MOST punters will be chasing massive odds with a bet in the winner market but there are plenty of ways of making a profit from the Masters.

In just a few days the world will fall quickly and strongly in love with golf when the year’s first Major gets under way in the ludicrously photogenic setting of Augusta.

As the only Major that is always played at the same venue our Masters memories are perhaps stronger than the other three – The Open, US Open, USPGA. The cast changes but the setting remains the same year after year.

A bet on the Masters is a must for even the most part-time of sports fans. At the odds, every player – yes, even Tiger – would bring tasty returns and with each-way bets paying down to fifth place (six with Paddy Power) in the winner market there’s every chance of getting some money back when it’s all over.

Of course, there are a massive array of markets on Betfair and it’s not just about finding the tournament winner. There are countless ways of making a profit but with so many to pick from how do you make your selections?

Here’s a run through a handful of betting options ahead of the big tee-off on Thursday and my each-way selections will be on another post.

Patriotic punt

British, or perhaps more specifically, English golf has been one of the least heralded sporting success stories of the last few years. In Luke Donald and Justin Rose, England boast two of the top four players in the world, while Lee Westwood and Ian Poulter are both in the top 20.

All four have Augusta form. Poulter has been top 10 two of the last three years, Westwood was third last year and second in 2010, Donald finished fourth in 2011 and Rose was eighth last year and has gone top five before (2007).

At 17.0 to back in the fixed odds the Betfair market likes Rose’s chances best with Donald a couple of ticks off at 31.0.

Westwood trades at the same price while Poulter can be backed at 46.0. Of the four Westwood has been playing the most golf and looks to be coming on well.

The course suits his powerful, accurate long game and while he will undoubtedly miss a few tiddlers he won’t be the only one to do so. An each-way bet on Westwood looks the sensible play.

American pick

Most golf fans will know about Matt Kuchar and Hunter Mahan but they hardly resonate beyond the confines of the sport. Nevertheless, they could be among the wiser bets you strike this week.

The home challenge looks especially strong this year and these two are likely contenders over the four days at Augusta. Both are class performers and regular tournament winners – Kuchar defeating Mahan in the final of the high-profile WGC Match Play this year.

Tougher courses tend to suit these two and Augusta is just that. Kuchar’s third last year shows an aptitude for the Georgia masterpiece, while Mahan has finished top 10 two times in the last four years and 12th in 2012. Playing it safe, Top 10 bets on either look sensible – Kuchar trades around 4.0 while Mahan is a tick bigger @ 5.0.

Run for your money

This has been a quietly impressive season for Peter Hanson who could just serve up an Augusta treat at big odds. This Ryder Cupper has produced top 10-finishes in the US and the Middle East, missing just one cut this season.

Third last time out it wouldn’t surprise to see this hugely consistent golfer go close once more. Hanson is 100.0 to win on the exchange, 61.0 on fixed odds, but the best way to profit from this steady Swede may be a back at 8.0 to finish as Top Continental European.

Do the obvious

Let’s face it, the best bet is a winning bet and Tiger’s the one you want to be on. With three tournament wins to his name this year the great man is back on his best form and 5.4 is a bigger price than he would have been in his pomp. Four Green Jackets are in the cupboard chez Woods – they’ve probably taken his measurements already haven’t they?

Recommended Bets

Back Lee Westwood each-way @ 31.0
Back Matt Kuchar @ 3.9 to finish Top 10
Back Hunter Mahan @ 5.0 to finish Top 10
Back Peter Hanson @ 8.0 to finish as Top Continental European
Back Tiger Woods @ 5.4

Milesey

7 Comments
  1. Milesey 11 years ago

    US MASTERS 2013

    Recommended Bets
    Back Lee Westwood each-way @ 31.0
    Back Matt Kuchar @ 3.9 to finish Top 10
    Back Hunter Mahan @ 5.0 to finish Top 10
    Back Peter Hanson @ 8.0 to finish as Top Continental European
    Back Tiger Woods @ 5.4

    MY E/W SELECTIONS……………..

