Golf betting guide: Available markets for the British Open and other tournaments

Xander Schauffele hits a tee shot at the 2020 Genesis Open.
Photo of Ricky Dimon

Ricky Dimon

Golf · 1 month ago

Show Bio

Since graduating from Davidson (The College That Stephen Curry Built), I have been writing about sports--just about any and all you can think of!--and coaching tennis in Atlanta, Ga. Beyond the four major sports, I am an avid tennis fan and cover the ATP Tour on a daily basis. If I'm not busy writing, you can generally find me on a tennis court or traveling the world wherever a sporting event takes me.

Golf may not be one of the four major American sports, but it should not be forgotten by the betting public. And it certainly shouldn’t be forgotten by fans of Pickswise. Our golf picks have been red hot in 2022 thanks to analyst Diane Knox Balas.

There is plenty of value to be found on the links, and this time of year – the middle of summer – is bettors’ favorite. All four majors are played in the span of four months, beginning with the Masters in April and going through the British Open in July. Next up on the 2022 schedule is the British Open, which takes place this week at none other than the home of golf: St. Andrew’s in Scotland.

Let’s discuss some of the common golf markets before getting into more British Open specifics.

Golf betting markets

Futures

Futures probably draw the most interest when it comes to golf. It’s easy to see why. This sport is unique in that there aren’t really one-on-one, head-to-head matchups (the WGC-Match Play Championship is one exception). Although there is a market for arbitrary matchups between certain players on certain days to see who can go lower, they aren’t actually playing against each other like two players would in a tennis tournament. Thus golf betting is driven mostly by futures. Odds for most tournaments will be posted by sportsbooks a few days before they begin (generally Thursday is the starting day, with very few exceptions outside of the aforementioned Match Play Championship). For the majors, those odds are generally posted many months in advance.

The most popular futures bets, as you might expect, are on outright tournament winners. Pre-tournament, favorites to win are generally in the +800 to +1100 range. Yes, it’s that hard to win a golf tournament even for the best players in the world. Maybe if someone is totally dominating the tour at the time of an event and the rest of the field at that particular event isn’t overly strong, you could find a favorite at +700 or so. But that is rare — and it has to be said most likely wouldn’t offer a lot of value.

Of course, you don’t have to go big by betting on someone to win an entire tournament. There are also markets for finishing in the top 10, the top 20, and making the cut. Someone who is +1200 to win a title, for example, could be +150 to finish in the top 10 and -170 to place in the top 20. Cuts happen after two of the four rounds at traditional tournaments are complete. Generally speaking, two-thirds of the field advances to compete on the two ensuing weekend rounds. Title favorites could be as low as -1500 to make the cut.

Over/Under

The total for an individual golfer’s score is another betting option. Such a market is most often offered for the opening Thursday rounds — especially at the four majors. It’s a simple concept, similar to game totals in other sports. Will a player shoot over or under his quota? If the over/under for a golfer’s round is 69.5 and he shoots 70 or worse, an over bet cashes; 69 or better gets the win for under tickets.

Head-to-head

As mentioned above, some books will pit two golfers against each other in a figurative but not necessarily literal head-to-head matchup and you can bet on which one will post a better score on a particular day. The official name is two-ball betting. Three-ball betting is the same concept, one you will often find for the first two rounds of majors when competitors are playing in groups of three.

The British Open odds and predictions

Who will join the ranks of major champions in 2022? So far the list includes Scottie Scheffler (Masters), Justin Thomas (PGA Championship) and Matt Fitzpatrick (U.S. Open). It would be no surprise if the quartet ends up featuring two Americans (Scheffler and Thomas) and two Europeans (Fitzpatrick and a player to be named this coming weekend). After all, Rory McIlroy is a +900 favorite at DraftKings and he is followed closely behind by Jon Rahm at +1200. Scheffler and Xander Schauffele – who is coming off a win at the Scottish Open – are +1400.

The return of Tiger Woods will be a significant storyline this week. Of Woods’ 15 major triumphs, two have come at St. Andrew’s (2000 and 2005). The 46-year-old withdrew from the PGA Championship because of his injured leg and he skipped the U.S. Open to rest up for the British Open, which he prioritized based on his perceived chance of success. That’s not to say Woods is among the favorites; he is going off at +4000.

For this tournament and all other majors, there are other markets such as the leader from a certain country. For example, when those odds become available later this week Louis Oosthuizen will be favored to be the top South African and Cameron Smith will be the No. 1 choice to be the best among Australians on the leaderboard.

Pickswise is the home of free expert Golf Picks and Golf Predictions. Our PGA expert picks go live every Monday or Tuesday, so check out our latest golf picks, best bets, and analysis for this week’s PGA tournament now.

Virginia Bonuses

See All
PointsBet

$500

Get 5x $100 Risk-Free Bets!

