KLM Open preview
A preview, stats and tips for this week's European Tour event - the KLM Open at Kennemer in Zandvoort.
Last Updated: 10/09/13 1:16pm
The European Tour is back at Kennemer for the first time in four years.
Reasonably undulating and close to the coast, the exposed 86-year-old course will offer a distinct links feel to all those teeing-up on Thursday.
Wind is a constant factor, with accuracy off the tee more important than normal.
It was here in 1976 that a teenage Seve Ballesteros secured his maiden Tour title - and he went on to win more than 50.
Kennemer hosted four straight KLM Opens from 2006, having returned to the schedule following a gap of 16 years.
All four of the tournaments staged at Kennemer during the past decade were won by British professionals - including two by Englishman Simon Dyson.
The leading contenders
Ross Fisher (16/1): Fisher is a course winner having captured this title at Kennemer in 2007. Throw in his fast finish in Crans-Sur-Sierre last week (he shot 63-66 on the weekend) and the bookies are taking evasive action. It's not a great field but 16/1 for a player who, until last week, hadn't had a top five since October 2012 certainly seems on the short side.
Simon Dyson (16/1): The Yorkshireman's record in this event is astonishing. Three of his six European Tour wins have come in the KLM Open and two of them were recorded at Kennemer (2006 and 2009). After a difficult first six months of the season he's really found his form again and his last six finishes read: 5-12-9-28-18-22. All in all he looks a better 16/1 shot than Fisher.
Joost Luiten (20/1) Holland's best player will be carrying most of the home hopes and he certainly has some good credentials. When still playing on the Challenge Tour he finished runner-up at Kennemer in 2007 while he was also sixth at Hilversum in 2011. In his last seven starts he's recorded a win in Austria, a second place in the Irish Open and a fourth in Wales so his current form is impressive.
Paul Casey (20/1): Given the record of the Brits on this course, Casey is an obvious contender to improve it further. This is actually his first appearance at Kennemer and only second in the event itself (46th at Hilversum last year) but his confidence is up after June's Irish Open win and he played some fine golf (opening 65) when 15th in Switzerland last week.
Miguel Angel Jimenez (22/1): The Spaniard was a popular punt at Crans-Sur-Sierre last time and, as usual, was prominent there yet again, finally finishing fifth. Also 13th in The Open at Muirfield and fourth in the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational, the veteran is in full flow again after his comeback from a skiing injury and a win could be around the corner. Surprisingly, he's played this event just once, missing the cut at Hilversum last year.
SELECTED PLAYERS with GOOD to REASONABLE FORM at KENNEMER
Course Form Since 2000
Player: '06 / '07 / '08 / '09
Felipe Aguilar: 47 / - / 26 / 26
Michael Campbell: - / 12 / 8 /
Alejandro Canizares: 7 / 23 / 45 / 35
Simon Dyson: Won / 27 / 12 / Won
Ross Fisher: 47 / Won / 20 / -
Jean-Baptiste Gonnet: - / 8 / 34 / 23
Richard Green: 2 / - / - / 15
Anders Hansen: 7 / - / 12 / -
Peter Lawrie: 6 / - / MC / 2
Paul McGinley: 22 / - / 2 / 26
Damien McGrane: 3 / MC / 20 / 4
Alex Noren: - / 3 / 12 / 10
Lee Slattery: 14 / 27 / 4 / MC
Alessandro Tadini: 22 / MC / - / 15
SELECTED PLAYERS with POOR to MEDIOCRE FORM at KENNEMER
