Bettors Edge- Wagering on the US Open
Golf’s second Major of the year gets underway this week with the start of the US Open this Thursday at Merion Golf Club, which is just outside Philadelphia. The US Open is traditionally the sternest test of golf the players will face all season long given that the USGA’s goal in the setup of the course is to make it play as close to even par as possible.
US Open Overview
Heavy rains last week and early this week have already softened what is one of the shortest courses in the US Open’s rotation at just below 7,000 yards so we could see quite a few red numbers on the leader board by the time Sunday’s final round rolls around. These conditions should favor some of the longer hitters on the tour such as favorite Tiger Woods at 9/2, third-favorite Graeme McDowell at 20/1 and Rory McIlroy at 20/1. It also helps that these three players have all won this tournament in the past five years.
Two other players to keep your eye on this week are Matt Kuchar at 20/1 and Adam Scott at 22/1. Kuchar’s best finish in a US Open was sixth in 2010, but he is coming off a victory in the Memorial just the other week. Scott has been listed at 22/1 to win this week and offers some solid value at these odds given his breakthrough victory at this year’s Masters in early April.
The odds for a few other notable golfers in the field include Phil Mickelson at 16/1, Justin Rose at 22/1, Lee Westwood at 28/1, Luke Donald at 33/1 and last year’s winner Webb Simpson at 40/1.
US Open Betting Strategy
Along with its odds to win the US Open, Bovada offers the chance to wager on a top five, top 10 and even top 20 finish for a number of the best golfers in the field. This betting strategy makes much better sense than trying to predict an outright winner which is extremely difficult to do in a tournament such as this.
One of the best values on the board is an even money bet that Tiger Woods finishes in the top five. You can get a $400 return on a $100 wager that either Adam Scott, Matt Kuchar, Phil Mickelson or Rory McIlroy finish in the top five. The better play for this group could be to wager $100 that they finish in the top 10 for a return of $165.
If you are looking the stretch the odds a bit you can get Graeme McDowell at +450 to finish in the top five and at +175 to finish in the top 10. Lee Westwood has never won a Major but he has come close a number of times. You might want to take a flyer that he finishes in the top five at +550 or play it a bit safer with a top 10 finish at +225. You can even make money if he finishes in the top 20 at +115.