Sign up for a new PointsBet account

Make a bet of up to $100 and receive a refund if you lose

Get this offer once a day for the first 5 days you sign up

Must be 21+. Full terms are available at PointsBet.

BetMGM

$200

Get $200 in Free Bets & a PICKSWISE HAT!

Sign up for a new account with BetMGM, and make a deposit of $10+.

Place a $10 moneyline wager on any team

Win $200 in free bets and a FREE Pickswise hat

21+ and new players only. Full terms available at BetMGM Sportsbook.

FanDuel Sportsbook

$250

Bet One, Get One: FanDuel will match your first bet placed up to $250 in free bets

Sign up for a new account with FanDuel Sportsbook

Deposit at least $10 into your account

FanDuel will match your first bet up to $250 in Free Bets!

Must be 21+ in CO. First deposit of at least $10 required. Bonus issued as non-withdrawable free bets that expire 14 days after receipt. See full terms at fanduel.com/sportsbook.

DraftKings

$100

Bet $5+ on MLB and get $100 in Free Bets Instantly!

Sign up for a new account with DraftKings Sportsbook and make your first deposit

Bet $5+ on any MLB team to win their next game

Win $100 no matter what!

Offer valid for new players only. Must be 21 years or older to play. Reward paid in site credit. Full terms available at DraftKings Sportsbook.

PointsBet

$2,000

Get $2,000 in Risk-Free Bets!

Register for a new PointsBet account & deposit

Receive a free bet refund up to $500 if your first fixed odds bet loses

& a free bet refund up to $1,500 if your first two PointsBetting Wager loses

Must be 21+. Full terms are available at PointsBet.

Caesars Sportsbook

$1,500

Get up to $1,500 Risk-Free First Bet!

Sign up for a new Caesars Sportsbook account

Make your first deposit of $50+

If your first bet is not a winner, get it all back as a free bet (up to $1,100) if you lose!

21+. Terms and conditions apply.

Monkey Knife Fight

$100

Claim Instant Deposit Match up to $100 + Free $5 game

Register for a Monkey Knife Fight account & deposit using promo code PICKSWISE100

Monkey Knife Fight will match your first deposit up to $100

Deposit $100 and you'll get $100 bonus + a free $5 game

18+. Terms and conditions apply. You must live in one of the states where real money DFS is legal.

BetRivers

$250

Get a $250 Deposit Bonus!

Sign up for a new BetRivers account using promo code PICKSWISE

Make a deposit & get it doubled up to $250 total

To get a $100 bonus, deposit $100

Must be 21+. Play in IA Only. Gambling Problem? Call 1-800-BETS OFF

Unibet

$500

Get a $500 Risk-Free Bet!

Register for a new Unibet account & make a deposit

Place your first bet up to $500 risk-free!

Get refunded up if you lose up to $500

New players only. Terms & conditions apply. 21+. VA only.

BetMGM

$1,000

Get a $1,000 Risk Free Bet!

Register for a new BetMGM & deposit

Place your first bet up to $1,000 risk-free!

Get refunded up if you lose up to $1,000

21+. Terms & conditions apply.

FanDuel Sportsbook

$1,000

Get a $1,000 Risk Free Bet!

Register for a new FanDuel Sportsbook account & deposit

Place your first bet up to $1,000 risk-free!

Get refunded up if you lose up to $1,000

21+. Terms & conditions apply.

DraftKings

$1,000

Get a $1,000 Deposit Bonus!

Register for a new DraftKings Sportsbook account & deposit

DraftKings will match 20% of your deposit up to $1,000 total

To get a $100 bonus, deposit $500

21+. Terms & conditions apply.

Monkey Knife Fight

$100

Claim 100% Instant Deposit Match up to $100!

Register for a Monkey Knife Fight account & deposit using promo code PICKSWISE100

Monkey Knife Fight will match your first deposit up to $100

Deposit $100 and you'll get $100 bonus + a free $5 game

18+. Terms and conditions apply. You must live in one of the states where real money DFS is legal.

Yahoo DFS

$25

Get $25 in Site Credit With Yahoo DFS When You Deposit $5!

Register for a new account with Yahoo DFS and deposit $5+

Enter a $5 DFS contest

Upon entry, you will receive a bonus $25 in credit into your account!

21+ and new players only. Full terms available from Yahoo DFS.

TVG

$200

Get Your First Single-Horse Win Wager Back Up to $200 if you don't win

Register for a new TVG account and make a deposit

Place your first single horse win-type bet up to $200

If your horse doesn't win you'll get a refund up to $300

21+. T&C's apply. Please gamble responsibly.

TwinSpires

$200

Get a $200 Sign-Up Bonus with Twinspires Racebook!

Open your TwinSpires.com account using offer code BET200

$200 bonus cash will be credited in increments of $100 for every $400 wagered

To earn the full $200 bonus players must wager $800 within 30 days

21+. Terms and conditions apply.