The Open Championship Betting Preview 2017

Open Championship 2017 Royal Birkdale The Open Championship 2017 Betting Preview

Royal Birkdale, Southport, England

Par 70, 7156 yards

The Course

Its Open Championship week and promises to be filled with a mixed bag of weather and plenty of drama. Royal Birkdale was established in 1889 and underwent a huge redesign in 1922 by Fred Hawtree and JH Taylor to create the current layout. It gained it “Royal” status in 1951 and has been on the Open rota since 1954 when it hosted the Open Championship for the first time. Peter Thompson was the first man to win here and he went on to win a further five Open Championships. He returned to Birkdale in 1965 to win his fifth and final title. This course has been one of the most regular venues for the Open along with Royal Lytham and St Andrews.

It last took place here in 2008 when Irishman Padraig Harrington won on a score of 283 (+3) beating his closest challenger Englishman Ian Poulter by four shots in total. From what we can tell, it was a tough, testing track back in 2008 and demanded accurate driving, GIR and most importantly a good touch on and around the greens.  2017 will be the tenth time Royal Birkdale will be hosting The Open.

Birkdale has a total of 12 par 4’s, four par 3’s and two par fives and like many links courses, can play either very difficult or fairly straight forward depending on weather conditions. It is a very spectator friendly course with high dunes spread around the golf course offering some great viewing points. Traditionally with all links courses, keeping the ball in the fairway and avoiding the challenging rough will be extremely advantageous. Judging from the 2008 Open driving accuracy, GIR, scrambling and hot putter are a must if players are going to contend here.

 

Adam Scott 25/1 The Open Championship Betting Preview 2017Adam Scott 28/1

The Aussie arrives in Birkdale on the back of a respectable T35 in Scotland and looks nicely warmed up coming into this week. He has been in great form over the last couple of months with three top 10’s in his last six starts. Scott had a good week in Augusta finishing T9, which included two rounds in the 60’s. He followed that with a T6 at the Players Championship in Sawgrass, a T31 at Memorial and a T10 at the FedEx St Jude Classic which included an impressive second round 64.

Scott has a great record at The Open Championship over the last few years with four top 10’s in his last five appearances. He finished second to Ernie Els at Lytham & St Annes in 2012 and followed that with a third place finish in Muirfield in 2013, fifth in Hoylake in 2014 and a T10 in St Andrews in 2015.

Statswise Scott ticks a few boxes here ranking 33rd in GIR, 23rd in driving distance averaging a little over 300 yards of the tee, and first in par 3 scoring. Given his Open pedigree and decent current form, Scott has to be well fancied this week.

 

Sergio Garcia 18/1 The Open Championship Betting Preview 2017Sergio Garcia 18/1 

After a sensational performance in Augusta beating Justin Rose in a playoff, I don’t think anyone would begrudge the Spaniard a major especially after coming oh so close so many times. He’s one player that jumps off the page in terms of Open Championship form. He has an impressive 10 top 10 finishes in the Open over the last few years and came close to winning in 2007 when he was denied victory by Padraig Harrington in a playoff in Carnoustie.

His results over the last few years have been particularly impressive with three top 6’s in his last three Open starts. He finished second in Hoylake in 2014 and followed that with a sixth place finish in St Andrews in 2015 and a fifth in Troon last year.

After victory at The Masters, Sergio kept up his good form with a T30 at The Players, T20 at the Byron Nelson, T12 in Colonial, T21 at the US Open and T2 at the BMW International Open in Germany.

Statswise he is averaging just under 300 yards off the tee and ranks 30th in driving accuracy, sixth in GIR, third in SGTTG and 17th in par 4 scoring. Sergio seems to be a different man since winning in Augusta and has to be respected here especially with great performances in the Open over the last few years.

 

Henrik Stenson 25/1 The Open Championship Betting Preview 2017Henrik Stenson 25/1 

Its hard not to back Stenson after last years final round performance in Troon. We saw two heavyweights of the game with Stenson and Mickelson going toe to toe in the final round and it turned out to be one of the best final rounds in major championship history. Stenson was on fire from the get go and ended up carding, what turned out to be an unbelievable 63, winning by three from Mickelson who shot a none-too shabby 65.

