Wind, rain, gorse, gunch, The Firth of Clyde, and a Postage Stamp. Welcome to the Golf Betting preview of mid-Summer classic viewing party known at The Open Championship.
Clear out a nice spot on the couch, keep the coffee brewing, and plan on watching the TV coverage into the wee hours of the morning. Yes, it's Open Championship week and while this year's mid-Summer classic will be without "The Squeaker," Ivor Robson, at the Starter's Podium for the first time in 41-years, there is always the chance that we will see a "Streaker" bolt across the grounds at some point by Sunday. It is the third Major of the season, the oldest of golf's Majors - it is the ever glorious British Open upon us once again and for the 145th time in history.
This season's edition will be played at Royal Troon in Scotland. This will mark the ninth time The Open has been held at Troon, the last time being in 2004 when American Todd Hamilton bested Ernie Els in a playoff to hoist The Claret Jug. Royal Troon is a classic links design with the first nine holes heading out and the inward nine coming back into the clubhouse. As such, this will make for the prevailing winds to typically be at the players' back during the outward nine and in their face coming home. It looks as if the wind, rough, heather, and gorse will not be the only elements the players will face this week but likely some rain as well. Strong ball striking and controlling one's ball in the wind will be a key factor to success this week. Both distance and accuracy off of the tee have proven to be very important elements at Troon. Scrambling and Sand Saves are always in play in links golf but unlike golf courses in The United States, putting at The British Open is often neutralized by much slower greens than those that are experienced in the three Majors played on American soil.
Jason Day (8-1) The world number one is a favorite (at GTBets) these days every time he tees it up. In five attempts at The British, he had never finished higher than 30th until missing out on a playoff last year by one shot and finishing 4th at St. Andrew's.
Dustin Johnson (9-1) DJ has moved into the world number two spot with consecutive wins at The U.S. Open and at The WGC Bridgestone. He certainly qualifies as the hottest player, if not the best player, going right now but can that translate into three victories in a row and two straight Major Championships?
Rory McIlroy (10-1) The Northern Irishman did not get to defend his title at The Open last year due to injury so this will be his first trip back to the championship since winning at Hoylake in 2014. McIlroy has been a bit inconsistent as of late, winning The Irish Open back in May but most recently, missing the cut at The U.S. Open a month ago. However, the sports betting odds hold Rory to be one of the favorites for the Open Championship.
Adam Scott (20-1)Scott's recent British Open performance has included a disheartening near miss in 2012 and four straight Top-10 finishes. He may be the best ball striker in the world these days, winning twice this past Spring in Florida and recently finishing 18th at The U.S. Open and 10th at The WGC Bridgestone.
Rickie Fowler (25-1) Rickie has missed the cut this year at The Masters, The Players, The Memorial, and The U.S. Open and has dropped to 7th in the world rankings. He is, however, one of the best wind players in the world and owns two Top-10 finishes at The Open in six tries.
Henrik Stenson (25-1) Like Adam Scott, Stenson is a masterful ball striker who has distance and accuracy off of the tee. He just won The BMW International Open two weeks ago and has three Top-5 finishes at The British in the last seven years. Make sure you check the different prop lines at PaddyPower for full complete betting experience of the Open Championship
The Long Shots
Lee Westwood (40-1) The veteran Englishman will be playing in his 22nd British Open this week, still without a victory in a Major Championship. He finished 4th here at Royal Troon in 2004 and has three additional Top-5 finishes in the event. Westwood has been paired with the eventual tournament winner in both The Masters and U.S. Open this season.
Andy Sullivan (60-1) This Englishman has notched two straight Top-10 finishes on The European Tour in the last two weeks and finished 23rd at The U.S. Open at Oakmont last month. This is only his second appearance at The Open, finishing 30th in his debut last year.
Chris Wood (80-1) And yet another Englishman, Wood is a popular sleeper pick this week, and rightly so having won The BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth in England at the end of May. He is currently 5th in The European Tour's Race to Dubai standings and does have two Top-5 finishes at The British, coming back in 2008 and 2009.
Sergio Garcia (20-1) At 36-years old, Sergio Garcia will be playing in his 20th British Open this year at Royal Troon. He won The Byron Nelson less than two months ago and has notched a total of nine Top-10 finishes at The Open including three in his last five visits. Garcia is coming off of a 5th place finish at The U.S. Open last month and another 5th place finish at The BMW PGA International a week later. Garcia is our Golf pick for this tournament. He's been knocking on the door his whole career. I think this year, he kicks it in.
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