The Open Championship – Betting Preview With Tips

The biggest four days in the British golfing calendar has finally arrived, and it is back at the course the legendary Jack Nicklaus described as ‘the best course in Britain’.

The Open hasn’t been staged at Muirfield since Ernie Els’ dramatic win in 2002, when he came out best of all in a four-man play-off.

However the course has changed considerably since then, with extra length, new bunkers, and four more championship tees in attendance.

There are even narrower entrances to the sloping greens, due to the extremely deep green-side bunkers. This means we are looking for players with great approach play, and are consistent in finding the greens.

This leads us to our main fancy of the competition, Graeme McDowell. He has just notched up his third victory of 2013, when landing the Open de France in fine fashion.

His incredible driving accuracy and scrambling are two key components that the winner must have in their locker, and this means that the 28/1 on offer for GMac looks very tempting. Coupled with the fact he has grew up playing links golf, unlike many of the competitors, this could give him the vital edge and he looks a great each-way punt.

GMAC1

His other two wins, in the RBC and Volvo Matchplay were equally as impressive, and he seems to be able to handle the burden of being a major winner a lot better, after a dip in form following his 2010 US Open victory.

He tied fifth in last year’s Open Championship, which is his best ever finish and provides a solid platform for the Irishman to kick on and improve on last year’s placing.

Alongside GMac, we can delve into two more fancied entrants, who are also in great form.

Jason Day was still in school when the Open was last at Muirfield back in 2002, but the Aussie has gone from strength-to-strength since turning pro, and has been consistent at the top level over the last couple of years.

Finishing joint-runner up in the US Open this year has highlighted the 25 year-old’s ability to continue to mix it at the top.

He has only played in the Open Championship twice in his blossoming career, disappointing in 2010 before going on to improve and finish a respectable 13th in 2011. He missed last year’s competition due to injury and the birth of his child, which will further spur Day on to give a solid account of himself.

His temperament is to be admired, and after a recent spout of top-ten finishes, it would be no surprise to see Day’s odds tumble in the days leading up to the big event, with a number of firms already only offering 25/1 on the Australian.

He is extremely consistent, and no-one can deny his major pedigree. He looks sure to give punters a solid run for their money at 33/1.

The final selection for the week is an intriguing outsider in the shape of Thorbjorn Olesen.

The 23-year-old has been in patchy form of late, but on his day, he’s shown incredible ability.

He’s more than capable of putting together a big performance, and the 65 he shot in the second round at Royal St George’s last year shows how he can cope with a difficult links course.

He is yet to piece together four rounds of consistent golf, but on the day he does, he is sure to land a big prize.

In the final two rounds at his only appearance at Augusta to date, he managed successive 68’s, so it’s clear to see he has no problem finishing off his rounds.

However his opening 18 often lets the Dane down, so if he is within two or three shots at the close of play on day one, he is in with a solid chance.

Stan James are offering a massive 125/1 on Olesen, who is as short as 50/1 elsewhere.

Advice:

2 points e.w – Graeme McDowell @ 28/1 (Sportingbet)

1 point e.w – Jason Day @ 40/1 (Coral/Youwin)

0.5 points e.w – Thorbjorn Olesen @ 125/1 (Stan James)

Bet Victor’s suggestions on how to win the US Masters

Bet Victor are renowned for their incredible special offers on major sporting events, and the US Masters is no different.

They have trumped other market competitors by offering an incredible special for anyone who is contemplating having a punt on this weeks big event.

Only at Bet Victor will you find the special offer of receiving your money back of up to £50 per person/household if Tiger Woods or Rory McIlroy win the US Masters!

This means that you can be free to back your outsiders in the knowledge that you will be receiving your stake back if either of the two main contenders land the prize at Augusta this week.

So enjoy the four days, and if it comes to the final day and you’re choices are without a chance, make sure you get behind Tiger or Rory to retrieve your money for the week!

Now we’ve got your attention, and you’re contemplating who to back, have a look at Bet Victor’s guide on how to win a Masters..

Follow the trends and best of luck for the week.

Masters

US Masters 2013 – Tips

The opening segment of this week’s post about the 2013 US Masters comes from my course-mate  and golf fanatic Matthew Southcombe.