The Swedes form in this event is excellent over the last ten years or so. He has three top three finishes including a win last year. He played well in Birkdale in 2008 finishing third and followed that with a T13 in Turnberry in 2009, third in St Andrews in 2010, second in Muirfield in 2013 and a superb win last year in Troon.

Stenson has been back showing some good form over the last couple of months finishing T3 at the BMW PGA in Wenworth, T16 at the Players Championship in Sawgrass, T26 at The Nordea Masters, T10 at the BMW International Open and a respectable T26 last week in Scotland, which included a final round 68. Stenson is hitting just under 75% of greens in regulation ranking 21st and ranks eighth in driving accuracy. He seems to be warming up nicely coming into this week and could be one to watch here.

 

Alex Noren 40/1 The Open Championship Betting Preview 2017Alex Noren 40/1

The in-form Swede is in superb form over the last year or so and when it comes to links courses, Noren has to be on the shortlist. He won the Scottish Open in Castlestuart in 2016 and went on to win four more times winning the European Masters, The British Masters, The Nedbank Challenge and the BMW PGA Championship. It’s also worth mentioning Noren was runner up to Anthony Wall at the Paul Lawrie Matchplay in 2016 in Archerfield Links in Scotland. He has also played well at the Alfred Dunhill Links over the last few years finishing T11 in 2016 and solo third in 2012.

Since winning the PGA in Wentworth, Noren went on to finish T15 at the Nordea Masters, tenth at The Players Championship and T10 at the Open De France. He hasn’t the best record in the Majors but Alex played well here in Birkdale in 2008 finishing T19. He also had a good week at the 2012 Open Championship finishing T9 at Lytham and St Annes. With a great links record and great current form, the world number nine could be another huge danger man here.

 

Padraig Harrington 50/1 The Open Championship Betting Preview 2017Padraig Harrington 50/1 

The 2008 champion has bounced back well after an elbow injury and looks to be back playing some good golf again. The Irishman played excellent last time the Open was held here in Birkdale and shot a superb final round 67 to beat Ian Poulter by four and lift the Claret Jug. Harrington played well last week in Scotland holding the 36 hole lead after shooting 67,68 in the first two rounds. The weather got the better of him on Saturday which resulted in a disappointing 79 but he bounced back with a final round 66 to finish T4. He has had a couple of good results over the last few weeks finishing T17 at the Travelers at the end of June shooting three rounds in the 60’s.

He has two Open Championships under his belt, the first one coming at Carnoustie in 2007 where he beat Sergio Garcia in a playoff and the second here in Birkdale in 2008. He also finished T20 in St Andrews in 2015 and T36 last year in Troon. He seems to be in a good place with his game and he’s the only one in the field that knows what its like to win here in Birkdale. It wouldn’t be a surprise to see him floating around the leaderboard come Sunday afternoon.

 

Ian Poulter 70/1 The Open Championship Betting Preview 2017Ian Poulter 70/1

I thought Poulter looked great value considering he’s back playing some good golf lately. As I mentioned above Poulter finished runner up to Harrington in 2008 on this course and has some good results at The Open over the last few years. He finished ninth in 2012 at Lytham and St Annes and followed that with a third place finish in 2013 in Muirfield.

He had a good week at the RBC Heritage in Harbour Town finishing T11 posting 11 under in total. Poulter then tee’d it up in Sawgrass and played solid throughout the week and putted very well finishing T2. He travelled to Scotland last week and finished T9 at the Scottish Open finishing seven under par in total. After a decent performance in Scotland and a runner up finish here in 2008, Poulter could be worth a small punt here this week.

 

Final Selections – 

Adam Scott 28/1 1pt EW

Henrik Stenson 25/1 1 pt EW

Sergio Garcia 18/1 1 pt EW

Alex Noren 40/1 0.5pts EW

Padraig Harrington 50/1 0.5pts EW

Ian Poulter 70/1 0.5pts EW

Total staked = 9 pts

 

*Most bookies paying seven places (PP paying 8)*

 

Good luck and enjoy the golf,

Doublebogey6

 

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Valero Texas Open 2015 Betting Preview

Valero Texas Open 2015 betting tips

TPC San Antonio, AT&T Oaks Course, Texas

7,435 yards, par 72

The Course

TPC San Antonio is located in the Cibolo Canyons area north of San Antonio, Texas, and opened in February 2010.

