Tuesday, 13 July 2010

The Open 2010

Firstly, the blog was very unlucky not to land a 50/1 place last week when Shane Lowry finished 7th and just 1 shot off the place money. Backed at 200/1, his weak round was Friday's but having had a good score on Saturday he couldn't find just one more birdie to put a smile on my face although his level par round was a good effort in the conditions to be fair to him and only for a pair of 68s from Stephen Gallacher & Raphael Jacquelin (along with Johann Edfors,best of the days) I would have been in the money and rewarded for "keeping the faith". So, do I stick with the young man this week? 125/1 with Paddypower who are paying 1/4 odds for 7 places is very tempting. I was interested in an e/w bet on the top GB & Ireland market where I was informed that he could be got @ 66/1 but best price on offer at present is 45/1.With 2 of my tips to lift the claret jug in this market also, I have relunctantly left him out (4/1 for top 20 is too low).
The two top tips for me this week are in the shape of Justin Rose & Ross Fisher. The former is in excellent form and has good links form although did not play at St Andrews in 2000 nor 2005. He should be entering looking for his 4th win in a row but the "collapse" 2 tournaments ago may heed him well in staying patient & focussed come Sunday Major day. 25/1 is still ok value for the Englishman and I reckon he will certainly challenge. Ross Fisher (50/1 Paddypower) hasn't been at his very best this year, could have won at Turnberry last year, but his short game is in fine shape, and on a course where driving accuracy is not that of huge importance, that side of his game may serve him well. Retief Goosen, (50/1 Ladbrokes) who missed cut last week and I put it down to the weather, has not finished tournaments off well lately, which is a slight worry but his 9 top 15s in The Open is a huge plus for taking a punt this week. Despite 45/1 on offer at Paddypower paying 7 places, the better value is in the win part and Ladbrokes are paying 6 places. (Bound to finish 7th now !!).

As it is a Major I am taking another selection and going beyond my 5% of bankroll rule. This "rule" I have always applied come Majors but to my cost at the US Open I ignored that time round and anyone reading the blog on my US Open selections a few weeks ago will know all too well what happened then....click here for a reminder. So the final selection is a punt on Europe's best golfer....no not Lee Westwood, or McDowell or McIlroy(although I believe the 2 Northern Irishmen will challenge this week) but Dusseldorf's Martin Kaymer (40/1 Paddypower). Getting back to his best the past few weeks but not closing them out suggests he is keeping a win to the right moment (lets hope anyway). A top 10 finish at Pebble Beach also suggests he is well capable of challenging for a Major that he ineviteably will win some day and that day could be soon !

So what of Tiger Woods and his compatriots who have dominated the Open in recent years? St Andrews should play into their hands and Tiger himself is gunning for a hat-trick of St Andrews Opens.Normally I would say Tiger would win and this year his best two showings have been at Augusta & Pebble Beach which points to the fact that Tiger can excel at a Major despite all his "troubles". However, I am confident that this week won't be his either and this is based on the fact that too many players are playing so well at the moment. Europeans will be confident following Graeme McDowells victory last month and tiger wont have a chance to put his aura on the event. Phil Mickelson is not even being considered, has terrible Open record and didn't fancy the rain last week in Loch Lomond either. Ernie will go well but he may "try too hard" again this week, had his chance to win at Pebble Beach.Of the other contenders,Stricker has good Open form and comes in off the back of a win, Ryan Moore is playing well so is Sean O'Hair, Zach Johnson even Heath Slocum has spent 3 weeks in Europe now might go ok but the selections are taken this week based on their home form and liking for links. I didn't mention Padraig Harrington.....he could win his 3rd jug in 5 years no problem at all...and it wouldn't surprise me, 25/1 a good price too....but I will stick with "my team for 2010"

Good luck !

British Open Selections

1 pt e/w J.Rose @ 25/1 (Paddypower 7 places)
1 pt e/w R.Fisher @ 50/1 (Paddypower 7 places)
1 pt e/w R.Goosen @ 50/1 (Ladbrokes 6 places)
1 pt e/w M.Kaymer @ 40/1 (Paddypower 7 places)