Following Martin Kaymer’s imperious US Open triumph, it would be easy to assume a timely return home to German soil would make scooping the BMW International Open in Cologne a foregone conclusion.
Having evoked the kind of stunning form which once placed him at the pinnacle of world golf back in 2010, on the surface there is nothing to put punters off his joint 8/1 favouritism.
A past winner of this event as a burgeoning rookie back in 2008, Kaymer made history by becoming the first German to win his home open.
Now 29, Kaymer’s set for a hero’s welcome at a course just shy of 20 miles away from where he grew up, but ironically that’s where his obvious appeal takes its first knock back.
That landmark victory took place in Munich at the Eiechenried course, the layout that has hosted the European Tour staple for 16 of the last 17 years, though this year it switches back to its 2012 venue at Larchenhof Golf Glub.
Two years ago Kaymer missed the cut in Cologne and as is so often the case immediately after landing one of the big four, it’s difficult not to feel a bit of a hangover back on the tour.
Although not an official major, but as good as, Kaymer followed his Players Championship victory with 29th at the Byron Nelson last month.
Meanwhile, the man best-place to spoil the German’s homecoming is co-favourite Henrik Stenson.
Sixth at Larchenhof in ’12, Stenson’s affinity to the event is pronounced by five top 10s in seven trips to the BMW, including victory in 2006.
Having finished T4 at Pinehurst, the Swede is beginning to rekindle his all-conquering 2013 form – finishing within the top seven in his last four European Tour events.
Further down the betting, Thailand’s finest Thongchai Jaidee is worth an each-way poke at 50/1 after finishing tied eighth at Larchenhof two years ago.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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