    Louis Oosthuizen @ 31.0
    Hunter Mahan @ 41.0
    Richard Sterne @ 201.0
    Martin Laird @ 111.0

    Milesey ( Betfair )

  2. eoghan 11 years ago

    my bets are

    louis oosthuizen e/w
    bubba watson e/w
    justin rose
    keegan bradley e/w

    rose and oosthuizen are my main picks, louis is just a dab hand at this course and will be there in the mix the last day and if he holds it together will win. justin rose has been playing superb and is my pick from all the english and irish boys to do the best this weekend.

    i pick bubba to win last year at 45/1 and i dont think he will be far away this year so i’ll take i punt on him just because of the money he made me

    keegan is a fighter and wont give up and i expect him to do well as long as he doesnt let the leaders after the first and second day get too far in front he has a good chance of roaring back sat and sun with the drive and fight i know he has

    didnt want to go into stats but feel free to ask if you need some info on this weekends players or my four picks.

    #LOVETHEGOLF

    goodluck everyone

  3. Joe Falkner 11 years ago

    Morning guys. Can’t wait for the Masters, going to be fantastic as always. With that said I’d thought I’d offer my thoughts on possibly the best value player in the field:

    Russell Henley is a Georgia native and former UGA student of five years (incidently, my wife was there at the same time on the women’s golf team). He has played Augusta many times and although he’s a rookie in Masters sense, he does have experience on the course.

    He’s already won this year in his rookie season on Tour and also made a good run at the Matchplay (knocking out Schwartzel in the process). He is a fantastic putter and will feel comfortable in his home state on a course he knows well.

    @betfair have him at 6/1 for top 20 and around 16/1 for top 10. For anyone wanting a little win bet on him, yoy can have around 330/1 on the exchange.

    Hope everyone enjoys the week and I hope Henley will win some of you a few quid come Sunday.

    Cheers,

    Joe

  4. Milesey 11 years ago

    four early risers off the tee to claim the Masters’ first-round lead…

    Who will turn the red numbers into a red-letter day? That’s the question on everyone’s mind ahead of the opening round of Augusta. And conveniently, it’s the short-course question of this particular article.

    But while all the top players would readily sign for a first-round edge, none of them is motivated to acquire it at all costs. Far from it. Round one is positioning day: just get yourself handily placed after 18 before the 72-hole stagger unwinds. Taking single-handed command of the tournament can wait for Sunday.

    Golfers are a superstitious bunch. Small wonder, considering the vagaries of a capricious sport. Consequently, many of the game’s best exponents shrink from an early position in the vanguard that increases both media scrutiny and personal expectation.

    Rory McIlroy and Tiger Woods are notable exceptions to this rule. And rightly so, considering some of their all wire-to-wire victories. After all, although first-round leaders often fail to finish the job, no position has a better strike-rate than the opening-round trailblazer.

    Lee Westwood and Luke Donald, however, are indicative of a wider malaise among top tour pros, whose irrational fear of leading is more akin to a herd animal – the horse a jockey delivers late because it’s scared of putting its head in front.

    So with that in mind – and assured that this racing metaphor is worth stretching past breaking point – let’s have a look at the runners for this initial cavalry charge. And more specifically, which key criteria will allow a player to lead from flag-fall – or in golfing terms, take the US Masters First Round Lead.

    An early start time: The morning wave of players always gets the chance to launch a birdie barrage when Augusta is at its most benign – and its greens at their most receptive. Putting surfaces are also smooth and unspiked by foot-fall which increases with in heat of the afternoon competition. Play wears on and the greens rough up.

    Check the weather forecast: Wind velocity is also typically at a minimum early doors before kicking later in the day. Heavy showers and thunderstorms can inconvenience play and soften the course up for later campaigners, though. There’s a 59% chance of such elements arriving on Thursday, but not until the afternoon. So the early advantage should be all the greater.

    Consult First-round Scoring Statistics: Round One Scoring Average is a useful barometer but even better is Early Tee Time Scoring Average. It’s a relatively recent stat among the mine on pgatour.com, but it’s an excellent one. Tiger Woods and Brandt Snedeker head it but offer poor value.

    Avoid the Market Leaders: And speaking of value, I prefer to search a little deeper down the betting lists for an outsider to unearth. The occasional trailblazing tendencies of Woods and McIlroy aside, favourites in this bracket are priced at restrictive odds for what is a sprint within a marathon. A top player will likely consolidate a promising start with conservative play as opposed to pushing for the peak in round one. Tiger, for example, has only broken 70 once is 16 Augusta outings on a Thursday.

    Players to Support

    Kevin Na (8.22am, local time) Third in Early Scoring Average this term and one of the best putters around. Na has always had the talent and is not afraid to serve it up to more fancied opponents. Injury halted his progress after a belated breakthrough on tour, but he’s now back in decent health and has been afforded an early wake-up call.

