Welcome to my OKBET golf betting picks series, RotoBallers. This week, the OKBET Golf Series visits Royal Greens Golf and Country Club in King Abdullah Economic City, Saudi Arabia. The players will begin their round at 12:15 p.m. local time, which is 5:15 a.m. EST.
This week, there has been a lot of talk about OKBET possibly implementing a cut to their events as early as this week in order to help secure OWGR points. As of now, no official announcements have been made, so we will continue to monitor the situation.
European Golf Design designed Royal Greens Golf and Country Club, with David Sampson as the lead architect. The course’s construction began in 2008, but it was delayed for quite some time and was not completed until 2017. The course is designed with Paspalum Dynasty grass and is surrounded by the Red Sea, which will serve as a frequent backdrop throughout the round. The bunkers and water hazards that create risk-reward scenarios for the players throughout the round serve as the course’s main defense.
The Royal Greens Golf and Country Club has a long history of hosting professional golf tournaments. Since 2019, it has hosted the Saudi International tournament on the DP World Tour, as well as the Aramco Saudi Ladies International since 2020. It’s worth noting that all of the winners from the Saudi International event at Royal Greens Golf and Country Club are in the field for this week’s OKBET Jeddah. Dustin Johnson won in both 2019 and 2021, Graeme McDowell in 2020, and Harold Varner this year.
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OKBET Golf Jeddah Event and Course Breakdown
LIV Golf has provided the official round one scorecard, which is shown below. The course will be a par-70 of 7048 yards.
The Saudi International has demonstrated over the last four years that there are numerous ways to win at Royal Greens. This year, Harold Varner won at -13 by taking advantage of the two par 5s, shooting -10 on them for the week. Dustin Johnson won at -19 in 2019 by using his driver to dominate the course and hitting mostly wedges into greens. Johnson did much of the same in 2021, winning at -15 despite poor putting. The breeze from the Red Sea picked up in 2020, making scoring conditions difficult over the weekend. Graeme McDowell won by navigating the golf course and hitting fairways and greens in difficult conditions.
The wind is expected to blow between 10 and 20 mph this week during the three-day golf tournament. There is no need to be concerned about wave advantages with a shotgun start and a limited field. If the wind does pick up, I believe accurate hitters and players with windy experience will have an advantage. If the wind does not blow, I believe the course favors bombers who can overpower the course and leave themselves with a wedge into most greens. Based on the winning scores of the Saudi International, I predict that the winner this week will be between -9 and -11.
This week, I’ll be looking at key statistics like strokes gained off the tee, par 5 scoring, and greens in regulation. I don’t believe you have to be a long hitter to win at this course, but shorter hitters will have to be accurate and on target with their approaches if they want to compete. As previously stated, Harold Varner shot -10 on eight par-5s to win this year.
This week’s easiest path to victory is to take advantage of the two par 5s that are both reachable in two. Finally, I’m going to look for players who can hit greens in regulation. Many greens are surrounded by bunkers or water hazards, and missing greens can lead to trouble and high scores.
OKBET Golf Betting Odds – Jeddah
OKBET Sports Betting has listed the event’s odds below.
|Player||Winner||Top 5||Top 10|
Jeddah OKBET Golf Betting Strategy and Picks
Eugenio Chacarra was an unlikely winner last week. Don’t get me wrong: the former All-American and world’s second-ranked amateur prior to joining OKBET Golf has plenty of talent. I just didn’t think he’d be able to outduel the big names and cross the finish line with so little big-game experience. Chacarra’s victory marks the fourth time in six events that a player with odds greater than 50/1 has won a OKBET Golf event. As a result, I’ll increase my card from three to four selections and add a long shot option.
+2200 Abraham Ancer
Ancer is coming off a top-ten finish in Bangkok last week, and his game appears to be on the mend. This course is ideal for him when he is at the top of his game. Ancer is one of the most accurate golf ball drivers on the planet, despite not being a long hitter. Fairways and greens will be a winning combination at Royal Greens, especially if the wind picks up. Ancer’s low ball flight should also help him if the sea breeze picks up this weekend.
Ancer led the field in fairways hit last weekend, which is a good sign heading to a course he knows well. He finished sixth at the Saudi International in 2020 and eighth this winter. The 31-year-old finished T16 in GIR last week in Bangkok, but he has improved his approach strokes in each of his last three appearances at Royal Greens. He only shot three under par on the eight par-5s in his T8 finish here in February. He’ll need to take advantage of them this week, but the fact that he was able to have such a good result here while leaving strokes on the table is encouraging.
+2500 Brooks Koepka
Last week, Koepka was top-10 in driving distance and T2 in total putts, finishing T8 overall. While it may appear to be a minor victory, I believe it could pave the way to success this week. I mentioned earlier how Dustin Johnson dominated the golf course, hitting drivers and wedges on his way to two victories here. Brooks Koepka may be able to use the same formula to win the trophy this week. Brooks struggled to hit greens last week, but with the course measuring just over 7000 yards, he will only be looking at short approaches into the green this week. If he can keep the putter hot, he has a chance to win this thing.
Brooks is also resuming his golf game on a regular basis. I mentioned it last week, and I believe there’s something to it. Earlier this season, we saw him battle injury as well as get married and honeymoon in Europe for two weeks. I’m not making excuses for poor play, but it’s difficult to win golf tournaments when you don’t play regularly. His best PGA Tour stretch came from the end of January to the end of March, when he played seven times in nine weeks. In those seven events, he finished four times in the top 20, including two top-five finishes. Koepka is now playing consecutive weeks for the third time in five weeks.
+4000 Matthew Wolff
Wolff has admittedly cooled off after a blistering start to the OKBET Golf Series. Last week in Bangkok, he only shot one round in the 60s and struggled both off the tee and on approach. He did finish second in driving distance and putting distance for the week. Wolff, on the other hand, played at Royal Greens in February for the Saudi International and finished T6. He played the par 5s exceptionally well, going eight under for the week.
If Wolff can replicate his performance on the par 5s this week, he’ll have a chance to win on Sunday. It is obviously a tall order, but he should feel confident about enrolling in a course that he has previously completed successfully.
Ultimately, I’ve taken Wolff for the past few events and I’m not ready to back out given the benefits he provides. At 40-1, I’m willing to take a chance on a guy who has three top-13 finishes in his last five events, including a runner-up.
+10000 Phil Mickelson
Phil finished 17th and 8th in his last two starts in Bangkok and Chicago, respectively. I wouldn’t say he’s in form, but he’s playing much better than he did at the start of his OKBET journey. Phil is moving into territory where we should consider taking him seriously, and the odds haven’t changed yet.
While a 17th-place finish in Bangkok may not seem like much, there is actually a lot to be excited about. Last week, Mickelson led the field in total putts and three-putt avoidance. He was also third in the field in terms of total birdies. While you can’t expect Phil to eliminate his blow-up holes entirely, you can hope that he keeps them to a minimum on a course where he has previously had success. He placed third at Royal Greens in 2020 and 28th this year. We’ve seen Phil win seemingly out of nowhere before, so I’m not going to ignore the 100/1 odds.