Fantasy League: Hong Kong Open preview

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It’s the penultimate tournament of the Today’s Golfer Fantasy League and the European Tour season at this week’s UBS Hong Kong Open.

There are a number of different battles taking place at Fanling GC; Rory McIlroy will be hoping to close the gap on Luke Donald at the top of the Race to Dubai, a host of golfers will be looking to force their way into, or cement their places in, the top 60 who qualify for next week’s Dubai World Championship and an unfortunate few will be battling for their place in the top 125 that earn a card for next year.

Fanling has hosted the tournament since it was first played in 1959 and it’s been a European Tour event for 10 years. It’s a classic tree-lined layout so favour players who keep the ball in play and take notice of past Hong Kong Open form.

TG’s six-man Fantasy League team for the Hong Kong Open is:

Padraig Harrington, $2.5m
The three-time Major winner is currently 67th in the Race to Dubai so he needs a good finish to make it to Dubai next week. He has three top 16s in his last four starts and won here in 2003.

Thongchai Jaidee, $1.5m
The Thai is always a force to be reckoned with on Asian soil. He’s finished in the top 20 in Hong Kong in each of the last six years including a second and a third.

Rory McIlroy, $4.0m
The US Open champion is strong favourite this week for good reason. Three previous visits have yielded 2-2-6 finishes and he hasn’t finished outside the top four in his last five starts.

Ian Poulter, $2.6m
The defending champion was also fifth the previous year. He’s had a quiet season but tends to come into form at this time of year and has already shown his 44th in driving accuracy and 12th in greens in regulation is a great fit for Fanling.

Justin Rose, $2.3m
Poulter’s World Cup partner last week has top 10s in his last two starts. He’s 15th in driving accuracy and 1st in greens in regulation on the European Tour.

YE Yang, $2.0m
The Korean has had a good second half to 2011 and hasn’t missed a cut since mid-June. A narrow and not overly long layout will suit his game and he should be feeling confident following a top 10 in Australia last week.

> You can register for the free Today’s Golfer Fantasy League and pick your team here.

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