possessing some interesting pieces of correlating form, I’m taking him to sign off the year in positive fashion in Mauritius.

Johannessen actually started his first season well, making six of his opening nine cuts and recorded four top 25s, including back-to-back finishes of 3rd in the SDC Championship and 6th in the Jonsson Workwear Open in South Africa in March.

He wasn’t able to keep that going, as he then missed eight of his next fourteen cuts and recorded just two finishes inside the top 30. After finishing 9th at Q-School, where he shot five rounds of 68 or better, his results in this new season haven’t looked much better but there are reasons to be positive.

The Norwegian missed the cut in both the Joburg Open and South African Open, but only by one each time and looked very good tee-to-green, with the putter failing to comply. This was unusual for a player who ranked 12th on the greens last season and with the putter warming up last week at Leopard Creek, it was no surprise to see him improve his result, sitting 13th after round three before eventually finishing 32nd on Monday.

Johannessen now looks a danger with all areas of his game firing and as a player who has some strong form on the links from his amateur days, as well as finishes of 3rd at St Francis Links and HimmerLand, this looks a suitable place for him to contend for a first DPWT win.

1 pt Matteo Manassero each way (1/5 - 6 places) - 80/1

Matteo Manassero has an attractive track record on links courses and after a missed cut last week, he has been pushed out to what looks a big price considering the quality of his effort in the South African Open two weeks ago.

It has been a testing few years for this one-time golfing prodigy. Thirteen years have passed since he became the youngest ever winner on the DPWT at the age of 17 – a record he still holds – in the 2010 Castello Masters and ten years since his tremendous triumph at Wentworth, looking a player with the world at his feet.

However, a loss of form over ensuing years finally saw him lose his place on tour in 2019 and he’s had to fight his way back to this level; from winning on the Alps Tour in 2020 to two victories on the Challenge Tour this year, he’s now back where he belongs.

Manassero has offered encouragement in every start so far. He played well for three rounds at the Joburg Open before a final-round 77 saw him tumbling down the leaderboard to 66th but he soon forgot about that in the South African Open the following week, finishing 5th and was just one shot behind the leader in 2nd entering the weekend.

He does have to respond to a missed cut last week but he looked good enough with a 70 in round one before failing to get anything going in round two and shooting a 4-over 76. Though he does come to a course that should suit this week.

The Italian has always possessed a good touch with the short-game, this was on show when ranking 3rd around-the-greens in that 5th in the S.A Open. He combined that with strength in approach and also looked strong on the greens; again looking solid enough in approach and putting last week despite missing the cut.

As a former winner of the Amateur Championship in 2009, whilst also possessing two top 20s in The Open Championship, and two top 5s in the Scottish Open, Manassero is proven on links courses and could make that hike in price in these calmer waters look too hasty by Sunday afternoon.

1 pt David Ravetto each way (1/5 - 8 places) - 90/1 

France’s David Ravetto will have to overcome a poor missed cut in the Alfred Dunhill Championship but signs were positive in his two prior starts. As a player who has played these more open courses well since stepping up to the DPWT, he should like what he finds at La Reserve.

The talented former top 25 amateur earned a crack at his rookie season due to finishing 2nd at Q-School last year and needed to venture back to the Infinitum golf resort this year to maintain his spot, which he did by finishing 16th.

His debut season did offer promise, with six top 25s and a couple of decent top 10s, including finishing 9th in the co-sanctioned Barbasol Championship in the U.S, but he struggled for consistency away from these performances; looking a very all-or-nothing player.

This has shown up again in the opening events of the 2023/24 season, as Ravetto looked solid in the Joburg Open, finishing 47th, then went even better in the South African Open, sitting 5th at the halfway spot before a more subdued weekend caused him to slide down the leaderboard to 17th.

With rounds of 78 and 75, he had a two days to forget at Leopard Creek and will need to bounce back here but I believe he has the arsenal to do so.

Some of the Frenchman’s better performances on the DPWT last season came on open, linksy courses, with finishes of 16th in the Dutch Open, 18th in the SDC Championship and 24th at HimmerLand. Indeed, this ability to perform on similar setups goes right back to his amateur days, where he recorded two top 20 finishes in The Amateur Championship.

Ravetto does excel with driver and hit plenty of greens last season, ranking 23rd in greens-in-regulation. He has a tidy enough short game, scores the par 5s well and having attended university in Texas, he should be no stranger to wind should it become a factor this week.

1 pt Luca Filippi each way (1/5 - 6 places) - 150/1 

The talented Luca Filippi has been consistently strong on the Sunshine Tour this year and has transferred that form over to the co-sanctioned events of the last three weeks. As someone not unfamiliar with playing in Mauritius, he looks worth a shot at a three-figure price in this weaker field.

Filippi was a solid top 200 amateur before turning pro in 2020. 2018 was a particularly strong year as he collected two titles in South Africa and recorded a 9th-place finish in the prestigious Amateur Championship at Royal Aberdeen.

He has shown steady progression since turning pro and ran up his best series of results yet in 2023, missing just one cut on the Sunshine Tour and recording five top 5 finishes.

Filippi has made each cut in the last three weeks. He finished 32nd in the Joburg Open and followed with a 52nd in the South African Open. His best performance of that recent spell in South Africa came last week in the Alfred Dunhill Championship as he finished 25th, having been sat no worse than 13th after rounds one, two and three.

The strength of his iron play, where he ranks 8th on the Sunshine Tour in greens-in-regulation should serve him well here and with that showing in the 2018 Amateur Championship showing an ability on links setups, I fancy he can go even better than those previous promising efforts.

You can catch all Jamie's latest Golf Betting Tips at our Insights hub.

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