If you're new to the world of golf betting, you might feel overwhelmed with the variety of bets you can make and all the numbers involved.
Golf is perhaps the most difficult sport on which to bet, particularly when trying to predict full-field outcomes like the first-round leader, the winner, a top-five or top-10 finisher and more. However, while being right is the most important indicator of long-term golf betting success, the second-most important factor is getting great golf betting odds to maximize the value of your wins.
If you're paying attention, you'll quickly notice not every sportsbook offers the same odds for the same players at the same tournaments. While the general odds table is pretty well in line from top to bottom, there are variations in price. That can have a big impact on how much money you take home if you win.
For example, if you bet $100 on Tiger Woods to win the 2019 Masters, would you prefer to get him at 14-to-1 or 18-to-1? Of course, you'd pick 18-to-1 (+1800) every time because you're going to score $400 more if he wins compared to the 14-to-1 line.
Even if you're only betting $20 for a player to win a tournament or get in the each-way cash zone or be a first-round leader, that +400 difference in odds is substantial. So, it's worth it to shop the betting marketplace and find the best odds for your well-planned bets.
While you won't see as much disparity in player odds to win a golf tournament the week of the event, you will see some keen differences in the future market, particularly around the major championships. With sportsbooks often releasing major championship odds months in advance to attract interest and casual bettors passing through their brick-and-mortar facilities, these odds can offer huge value.
When odds come out for majors, look toward your horse-for-course picks and players you suspect whose form will improve in the coming months. Those players are likely priced in the futures market against their current form, and it likely offers an opportunity to score anywhere from +500 to +2000 in a premium for picking them. Of course, in this high-speculative market, it's wise to bet in smaller increments and add exposure as your desired player shows the form you're expecting, but even those marginal price improvements will make the overall payoff better.
Another market where price-shopping is crucial is each-way bets. Not only will you see a difference in the odds themselves, but you'll also see a difference in the number of places available to cash in on an each-way bet. Some sportsbooks offer each-way bets that only pay if a player finishes inside the top five of a tournament. At some books, that each-way bet goes out seven or eight places, giving you a slightly better chance of winning in exchange for slightly less-juicy odds.
A discerning bettor can make a choice that suits their goals, philosophy and bankroll. They don't get tied up making short-term and narrow-minded decisions. They're the ones who have a plan, stick to it and do their homework.