    Charl Schwartzel (9.39am) Champion of two years ago and arguably in the form of his life, the quiet South African lets his golf do the talking. Has been quicker out of the blocks on the European Tour than stateside, but certainly has the right mentality to keep pushing when others are dropping anchor and avoiding the errors.

    Webb Simpson (9.39am) Playing alongside Schwartzel and admittedly not my favourite player. However, I doubt the US Open champ is losing much sleep over that assessment. And I must admit that he has the length to bring this track to its knees. He is possibly the streakiest player on the circuit and is ninth in early-round scoring. If the muse is with him, he’ll contend.

    Rickie Fowler (10.56am) Long and straight, this exciting youngster has already amassed some promising Augusta form. He will be keen to get a jump-start on his rivals and bolster his reputation as a great frontrunner.

    So that’s my customary four-off-the-tee. One of my outright picks, Justin Rose, just missed out on selection. The Englishman excels in first-round scoring, especially at the Masters where he has led after the initial skirmishes three times. Then again, seeing as my esteemed colleague Steve R has put him up, chances are you knew that already.

    Recommended Bets

    Back Kevin Na @ 180.0
    Back Charl Schwartzel @ 36.0
    Back Webb Simpson @ 65.0
    Back Rickie Fowler @ 65.0

    Milesey ( betfair )

  5. Milesey 11 years ago

    Thursday – Round One (all BST)

    1:00pm S Lyle (Sco), J Peterson (USA), N Smith (USA)

    1:11pm L Mize (USA), B Gay (USA), R Henley (USA)

    1:22pm I Woosnam (Wal), D Lynn (Eng), K Na (USA)

    1:33pm D Toms (USA), R Sterne (Rsa), T Potter Jr (USA)

    1:44pm T Watson (USA), R Moore (USA), K Streelman (USA)

    1:55pm R Garrigus (USA), C Pettersson (Swe), T Clark (Rsa)

    2:06pm M Weir (Can), L Westwood (Eng), J Furyk (USA)

    2:17pm B Snedeker (USA), R Ishikawa (Jpn), J Rose (Eng)

    2:28pm J Olazabal (Esp), M Leishman (Aus), T Vogel (USA)

    2:39pm C Schwartzel (Rsa), W Simpson (USA), P Hanson (Swe)

    2:50pm Z Johnson (USA), KJ Choi (Kor), G McDowell (NIr)

    3:12pm M Thompson (USA), J Huh (USA), J Senden (Aus)

    3:23pm S Cink (USA), N Colsaerts (Bel), T Wiratchant (Tha)

    3:34pm B Watson (USA), I Poulter (Eng), S Fox (USA)

    3:45pm T Woods (USA), L Donald (Eng), S Piercy (USA)

    3:56pm J. Day (Aus), R Fowler (USA), P Harrington (Irl)

    4:07pm J Merrick (USA), T Olesen (Den), DA Points (USA)

    4:18pm C Stadler (USA), B Curtis (USA), M Weaver (USA)

    4:29pm M O’Meara (USA), M Laird (Sco), J Donaldson (Wal)

    4:40pm P Lawrie (Sco), T Bjorn (Den), G Fernandez-Castano (Esp)

    4:51pm T Immelman (Rsa), G Coetzee (Rsa), A Dunbar (NIr)

    5:13pm E Els (Rsa), S Stricker (USA), N Watney (USA)

    5:24pm B Crenshaw (USA), M Manassero (Ita), T Guan (Chn)

    5:35pm B Langer (Ger), L Glover (USA), H Stenson (Swe)

    5:46pm V Singh (Fij), B Van Pelt (USA), YE Yang (Kor)

    5:57pm A Cabrera (Arg), S Garcia (Esp), A Scott (Aus)

    6:08pm F Couples (USA), D Johnson (USA), B Grace (Rsa)

    6:19pm H Mahan (USA), H Fujita (Jpn), F Molinari (Ita)

    6:30pm P Mickelson (USA), L Oosthuizen (Rsa), M Kaymer (Ger)

    6:41pm R McIlroy (Nir), K Bradley (USA), F Jacobson (Swe)

    6:52pm J Dufner (USA), M Kuchar (USA), B Haas (USA)

    Friday – Round Two

    1:00pm J Merrick (USA), T Olesen (Den), DA Points (USA)

