BMW Championship Golf Betting Tips
Robert Cobley is a maths graduate with years of experience in the sports betting industry. He has now teamed up with Bet UK to bring his golf betting tips to our readers.
Medinah Country Club, Course 3 - Illinois, USA - Par 72, 7,600 Yards
The PGA Tour heads to one of it’s most iconic venues this week for the BMW Championship at Medinah Country Club. The venue was last seen around the World in 2012 when he European Team overcame a 6 point deficit to beat the USA in what became known as the Miracle at Medinah. The course is 30 minutes drive west from Chicago, and always offers up a fantastic atmosphere. Before that dramatic event in 2012 it had played host to successive major wins for Tiger Woods at the 1999 and 2006 PGA Championships. Tiger is due to play this week, but there are concerns that the back industry that forced him to withdraw last week could see the end of his season.
The course itself is a visually stunning behemoth with 4,700 trees lining the 7,600 yards worth of estate across the 18 holes of premium woodland golf. Whilst he rough is not particularly challenging, the trees make sure that any wayward shots are severely punished, and it is often a lottery as to whether players can get back onto the fairways, let alone the greens. This was the scene of Sergio Garcia’s one handed 200 yard cut as he battled Woods in that 2009 encounter that announced him onto the golf scene.
Water is in play on five holes, and the par 5s, as well as one par 4, are all reachable. This is very much a first shot golf course and there is a huge premium on driving the ball straight. Strokes gained tee to green will be imperative and this is where I will focus my attention this week in the reduced field of just 69 players.
Last Five Winners:
2018: Keegan Bradley - -20 2017: Marc Leishman - -23 2016: Dustin Johnson - -23 2015: Jason Day - -22 2014: Billy Horschel - -14
The Market Leaders
As seems to have become the norm in the Fedex Cup playoffs this year, Rory McIlroy (8/1) and Brooks Koepka (8/1) once again sit tied to the top of the market heading into the season’s penultimate event in Chicago. Mcilroy played some fantastic golf again last week before falling over in the final round once more to post a 6th placed finish, whilst Koepka had a less impressive week as he slipped to 30th; a disappointing return in a limited field. Both players drive the ball well and are each capable of contending this week, but for me Mcilroy is the far better bet of the two given the strengths that lie in his long game. Rory sits top of the strokes gained tee to green statistic whilst Koepka resides, a still impressive, 9th. He is also very much overdue a victory since his fantastic win on a similarly long course in Canada and, if i was looking to back a favourite, Rory would certainly be my bet.
John Rahm (10/1) is the comfortable third favourite. Rahm finished 3rd last week and is enjoying the best run of golf of his career. I have concerns about the tightness of some of the tee shots and that Rahm’s bogey avoidance stats might well hamper him this week, and of the market leaders he is the easiest to pass over this week. Justin Thomas (14/1) has hovered around the top of the leaderboards lately with top 12 finishes in his last 4 starts without ever getting into serious contention. That might change this week. Thomas has history for stepping up his game in the playoffs and is the second best driver of the ball on Tour behind Rory. Look out for a strong challenge from him this week. Dustin Johnson (14/1) has really struggled with his game in the second half of this season, posting no top 20s for the last 3 months, and although he has the long game for Medinah, it is hard to foresee him beating the other 68 in the field this week without dramatic improvement.
Rob’s Golf Betting Tips
Headline Betting Tip
As alluded to in the market leaders preview, i really like the chances of Rory this week. Since his unfortunate experience at Portrush, he has continued to play the excellent golf that we have seen from him all season, whilst still not quite picking up the rewards that he deserves.Finishes of 4th and 6th have followed that fantastic 2nd round 65 at Portrush, and he now arrives at a venue that should suit him perfectly, and in a reduced field Rory is almost certainly to be in contention over the weekend.
McIlroy drives the ball better than anyone, and also leds the stats for the best approach shots on Tour. This will be the perfect antidote to the defences of Medinah which all lie in the long game, and with Rory avoiding these troubles as well as having the game to overpower the par 5s, it’s hard to see where he falls over this week. The putting can remain inconsistent, especially from short range, but a better than average week on the greens will surely see Rory capture the title and head to Atlanta as the Fedex Cup leader. 5 points win at 8/1.
Other Betting Tips
Mexican Abraham Ancer continued his impressive rise through the golfing ranks last week with his highest placed PGA Tour finish, posting a 2nd place at Liberty National, just one stroke behind tournament winner Patrick Reed. Ancer, at 28, is approaching the height of his career, and saw a defining win last year when taking the Australian PGA Title in Melbourne on a tough links course. The challenge last week at Liberty is what I'd describe as a parkland / links hybrid, and the woodland setup of Medinah will be very different. That said, Ancer is highly capable, and needs to have a high finish to proceed to the final to in Atlanta next week for the Tour Championship. He has an all round game that i wouldn’t say is limited to the driving or the short game, although the latter is perhaps what gives him the biggest edge.
He will need to keep the ball straight and stay out of trouble, but this venue can be tackled in more ways than one. The long driving of Mcilroy will of course give him a significant edge, as it will others, but at a tough venue beating par over 4 rounds will put you in contention however you achieve it, and Ancer is as well placed as any to do that. In a limited field he is a value selection with 2 points e/w at 70/1.
Korean Sung-Jae Im is enjoying a rollercoaster first season on Tour. He started the season very impressively with top 10s in 3 of his opening 5 events, but more recently has struggled, only breaking into the top 10 on two occasions in the past 3 months. That did, however, include a notable 6th placed finish at the Wyndham Championship. That result was followed up by a top 40 last week, and one of the most respected coaches in the game this week described the 21 year old as having the best swing he had seen on Tour since Tiger Woods burst onto the scene back in 1997.
There is no doubting Im’s talent, and for me this could almost be called a disappointing rookie season given the unusually high expectations that fall upon his shoulders. He is only slight but has a fantastic all round game. I was interested to see his performance at The Open Championship where he really struggled in the wind and tough conditions associated with that test of golf. I expect far different on the protected woodland course at Medinah, and wouldn’t be at all surprised if his breakthrough win came at this level of event. Another that is a solid each way pick in the 69 man field with 2 points e/w at 80/1.
I was tempted with just the three selections this week given that there are under 70 players in the field, but Canadian Corey Connors is someone that i can’t pass over. I tipped Connors last week at Liberty National, and the 27 year old Canadian battled well all week to post a meritable 21st placed finish at 200/1 that was good enough to take him through to the penultimate week of the Fedex Cup. This week’s venue is an almost perfect fit for Connors who hits the ball long and straight, and sits 11th in the strokes gained tee to green stat above the likes of Justin ROse, Gary Woodland, and last week’s winner Patrick Reed.
Connors should set up plenty of chances this week, and the key for him particularly is going to be the par 5s, where he picks up the majority of his shots week to week. With 5 of the 18 holes this week reachable in a shot below regulation, eagle chances will be plenty for Connors. Like headline selection Mcilroy, he will need a good week on the greens, but if he can achieve that then his price could look crazy come Sunday evening. I shall have 1 point e/w at 150/1.
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*All odds from Bet UK’s online betting markets correct at the time of writing.
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