Dubai Desert Classic Predictions, Betting Odds & Top Picks
- The DP World Tour stays in the United Arab Emirates for a second week
- Two-time winner Rory McIlroy is favorite for an event that started in 1989
- The Majlis course at Emirates GC hosts again
Dubai Desert Classic Odds
The odds for this tournament are provided by DraftKings Sportsbook. Click on the odds below to head to DraftKings Sportsbook and place a bet.
|Rory McIlroy||+750 |
|Viktor Hovland||+900 |
|Collin Morikawa||+1000 |
|Tyrrell Hatton||+1600 |
|Shane Lowry||+2200 |
|Sergio Garcia||+2200 |
|Thomas Pieters||+2200 |
|Adam Scott||+2500 |
|Paul Casey||+2500 |
|Tommy Fleetwood||+2500 |
|Bernd Wiesberger||+2800 |
Dubai Desert Classic Picks
Sergio Garcia won this event in 2017 and has an excellent record in the UAE. The wind could also help his cause so back him to win at +2200 with DraftKings Sportsbook.
Dean Burmester continues to thrive and can get the better of Tommy Fleetwood in a 72-hole match. Back him to outscore the Englishman at -105 with Caesars Sportsbook.
Bernd Wiesberger has three top 10s at this course and was 12th in Abu Dhabi last week. Take the Austrian to bank another top 10 at +350 with DraftKings Sportsbook.
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Dubai Desert Classic Predictions
The European Tour… scratch that… the DP World Tour (we’ll all get used to the new name soon) stays in the United Arab Emirates for its second straight big-money Rolex Series event.
As with last week’s Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship – won by Thomas Pieters with 10-under – there’s a hefty $8,000,000 prize fund and 8,000 DP World Tour Rankings points to play for.
Those numbers have lured plenty of top stars again and Rory McIlroy, Collin Morikawa and Viktor Hovland do battle once more.
It didn’t work out great for that trio last week. McIlroy was never in contention and finished tied 12th, Morikawa was a hugely disappointing tied 62nd and Hovland was left to reflect on some costly mistakes in Sunday’s final round that turned a possible win into a tied fourth.
This event started in 1989 and, except for 1999 and 2000, it’s always been played on the Majlis course, a track designed by Karl Litten.
Like plenty of desert courses, it’s exposed to the wind and that explains why so many Open winners have hoisted the silverware.
Check the trophy and you’ll find names such as Tiger Woods, Seve Ballesteros, Ernie Els, Mark O’Meara and Henrik Stenson. McIlroy is a two-time winner.
It’s been shared around in recent times with flags from five different nations next to the winners from 2017 to 2021: Spain’s Sergio Garcia, China’s Haotong Li, America’s Bryson DeChambeau, Australia’s Lucas Herbert and England’s Paul Casey.
The wind really blew when Herbert won with 9-under but in calmer conditions, Li and DeChambeau triumphed with 23-under and 24-under respectively.
Casey fired 17-under last when winning by four from Brandon Stone.
Big-hitting tends to be a major asset on this 7,353-yard par 72 while it’s worth noting that ahead of this year’s edition new greens (Bermuda TifEagle) have been laid after the old ones were showing signs of wear and tear.
Water is a prominent feature and it comes into play on 10 holes. That could be an issue as the forecast suggests gusty conditions this week, especially on the weekend.
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Sergio Can Win Again
We noted last week that Rolex Series events tend to produce classy winners and 16 of the last 19 had been captured by golfers who had played in or gone on to play in Ryder Cups.
Make that 17 out of 20 now after Pieters prevailed in Abu Dhabi.
I expect that to become 18 in 21 this week and the man who can enhance that record further is Sergio Garcia.
The Spaniard lifted the trophy here in 2017 when going wire to wire and has since finished third in 2019 and sixth last year when fourth with a round to play.
Widen the lens further and Sergio has seven top 10s from his last 10 appearances in the United Arab Emirates while he’s a past winner of another windy desert event, the Qatar Masters.
The concern could be that this is Garcia’s first start of 2022 and we’ve not seen him in competitive action since he took tied 16th in November’s DP World Tour Championship.
But older players have a habit of winning off the bat, perhaps because their swings are so honed that things quickly click back into place.
Lee Westwood, six years Garcia’s senior, won the Abu Dhabi Championship in his first start of 2020 after a lengthy break and Sergio is capable of the same on this course.
The windy conditions could play further into his hands and he looks a good bet at +2200 with DraftKings Sportsbook.
Burmester Can Beat Fleetwood
It once would have seemed a strange move to back Dean Burmester to beat Tommy Fleetwood in a 72-hole match bet.
But the two have gone in different directions and this is where we are now.
Burmester was seventh in October’s Alfred Dunhill Links Championship, won his home South African PGA added sixth in the prestigious DP World Tour Championship in a lucrative November, and then made the top four in the South African Open in early December.
He started his 2022 campaign with a top 25 in the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship week.
Fleetwood had to settle for tied 27th in the DP World Tour Championship and tied 48th in Abu Dhabi.
That means Burmester has beaten Fleetwood in the last two events they’ve both played in and each time the event was held in the UAE.
In this tournament, Fleetwood shot the lowest 72-hole score last year but Burmester won their head-to-head in 2020 when finishing tied third.
Burmester improved his world ranking 115 spots to 67th from the end of 2020 to the end of 2021 so the big-hitting South African is very much on the up.
Fleetwood went from 17th to 40th in that same period so, despite remaining a class act, the force is with his opponent right now.
Back Burmester to win their 72-holer at -105 with Caesars Sportsbook.
Wiesberger Can Crack the Top 10
Bernd Weisberger, another Ryder Cup man, played three good rounds in Abu Dhabi last week, eventually rueing a Friday 77.
But laps of 69, 67, 70 helped him finish tied 12th and rack up yet another good desert finish.
He placed sixth in this event last year and late in 2021 was runner-up in the Dubai Championship.
As well as last year’s top-six finish, he’s had top 10s at this event in both 2014 and 2015 so likes the course and his Strokes Gained: Tee To Green numbers are always excellent.
If he sinks his share of putts, another top 10 looks very much on the cards and it’s an attractive price at +350 with DraftKings Sportsbook.
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Dubai Desert Classic Information
|Dubai Desert Classic|
|Tournament||Dubai Desert Classic|
|Location||Emirates GC, Dubai, United Arab Emirates|
|Time||Thursday, January 27 – Sunday, January 30|
|How to Watch||Thursday & Friday 2.30am-6am, Saturday & Sunday 2am-6am ET (Golf Channel). All 4 days on Sky Sports|
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Dave Tindall is former golf editor at SkySports.com and Golf365.com and has been writing betting previews for the PGA Tour and European Tour since 1997. He has also written for a range of betting companies, including William Hill and Betfair, as well as being a regular columnist for Rotoworld, The Guardian, Sporting Life and Planet Sport. His other area of speciality is football while he's also covered cricket and tennis.
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