Completed: Royal AberdeenJul 10-13

Scottish Open

Scheduled: Firestone CCJul 31-3

World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational

Dunhill Links guide

A preview and stats ahead of this week's Alfred Dunhill Links Championship in Scotland

By Dave Tindall Twitter: @DaveTindallgolf.   Last Updated: 25/09/13 10:03am

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The famous Road Hole at St Andrews

The famous Road Hole at St Andrews

Sky Bet

An excellent field has assembled on Scotland's east coast for the 13th staging of this autumn links festival.

Once again, St Andrews, Carnoustie and Kingsbarns are the courses being used for this popular pro-am event.

Over the opening 54 holes, each professional and his amateur partner will play one round at each of the venues.

Those who survive the cut will head back to the Old Course at St Andrews on Sunday to decide the destiny of the two titles - both the main tournament prize as well as the pro-am segment of the event.

Over the years, in a tournament first contested in 2001, Carnoustie has usually proved to be the highest-scoring of the three venues and that is unlikely to change this week.

The Old Course is traditionally the lowest-scoring of the three although the Kyle Phillips-designed Kingsbarns, with its large undulating greens, did yield a 60 last year.

PLAYERS with GOOD to REASONABLE FORM in LINKS CHAMPIONSHIP

Last Eight years

Player: '05 / '06 / '07 / '08 / '09 / '10 / '11 / '12

Thomas Aiken: MC / MC / 45 / 13 / Dq / 22 / 30 / 22
Rafael Cabrera-Bello: - / - / - / - / 4 / MC / 30 / MC
Magnus A Carlsson: - / - / - / 5 / MC / - / - / 13
Paul Casey: 23 / 6 / 10 / 8 / - / - / - / MC
Jamie Donaldson: MC / MC / - / 8 / MC / MC / 9 / MC
Nick Dougherty: 49 / 27 / Won / 19 / MC / MC / MC / -
Victor Dubuisson: - / - / - / - / - / MC / 27 / 5
Simon Dyson: 49 / 8 / 55 / MC / Won / 5 / 9 / MC
Johan Edfors: - / 8 / MC / MC / 26 / 11 / 30 / MC
Ernie Els: - / 5 / 6 / MC / 26 / 22 / 53 / 34
Ross Fisher: - / MC / 49 / 2 / MC / 11 / 64 / 22
Tommy Fleetwood: - / - / - / - / - / - / 5 / 55
Mark Foster: 28 / MC / MC / MC / 42 / MC / 21 / 15
Stephen Gallacher: 7 / MC / MC / 24 / - / 17 / MC / 5
Ricardo Gonzalez: 7 / 38 / MC / 31 / 9 / 41 / - / 13
Soren Hansen: MC / MC / 8 / 8 / 42 / 37 / MC / -
Padraig Harrington: 3 / Won / 8 / 13 / 26 / 17 / 8 / 29
Michael Hoey: - / MC / - / - / 19 / MC / Won / MC
Raphael Jacquelin: MC / 22 / MC / 24 / 16 / 48 / MC / 5
Thongchai Jaidee: - / 38 / - / 19 / 42 / - / MC / 15
Martin Kaymer: - / - / 15 / 2 / - / Won / 30 / 34
Simon Khan: 16 / 15 / MC / MC / 19 / MC / 58 / 63
Paul Lawrie: MC / 15 / 4 / MC / MC / 22 / 45 / MC
James Morrison: - / - / - / - / - / MC / 17 / 22
Alex Noren: - / - / 45 / 48 / MC / 17 / 39 / 3
Brett Rumford: 37 / MC / 15 / - / 19 / MC / 53 / 22
Charl Schwartzel: MC / 22 / MC / 13 / MC / - / 9 / 66
Jeev Milkha Singh: - / - / 23 / 24 / - / - / - / -
Graeme Storm: MC / 32 / 15 / MC / 19 / 37 / MC / 15
Anthony Wall: 37 / 2 / 32 / 5 / - / 29 / MC / MC
Marc Warren: - / MC / MC / 13 / 19 / MC / 5 / 34
Steve Webster: MC / - / 15 / 66 / MC / 45 / 18 / 12
Danny Willett: - / - / - / - / 42 / 2 / 27 / 5
Oliver Wilson: MC / 32 / MC / 40 / 2 / MC / 21 / 34

PLAYERS with POOR to MEDIOCRE FORM in LINKS CHAMPIONSHIP

Last Eight years

(No Top-40 Finishes from three or more starts since 2005)

Player: '05 / '06 / '07 / '08 / '09 / '10 / '11 / '12

Felipe Aguilar: - / - / - / 66 / Wd / MC / MC / MC
Mark Brown: - / - / - / - / MC / MC / MC / -
Robert Coles: MC / 44 / - / - / - / MC / MC / MC
Richard Finch: MC / MC / 59 / MC / MC / 48 / MC / 55
Jean-Baptiste Gonnet: - / - / - / MC / MC / MC / 64 / MC
Retief Goosen: - / - / - / 52 / - / 53 / MC / -
Scott Hend: - / - / - / Dq / MC / MC / MC / -
Keith Horne: MC / MC / - / MC / 53 / MC / MC / MC
Dave Horsey: - / - / - / - / MC / MC / 58 / MC
Pablo Larrazabal: - / - / - / MC / MC / MC / 58 / MC
Mikael Lundberg: Wd / 59 / - / MC / MC / MC / - / -
Gareth Maybin: - / - / - / - / 51 / MC / MC / MC
Robert Rock: - / - / MC / MC / MC / MC / MC / 61
Alessandro Tadini: 41 / MC / 45 / - / 42 / - / - / -
Tjaart Van Der Walt: - / 59 / - / - / - / - / MC / 61
Simon Wakefield: MC / MC / MC / MC / MC / - / - / -
Peter Whiteford: - / - / - / MC / - / MC / MC / MC
Fabrizio Zanotti: - / - / - / - / - / 45 / MC / 69

