Starts - 19 November 2020
Course - PGA National Cyprus Course
Par - 71 (36-35)
Length – 6,956 yards
Defending Champion- N/A
Overall Profit/Loss: +4.6pts
Pre-Event Six to Watch
1st Robert MacIntyre - 33/1 @ Bet365 (Win and Full Place +41.25PTS)
MC Mikko Korhonen - 50/1 @ Betfair
MC Wilco Nienaber - 55/1 @ Bet365
MC Calum Hill - 80/1 @ Betfair
MC Max Kieffer - 100/1 @ Betfair
MC Alejandro Canizares - 150/1 @ Betfair
In-Play Bets: +4.6pts
7 November 2020 ( -2 Points)
1pt Each Way Bernd Ritthammer (1/4 1,2,3,4) - 28/1 @ Betfair
6 November 2020 ( +2.6 Points)
1pt Each Way Jorge Campillo (1/5 1,2,3,4,5) - 28/1 @ Betfair
1pt Each Way Louis De Jager (1/5 1,2,3,4,5) - 40/1 @ Betfair
5 November 2020 ( +4 Points)
1pt Each Way Callum Shinkwin (1/5 1,2,3,4,5) - 45/1 @ Bet365
1pt Each Way Kalle Samooja (1/5 1,2,3,4,5,6) - 40/1 @ Betfair
Type of Course - Coastal, Resort, Birdie Fest.
Course Designer - Cabell Robinson
Course Links - Robinson designed Valle Romano and Finca Cortesin amongst others.
Fairways - Wide, Bermuda.
Greens - Large, Bentgrass
Par 5's - 3rd, 6th, 10th and 18th.
Hosted Since - Debut for this event but hosted last week.
Sunny all four days. Temperatures expected to reach 27 degrees, with winds ranging from 5mph in the mornings to 13mph in the afternoon.
Thurs - Sunny and a moderate breeze.
Fri - Sunny intervals and a gentle breeze.
Sat - Sunny intervals and a gentle breeze.
Sun - Sunny intervals and a gentle breeze.
Significant Info To Be Aware Of
The Cyprus Showdown will not be a traditional stroke play event. The 105 players will play two rounds as normal with the top 32 making it through to Saturday. The scores will be reset and the top 16 on Saturday evening will make it through to Sunday's final round, where the scores will once again be reset and the lowest score will win. Given the volatile nature of the event, caution is advised when betting pre-event.
The course was used last week for the Cyprus Open. This is the second time this season the same course has been used in consecutive weeks on the European Tour (Celtic Classic and Wales Open). The second week in Wales (the Wales Open) had a familiar feel to the first, as five players finished in the top 14 in both events. Form from last week will count for a lot.
Continue to exercise caution in relation to Covid-19 related withdrawals.
With this being a new format we have no trend analysis. However, it is not altogether dissimilar to the ISPS Handa World Super 6 events which took place in 2018 and 2019. On those occasions six hole matchplay was used once the cut was made but the idea that the first two days counted only for qualification was similar.
The top two at the Cyprus Open (Callum Shinkwin and Kalle Samooja) both ranked inside the top 5 for Strokes Gained: Putting. Putting may be less important for this format given players only need to do enough to progress to Sunday's final 16 before scores are reset. However, a hot putter will be needed on Sunday with the format encouraging low scoring on the final day.
Both Shinkwin and Samooja ranked inside the top 25 for SG: Off The Tee and SG: Approach so we should look for players with their long game in decent shape.
The 236 yard 15th played as the hardest hole on the course last week (3.20 average). The 5th, 16th, 13th, 9th and 12th also played fractionally over par (in that order).
The par 5s are particularly scoreable with the 6th and 10th ranking as the two easiest holes last week.
Fast or Slow Start
With the scores resetting after each cut, there is no need to worry about playing catch up.
Six To Watch
As outlined in our Tipping Record, our strategy is to focus on speciality bets and value in-play. However, we have identified the following six players if you do wish to place a bet before the event begins:
Robert MacIntyre - 33/1 @ Bet365 (5 places)
It's hard to see Bob not making the weekend given his propensity to back up high finishes once on form. Whilst taking Rookie of the Year in 2019, he was runner up in consecutive weeks at the British Masters and the Made in Denmark. Towards the end of 2019 he again showed his ability to run hot when posting finishes of 4-17-8-8 to end the season. The young Scot finished 3rd last week, improving his score each day by a shot, culminating in a bogey free six under par 66. Unsurprisingly, he ranked 4th SG: Approach and 18th SG: Off The Tee. If Bob makes it to the final 16 you'd fancy him to go low and take the title.
Mikko Korhonen - 50/1 @ Betfair (7 places)
Mikko finished 17th last week, ranking positively for SG: Approach (26th) and SG: Off The Tee (50th). He's a player to side with when on form given each of his wins to date have been preceded by a top 15 in his two previous starts. He's won each of the last two seasons, including the Shot Clock Masters in 2018. Like this week, that was a different format event where players were timed when taking shots. Although there will be no time issues this week, Mikko has shown he's capable of succeeding in alternate formats.
Wilco Nienaber - 55/1 @ Bet365 (5 places)
Wilco finished 53rd last week but on closer inspection there's every reason to get him onside. Firstly, he fired three rounds of 68 or better which included a final round 64. Only a horrendous Saturday 79 prevented him from being inside the top 10. An enormous hitter, he can take advantage of the par 5s here and score with ease. Interestingly it was his driving that let him down last week, ranking 12th SG: Approach but 93rd SG: Off The Tee. Assuming he gets the big stick working like it can, he's a very real threat.
Calum Hill - 80/1 @ Betfair (7 places)
Calum is a future winner on the European Tour and there's a few reasons to think this may well be the week. A three time winner on the Challenge Tour, he's playing the European Tour for the first time this year. He's already posted two top 10s and notably one of those came at the Wales Open, an event using the same course as the previous week. It may well be that the extra course knowledge this week will see him go close. He ranked 25th SG: Approach last week and although his driving stats weren't great for the tournament as a whole, he drove it considerably better over the weekend.
Max Kieffer - 100/1 @ Betfair (7 places)
Max has yet to win on the European Tour but a change in format could well be the tonic to change that. He was 17th last week, making only three bogeys. That kind of solid golf should see him progress to the weekend at least and from there we'll need to rely on him having a hot putter. He finished 2nd at the Oman Open in 2019 and we think that is a correlating course. With that in mind Max is worth keeping an eye on.
Alejandro Canizares - 150/1 @ Betfair (7 places)
Alejandro has been in the wilderness for a few years, having failed to post a top three finish since November 2016. However, he's a two time winner on the European Tour and appears to be coming into a bit of form. He's posted four top-45 finishes in his last six starts, including 34th last week. He played nicely tee to green, ranking 21st SG: Tee To Green and 33rd SG: Off The Tee. His best finish this season was 6th at the Oman Open and there's reason to think there might be a bit of correlating course form there. Finally, there's significant room for improvement on the par 5s - he only played these in -1 last week!