2019 Open Golf Championship: Betting and Odds Preview
A change in scheduling for 2019 means that we have now reached the final Major golf tournament of the year. This will be the 148th edition of the Open Championship and for many, this is where the game began.
Almost without exception, the world’s best golfers are heading to Royal Portrush on the coast of Northern Ireland as the course holds the Open for only the second time in its history. A fascinating four days lies ahead so let’s see if we can pick out some winners.
Event Date: July 18–21, 2019
A very strong field is led by Rory McIlroy who starts at odds of 9/1 with Unibet and Royal Panda. Rory is very much a home favourite, having grown up in the region and he holds the course record at Royal Portrush with a 61. Incredibly, McIlroy set that mark as a 16 year old but more importantly, he comes into the Open with some solid form.
Rory has two wins this season plus no fewer than 11 top ten finishes so he looks in great shape to add to his list of Major titles.
Our second favourite this week is reigning US PGA Champion Brooks Koepka who is on offer at 10/1 with SportNation and William Hill. As a man who only seems to lift his game for the Majors, Koepka is something of an enigma but some tipsters are getting excited about the fact that his caddy Ricky Elliott learned his golf at Royal Portrush.
A stellar chasing pack is led by Spain’s Jon Rahm at 14/1 with Coral and 10bet and he’s just ahead of former World Number One Dustin Johnson at 16/1 with BetFred and SportingBet. Rahm is certainly in good shape having won the Irish Open two weeks ago and that win came on the back of two straight top three finishes.
In contrast, Johnson has no form to speak of but his stats make him a threat this week.
Moving through the card, Tiger Woods is available at 20/1 with Bethard while Justin Rose follows at 22/1 with 888Sport and Unibet. Adam Scott is next up at 28/1 with Betway and then we come to our defending champion, Francesco Molinari. The Italian kept a cool head when winning by two shots from a tight chasing pack in 2018 and he went on to play a key part in Europe’s Ryder Cup success last September.
Molinari can always return to form but he hasn’t looked at his best since a last-day meltdown at the US Masters in April.
Elsewhere, Henrik Stenson is quoted at 30/1 with Ladbrokes while Tommy Fleetwood is at that same 30/1 figure with Unibet before we start to ease out to the longer prices.
Justin Thomas is one golfer working his way back from injury who just might return to form at the right time. A former Major winner, JT has not been at his best this season but there will be some definite interest in his win odds of 30/1 with SportingBet and 888Sport.
Moving back beyond Thomas, golf punters may want to consider Paul Casey at 50/1, Sergio Garcia at 66/1 with Ladbrokes, or Gary Woodland and Marc Leishman who are both at 66/1 with Betway.
Further behind, there is a clutch of European golfers who are going under the radar despite performing consistently well on their home Tour. We’re talking about the likes of Matt Wallace at 50/1 with SportingBet and Royal Panda, Rafael Cabrera Bello at 66/1 with Betway, Eddie Pepperell at 80/1 with Unibet and Andrea Pavan at a very distant 250/1 with BetFred and SportPesa.
We could see a long priced challenge this week but let’s move on for now and see what it will take to win the 148th edition of the Open Championship.
Course, Trends and Indicators
We’re back at Royal Portrush for the first time since 1951 but just what can we expect from Northern Island’s Open venue? Based on the location and the weather forecast. We’re in for some classic links play with wind and rain likely to exaggerate the challenge of this coastal location.
We can also go back relatively recently – to 2012 – when the Irish Open was held here. The event was won by Jamie Donaldson and the key stat for the most successful golfers involved scrambling. Distance off the tee could be a factor: The Dunluce course here is relatively lengthy and there is at least one par four that could be driveable for the Power Hitters.
In any of golf’s four Majors, it could be wise to avoid the outright win markets and look for some Each Way or Top Ten value. There are lots of offers around for the Open Championship and it’s particularly worth noting that both Coral and William Hill are paying down to ten places in their Each Way markets.
With that in mind, we’re looking to kick things off with an Each Way punt on Matt Kuchar. We recall taking a strong profit on this player when he finished second to Jordan Spieth back in 2017 and he has the type of record to succeed on links courses. Kuch is also in solid form, leading the way at the top of the FedEx charts so we’re happy to include him as our first pick.
Ian Poulter is worth another Each Way punt as a man who can never be written off. The Postman has the canny game to succeed in all weathers and should have the stats to deliver another strong profit.
If pushed for a winner, we might be swayed towards a strong American contingent and our preference may be for either Dustin Johnson or Brooks Koepka. However, with golf being such a tough market to predict at times, we’ll finish with a couple of Top Ten finish tips on Matt Wallace and Andrea Pavan – two players who have enjoyed immense success in Europe and have the ability to step up strongly for a Major.
- Matt Kuchar Each Way at 40/1 with Unibet
- Ian Poulter Each Way at 80/1 with Unibet
- Matt Wallace for a Top Ten finish at 9/2 with William Hill
- Andrea Pavan for a Top Ten finish at 43/2 with Sporting Bet