We’re off to Milan for the next stop in the cash-laden Rolex Series. Who’s going to leave with the Italian Open crown?
Italian Open betting: Steve’s top tips
Italian Open-bound Jon Rahm (7/1) hasn’t finished worse than seventh since the PGA Championship back in August.
He’s already got one Rolex Series event in the locker, having crushed the field in the Irish Open earlier in the summer. There’s every chance if he brings that kind of form to Milan he dominates.
He arrives on the back of some seriously impressive FedEx Cup displays. Rahm finished 3rd, 4th, 5th and 7th in the four Playoffs events.
Repeating that could make him hard to stop in a field where Sergio Garcia (16/1) is the other standout participant.
Having split with TaylorMade this week, though, I’d want to see what clubs the Masters champion is using before taking a view.
I’m wary of not having Francesco Molinari (16/1) on my side.
The defending champion has won his home event twice – accounting for half of his four tour victories.
He’s also hit some impressive heights this season, including runner-up finishes at the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth and the PGA Championship.
Just outside the top 10 in his final PGA Tour event of the season, he should be thereabouts.
Italian Open betting: Steve’s each way tip
I got the chance to follow David Lingmerth (50/1) around Close House at the British Masters and the Swede has some serious game, as he proved with a third round 62 that gave him a sniff of the title going into the final day.
He couldn’t keep up with Paul Dunne but still finished in the top five. At a course where you’ll have to go low to feature (Molinari won last year on 22 under), he has the ability to post a lot of birdies.
In the top 20 in putting in America, despite an average PGA Tour campaign that’s brought just one top 10 at the Quicken Loans National, he can be in the frame if he continues to hit the ball as well as he did in Newcastle.
That was a welcome return to form for the Englishman, who is a fabulous ball striker. He showed earlier in the season that he can go on a tear – recording six top 10s in eight starts.
Italian Open betting: Steve’s outsider
Continuing the form theme, it’s surprising to see Robert Rock (140/1) so long given his exploits in Scotland.
Finishing inside the top five at the Dunhill, that followed a week at Close House that’s better than the final result – 37th – suggests.
He was in the frame for a decent finish at halfway. Paired with Danny Willett, he couldn’t get anything going in the third round and fell down the leaderboard.
But he finished with 68, his third of the week. If you go back to mid-summer, he recorded three top 10s in four starts, so you can’t count him out at this price.