Course Form Since 2000
(Two Missed Cuts from as many starts or No Top-40 Finishes from three or more appearances)
Player: '06 / '07 / '08 / '09
Richard Bland: 61 / MC / - / MC
Rafael Cabrera-Bello: - / MC / - / MC
Robert-Jan Derksen: 47 / MC / MC / 47
Oliver Fisher: - / MC / MC / MC
Michael Jonzon: MC / - / MC / 61
Sam Little: 42 / MC / MC / 47
Gary Lockerbie: - / MC / - / MC
Robert Rock: 68 / 58 / 45 / MC
Sven Struver: 63 / 47 / 58 / MC
TOP-10 Finishes at KENNEMER between 2006 & 2009 (Not Already Listed Above)
Joost Luiten: (2nd - 2007)
Peter Hedblom: (T-2nd - 2009)
Thomas Levet: (T-3rd - 2007)
Christian Cevaer: (4th - 2006)
Marc Warren: (T-4th - 2008)
Soren Hansen: (T-6th - 2008)
Gary Orr: (T-8th - 2008)
Anthony Wall: (T-8th - 2008)
Niclas Fasth: (9th - 2009)
Ignacio Garrido: (T-10th - 2009)
TOP-10 Finishers from Last Week's Event in Switzerland
Craig Lee (2nd)
Alejandro Canizares (4th)
Ross Fisher (T-5th)
Miguel Angel Jimenez (T-5th)
Gregory Havret (T-7th)
Brooks Koepka (T-7th)
Tommy Fleetwood (T-9th)
LOWEST 10 STROKE AVERAGES at KENNEMER
(For Years 2006/09)
67.88: Simon Dyson (16)
67.88: Richard Green (8)
68.08: Alex Noren (12)
68.20: Peter Lawrie (10)
68.21: Damien McGrane (14)
68.38: Michael Campbell (8)
68.42: Paul McGinley (12)
68.63: Anders Hansen (8)
68.75: Jean-Baptiste Gonnet (12)
68.83: Ross Fisher (12)
Min. No. of Rounds = 8
LOWEST ROUNDS at KENNEMER SINCE 2000
62: Richard Green (2006)
63: Five times
64: 29 times
Note: Four players - Simon Dyson, Martin Erlandsson, Paul McGinley & Damien McGrane - have each posted two rounds of 64 or lower at Kennemer between 2006 and 2009.
Kennemer: Par 70; 6,626 yards
Winning Totals (Last Three Tournaments):
2009: 265 (Simon Dyson)
2008: 264 (Darren Clarke)
2007: 268 (Ross Fisher)
Joost Luiten has a hit-and-miss record in his national Open.
On the downside, he's missed five cuts out of eight which suggests sometimes if he's not on his game the disappointment quickly kicks in and the focus goes.
However, on other occasions he's thrived in front of his home fans and he's playing well enough at the moment to suggest he can flourish again.
Hitting the ball straight is key this week according to Dutch journalist Ruben van der Zaag and Luiten is 12th in Driving Accuracy this year and 14th in Greens In Regulation.
His second place at Kennemer in 2007 shows he likes the course and his ability to shoot low rounds will stand him in good stead on this track.
Dutchman Maarten Lafeber won this event in 2003. Ten years on, Luiten can delight the Dutch fans again.
Richie Ramsay was runner-up in this event last year and 26th in his only start at Kennemer in 2009.
Like a lot of defending champions, he found it hard to recreate the previous year's magic in Switzerland last week and missed the cut.
But prior to that he was 10th at Gleneagles and his straight-hitting (he's fourth in Driving Accuracy this year) will be a big benefit here.
At 66/1 the 2006 US Amateur champion definitely represents a bit of value.
Anders Hansen keeps the ball in play better than most and, as you might expect, he's got some fine course form here.
The Dane has finished 12th and 7th in his two knocks at Kennemer and before missing the weekend in Switzerland he was eighth at Celtic Manor and 17th at Gleneagles.
Take him each-way at 33s.
2pts e.w. Joost Luiten at 20/1 (1/4 1,2,3,4,5)
1pt e.w. Richie Ramsay at 66/1 (1/4 1,2,3,4,5)
2pts e.w. Anders Hansen at 33/1 (1/4 1,2,3,4,5)