To say that we are juiced up for this one would be a huge understatement! The Ryder Cup is like no other event in sport and getting ahead of the game with regards betting is an almighty challenge. Things can change so quickly from hour to hour, that pre-empting what each side might do can be foolish.
The only markets that you can really slip into at this stage are those of winning team and leading points scorer, but even then once the pairings are announced you’ll get a much better insight into leading points scorer etc.
Obviously, we are going to wade in to a degree before the action starts, but will leave much of our capital in reserve for some in-play action.
Winning Team/Team to Lift the Cup
USA are currently 4/7 favourites to lift the trophy, which you can understand to a degree. There are plenty of factors that will lead a lot of people to back this theory; home advantage, higher world rankings, less rookies, better prepared than normal etc, but you can easily counter this with the fact that they have been odds on five of the last six matches ….. and lost five out of six. In short there’s no value here, and certainly no confidence to be gained.
Our thoughts (clearly looking through blue and gold tinted lenses) are that the Americans are over-thinking things. They appear to have gone to the nth degree to see that they have left no stone unturned and are using statistics to guide their decisions. They are trying to replicate Paul McGinley’s level of organisation and preparation but are missing the point – chemistry is everything in the Ryder Cup and no statistics will tell you who feels good with who.
Amazingly Europe are still underdogs despite their consistent success and this can be primarily put down to the number of rookies – six. Our team shouldn’t be dismissed out of hand, given that we do field The Open Champion, The Masters Champion, The Olympic Champion, The Fedex Cup Champion and Kaymer has a couple of majors to his name too. My belief is that we have some really strong pairings and while Darren Clarke might not make the mistakes of Mark James in 1999, he may not give a couple of his rookies too much action ahead of the singles. It’s a fine balance, but one that can be achieved.
Double-up: Winning Team & Leading Points Scorer
We are sticking to our guns and backing Europe and will be doubling this up with a leading points scorer option to give us some decent odds. Firstly, identifying the players who will have the best chance to play most. On the American side, there are a few players who appear to be suited to either fourball or foursomes, but not both and that certainly limits their potential. We envisage both Dustin Johnson and Patrick Reed to be ever-present, but beyond that it’s anyones guess. As the losing team is unlikely to field the highest points scorer we will focus on Europe.
Logic says that McIlroy, Rose and Garcia will play all 5 games. If Stenson was 100% fit then he would be a shoe-in to do the same. Westwood and Kaymer are certainly likely to return good results but might not get the full run – there is talk that Kaymer’s chipping might not be ideal for foursomes. We are going to back Justin Rose to continue a good run of Englishmen topping the points scoring. He is likely to be paired with Stenson in the opening match and their experience could be key to the whole match – a win in that one could really set momentum going for either side.
At 22/1 we’re happy to give Rose and Europe a run and will no doubt be looking to pile into some match betting and the odd accumulator on each round of matches.
Ultimately though, it is the hardest event in sport to predict. No level of organisation can prepare the players for the matches and it will inevitably boil down to who holes the putts and who holds their nerve. the only thing guaranteed is that the crowds will be boisterous, even without Danny Willett’s brother winding them up!