    1:11pm C Stadler (USA), B Curtis (USA), M Weaver (USA)

    1:22pm M O’Meara (USA), M Laird (Sco), J Donaldson (Wal)

    1:33pm P Lawrie (Sco), T Bjorn (Den), G Fernandez-Castano (Esp)

    1:44pm T Immelman (Rsa), G Coetzee (Rsa), A Dunbar (NIr)

    1:55pm E Els (Rsa), S Stricker (USA), N Watney (USA)

    2:06pm B Crenshaw (USA), M Manassero (Ita), T Guan (Chn)

    2:17pm B Langer (Ger), L Glover (USA), H Stenson (Swe)

    2:28pm V Singh (Fij), B Van Pelt (USA), YE Yang (Kor)

    2:39pm A Cabrera (Arg), S Garcia (Esp), A Scott (Aus)

    2:50pm F Couples (USA), D Johnson (USA), B Grace (Rsa)

    3:12pm H Mahan (USA), H Fujita (Jpn), F Molinari (Ita)

    3:23pm P Mickelson (USA), L Oosthuizen (Rsa), M Kaymer (Ger)

    3:34pm R McIlroy (Nir), K Bradley (USA), F Jacobson (Swe)

    3:45pm J Dufner (USA), M Kuchar (USA), B Haas (USA)

    3:56pm S Lyle (Sco), J Peterson (USA), N Smith (USA)

    4:07pm L Mize (USA), B Gay (USA), R Henley (USA)

    4:18pm I Woosnam (Wal), D Lynn (Eng), K Na (USA)

    4:29pm D Toms (USA), R Sterne (Rsa), T Potter Jr (USA)

    4:40pm T Watson (USA), R Moore (USA), K Streelman (USA)

    4:51pm R Garrigus (USA), C Pettersson (Swe), T Clark (Rsa)

    5:13pm M Weir (Can), L Westwood (Eng), J Furyk (USA)

    5:24pm B Snedeker (USA), R Ishikawa (Jpn), J Rose (Eng)

    5:35pm J Olazabal (Esp), M Leishman (Aus), T Vogel (USA)

    5:46pm C Schwartzel (Rsa), W Simpson (USA), P Hanson (Swe)

    5:57pm Z Johnson (USA), KJ Choi (Kor), G McDowell (NIr)

    6:08pm M Thompson (USA), J Huh (USA), J Senden (Aus)

    6:19pm S Cink (USA), N Colsaerts (Bel), T Wiratchant (Tha)

    6:30pm B Watson (USA), I Poulter (Eng), S Fox (USA)

    6:41pm T Woods (USA), L Donald (Eng), S Piercy (USA)

    6:52pm J. Day (Aus), R Fowler (USA), P Harrington (Irl)

    Milesey

  6. Milesey 11 years ago

    1:22pm I Woosnam (Wal), D Lynn (Eng), K Na (USA)
    ***** K NA *****

    2:17pm B Snedeker (USA), R Ishikawa (Jpn), J Rose (Eng)
    ***** J ROSE *****

    4:07pm J Merrick (USA), T Olesen (Den), DA Points (USA)
    ***** DA POINTS *****

    5:57pm A Cabrera (Arg), S Garcia (Esp), A Scott (Aus)
    ***** A SCOTT *****

    6:19pm H Mahan (USA), H Fujita (Jpn), F Molinari (Ita)
    ****** H MAHAN *****

    Milesey

    *********************************************************
    Thursday – Round One (all BST)

    1:00pm S Lyle (Sco), J Peterson (USA), N Smith (USA)

    1:11pm L Mize (USA), B Gay (USA), R Henley (USA)

    1:22pm I Woosnam (Wal), D Lynn (Eng), K Na (USA)

    1:33pm D Toms (USA), R Sterne (Rsa), T Potter Jr (USA)

    1:44pm T Watson (USA), R Moore (USA), K Streelman (USA)

    1:55pm R Garrigus (USA), C Pettersson (Swe), T Clark (Rsa)

    2:06pm M Weir (Can), L Westwood (Eng), J Furyk (USA)

    2:17pm B Snedeker (USA), R Ishikawa (Jpn), J Rose (Eng)

    2:28pm J Olazabal (Esp), M Leishman (Aus), T Vogel (USA)

    2:39pm C Schwartzel (Rsa), W Simpson (USA), P Hanson (Swe)

    2:50pm Z Johnson (USA), KJ Choi (Kor), G McDowell (NIr)

