High Rollers Lost a Lot of Money Betting on Tiger Woods at The Open
Sports gamblers are set to take a big loss this week after 97% of the money wagered had Woods making the cut at The Open. William Hill’s Nevada sportsbook had Tiger Woods as a -190 favorite to make the cut at St. Andrews, where he won the Open in 2000 and 2005. What seemed like a solid bet lured high rollers to wager a lot of money on Tiger Woods, but their faith in the fading legend proved to be unfounded.
The wagering action was not a real test of public opinion, though. 53% of the gamblers who made bets at William Hill wagered against Woods. That means a lot of small bets were on the “No” proposition, while the big money was on the “Yes” proposition. The average bet against Tiger Woods was less than $50, while the average bet for Woods was more than $200.
Second Round Not Complete
Bettors are going to have to wait for the results, though. Tiger Woods, who missed the cut at the U.S. Open last month, finished play on Friday with 6 holes to play in his second round. He sits at +5, which would have him missing the cut at present.
Dustin Johnson Leads
Dustin Johnson is leading at the moment with a 9-under. He still has 6 holes remaining on his second round, when play resumes on Saturday. For Woods to make the cut, he would need to make up perhaps 4 shots on the leader on the next six holes. Given the results of the two golfers on the first two days of the event, that is not likely to happen. The projected cut line is even-par, which would means Woods needs to birdie 5 of 6 holes.
Dustin Johnson is doing many of the things Tiger Woods used to do on the course. Johnson is a physical specimen who hammers the ball down the fairway, putting him in position to hit higher irons on his approach to the green. Of course, Dustin Johnson’s problems never seem to come on Thursday and Friday at a major. The world #3 has issues on Sunday at the majors. Last month, he faltered at the US Open, losing three shots in the last three holes to finish in 2nd place. Jordan Speith, the new wunderkind of golf, won the event.
Media Focus on Tiger Woods
Fans of Tiger Woods only hope he can compete against the young lions. Despite the rapid decline of Tiger Woods’s game, gamblers and media members continue to be fascinated by him. That is what happens when a golfer wins 14 majors in sensational fashion, often breaking records. Combine the winning with Woods’ multi-ethnic background and high intensity on the golf course and the PGA had a perfect storm for publicity and fan interest.
Many American golf viewers wonder whether to much focus is being placed on Tiger Woods. Despite Dallas-resident Jordan Spieth winning 2 Majors at the age of 21, the latest round by Tiger Woods continues to command much of the media coverage in the USA. The attention might be leading bettors down the wrong path, as he continues to dominate their attention. Woods had the 5th-most bets placed on him, despite being far below the other Top 5 golfers on the list in terms of 2015 production.
Falling with a Thud
The problem might be the rapidity of Tiger Woods’s fall down the leaderboard. In 2013, Tiger Woods was still the #1 ranked golfer in the world. Despite playing in half or less than half of the tournaments as most of the top PGA golfers, Woods continued to post results better than the rest of the competition. But nearing 40 years of age, he changed his golf swing again to lessen the risk of injuries. This 4th and latest change to his golf swing does not appear to have worked–at least not yet.
That explains the continued fascination with Woods’s results. It was not that long ago that making a cut was a given. The mark of success for Tiger Woods was whether he won the tournament or not. So many gamblers believe it is only a matter of time before Tiger Woods figures out the winning formula, the changes to his golf swing take hold, and he is back near the top of the leaderboard. For the high rollers, at least, it seems a good bet to assume Woods will rebound.
St. Andrews Was Not Enough
But if he can’t do it at St. Andrews, gamblers might begin to wonder if he can do it. Tiger Woods was a wizard on this course in 2000 and 2005. He did things no one else ever had, on the most storied course in golf history. For those thinking it was only a matter of time, they might start to believe that time is no longer on Tiger Woods’s side. He is no longer the young lion. In fact, he’s in the older generation now. Players like Jordan Spieth and Rory McIlroy grew up watching Tiger Woods play.
The Open’s Odds
On the Bovada website, the odds coming into the tournament had Dustin Johnson as the favorite with 10/3 odds. Jordan Spieth was next with 4/1 odds. Jason Day (9/1), Louis Oosthuizen (14/1), and Zach Johnson (16/1) rounded out the top five. Tiger Wood began the event at 20/1 odds. Now, his odds have been taken off the board completely. At Bovada, the odds top out at 1000/1, so the bookmaker site puts his odds of winning at less than 1000/1.
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