As one of the most difficult sports in the world, golf is challenging for both players and those who bet on the sport. It can be tricky to generate consistent profits from golf betting. However, golf is renowned for producing some of the highest odds in sports betting – which means large returns can be generated using small stakes.
Follow the golf betting tips listed below to improve your chances of placing winning bets.
Look to players’ form
It’s generally best to avoid betting on golf if you don’t follow the sport closely. To place successful golf bets, you need to have a good idea of how dozens of the top players are performing at a given time.
Top players tend to hit form for short periods, and it’s essential to recognise when players are peaking or on the verge of experiencing dips in form. Form is a far better predictor of how a player will perform than rankings or reputation.
Consider the course
It’s vital to consider the layout of a course before betting on how a specific golfer will fare at a tournament. Long fairways will favour players with strong driving games, whereas short fairways benefit those with good short games.
Inaccurate players may not be hampered by courses offering wide fairways and short rough, but will quickly wither when fairways are narrow or rough isn’t cut short.
Check weather reports
Nothing can play as much havoc with the pecking order in a golf tournament as the weather. Rain and strong winds affect the performance of the ball in the air and on the fairway. In these conditions, long-shot outsiders may suddenly find themselves in the position of title contenders due to the order of play on a day with poor weather.
Aim to get your hands on finishing position statistics for the golfers competing in a tournament. The statistics come in the form of a database that tracks each golfer’s finishing position over several dozen tournaments. Finishing position is the single greatest indicator of form, and statistical information is an indispensable tool for placing educated golf bets.
Consider outright betting
The outright betting markets for golf tournaments offer the highest odds of any sports betting markets. It’s not unusual to find top quality players with odds as high as 50/1 in these markets, and it’s common for tournaments to produce winners at these odds.
The challenge presented by outright markets is that they can offer over 150 choices. Fans can hedge their bets by placing multiple bets in these markets.
Bet each way
No other sport rewards each-way betting as handsomely as golf. Outright markets typically pay to fifth place at 1/4 odds. Given that the odds on most of the players in a given field will be well above 20/1 and can drift as high as 100/1, it’s clear that each-way bets can generate handsome returns when golfers manage to place in a tournament.
Each-way betting is a simple and effective way of hedging golf bets on the outright markets.
If you’re placing bets on the outright markets for a golf tournament, it’s essential to shop around for the best odds on the players you want to back. There can be big differences in the prices offered on players by the top bookmakers, and finding the best odds can have a significant impact on the profits you can generate.
Using an odds comparison service can help you identify the best odds, as well as alerting you to free bet offers, which you can use to hedge bets you place in the outright markets.
Lay the favourite
Odds on the favourite in a golf betting market rarely reflect the true statistical likelihood of that player winning a tournament. When players like Tiger Woods get backed down to short odds, take advantage of this by laying a bet on a betting exchange. This involves betting that the favourite won’t win.
Even an in-form, big-name player is statistically unlikely to win each tournament, so lay bets win more frequently than straight back bets in the outright markets.
Find value and trade
Betting exchanges like Betfair and the more recent Ladbrokes Exchange give golf fans the option to trade prices. The high odds available on “value” players in these markets can make trades very profitable. Punters can effectively lock in profits by backing genuine contenders at high odds and then placing lay bets when the contender’s odds contract during the course of a tournament.
Similarly, you can place lay bets on players who are backed at unrealistically short odds and then back the players when their odds drift as they fail to perform according to expectations. For more information on trading, read our guide to betting exchanges.