The most attractive thing about golf betting is that punters can claim some winners at huge odds, which come in on a regular basis.
The challenge is to narrow down fields of 156 players into realistic hopefuls by considering key elements that point to success.
You need to consider how well they have been performing in recent golf tournaments, the results they have gained in previous outings at that week’s venue and whether the test is suitable for the strengths of their game, whether that is how far they hit it off the tee, how straight the ball tends to go and their ability on and around the greens.
And, if that’s not enough, you have to keep an eye on the weather forecast as well as their chances could easily be scuppered if they go out at the wrong time of day.
Outright Golf Betting
This is simply selecting who you think will win the tournament and you can get some decent each-way returns if your players fall just short on Sundays.
But you can cut the field down a bit. Firstly, you can back a player to finish in the top ten, or top 20 or you can select the player you think might be the top American finisher in the field or top senior or top amateur.
These outright bets will cover all four rounds and any potential playoff needed to identify the winner.
Don’t worry if you failed to get your bets on before the first ball was struck on Thursday morning, as there should be opportunities to get involved further down the line.
The fact a tournament lasts four days helps greatly in this respect as you can take in the action, sleep on it and then back players before the action starts the following day.
Match bets fall into two categories: tournament bets and two-ball or three-ball betting.
Tournament bets are straightforward. You can bet on one player finishing higher up the leaderboard than another and sometimes players of perceived equal ability will be grouped together. A bigger price will therefore be available if a player finishes ahead of four rivals rather than just one.
In two-ball or three-ball betting, a player is priced to complete his round in fewer shots than his playing partner or partners on that particular day, so look out if you have a course specialist up against someone struggling. These prices are available on each of the four rounds.
Other Golf Markets
Other betting opportunities include the margin of victory. Here you are just betting on the number of shots the winner will triumph by, regardless of who he is.
And then there are specials such as will there be a hole in one or an albatross during the tournament. You can also select players to make or miss the cut which usually comes into force at the end of the second round.
So, there are a wealth of markets out there and something for everyone.
Steve Palmer’s Top 5 Golf Betting Tips:
Golf offers punters a big field and sometimes big price winners, but with so many top players to select from and on different styles of course. Tipping expert Steve Palmer runs you through the main topics to consider when placing a golf bet.
- Research the course as much as possible and identify the type of player who could succeed
Golf courses change over time – owners and designers are often tinkering with their tracks – so it is important for punters to keep abreast of any developments. Never assume the same course name means the same layout. A wide-open venue favouring aggressive players may suddenly turn into a plodder’s paradise if dozens of trees have been planted, the rough grown long or the fairways tightened. It is important to assess the difficulty of the course. Strong ball-strikers are aided by tough tee-to-green tests, while good putters prefer easy layouts where there is a premium on who performs best on the dancefloors.
2. Work from the full field and do not be put off by big prices
It can be difficult for horse racing and greyhound racing lovers to appreciate that massive odds do not automatically mean ‘no-hoper’ in the world of golf. Golfers win tournaments at enormous prices regularly. Horses and greyhounds don’t. With fields of 156 players the staple diet on the European Tour and PGA Tour, plenty of runners will inevitably be chalked up at 100-1 and bigger. There is so much strength in depth on the pro circuit that even really top-class players will often have juicy odds against their name. Don’t get lazy – work through the entire field when making your selections – don’t just concentrate on the market leaders.
3. Current form is more important than anything else
Who is playing well is by far the most crucial judgement a golf punter has to make. Historical form at the course must enter calculations, but a player who is swinging well and putting well can make birdies anywhere. Try to back golfers who are in possession of their A-game. Progressive, unexposed types often represent the best value – youngsters who have excelled at amateur level have the scope to make rapid strides in the pro ranks. Always being on players who are better than bookmakers think they are is a passport for profit.
4. Be fluid with how many selections you have
Punters do not have to back the same amount of golfers every week – for one tournament you may decide that only one selection is appropriate, while for another you may opt for six or seven. The field size is always a decent starting point in deciding how many you want on your team. The South African Open can have 240 players in it sometimes, so it is bold to go into that one without a large team. But then some events have only a handful of runners – with tighter each-way terms – so fewer selections are required.
5. Always chance a win-double when possible
When the European Tour and the PGA Tour are both staging an event, punters should consider pairing their best selection in each tournament in a double. Getting one golf winner is tough, so getting two in the same week is obviously a serious challenge, but the odds are consequently enormous. A small stake can yield a huge return, so it is always worth the gamble.