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Thursday, 17 January, 2019

Austin Connelly can get off to a strong start in Belgian Knockout

Canadian showing solid form on European Tour

Canada's Austin Connelly could perform well in Belgium
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Sky Sports Golf, 10am Thursday

The knockout aspect of the Belgian Knockout will not come into play until Saturday so, with two days of conventional strokeplay action to get through first, the customary threeball betting opportunities are available.

Pick of the bunch in the later action looks to be supporting Canadian Austin Connelly in his group alongside England's Matthew Southgate and former Ryder Cup star Peter Hanson (12.20pm BST).

Connelly heads to the Antwerp event having posted a storming end to his challenge at last week's Sicilian Open, where he carded closing rounds of 65 and 66 to finish 11th.

And, while he missed the cut at his previous effort in the China Open, the Canadian claimed a creditable 14th spot at last year's Open at Royal Birkdale and was 13th at the Hassan Trophy last month.

Those are some of the best performances Connelly has posted in Europe – he was second in last year's KLM Open – and he could get off to a fast start.

The same may not be expected of his playing partners.

Southgate was 48th in Sicily but that was his first tournament in 11 weeks following recuperation from a foot injury and it may take a while longer for the 29-year-old from Southend to get back into the swing of things.

Hanson's fall down the rankings to 427th has to be seen as a huge disappointment for a player who was celebrating his second Ryder Cup success just six years ago.

He has missed his last two cuts and, with just three top-20 finishes in his last 20 events, it could be a while before he scales his previous heights.

A Connelly to win threeball
1pt 8-5 Betfair, Betfred, Paddy Power

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Connelly heads to the Antwerp event having posted a storming end to his challenge at last week's Sicilian Open
E.W. Terms
Sky bet