Played virtually all year round and popular across the whole world, golf is a sport where the incredible skill of the top professionals and the splendour of the courses combine to create a magical atmosphere. It is unique in the way that the performance of individual competitors cannot be directly influenced by other participants, making golf a fascinating and potentially lucrative sport to bet on.
The following online sportsbooks all have a large number of golf betting markets available:
The main golf market is for betting on the outright winner of a tournament, but it is also possible to bet on whether a player will finish in the top five, top ten and so on. Another common wager is on the winner of a tournament when one particular player’s score is not included, such as when one competitor surges into a big lead and a closer contest emerges as to who will finish second.
For punters who feel particularly confident in their powers of prediction, there is the option for forecast betting, when you back the players you think will finish first and second, while other popular markets include the winner of a particular round rather than the whole event. Customers who prefer to pick from just two possible outcomes can also bet on whether a certain player will make or miss the cut, or whether anyone will shoot a hole in one.
Match betting allows punters to bet on which of two players will have the highest finish at a tournament, or simply on who will emerge as the victor in a match play competition such as the Ryder Cup. Major tournaments can be bet on a long time in advance and there are various specials available at most times on how many big events certain players will win.
As golf is a sport where lots of players often end up on the same score, it is common for a dead heat rule to apply, where the punter’s return depends on the number of participants who finished in an equal position. For example, if a punter is betting on someone to finish in the top five and they come in joint fifth with one other player, the customer’s stake would be divided by two before they are paid out at the same odds. If three players tied for fifth, the stake would be divided by three.
Golf is a great sport for outright betting because the odds are generally quite long, even for favourites, when compared to other sports such as tennis. This is largely because it is so competitive and there are such a large number of players capable of winning any event, but punters who analyse form and statistics closely can really boost their chances of a good return.
One important factor is to find which type of player is best suited to the course staging an event, so considering the results from the most recent tournament at the venue is a good place to start. Players who rank highly for driving distance generally prefer longer courses, while driving accuracy is more crucial when the fairways are narrower and in many tournaments it is the putting which proves decisive.
Weather conditions are also vital as players taking to the course in the morning can sometimes have a significant advantage over those teeing off later, or vice-versa, if strong winds suddenly appear or die down. In-play betting can therefore be very rewarding if you track an event live, as even if the weather stays constant it can be a good idea to bet as the tournament is unfolding so you can more easily tell who has momentum behind them.
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