The resort features two 18-hole golf courses, the AT&T Canyons Course designed by Pete Dye in and Bruce Lietzke, and the AT&T Oaks Course designed by Greg Norman and Sergio Garcia. Both courses are members of the Tournament Players Club network operated by the PGA Tour, with the Oaks Course hosting the Valero Texas Open since 2010. The Canyons course took over as the venue for the AT&T Championship on the Champions Tour in 2011.

The Oaks Course is a tricky par 72 with four par 5’s, four par 3’s and 10 par 4’s. This course is a tough challenge with narrow fairways and deep bunkers. There is also a lot of vegetation where there can be some unplayable lies so hitting the fairways will be very important this week. This course can sometimes get windy and ranks in the top 10 of the most difficult courses to play on the PGA Tour. The average winning score has been between 8 and 14 under for the last five years.

Driving accuracy is one important stat to consider on this course as there are many narrow fairways and deep penal rough to contend with. Also hitting accurate iron shots into the right areas of these tricky undulating greens will be important along with good GIR stats.  Par 5, par 4, par 3 scoring, proximity to the hole and strokes gained putting are also worth looking at. These greens are tricky Bermuda greens and will require a decent putter.

 

Zach Johnson Valero Texas Open 28/1

Zach Johnson 28/1

Johnson comes to Texas after a great performance at Bay Hill last week, in particular his superb Albatross on the par 5 16th, where he knocked his second shot straight in the hole shooting an impressive final round 66 finishing T9 on 12 under. He has had a further three top 10’s this season finishing T8 at The Hero World Challenge before Christmas and solo 7th at The Hyundai Tournament of Champions in January. He also had a good week at The Phoenix Open a few weeks ago finishing T10 on 10 under for the tournament.

Johnson has played well here before finishing T6 last year. Statswise he seems to fit the bill ranking 18th in driving accuracy, 32nd in strokes gained tee to green and 13th in birdie average. He also ranks 13th in par 4 scoring, 19th in par 5 scoring and 15th par 5 birdie or better leaders. After playing well last week at Bay Hill and a good performance here last year, Zach Johnson could be one to watch this week at a good price.

 

Kevin Na 40/1 Valero Texas Open

Kevin Na 33/1

Kevin Na has been playing well over the last few weeks and has three top 10’s in his last three starts on the PGA Tour. He had a good week in Doral finishing T9 at The WGC Cadillac and followed that with a T10 at The Valspar, which included a final round 66. Last week at Bay Hill, Na put together four solid rounds to finish T6 on 13 under for the tournament.

He played well here last year and finished T11 on three under for the week and could have finished a lot better if it weren’t for a disappointing 76 in the final round. Na is hitting 60% of fairways and ranks 45th in strokes gained tee to green. He also ranks 28th in par 3 scoring, 22nd in par 4 scoring and 14th in par 3 birdie or better leaders. With three top 10’s in his last three starts, Na is in good form and could go well on a course he has played well on in the past.

 

Brendan Steele 40/1 Valero Texas Open

Brendan Steele 40/1

Steele was going nicely last week in Bay Hill only to falter in round 4 shooting a disappointing 76 to finish T35 on six under. Despite his poor finish last week, he had three top 15’s in his last five starts and looks to be in good form. He played very well at The Humana at the end of January finishing T2, which included an impressive final round 64. More recently, he had a good week at The Northern Trust Open finishing T14 and followed that with a T11 at The Honda Classic.

Steele has played well here  in the past with a win in 2011 and a T4 in 2012. He ranks 15th in strokes gained tee to green, 24th in scoring average and 12th in driving distance. He also ranks eighth in par 4 scoring, 23rd in par 4 birdie or better leaders and 19th in birdie or better conversion percentage. With good current form and a former winner on this course, Steele could be another danger man here.

