2019 Commercial Bank Qatar Masters Preview
Last week’s Oman Open proved just how important it is to have a win under your belt when contesting for titles.
Various players were vying for the title, including Fabrizio Zanotti, Scott Jamieson, Max Kieffer and Clement Sordet, but none are what we might call ‘prolific’ and all fluffed their lines as the lead flip-flopped in an engrossing final round.
In the end, it was left to Kurt Kitayama – who won the Mauritius Open earlier in the campaign – to get the job done, with the American birdieing two of the last three holes to just take the tape first.
From Oman the Tour heads to Qatar, a similarly desert-style location just along the Gulf coast.
Tom Lewis of England plays his shot from the 13th tee during the first round of World Golf Championships-Mexico Championship at Club de Golf Chapultepec on February 21, 2019 in Mexico City, Mexico. Get premium, high resolution news photos at Getty Images
The key factor in golf in these parts of the world is the wind, and the early forecast suggests an almighty breeze will blow with speeds of between 18-21 mph predicted for all four days!
That should help to make the Qatar Masters an interesting spectacle, if nothing else, and will test the skills of the players on what would otherwise be a fairly straightforward Doha GC assignment.
Designed by Peter Harradine, who is also responsible for the Abu Dhabi GC which hosts the Abu Dhabi HSBC each year, this is a lengthy 7,400 yard Par 72 track that could play longer in the wind. It is exposed and flat, with a Links look and feel, with artificial lakes proving an obstacle on six of the holes.
Eddie Pepperell won here at a mark of -18 a year ago, and his blueprint was obvious: find lots of fairways. He ranked just 75th for Driving Distance, choosing to keep his driver sheathed for most of his winning effort, but in ranking second for Driving Accuracy clearly he was well placed to approach these large and contoured Bermuda greens.
Jeunghun Wang followed a similar path to glory in 2017, so perhaps this is the route our winner will take this week too.
Otherwise, there’s not much to work with, although form at another surprising correlating course – Dom Pedro Victoria, home of the Portugal Masters, is also worth considering.
With all of the above in mind, here’s our six-man roster for the Qatar Masters.
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