TOP-25 Finishers in 2012 (Not Already Listed Above)

Branden Grace: (Won)
Thorbjorn Olesen: (2nd)
Joel Sjoholm: (4th)
Fredrik Andersson: (T-5th)
Lee Slattery: (T-5th)
David Drysdale: (T-15th)
Oliver Fisher: (T-15th)
Chris Wood: (T-15th)
Mikko Ilonen: (T-22nd)

LOWEST 20 STROKE AVERAGES at LINKS CHAMPIONSHIP

(Last Five Years 2008/12)

Average (Rounds)

69.00: Danny Willett (16)
69.13: Martin Kaymer (16)
69.65: Padraig Harrington (20)
69.78: Simon Dyson (18)
69.93: Michael Hoey (14)
70.00: Victor Dubuisson (11)
70.00: Richie Ramsay (14)
70.00: Marc Warren (19)
70.16: Oliver Wilson (19)
70.18: Magnus A Carlsson (11)
70.19: Ricardo Gonzalez (16)
70.21: Ross Fisher (19)
70.21: Alex Noren (19)
70.27: Stephen Gallacher (15)
70.27: Charl Schwartzel (15)
70.40: Thongchai Jaidee (15)
70.50: Mikko Ilonen (16)
70.53: Raphael Jacquelin (19)
70.53: Brett Rumford (15)


70.55: James Morrison (11)

Min. No. of Rounds = 10

LOWEST ROUNDS in LINKS CHAMPIONSHIP (All-Time)

60: Branden Grace (KB - 2012)
62: Lee Westwood (KB - 2003)
62: Brian Davis (SA - 2003)
62: Graeme McDowell (SA - 2004)
62: Victor Dubuisson (SA - 2012)
62: George Coetzee (SA - 2012)
63: Nine times (6 (SA); 3 (KB), 0 (CN))

St Andrews: Par 72; 7,279 yards
Carnoustie: Par 72; 7,412 yards
Kingbarns: Par 72; 7,150 yards

Winning Totals (Last Three Years):

2012: 266 (Branden Grace)
2011: 266 (Michael Hoey)
2010: 271 (Martin Kaymer)

Conclusion

Peter Uihlein: Looks a good bet at 50/1

Americans are so often inspired by St Andrews and visits to the 'home of golf' and that alerts me to the chances of Peter Uihlein and Brooks Koepka.

On recent form they could be much shorter in the betting but both have been chalked up at 50/1 and I think that's more than fair.

Uihlein was runner-up in Wales two starts ago and also 10th on his last trip to Scotland after being second at the halfway mark of that Scottish Open.

Yes, there have been a fair few missed cuts sprinkled around but Uihlein, who won at coastal/windy Madeira back in May, is clearly one to watch when he's 'on' and I have the feeling the courses will suit him this week - especially St Andrews where he'll play two of the four rounds.

Walker Cup players have done well in this event (which makes sense given that the contests take place on links courses) so Uihlein, who won both his singles matches at Royal Aberdeen in 2011, has an extra little edge.

Koepka has followed in the footsteps of Uihlein and chosen to see the bigger picture by broadening his horizons by playing in Europe first.

And the 23-year-old already has plenty of happy diary entries about Scotland.

It was here that he won his third Challenge Tour event of 2013 - the Scottish Challenge - which gave him automatic promotion to the main European Tour.

Since securing his card he's finished 12th in the Scottish Open and also tied 28th in the Johnnie Walker Championship at Gleneagles.

His recent form figures read 18-7-22-MC so he looks close to putting in another big performance.

Back to the Walker Cup and I'll also put in two English players who have featured in that tournament.

Tommy Fleetwood has really kicked on since his 2009 appearance at Merion and he has a reputation as a strong links player.

He was fifth on his debut in this event in 2011 and on his last trip to Scotland he captured the Johnnie Walker Championship.

Since then he's made the top 10 in Crans while he closed the KLM Open with a 67 on his last start.

Take the 40/1.

Lewis was tipped for great things when leading the 2011 Open as an amateur and justified the hype when winning in Portugal on just his third start as a pro.

He's had a dip since but there are some good signs of late - two tops 20s in his last five starts - and the 175/1 is just too tempting.

Lewis missed the cut here last year but shot a 65 in his third round and hopefully his obvious talent can shine through again this week.

Best bets

2pts e.w. Peter Uihlein at 50/1 (1/4 1,2,3,4,5)
1pt e.w. Brooks Koepka at 50/1 (1/4 1,2,3,4,5)
1pt e.w. Tommy Fleetwood at 40/1 (1/4 1,2,3,4,5)
1pt e.w. Tom Lewis at 175/1 (1/4 1,2,3,4,5)

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