Posted on: July 19, 2023, 12:29h.
Last updated on: July 19, 2023, 12:29h.
Northern Ireland’s Rory McIlroy is the odds-on favorite this week at The Open Championship.
The 151st playing of The Open tees off tomorrow at Royal Liverpool Golf Club in Hoylake, England. McIlroy, currently the second-ranked golfer in the world, is fresh off a win at the Scottish Open last week that included him birding the final two holes to win by a stroke over Scotland’s Robert MacIntyre.
BetMGM relayed to Casino.org today that action continues to come in on the 34-year-old who won the Claret Jug the last time The Open was contested at Royal Liverpool in 2014. BetMGM says McIlroy is on 11% of its Open ticket slips and is responsible for more than 14% of the overall money wagered on the fourth and final professional golf major of the year.
McIlroy remains the betting favorite at +750 (15/2). A winning $100 bet on that line would net $750.
The Northern Irishman and face of the PGA Tour during its dispute with LIV Golf hasn’t won a major since August 2014 when he followed up his Open victory with his second PGA Championship at Valhalla in Kentucky.
McIlroy, Scheffler Major Liabilities
McIlroy, typically outspoken and readily available for the media, is taking a different approach this week at Royal Liverpool in deciding to stay relatively quiet about his expectations for the week.
My game feels like it’s in good shape,” McIlroy said in a brief remarks following a practice round today. “I think seeing the way I played last week and being able to control my ball in pretty difficult conditions — I feel good about that coming into this week.”
The weather is notorious for being a factor at The Open. For the 151st playing, the forecast includes plenty of rain and wind for Saturday and Sunday, though tomorrow and Friday’s rounds will feature more mild conditions.
McIlroy shares the shortest odds this week with world number one Scottie Scheffler, who is also at +750. Scheffler, the 2022 Masters champ, is BetMGM’s biggest liability, as the 27-year-old Texas native is responsible for 11.4% of the sportsbooks’ Open tickets and over 19% of the money wagered.
The heavy action on Scheffler and McIlroy has resulted in BetMGM keeping their odds short and lengthening others’ lines in order to spread out the money. Jon Rahm’s odds have lengthened to +1200 after opening at +900. The world’s third-ranked player has the third-shortest Open odds after McIlroy and Scheffler.
As for liability, BetMGM tells Casino.org that Brooks Koepka is third after the two front-runners. The 33-year-old has five majors to his resume but zero overseas. Koepka’s best Open finish came in 2019 when he finished T4 at Royal Portrush in Northern Ireland.
Koepka is at +2000 and is responsible for about 7% of the tickets and 8% of the money bet.
Former Champ Odds
Australia’s Cameron Smith won the 2022 Open Championship at St. Andrews. The 29-year-old birdied the final hole to beat Cameron Young by a shot and McIlroy by two.
Smith jumped the PGA Tour for LIV Golf after hoisting the Claret Jug. He’s since won two LIV events in Chicago and London, the latter coming earlier this month. Smith is at +1600 to repeat as Champion Golfer of the Year — the title bestowed to the Open winner.
Other former Open winners in the field this week include Collin Morikawa (+2800), Jordan Spieth (+3300), and Phil Mickelson (+20000). Tiger Woods, a three-time Open winner, is not playing, as he continues to recover from a subtalar fusion procedure to address post-traumatic arthritis from a previous foot fracture.