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David Thompson 30th Nov 2011 - 16:25

Donald 'dozen' know who'll win in South Africa.


The Nedbank Golf Challenge

Thursday 09:00 - live on Sky Sports 1

Northwest of Johannesburg a select list of just twelve golfers will take on the Gary Player Country Club's course in an attempt to secure the huge prize of $1.25 million. At the head of the field sits the World number three Lee Westwood at 7/2. The Englishman is the defending champion in South Africa having won in 2010 by eight strokes.

At 4/1 World number 1 Luke Donald appears to be good value in a field consisting of just twelve players. These odds will reflect his recent absence from the game, he has recently had a child and after securing top spot in the US Money List he could afford some time-off. Despite this he is fully expected to put in a consistent performance and shouldn't be too far off the leading pack come Sunday.

Former World Number 1 Martin Kaymer has had a recent return to form, he won the WGC-HSBC Champions event in Shanghai and followed that up with a second place finish for Germany in the Omega Mission Hills World Cup, losing out only to the American duo. At 11/2 he is of course in with a shout, but not as much as the man behind him in my opinion.

Historically at Sun City the home nation players have been extremely successful, none more so than local hero Ernie Els. Charl Schwartzel has been in terrific form of late. The US Masters champion also defended the Joburg Open this year and at odds of 13/2 he represents the outstanding value in this field of champions.

The British Open Champion Darren Clarke has been disappointing since his Major win and for me he has more chance of winning the BBC Sports Personality of the Year than the $1.25million on offer at Sun City. It would of course be nice to see a return to form for the Northern Irishman, however amongst this field I can't see him heading the field at any stage.

One man who has proven that he can compete with the world's best in 2011 is Simon Dyson. The KLM and Irish Open champion has shot up the rankings this year and has proven that he is capable of reaching the next level. Last week he did struggle in the South African Open, missing the cut after rounds of 70 and 73, and that could explain as to why he sits as an 18/1 outsider for this weekend's title.

Graeme McDowell will come into the event in South Africa after a disappointing finish to the World Cup of Golf. He and partner Rory McIlroy had lead throughout the tournament, but a poor showing on the final day cost them the title. He's 12/1 for the tournament however I would delve into the match bet markets for McDowell. Matched up with Kyung-Tae Kim the 5/2 available on McDowell to win both the front and back nine looks tempting and to win by either 1 shot or 2 at 13/2 also screams value on day one of the tournament.

William Hill as ever will be offering a range of interesting  pre-tournament and In-play markets for you to hunt out some value, and with some of the best golfers on view in Sun City there will be plenty of reasons to tune into Sky Sports 1 and open your lap-top for some great betting opportunities. Can Luke Donald return playing like the World number 1 or will the rest of the field leave him behind as they fight it out for the $1.25 million on offer in South Africa?



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