Highlights on Off The Ball

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Highlights on Off The Ball

Virtual Insanity! John Duggan's Golf Tips for the BMW PGA Championship

Welcome to Virtual Insanity for OTB, where we spend virtual money to try and win virtual money on...

Virtual Insanity! John Duggan'...

Virtual Insanity! John Duggan's Golf Tips for the BMW PGA Championship

Welcome to Virtual Insanity for OTB, where we spend virtual money to try and win virtual money on golf betting. It's that simple!

It's going to be a successful 2022 for Virtual Insanity!

The virtual pot is at €1223 from €1000 for 2022.

After various recommendations won at 80/1, 66/1, 25/1 (twice) and 16/1, profit stands at 22.3%. It will be guaranteed profit for the year, to add to last year's final profit tally of 46.5% for 2021.

This week's tournament of focus is the BMW PGA Championship on the DP World Tour at Wentworth in Surrey.

This is the flagship event of what is seen as the 'European Tour', but the atmosphere promises to be frosty with the presence of up to 17 players from the breakaway LIV golf tour.

Rory McIlroy, Shane Lowry, Graeme McDowell and Jonathan Caldwell are the Irish players in the field.

Wentworth is a tree-lined par 72 which requires accurate driving, precise approaches and a decent touch around and on the greens. So it tests all facets of a player's game, but I would feel that long straight driving is the most important attribute to have.

Having watched the PGA down through the years, I have always seen Wentworth to be a 'horses for courses' venue, where players that take a liking to it tend to return and play well again.

The tournament starts at 6.40am on Thursday.

Be sure to shop around, with bookmakers such as Paddy Power, SKY Bet, William Hill, Betfred, Ladbrokes, Coral, Betway and Betfair offering 1/5 the odds for your pick to get into the top eight places.

Our headline selection is Shane Lowry for €5 each way at 16/1. (1/5 the odds the first 8 places, SKY Bet). 

Our own Shane Lowry loves Wentworth and he's had a very decent year, so I feel he is primed to win this week. Offaly's finest is ranked 23rd in the world and although he hasn't won in 2022, he played very well at the Masters, where he was tied for third and almost claimed the Honda Classic. Lowry had four top ten finishes on the PGA Tour and arrives in Surrey with a huge degree of comfort in the surroundings. Lowry has nine top 20 finishes in 12 starts at the PGA Championship and has been four times inside the top six. He's a strong driver of the golf ball and we know how good his hands are around the greens. If the putts drop, Lowry can earn a deserved victory in a tournament which he has graced so well over the years. He's the headline pick this week.

Our second selection is Patrick Reed for €2.50 each way at 40/1. (1/5 the odds the first 8 places, Paddy Power, Betfair, William Hill, Betway). 

American Patrick Reed is one of the LIV tour players, and of all of them he strikes me as somebody who likes to prove a point. The former Masters champion has committed to playing Asian tour events and is unrepentant about his departure from the PGA Tour, wearing LIV golf branded lettering on his clothes. Reed has never been afraid to win - he landed the Farmers Insurance Open last year and that fire in the belly makes him a danger to all. In two starts at Wentworth, he's finished tied for fourth (in 2019) and tied for third (in 2020). He's not going to care about being liked this week and it's folly not to expect some of the LIV players to do well. I rate him as a decent each way bet.

Our third selection is Dean Burmester for €2.50 each way at 55/1. (1/5 the odds the first 8 places, SKY Bet). 

South African Dean Burmester is happy out at the moment - a tie for fifth at the recent Korn Ferry Tour Championship earned him his PGA Tour card for next season. So he turns up at Wentworth with the pressure off and with good vibes about a course where he has a tie for ninth and a tie for twelfth on his C.V. from five appearances. Burmester was seventh in stroke average on the DP World Tour last year and is fifth in driving distance this year. He finished in a tie for 11th at the Open and I feel he's getting more comfortable in elite company. He can certainly contend.

Our final selection is Francesco Laporta for €1.50 each way at 175/1. (1/5 the odds the first 8 places, SKY Bet). 

Italy's Francesco Laporta tied for sixth on his debut at Wentworth last year and he returns this year in decent form, coming off a tie for fourth in the Made in Denmark event on his last start. So he brings course form and recent form to the table. Laporta has been around a good while and while he's never won the DP World Tour, he has tasted success on the Challenge Tour. This tournament can sometimes conjure unheralded winners (Andrew Olcorn, Scott Drummond, Simon Khan, Byeoung-hun An) and Laporta may rate as one of the better outsiders.

So that's €23 wagered virtually on this week's golf. Make sure you bet less at home!

Please gamble responsibly, never bet more than you can afford, and good luck!

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