 

Charley Hoffman 50/1 Valero Texas Open

Charley Hoffman 50/1

Charley Hoffman is your typical horse for the course and hasn’t finished outside the top 15 in his last five appearances at TPC San Antonio. He finished T11 last year, T3 in 2013, T13 in 2012, T2 in 2011 and T13 in 2010. He showed some good form in the early stages of the season with a win at The OHL Classic back in November, T14 at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions in January and a T2 at The Humana Challenge. Most recently his form has been a bit mixed with a T30 at The Northern Trust Open, T38 at The WGC Cadillac and an MC at The Valspar.

Statswise he ranks 45th in GIR, 40th in birdie average and 22nd in par 4 scoring. He also ranks 33rd in par 4 birdie or better leaders and first in approaches from 100 yards, which is a good stat for approaches into some of the shorter par 4’s. With a great previous record on this course, I expect Hoffman to bounce back and have a good week here.

 

Daniel Summerhays 66/1 Valero Texas Open

Daniel Summerhays 66/1

Summerhays has been playing well over the last few weeks with three top 30’s in his last five starts. He finished with a T30 at The Northern Trust Open, T17 at The Honda Classic and a T10 at The Valspar finishing on four under for the tournament. He has a great record here over the last three years finishing T2 last year, T7 in 2013 and a respectable T29 in 2012. He has been very steady so far this season with only two missed cuts in his last 18 competitive starts.

Summerhays is hitting 62% of fairways and ranks 22nd in strokes gained putting and 27th in scoring average. He also ranks 45th in par 3 scoring, 22nd in par 4 scoring and 21st in approaches from 175-200, which is a good stat for approaches into the four par 5’s. With a good record here over the last couple of years, Summerhays could feature at a big price.

 

Final selections –

Zach Johnson 28/1 2 pts EW

Kevin Na 33/1 1 pt EW

Brendan Steele 40/1 1 pt EW

Charley Hoffman 50/1 1 pt EW

Daniel Summerhays 66/1 1 pt EW

Total staked = 12 pts

 

Good luck and enjoy the golf,

 

Doublebogey6

 

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WGC-HSBC Champions Betting Preview 2014

WGC HSBC Champions pic 2

Sheshan International GC (West)
Par 72, 7,266 yards

The Course
The WGC-HSBC Champions returns to Sheshan International Golf Club for its fifth visit this week. The field includes most the world’s top golfers including FedExCup champion Billy Horchel, Bubba Watson, Adam Scott and Martin Kaymer. The line-up will feature 12 of the top 20 players in the world rankings. Rory McIlroy will not be featuring this week as he is preparing for an upcoming court case and defending champion Dustin Johnson will also be absent.

Previous winners include Phil Mickelson (2009), Francesco Molinari (2010), Martin Kaymer (2011) and Dustin Johnson (2013). Dustin Johnson holds the 72 hole record here with a score of 264 (2013).
Sheshan International is a par 72 measuring 7,266 yards and has four par 5’s, four par 3’s and 10 par 4’s. The course has some elevation changes along with some man made lakes and tree lined fairways.

Length will be a big factor here as two of the par 5’s measure over 590 yards. The par 4’s will also favour the big hitters with half of them measuring 450 yards or longer and the par 3’s measuring 200 yards or longer. The fairways are fairly wide and forgiving and the greens are also quite large so scoring should be good this week.

The main areas of focus for me are previous form and current form, driving distance, GIR, SGP, par 4 scoring and par 5 scoring.

Sergio Garcia pic 1

Sergio Garcia 16/1
After a superb start to the season with a T2 last week at The CIMB Classic in Malaysia, Sergio comes to Sheshan this week in fine form. He was steady all week shooting rounds of 69,68,68,69 finishing on 14 under par. He showed superb consistency last season recording an impressive 10 top 10 finishes, two of which came at the end of the season. He had a great week at The BMW Championship finishing T4th, which could have been better if it weren’t for a third round 72. He then went on to have another good week at East Lake finishing T9th at The Tour Championship, which included a final round 66.

His record here at Sheshan is quite impressive with a win here in 2008 and a T4 last year. Last season Sergio ranked 14th in GIR, second in strokes gained tee to green, fourth in both par 3 and par 4 performance and 24th in GIR from 200+ yards. With a great record here and coming off a T2 last week, Sergio looks to tick all the boxes here.

