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Qatar Masters tips: Tom McKibbin ready to turn up heat in desert sun

The DP World Tour’s early-season Middle East swing concludes at Doha Golf Club, from where golf pundit Martin Colwell has picked out his three best-value contenders for the Qatar Masters

Qatar Masters key stats:

  • When: February 8-11 2024
  • Where: Doha Golf Club, Qatar
  • How long: 7,466 yards - par 72
  • What to expect: Lush green oasis in exposed desert landscape with eight strategically placed lakes
  • Who won last year: Sami Valimaki (-18) - after play-off with Jorge Campillo

The tournament makes a quick rescheduled turnaround after being held in October last year, when Sam Valimaki won after a play-off with Jorge Campillo, who had himself landed the title in 2020. 

The Finn is not here to defend his title this time around, while Campillo might appear tasty at 40/1, but will have to be at his best to challenge the in-form favourite Rasmus Hojgaard, who lines up for the fifth straight week after making the top 11 in each of the first four tournaments of the year.

Even with that form, 10/1 might seem a little short, which leaves Yannik Paul and Zander Lombard the joint-second-favourites at 18/1, but we’re happy to bypass both this week, as they tend to flatter to deceive when it comes to converting good starts into Sunday afternoon successes.

Of much more interest on the 22/1 mark is ‘the next Rory McIlroy’, Tom McKibbin, who might not ever be able to live up to that label, but certainly has similar talents to his fellow-Northern Irishman.

McKibbin famously secured his maiden Tour victory in last June’s European Open in Germany, then finished ninth behind Valimaki in this event four months ago, and has made the top 25 in each of his three events so far this year. 

Suggested bet: Tom McKibbin each-way in the Qatar Masters



Thriston Lawrence was runner-up at the Dubai Invitational last month, but has subsequently struggled in two outings, making Richard Mansell look a better bet at a similar price.

The Englishman took a week off last week to complete his move to live in Dubai, but was playing well before then and drives the ball a long way.

One to catch the eye among the mid-market pack is the young Swedish golfer Jesper Svensson at 50/1, who is in great fom and could go well in this weaker field.

Runner-up at the South African Open late last year, Svensson has made a solid start to his 2024 campaign, culminating in another runner-up spot last week at Ras Al Khaimah, where he finished just a couple of shots behind Dylan Frittelli (who might also attract some interest to go back-to-back here at 70/1)

Suggested bet: Jesper Svensson each-way in the Qatar Masters


Another up and coming Danish golfer on this tour is Marcus Helligkilde, who often shows up on leaderboards but does need to get a win in 2024 to move on from where he is currently at. 

That said 50/1 seems solid each way value, and the same could be said for Canadian raider Aaron Cockerill who has moved to this tour for 2024 and put in a good shift last weekend.

Last but not least, Haotong Li has made a name for himself on this tour and in the U.S., and seems to have recovered from the injury issues that plagued him for eighteen months. 

While not quite on his game last weekend, he had showed up well to finish tied for 14th and 7th at the Dubai Invitational and Dubai Desert Classic respectively. 

While prone to inconsistency, this course should give him plenty of landing areas off the tee, and he can also play in the wind as he has put himself in contention on links courses in the past.

Suggested bet: Haotong Li each-way in the Qatar Masters



Suggested bet summary:

  • Tom McKibbin (22/1) - 2 points each-way 
  • Jesper Svensson (50/1) - 1 point each-way
  • Haotong Li (66/1) - 1 point each-way

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