The Welshman cleaned up at the Ryder Cup, so I have drafted him in, in the hope of making us all some money on the big event in America this week.

There are plenty of offers around if you care to shop about, however if you are fancying a bigger priced bet but scared that the front two in the market could snatch it, in Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy, make sure you have a bet with Bet Victor.

They are offering money back of up to £50 back if Tiger or Rory win, on any pre-tournament bets on the big event. This looks a safer option if your player is only a couple of points shorter with the firm, as effectively you also have the front two in the market going with you, for free.

Selections:

Matt Kuchar 37/1 Betfair

I can’t believe Kuchar’s price is so big!

Kuchar is currently 3rd in the FedEx Cup standings following his win at the WGC Accenture Mactchplay back in February. The Butch Harmon student hasn’t missed a cut all year and has 3 top 10’s out of 7 starts.

The Floridian has proved he has what it takes to hold his own at the major championships. Last season he came T9 at the Open Championship and came T3 at Augusta behind winner Bubba Watson and 2nd place Louis Oosthuizen.

I’m a firm believer that to win at Augusta you need to be hitting fairways, but Kuchar never misses a cut (just 1/22 cuts missed last season) and if you’re there at the weekend, anything can happen.

Justin Rose 22/1 Betfair

U.S. Open Golf Practice Round June 15,  2011

Rose is the finished article with a fantastic, repeatable swing. The Englishman is 18th in the FedEx Cup thanks to no missed cuts from 4 starts this season, he also has 4 top 25’s with 3 top 10’s.

He also has the winning feeling this season after being part of the Lake Albany team that won the Tavistock Cup in March.

The 32-year-old has worked his way to number 3 in the world and last year he finished T8 at Augusta and T3 in the PGA Championship. He also played a big part in the European Ryder Cup success, canning a huge putt on the final day at 17, proving he can do it on the big stage.

Finally in a recent interview at Bay Hill I got the impression that Rose believes he can beat Tiger, and he can.

Keegan Bradley 33/1 Bet365

I’m usually not Bradley’s biggest fan, something about him really bugs me, but there’s no denying the guy can play.

He didn’t really perform too well in the majors last year but managed to get himself T3 at glory’s last shot.

The man from Vermont proved he has what it takes on the big stage by winning the WGC Bridgestone Invitational last season, he also won 3 out of 4 points on his Ryder Cup debut.

His season has come alive in recent weeks claiming 4 top 10’s in his last 4 starts and has the 11th best scoring average this year on the PGA Tour.

The man has some serious game and I reckon he’s a solid each way bet.

Those selections were courtesy of Mr Southcombe, and now I am going to add my own for anyone who fancies sticking with me!

My Selections:

Charl Schwartzel – 29/1 Betfair

charl schwartzel

Schwartzel has really been on top of his game of late, with his last four starts on the European Tour returning a first, a second, a third and a fourth placed finish.

His final round 75 eradicated any chances he had when last seen in America, but when you take into account, that is his worst strokeplay finish so far this calendar year, it makes the 29/1 seem a marvelous price.

He has a sensational record in Majors, with a run of seven consecutive top 18 finishes.

He landed the US Masters two years ago and arrives to Augusta in better form, and arguably a better player than when he won it. All points towards a big challenge from the South African.

Angel Cabrera – 125/1 William Hill

The ageing Argentinian has a fine record at Augusta including five top 10 finishes in the Masters, with the highlight being his victory in 2009.

His long, straight drives are key to his success at the course, and although his form has not been great as of late, he always seems to make sure he enters early April in top condition for a crack at the big prize.

Matt Southcombe’s advice:

1 point win: Matt Kuchar – 37/1 (Betfair)

1 point win: Justin Rose – 22/1 (Betfair)

0.5 points e.w: Keegan Bradley – 33/1 (Bet365)

My advice:

0.5 point win – Charl Schwartzel – 29/1 (Betfair)

2 points win: Charl Schwartzel – Top 10 finish – 11/5 (Stan James)

0.25 win – Angel Cabrera – 125/1 (William Hill)

0.25 win – Angel Cabrera – Top 10 finish – 8/1 (Ladbrokes)

Here is a link to Matt Southcombe’s sports blog: http://sportisawesome.wordpress.com/

2013: +25.11