European Tour Fantasy Golf Picks and Predictions for the 2017 KLM Open
2017 KLM Open Fantasy Preview
One inch….that was all that separated us from a third consecutive winner on the European Tour at the European Masters last week.
Our man Scott Hend, who had led all week until Sunday, was forced into a playoff with fast-finishing Matt Fitzpatrick, whose final round of 64 was by far the best shot on the day. The pair thought out three playoff holes, and on the second of those Hend missed a putt by the inch to take the spoils. On the next hole….well, you can probably guess the rest.
The players make the short hop from Switzerland to the Netherlands this week for the KLM Open, an event won in fine style by local boy Joost Luiten 12 months ago.
He was never out of the picture after a second round of 64, but it was his nerveless 63 on the Sunday that secured victory for the home favorite ahead of perennial silverware challenger Bernd Wiesberger.
From a DFS perspective this is not the ideal tournament given that we have only one hosting of this event at The Dutch, this week’s course. The stats last year give little away, with the average Driving Distance rank of the first ten players home being 28.6, Driving Distance of 33.8, GIR of 22.4, and Putts per Round of 18.3.
So nothing majorly stands out (although Luiten did rank 17 for Driving Accuracy and second for GIR), and so perhaps the weather is our major angle in this week. A treacherous four days of rain are in store, with winds peaking at somewhere in the region of 20 mph. The Dutch is an inland course but one described as Links in nature due to its exposed layout, and so players comfortable in the wind are going to have a huge advantage.
For DFS gamers who enjoy potential micro-advantages, the late/early draw might just have the edge: the early forecast shows sunnier spells and lighter winds on Friday morning from 7:00 until 12:00. Obviously keep an eye on this in the coming days.
This could become something of a grind, and while Luiten’s winning total of -19 suggests a scoreable course it is interesting to note that those in T10 were some nine shots behind the Dutchman. Add a few on for the possible extreme weather this week, and a tough four days is anticipated.
Perhaps the best strategy is to draft players comfortable on Links and playing in adverse weather – current form can go out of the window when you’ve got a 20mph crosswind cutting your cheekbones to ribbons.
So who are we drafting in the Netherlands? Let’s have a look…
This Week’s KLM Open Fantasy Picks & Predictions
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Cover photo via Instagram