Saudi International Golf Betting Tips 2022

Who will prevail in the star-packed Saudi International this week?

Betting slip graphic and four golfers
(Image credit: Future)

We have seen the big marquee names at the Saudi International in the last two years but never on the scale of this year’s cavalcade of talent aimed at showing that the mega-rich locals have the power and punch to be major players in world golf. Battle lines have yet to be drawn with the PGA and DP World Tours but this renewal, with a prize money hike to $5m, is a clear warning shot that the Saudi rulers have much more than the Asian Tour on their agenda.

It’s not as if this year’s flagship first event of the 2022 Asian circuit is even the richest in declared prize money of the week - well behind the $8.7m on offer at Pebble Beach - but it’s the massive back-handers in appearance money that’s attracting defending champion Dustin Johnson and box-office star Bryson DeChambeau to the Royal Greens outside Jeddah.

Officially, it is all in the great cause of growing the game in that part of the world but we all suspect it’s just a precursor to something more far-reaching. The difference between this and last year’s International is that it is no longer sanctioned by the European (now DP World) Tour and 20 of the world’s top 50 have had to apply for special exemptions from their respective tours to participate. They were only granted by the PGA Tour in return for guarantees that the Pebble Beach Pro-Am would be supported in a future year.

The controversy surrounding the tournament has not put many off going - as Shane Lowry says “I’m not a politician, I’m a professional golfer” - so this column is not concerned with greed and golf on a fine course versus loyalty and morality but with finding the winner of the flagship event of Saudi’s National Golf Week.

DJ, beaten by shock winner Graeme McDowell in 2020, went one better last year with a two-shot victory over Justin Rose and Tony Finau. He also won the inaugural International in 2019 but that early tiptoe into the market place did not have the awesome line-up assembled this week. The former world No. 1’s return to fray at Torrey Pines after putting the clubs away in October was competent rather than earth-shattering but any competition rust will be out of the system and he has to be favourite.

Xander Schauffele and DeChambeau are the next two on the world rankings but neither impressed at Torrey Pines and I’m more impressed by the European trio of Tyrrell Hatton, Thomas Pieters and Sergio Garcia. Hatton beat himself when sixth in Abu Dhabi and fourth in Dubai, often looking the best golfer in the field, and could easily make it third time lucky so long as he drops the “Why me?” negativity. 

Sixth on the 7010-yard par 72 Royal Greens 12 months ago, only four behind the winner, he has 119 to beat including the Asian Tour’s top 30. Japan’s latest star Takumi Kanaya could be the Asian standard-bearer but Pieters’ easy length and the newly-confident putting stroke which was such a big feature of his Abu Dhabi triumph make him a more likely threat. There was much to like about Garcia’s first crack at 2022, a solid 12th in Dubai which, taken in conjunction with Saudi form of sixth and 12th, augurs well for an improved second outing.

Finau will be backed on his second last year but the big fella has yet to impress me so far this year and I’d rather take a chance on one of the few young bucks taking part, Matt Wolff, a birdie machine like DeChambeau who could run riot if he gets a taste for the course.

Saudi International Golf Betting Tips 2022

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Jeremy Chapman
GM Tipster

Celebrating my 52nd year tipping and writing about golf. Tipped more than 800 winners (and more than 8000 losers!). First big winner Lee Trevino at 8-1, 1972 Open at Muirfield. Biggest win £40 each-way Ernie Els at 80-1 and 50-1, 2012 Open. Most memorable: Giving the 1-2-3 at 33-1, 50-1, 33-1 out of 4 tips from a field of 180 in 2006 Pebble Beach Pro-Am. According to one bookmaker “Undoubtedly one of the greatest tipping performances of all time”. And, of course, putting up a 150/1 winner with Stewart Cink in my very first column for Golf Monthly. Lowest handicap 9 Present handicap 35.6. Publications tipped for: Sporting Life, Racing Post, Racing&Football Outlook, Golf World, Golf Weekly, Golf Monthly, Fitzdares Times. Check our Jeremy's latest tips at our Golf Betting tips home page