As the 151st Open Championship unfolds at Royal Liverpool, the betting public is in for a wild ride with fluctuating odds and challenging conditions. The much-discussed pot bunkers proved to be as penal as predicted, causing players to hit sideways and even putt from the sand. Thursday's opening round witnessed an array of scores on the 18th hole, ranging from an eagle 3 to a quintuple bogey 10.
Currently leading the pack are England's Tommy Fleetwood, Argentina's Emiliano Grillo, and South African surprise amateur Christo Lamprecht. They are closely trailed by Brian Harman, Antoine Rozner, and Adrian Otaegui, among others.
As we look ahead to Friday's action, the weather, particularly the wind forecast, will play a crucial role. Those teeing off in the afternoon might face tougher conditions with winds gusting up to 24 mph. Therefore, it's wise to keep an eye on the morning wave for potential value.
Here are some Draws to consider:
Max Homa (+2000 to win): Despite his previous struggles in major championships, Homa showed promise on Thursday. Ranking well in Strokes Gained: Off the Tee, SG: Approach, and SG: Putting, he could be a dark horse for a strong performance.
Viktor Hovland (+2000 to win): With solid past Open Championship results and improved skills in his tee-to-green game, Hovland has the potential to shine, provided he can avoid short game issues.
Tyrrell Hatton (+3000 to win): Though he had a rough start on Thursday, Hatton has shown brilliance in SG: Approach and has the ability to bounce back. Consider him as a risk/reward option.
On the other hand, some players might not live up to expectations, and it might be wise to Fade them:
Scottie Scheffler (+700 to win): While Scheffler is a strong contender every week, his afternoon tee time and low SG: Putting ranking make his current odds questionable. Waiting for the odds to drift may provide better value.
Tommy Fleetwood (+600 to win): Although Fleetwood is a local star and a formidable player, his early +600 odds, afternoon tee time, and competition from other stars warrant a cautious approach. Waiting for the morning wave results could lead to better betting decisions.
The 151st Open Championship promises excitement and surprises as players battle the challenging conditions at Royal Liverpool. Strap in, and let the odds wave carry you through this exhilarating golf spectacle.