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Hero Open Tips & Predictions: Week two of the UK Swing

Oliver Fisher features amongst our Hero Open tips and predictions.
Oliver Fisher features amongst our Hero Open tips and predictions.

Resident golf tipster Russell Palmer is back again for the European Tour's second event back, the Hero Open being played at the Forest of Arden with three tips...

Golf tipping is hard, but sometimes as a golf tipster you can make things even harder on yourself by not sticking to your laurels and following your process.

As regular readers and those who followed last week's column will testify, I pointed out that I wouldn't usually be backing a single odds priced jolly in the first tournament back after a break. However, I talked myself into putting Lee Westwood up to win the British Masters, a tournament he was hosting where despite making the cut, would finish dead last of those who played all four rounds.

With the betting wide open for this week's Hero Open, part two of the six tournament UK Swing series, I don't really have that problem, although it's a devilishly hard card to mark. I try my best with three picked out at escalating prices.

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Hero Open at a glance

This week's first pick comes in the shape of 19-year-old Rasmus Hojgaard who chased home last week's British Masters winner Renato Paratore to finish in second place.

Already a winner on the European Tour bagging the Mauritius Open last year, where incidentally he beat Paratore in a play-off, this guy has some talent. Coming into last week's event with a touch of form in the Nordic Tour with a top ten finish, he looks game ready and a player to keep an eye on at such a slender age.

He hits the ball a country mile ranking in the top ten for driving distance and with the Forest of Arden measuring under 7,000 yards as a par 72 he could be coming in with plenty of wedges this week. At 25/1 with Bet365 his recent form has been factored in but it's not putting me off.

His twin Nicolai also plays on the European Tour. 

For tip number two I'm looking to another Dane who has been out of action for some time for reasons I will come onto, but if this event was being played 12 months ago would most probably be favourite.

Thorbjorn Olesen is a class act on the course, but has had some trouble off it which saw him sit out the European Tour since the end of last season. The Dane is awaiting a court appearance connected to a number of charges related to incidents on a plane last year and was formally charged with sexual assault and being drunk on an aircraft. The European Tour have lifted the suspension handed down pending the court appearance due to it being delayed a year due to the COVID outbreak.

It means Olesen is back and we're taking a punt on just how rusty, or not, he may be.

He finished in the top ten of a Nordic Tour event he played in five weeks ago so he's not coming in completely fresh, but with the European Tour giving the top ten finishers in this mini six tournament UK Swing to US Open qualification later in the summer, there's a real emphasis for Olesen to get his career back on track with a good performance this week.

With five wins on the European Tour, his best form would see him go off favourite here so I'm happy to take a chance at the prices.

My third pick is another big price in the shape of Oli Fisher at 80/1 with Bet365.

The Englishman is famous for being the first player on the European Tour to shoot a 59 in the Portugal Masters in 2018 and he also has a European Tour win to his name when landing the Czech Open way back in 2011.

The 31 year old is also famous for being mates with Rory McIlroy and although the pair's careers aren't aligned in terms of success, Fisher possesses a lot of quality which was on display last week when sneaking into the places with some firms finishing 7th at big odds.

The layers haven't sufficiently cut him enough this week in my opinion on a course which should suit. 

Unsurprisingly its his putting where he can make shots up on the field this week, ranking 17th for putts in GIR this season on the European Tour and if the rest of his game can hold up he can feature at the sharp end again on Sunday.

As ever, enjoy your punting this week and good luck if you're following. Please gamble responsibly.

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