A star studded field is in town for the Omega Dubai Desert Classic. Daily Fantasy Focus looks at who will come out on top in the land of skyscrapers.
One of the European Tour’s premier events, the Omega Dubai Desert Classic signals to many the real start of the season.
As usual the field is packed with big names, even after Rory McIlroy’s injury enforced withdrawal. Henrik Stenson, last year’s champion Danny Willett and Tiger Woods are among those teeing it up Thursday.
The Majlis Course at Emirates Golf Club has hosted the tournament since the turn of the millenium and will do so again this week. Scoring tends to be low on a course with wide fairways and little tree trouble or heavy rough. Off the tee, distance rather than accuracy is at a premium.
One thing there is is plenty of water, so players can rack up the occasional round wrecking big number. Usually though good play will be rewarded with birdies, especially on a back nine that contains three par fives.
The greens run a little firmer and faster than some of the other courses on tour, so players familiar with US conditions can sometimes have an advantage.
Players To Watch
Rafa Cabrera Bello (€20.9m): The Spaniard has been highly consistent on the Desert Swing, finishing 6th in Qatar to follow up a top 20 in Abu Dhabi. He was tied for 2nd here last year, and won the event in 2012.
Andy Sullivan (€19.8m): Poor final rounds have haunted Sullivan in the last two events, but a closer inspection shows his form is better than it seems. He went two rounds without a bogey in Qatar, and could contend on a course where he finished in a tie for 8th last year.
Bradley Dredge (€16.5m): Dredge has given his owner’s plenty of consistency but little in terms of fireworks the last few weeks. The Welshman has hovered around the top 20 in both events. He was also in that area at this venue last year (t-18th). Not spectacular, but safe.
Stephen Gallacher (€7.7m): A couple of consecutive missed cuts have left Gallacher criminally underpriced at an event where he has won twice in the last four years. He did fail to play the weekend last year, but there’s huge upside here.
Alvaro Quiros (€6.9m): Much like Gallacher, Quiros just seems to thrive on this track. He was 4th last year and won the whole tournament back in 2011.
Nathan Kimsey (€6.7m): Finished in the top ten out of the blue in Qatar. At this price you aren’t expecting a ton, but his form is good.
The wind can play a big role around this course due to how exposed it is. Keep an eye on the forecasts particularly for daily games.
The winning score is usually around the 20 under par mark. Avoid players who struggle to post at least one really low number a week.