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Joburg Open Predictions, Betting Odds & Top Picks

Written by: Matt Cooper
Updated November 23, 2022
12 min read
  • It's the 15th edition of the tournament based in Johannesburg, South Africa
  • Houghton Golf Club is the new venue
  • Home golfers dominate the betting and have won the event eight times

The Joburg Open Odds

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Christiaan Bezuidenhout


George Coetzee


Thriston Lawrence


Hennie Du Plessis


Louis De Jager


Oliver Bekker


Romain Langasque


Zander Lombard


Dani Von Tonder


Wilco Nienaber


The Joburg Open Picks



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Joburg Open Predictions

The Joburg Open Profile

The 2022 season ended in glory for Rory McIlroy on Sunday but there is no rest for the journeymen of the DP World Tour because the 2023 season starts this week with a doubleheader in Australia and South Africa.

For the latter this is a first tournament in a three week pre-Christmas stretch of action in the country and, as always, it represents a golden opportunity for Springbok golfers in conditions that suit them.

With the superstars of the circuit resting after a long year, the strength of the home golfers is further exaggerated and only one player rated +4000 or less is not representing South Africa.

Remember also that Sunshine Tour golfers have extra motivation because a win will earn them immediate graduation to the bigger league.

Course Report

Houghton Golf Club has a Jack Nicklaus layout which immediately provides clues for punters.

The great man’s design group are responsible for the course, rather than the 18-time major winner himself, but he always demands that the details are allied to his principles which means the fairways are not narrow but a smart player will hit the right areas and that approach shots will be tested to the max with distance control a key skill.

It’s also important to recall that all golf in Johannesburg takes place at altitude which means the ball flies further than normal.

The Favorites

Now settled on the PGA Tour Christiaan Bezuidenhout will be looking forward to another opportunity to tee it up on home soil.

He only played three times on the DP World Tour last season but each effort was solid: a top 20 at the Scottish Open, making the cut in the Open and fifth just two weeks ago in the Nedbank Challenge.

But more intriguing is that back at the end of 2020 he won back-to-back in the Alfred Dunhill Championship and South African Open.

Meanwhile, few players in the field know how to win like George Coetzee.

He’s lifted no less than 15 trophies in his career and all but two of them was claimed in South Africa.

He won this event in 2014, his first at DP World Tour level, and he was also a winner earlier this month.

Twelve months ago Thriston Lawrence was a promising golfer, but one who was yet to prove himself.

He fired two rounds of 65 to win this event in a tournament reduced to 36 holes and he has ridden the wave ever since.

He added a second win in the European Masters and it was perhaps no surprise that his success came there because he is a fine performer at altitude.

Big George the Pick of the Favorites

How do we separate the top three?

Bezuidenhout is a fine talent, but his strength is with the short game and a Nicklaus test takes that out of his hands somewhat.

Lawrence is, as discussed, superb at altitude and has to be respected, but he’s had a long year and has looked fatigued in recent weeks.

Coetzee is a recent winner, a past tournament champion is not inconvenienced by altitude, and here’s the key: he plays Nicklaus designs very well.

He’s lost a playoff at Gleneagles, been second at Serengeti, and won at Simola.

Moreover, he was fourth at Pecanwood, third at Serengeti, and won at St Francis Links this year. That’s a lot of ticks.

Take the +1200 each way with Caesars Sportbook which pays out six places.

Whitnell a Nicklaus Fan

It’s been a strong couple of years for Dale Whitnell, the Englishman who enjoyed a decent amateur career but who then struggled to assert himself in the progessional ranks.

A victory on the second-tier Challenge Tour helped him gain confidence in 2019 and he has slowly improved on that in the last three seasons.

The latest campaign ended with him landing 10 top 30 finishes with three top 15s late in the year including fourth at the Mallorca Golf Open and 12th in the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.

Those results will have boosted his confidence and now he can take heart from his own good form on Nicklaus layouts.

In the last two years he has been 10th at Steyn, fourth at Mount Juliet and 13th at the London Club.

He also has good memories of South Africa because it was the scene of his first ever top 10 on the DP World Tour in the Alfred Dunhill Championship at Leopard Creek.

Take him each way with Caesars Sportsbook offering +4500.

Du Plessis Can Maintain Grip on De Jager

In recent weeks when Hennie Du Plessis and Louis De Jager have been playing in the same event it is the latter who has prevailed in their head-to-head count.

The lead is 4-1 in the last five such encounters.

But dig deeper and Du Plessis looks to be holding all the aces.

Since the start of 2019 his advantage is significant, with a 21-8 lead.

But when the pair are playing Nicklaus designs the numbers are even more persuasive.

Du Plessis leads 5-1 in such circumstances and he’s actually won each of the last five head-to-heads.

Take him in the bet365 match bet at -143.

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How to Watch The Joburg Open

  • Tournament: The Joburg Open
  • Location: Houghton Golf Club, Johannesburg, South Africa
  • Date: Thursday, November 24 - Sunday, November 27
  • How to watch: Thursday-Sunday 6-10 a.m. ET on Golf Channel. And all four days on Sky Sports.
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Matt Cooper

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Matt Cooper has been a sports journalist since 2009 with his work appearing at ESPN, Sky Sports, NBC, Sporting Life and the Planet Sport Network among many others, in addition to guest appearances on the BBC and CNN. Although a specialist in golf, who has traveled the world to cover the sport, Matt has also covered rugby, cricket, football and the Olympics. Email: [email protected]

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