Graeme McDowell WGC HSBC pic 1

Graeme McDowell 28/1
Gmac is another player that comes into this week showing some good current form. He played well last week at The BMW Masters in Shanghai finishing in a respectable T16 on 10 under par which could have been a lot better if it hadn’t been for a disappointing 74 on Sunday. He also had a good performance at The Volvo World Matchplay finishing T9th after being knocked out by Joost Luiten.

McDowell has a great record on the course over the last few years finishing third here in 2011 and third again last year. Statswise last season he ranked 12th in driving accuracy, first in strokes gained putting, 15th in par 4 scoring and 13th in GIR from 150-175, which is a good stat for some of the lengthy par 4’s. Gmac is showing good form at present and could go well on a course he has played so well on in the past.

Jamie Donaldson pic 1

Jamie Donaldson 28/1
Jamie Donaldson has been playing super golf since August when he won the Czech Masters. He followed that with a solo 7th at The European Masters, a T4 at The Wales Open, T13 at The Volvo World Matchplay and a T4 last week at The BMW Masters in Shanghai. Not to mention his super Ryder Cup display at Gleneagles.

Jamie has also played Sheshan once before, which was last year when he finished eighth.
Donaldson also fits the bill statswise ranking eighth in stroke average, 57th in driving distance hitting it an average of 290 yards off the tee. He also ranks 12th in putts per GIR and 23rd in putts per round. With super current form and a good performance last year, it’s hard to ignore Jamie here.

Ryan Palmer pic 1

Ryan Palmer 40/1
Ryan Palmer has been playing good golf over the last few weeks and could sneak under a lot of people’s radar. He comes into this week with four top 10 finishes in his last six starts on all tours. He played well at The BMW Masters last week finishing T8 on 13 under par. Palmer had a good finish to the season at The FedExCup Playoffs finishing solo seventh at The Tour Championship, T4 at The BMW Championship and T16 at The Deutsche Bank. He also had an impressive week at The PGA Championship finishing T5 on 12 under par.

Palmer was one of the bigger hitters last season hitting it an average of 300 yards ranking 23rd in driving distance. He also ranked 15th in strokes gained tee to green, 35th in SGP and seventh in par 4 performance. He also ranks fifth in GIR from 175-200 yards, which is a good stat for approaches into the long par 4’s.

Lee Westwood pic 1

Lee Westwood 40/1
Westy has had a decent start to the new season finishing T12 at The Frys and T13 at The CIMB Classic last week. He also played well towards the end of last season before the start of the FedExCup playoffs finishing T19 at The Bridgstone Invitational and T15 at The PGA Championship. Westwood’s record here is quite impressive finishing runner up to Phil Mickelson in 2009 and again to Francesco Molinari in 2010. He was also runner up in 2007 and finished in a respectable T13 in 2011.

He ranks sixth in strokes gained tee to green and seventh in strokes gained total. He is also averaging 299 yards in off the tee and ranks 10th in par 3 performance on the PGA Tour so far this season. With three second place finishes at this event and two top 15’s in his last two events, Westwood is certainly good value at 40/1.

Final selections –
Sergio Garcia 2 pts EW at 16/1
Graeme McDowell 1.5 pts EW at 28/1
Jamie Donaldson 1.5 pts EW at 28/1
Ryan Palmer 1 pt EW at 40/1
Lee Westwood 1 pt EW at 40/1

Total staked = 14 pts

Good Luck and enjoy the golf,
DB

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The Barclays Betting Preview: FedEx Cup Playoffs

The Barclays

Ridgewood Country Club. Paramus, New Jersey
Par 71, 7,319 yards

The Course
The Barclays returns to Ridgewood CC this week where it hosted this event back in 2008 and 2010. Matt Kuchar defeated Martin Laird in a playoff to win in 2010 and Vijay Singh defeated Sergio Garcia and Kevin Sutherland in a playoff in 2008.

Ridgewood is a tree lined par 71 that measures 7,319 yards with three par 5’s, four par 3’s and 11 par 4’s. The course was designed by A.W Tillinghast in 1929 and is one of the oldest country clubs in the United States. Tillinghast has also designed courses that hosted major championship’s over the years such as Bethpage Black, which hosted the US Open in 2002 and 2009, Baltusrol which hosted the 2005 PGA and the west course at Winged Foot which played host to the 1997 PGA and 2006 US Open.

