Article written

  • on 09.08.2011
  • at 04:03 PM
  • by KT

USPGA Championship Preview

The fourth and final Major gets underway on Thursday as Atlanta Club in Georgia hosts the USPGA Championship for the first time since 2001. David Toms was the victor on that occasion and is 55/1 (Boylesports) to follow that up with another USPGA title this time around.

Rory McIlroy once again heads the betting (12/1 – Ladbrokes) after blowing the field away to claim his maiden Major title at the US Open. The Northern Irishman has also  come close at each of the last two USPGA events, yet we’ll be staying well clear at just 12/1 on this occasion.

Instead we’ll be looking to take advantage of bet365, Boylesports and Paddy Power who are all offering 1/4 the odds on all each-way bets, paying 6 places.

World Number One Luke Donald is towards the top of the betting too after a fine performance at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational last weekend, finishing an eventual second to Adam Scott. Although his form of the early part of the year has not quite been maintained, he continues to be a permanent fixture on the leaderboards and must be considered at 14/1 (Boylesports).

Fellow Englishman Lee Westwood is 15/1 (Paddy Power) after a top 10 finish at Firestone at the weekend. He has won two of his last 10 competitions he has played and tied for third in the 2009 outing of the US PGA Championship. That said he is still looking for that first Major win and there is much better value in the field.

The American’s haven’t won the PGA Championship since 2007 and Phil Mickleson was the last to taste Major victory at all back in 2010. Tiger Woods is the shortest price American, but with only one tournament since his comeback from an eleven week lay-off, we’ll be giving the 25/1 (Boylesports) a wide berth this time around.

Woods’ former caddie, Steve Williams, caused a storm at Firestone after helping guide Adam Scott to victory. Again he will be carrying the bags for Scott in Georgia and the Australian is 25/1 (Ladbrokes) to land back-to-back victories.

Dustin Johnson is an interesting bet at 28/1 (Boylesports) after being in fine form on the PGA Tour. He lead on the final day in 2010, only to be given a 2 shot penalty for grounding his club in a bunker, a penalty which would eventually rule him out of contention. He has been in sterling form of late, finishing top six in half of his last half-dozen outings.

Phil Mickleson finished 2nd in the last Major (The Open Championship) and the 2005 USPGA Champion is 28/1 in the betting to win here with Boylesports.

Defending champion Martin Kaymer is 40/1 (Ladbrokes) to retain his title, but the German has been a little disappointing of late after starting the season so well.

Of the other likely contenders, Rickie Fowler makes most appeal. He only seems to turn up for the big occasions and after excellent performances at the Ryder Cup, The Open and Akron, the colourful American is getting closer to claiming his first Major crown. He is 33/1 with Paddy Power to lift the USPGA title this week and gets the nod from us.

Free Bet!

Jason Day is one of the slowest players on the PGA tour, but possesses an array of talent. Day finished second at both the Masters and the US Open and there would be few raised eyebrows if he was to be towards the top of the USPGA leaderboard come Sunday (28/1 – Boylesports).

Steve Stricker (28/1 – Boylesports) has won two of his last three starts and will probably be knocking on the door again this time around. He tops most of the PGA Tour stats and has a cool head even when things aren’t going his way. If he can stay within three or four shots of the leaders coming into Sunday, he will have a great chance, and also forms one of our golf tips this week.

**Take note: Whilst ‘fitness’ is not often a term often used to assess a golfer’s chances, bear in mind that the temperature will be brutally hot, often topping 100 degrees as it was in 2001. With that in mind it may be better to side with the younger players as opposed to the ‘Big’ John Daly’s of this world.

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