Who’s going to win as the DP World Tour returns to Nairobi? Oddschecker’s Tom Jacobs shares his picks
This will be just the fourth edition of the Magical Kenya Open on the DP World Tour after the circuit had a week off last week. Having come close with Tyrrell Hatton at Bay Hill, I have three fresh betting tips for the action in Nairobi, but first…
2023 Magical Kenya Open preview
Venue: Muthaiga Golf Club, Kenya
Date: March 9-12, 2023
Course stats: Par 71; 7,228 yards
Course summary: This parkland course packs a lot of history, and certainly offers a different challenge to the one players are used to. A much longer front-nine, in comparison to the back-nine, will test players right out of the gate, and with four par-5s on offer, there should be plenty of opportunities to score low. Similarly to Karen Country Club, the previous host venue, altitude will play a big part and needs consideration.
Purse: $2 million
Defending champion: Ashun Wu (-16)
Thursday: Sky Sports Golf from 9.00am
Friday: Sky Sports Golf from 9.00am
Saturday: Sky Sports Golf from 9.30am
Sunday: Sky Sports Golf from 9.30am
2023 Magical Kenya Open betting tips
The Each-Way Play: Marcus Kinhult @ 40/1 with Bet365
Starting the week off with your best selection at 40/1 is either exciting or concerning, but we will opt for the former in the hope that Marcus Kinhult can deliver some returns for us this week in Kenya.
The Swede has been in good form this year, finishing 8th at the Dubai Desert Classic and once again finishing 8th last week, this time on the less demanding Nordic Golf League. Now, he needs to turn that form into a consistent run on the DP World Tour, so he can reach the dizzying heights of 2019.
Kinhult won his first and so far only DP World Tour title in 2019, beating Robert MacIntyre, Eddie Pepperell, and Matt Wallace at the Betfred British Masters. Later that year he also found himself in a playoff with Tommy Fleetwood, who he lost out to at the Nedbank. Now he returns to a course he’s enjoyed in the past and he can play well again this week.
When playing this event on the Challenge Tour the Swede finished 12th and just last year he finished 8th in this event when it was elevated to a DP World Tour event. That doesn’t tell the whole story though, as he was in 2nd place and four shots back of Ewen Ferguson going into the final round, but as the Scotsman blew his lead, Kinhult too struggled to get anything going and instead slipped down the leaderboard.
This isn’t the strongest of events, and at his best Kinhult is one of the more talented players in this field, so I am banking on him showing that here at 40-1!
Another Each-Way Play: Angel Hidalgo @ 55/1 with Bet365
Hidalgo is playing some great golf right now and has been on and off for a decent amount of time on the DP World Tour. The standout performances for him so far on the DP World Tour have been a 4th place finish at Valderrama and a top five at the Joburg Open, two results I think correlate nicely for this.
Add in recent finishes of 8th (Dubai Desert Classic), 28th (Ras al Khaimah), and 10th last time out at the Hero Open, and he’s clearly an improving player who is in a great run of form and can contend in this level of the field.
The Spaniard finished 17th here last year and was 5th at the halfway stage, so his three rounds in the 60’s here 12 months ago, certainly breeds confidence.
Back Hidalgo to find that next level and get himself in the winners’ circle on his return to Muthaiga Golf Club.
The Long Shot: Alexander Knappe @ 80/1 with Bet365
Alexander Knappe is in great form right now, finishing 34th, 3rd, and 6th in his past three starts, and I suspect that will continue in Kenya, where his strong ball striking can come to the fore.
There is always a worry after a break and a switch in the continent that recent form can go out of the window, but I am expecting Knappe’s ball striking to hold up, and he has certainly shown a liking for African golf in the past.
In the past three months, Knappe ranks 2nd on Tour in Ball Striking, as he leads the Tour in Total Driving and ranks 36th in Greens in Regulation, which is an ideal combination for this test.
Knappe has enjoyed playing in Africa in the past, even if it has generally come in South Africa, as he’s finished, 1st, 3rd, and 4th in the Dimension Data Pro-Am. Knappe also finished T8 in this event in the past, just at a different course.
He hasn’t made the cut at Muthaiga yet, but that changes this week.