There will be an emphasis on driving accuracy on this course with its narrow tree lined fairways and penal rough. Par 4 scoring will be important along with good ball striking and putting. The greens here are undulating and will be tricky and fast depending on the weather.

Sergio Garcia pic 1

Sergio Garcia 20/1
With four top fives in his last six starts, Sergio comes to Ridgewood in superb form with his game in great shape. At The Players back in May, he finished solo third on 11 under par for the tournament and followed that with a T2 at The Travelers and another T2 at The Open Championship at Hoylake. Garcia then had yet another great week at Firestone at The WGC Bridgestone, which included a third round 61, to finish on 13 under par and solo second.

Sergio has course form here and came close to winning in 2008, but was defeated by Vijay Singh in a playoff to settle for second with Kevin Sutherland and came close again in Bethpage in 2012 finishing T3. Statswise he ranks 49th in driving accuracy, fourth in GIR, 35th in SGP and third in par 4 scoring. He ticks all the boxes here and looks like he could have a great week.

Phil Mickelson pic 1

Phil Mickelson 22/1
After a great performance last week at The PGA, Phil will be coming to The Barclays this week feeling confident. His season hasn’t been anything to shout about, however he has shown signs of good form over the last few weeks with good performances at The FedEx St Jude Classic (T11), The Bridgestone Invitational (T15) and a solo second last week at Valhalla.

Phil’s previous performances on Tillighast designs have been decent with a two second place finishes at The US Open in 2002 and 2009 in Bethpage Black and a win at the PGA Championsip back in 2005 at Baltusrol. Statswise he ranks 47th in SGP, 17th in par 4 performance and 31st in total putting.

Jimmy Walker 40/1
Jimmy Walker started the season off in style with wins at The Frys.com Open, The Sony Open and the AT&T at Pebble Beach. With solid performances at the majors so far this year, Jimmy Walker could be a man to keep your eye on here at The Barclays this week.

He has proven he can contend in the big events with great performances at The Masters (T8), The US Open (T9) and a respectable T26 at The Open. Walker also played great golf at Sawgrass closing with a 65 to finish T6th. Last week in Valhalla Walker shot an impressive final round 65 to finish T7th.

He ranks 30th in GIR, seventh in SGP, second in birdie average and 10th in scoring average. He also ranks third in total putting, 10th in par 4 performance and 11th in par 3 performance.

Hunter Mahan 45/1
Mahan has been showing some good form lately with good performances in his last two events. He had a good week at Firestone shooting 71,65,71,68 on his way to a T15 and played well last week at The PGA shooting a final round 67 to finish T7th. Mahan has played here before finishing in a respectable T31 in both 2008 and 2010. However in 2008, he shot a 62 to lead after round one and has proven he can go low around this course.

Mahan ranks 40th in driving accuracy, 42nd in GIR, 41st in strokes gained putting and 45th in par 4 performance. With decent performances here in the past, Hunter comes here in good form and could have a good week at a generous price.

Brandt Snedeker pic 1

Brandt Snedeker 33/1
Snedeker has been keeping a low profile lately with seven top 25’s in his last eight starts on the PGA Tour. He played well at The US Open (T9), The Travellers (T11) which included a final round 64, The Quicken Loans National (T21) and The Bridgestone Invitational (T12). In his last two events he finished T5 at The Wyndham and T13 at The PGA in Valhalla.

He comes here with his game in good shape and ranks 15th in SGP and is hitting 63% of fairways off the tee. He also ranks 29t in total putting and 23rd in par 5 performance. He played well at this event in 2012 at Bethpage finishing solo second and again at Plainfield in 2011 finishing T3 with Vijay Singh.

Final Selections:

Sergio Garcia 2 pts EW
Phil Mickelson 1.5pts EW
Jimmy Walker 1.5 pts EW
Hunter Mahan 1 pt EW
Brandt Snedeker 1 pt EW

Total Staked = 14 pts

Good luck and enjoy the golf,

DB

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