    3:12pm M Thompson (USA), J Huh (USA), J Senden (Aus)

    3:23pm S Cink (USA), N Colsaerts (Bel), T Wiratchant (Tha)

    3:34pm B Watson (USA), I Poulter (Eng), S Fox (USA)

    3:45pm T Woods (USA), L Donald (Eng), S Piercy (USA)

    3:56pm J. Day (Aus), R Fowler (USA), P Harrington (Irl)

    4:07pm J Merrick (USA), T Olesen (Den), DA Points (USA)

    4:18pm C Stadler (USA), B Curtis (USA), M Weaver (USA)

    4:29pm M O’Meara (USA), M Laird (Sco), J Donaldson (Wal)

    4:40pm P Lawrie (Sco), T Bjorn (Den), G Fernandez-Castano (Esp)

    4:51pm T Immelman (Rsa), G Coetzee (Rsa), A Dunbar (NIr)

    5:13pm E Els (Rsa), S Stricker (USA), N Watney (USA)

    5:24pm B Crenshaw (USA), M Manassero (Ita), T Guan (Chn)

    5:35pm B Langer (Ger), L Glover (USA), H Stenson (Swe)

    5:46pm V Singh (Fij), B Van Pelt (USA), YE Yang (Kor)

    5:57pm A Cabrera (Arg), S Garcia (Esp), A Scott (Aus)

    6:08pm F Couples (USA), D Johnson (USA), B Grace (Rsa)

    6:19pm H Mahan (USA), H Fujita (Jpn), F Molinari (Ita)

    6:30pm P Mickelson (USA), L Oosthuizen (Rsa), M Kaymer (Ger)

    6:41pm R McIlroy (Nir), K Bradley (USA), F Jacobson (Swe)

    6:52pm J Dufner (USA), M Kuchar (USA), B Haas (USA)

  7. Milesey 11 years ago

    a quintet of bets from Thursday’s three-balls

    This year at the Masters, more than any other, I get the feeling we’re in for a real treat. The three market leaders absolutely love the course and all look in good shape. Tiger Woods has regained the World number one ranking and positive vibes about his putting continue to reach us. World number two Rory McIlroy looked on his way back to his phenomenal best last time out and could be peaking at the perfect time. Make no mistake, the two will have one eye on each other and we could be in for the dream scenario – a Sunday shoot-out between the two best players in the world. It could even be Woods v McIlroy in a final day two ball, keep your fingers crossed.

    Young teenage golfers are something of a rarity at the majors. I’m not expecting 14-year-old Chinese golfer Guan Tianlang to be challenging the top of the leaderboard this week but the youngster earned his place in the field on merit, and has played endless practice rounds receiving glowing praise from Tiger Woods, Ben Crenshaw and numerous others. I think he looks a decent price @ 5.0 to win his day one three-ball with Matteo Manassero and Crenshaw, which looks odds-on to be the shortest hitting group on the fairways.

    Nick Watney has an excellent Masters record: he’s made the cut on each of his five visits with his best finish being seventh in 2010 when he shot the best round of the tournament with a 65 on the final day. Watney’s partners this week are Steve Stricker, who has often struggled at Augusta, and Ernie Els, who has struggled since his Open Championship victory.

    Martin Laird’s victory at last week’s Valero Texas Open was all the more impressive when you consider it was his first piece of worthwhile form this season and a Masters invite was on the line. With that confidence-boosting performance Laird now becomes a contender for a big week. The Scot was 20th on debut at Augusta in 2011 and made the cut again last year on his second visit. Playing partners Jamie Donaldson (debutant) and Mark O’Meara (in good form on the Champions tour, possible danger) have it all to do to match him.

    His results since his win on the first week of his season haven’t been anything to write home about but it’s perhaps fair to say Russell Henley has had one eye on Augusta. This Masters rookie was born and raised in Georgia and was apparently the first man banging on the door at Augusta for a practice round once his invite was secure. Remarkably, he’s already played in two Majors (US Open 2010/11) and made the cut on both occassions. Henley has a big future in the game and is a fair price at even money to outscore Brian Gay and veteran Larry Mize in round one.

    Recommended Bets
    Back McIlroy/Woods double @ 2.7
    Back Guan Tianlang @ 5.0
    Back Nick Watney @ 2.75
    Back Martin Laird @ 1.95
    Back Russell Henley @ 2.0

    Milesey ( betfair )

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