Open Championship (British Open) – Gambling/DFS Preview 2022

Old Course at St. Andrews – Scotland

Course Breakdown

Par 72, 7305 yards and plays much shorter than that (around 6500 yards), 14 Par 4s, 2 Par 5s, 2 Par 3s, both Par 5s are reachable and 7 of the Par 4s are under 400 yards that depending on wind and roll could be reachable off the tee, wide rolling fairways with lots of mounds and undulations, fescue and bentgrass rough that is less than 2.5 inches deep, large pot bunkers in the landing zones off the tee that could be difficult to get out of, wild misses could see deep fescue, huge double greens that are elevated and the shape of an upside down bowl with massive undulations and elevation changes, greens protected by deep pot bunkers and collection areas with short grass and tough lies, fescue with a mix of bentgrass in the greens, weather is the biggest defense of the course, especially wind which makes the biggest impact on how the course plays

Tournament Notes

  • Final major of the year
  • The last time this course hosted The Open was in 2015. Zach Johnson won in a playoff over Marc Leishman and Louis Oosthuizen
  • At the 2015 Open here, Hideki Matsuyama was the only player who finished inside of the top 10 for the week in Par 4 Scoring but finished outside the top 10 on the leaderboard. Hideki was T7 in Par 4 Scoring, but was T18 on the leaderboard.
  • At the 2015 Open here, each of the T5 in Driving Distance for the week all finished inside the Top 10
  • Since 2011, outside of Ernie Els in 2012, each Champion Golfer either had a win or three Top 10’s in their six starts prior to winning the Open.
  • Since 2008, only Collin Morikawa had fewer than four previous Open appearances before winning the Open
  • Since 2008, no one since Paddy Harrington (who won for the second straight year) had finished better than T30 in their previous Open start and 7 of the past 12 winners had missed the cut in their Open before becoming champion, so history the prior year doesn’t matter as much but experience on links style courses is important
  • 7 of the last 10 winners were 32 years old or older
  • 8 of the last 9 winners had a T20 in one of the other majors that season
  • 14 of the last 16 winners finished T9 or better in a previous year
  • 2 of the last 8 winners won their last start prior to winning the Open and 4 of the last 8 have a win in one of their two lead in events. 
  • 5 of the last 8 winners have a win in one of the previous five starts and the only outliers were Zach Johnson in 2015 who had 3 T10s in the 5 starts prior to winning at St. Andrews, Shane Lowry in 2019 who had 3 T10s in his 4 prior starts and Collin Morikawa last year who 2 T5s in his previous two starts and 4 T10s in his prior 5 starts
  • 7 of the last 8 winners had a T10 at the Open in the five years prior to their win, Morikawa last year was the one outlier who won in his first Open Championship
  • Every winner at St. Andrews since 1970 have either a Win or T3 finish at the Masters

Key Stats

Approach, Par 4 Scoring, SG: OTT

Field

156 golfers – major field with the best players in the world including PGA Tour, LIV Tour and DP World Tour

Defending Champion: Collin Morikawa (Royal St. Georges)

One and Done: Matthew Fitzpatrick – note that none of these matter for me anymore since I’m horrible at this format and way outside the money, but still keep picking the best guys I have left each week

One and Done Considerations: Rory, JT, Xander, Zalatoris, Matthew Fitzpatrick

Players

Rory McIlroy: 11100: +900 – Skipped the Scottish Open last week and played more regular links golf with Tiger, T3 here in 2010 very early in his career, missed the 2015 Open with injury, 46,MC,2,4,5,1 finishes at his last six British Opens, 19,5,1,18,8,5,2,MC,33,13,10 finishes this season including 5th at the US Open, 8th at the PGA Championship and 2nd at The Masters which all came with “backdoor covers”, 7th in approach, 1st in Par 4 scoring, 3rd in SG: OTT, 2nd in driving distance, 17th in sand saves, 18th in SG: ARG, 38th in putting, 99th in 3 putt avoidance, 4th in bogie avoidance, 6th in opportunities gained, this is a tough price to bet especially when Rory maps out great for every major and doesn’t seem to win them but I thought this was the perfect spot to use a 1 unit free bet (which if hits pays out more than my 6 unit win on a typical outright)

Justin Thomas: 10500: +2000 – After missing the cut last week at the Scottish he went directly to St. Andrews and got some practice rounds with Tiger, MC,37,3,MC,1,5,35,8,3,33,6,8,20 finishes this season including his win at the PGA Championship and 8th place finish at the Masters, 40,11,MC,MC,53 finishes at his British Opens, 9th in approach, 5th in Par 4 scoring, 11th in SG: OTT, 7th in driving distance, 6th in sand saves, 9th in SG: ARG, 15th in putting, 6th in 3 putt avoidance, 11th in bogie avoidance, 1st in opportunities gained

Xander Schauffele: 9900: +1600 – Sixth player in the last ten years to come into a major off back to back wins (the other five were Tiger, Rory, Spieth, Day, DJ who all finished T10), coming off back to back wins at the Scottish Open last week and the Travelers three weeks ago with a win at the JP McManus Pro Am in between them in a very strong field event, 1,1,14,18,13,5,MC,12,MC,13,3,34 finishes this season, 26,41,2,20 finish at his four British Opens, 4th in approach, 4th in Par 4 scoring, 19th in SG: OTT, 32nd in driving distance, 7th in sand saves, 25th in SG: ARG, 39th in putting, 2nd in 3 putt avoidance, 8th in bogie avoidance, 1st in opportunities gained, Xander this week with his form coming in feels the same way that Scottie Scheffler did going into The Masters this year

Will Zalatoris: 9600: +2500 – Three T6 or better finishes at majors this season losing in a playoff at the US Open, 2nd at the PGA and 6th at the Masters, MC,2,5,MC,2,MC,6 finishes in his last seven events, this will be his first British Open, 2nd in approach, 8th in Par 4 scoring, 6th in SG: OTT, 10th in driving distance, 71st in sand saves, 56th in SG: ARG, 99th in putting, 13th in 3 putt avoidance, 14th in bogie avoidance, 7th in opportunities gained, ANDERCURSED

Dustin Johnson: 9200: +3300 – 36 hole leader here in 2015 before the weather wrecked havoc on Sunday and he completely imploded to a T49 finish, T14 here in 2014, 8,51,MC,54,9 finishes in his last five British Opens, T3 at LIV Portland, T7 at LIV London, 24th at the US Open, MC at the PGA, 12th at the Masters, 9th at The PLAYERS, 39th in approach, 40th in Par 4 scoring, 40th in SG: OTT, 11th in driving distance, 128th in sand saves, 90th in SG: ARG, 33rd in putting, 105th in 3 putt avoidance, 50th in bogie avoidance, 18th in opportunities gained, I just think these odds are too high not to bet on who’s still one of the ten best golfers in the world even though he’s now on the LIV Tour, poor stats obviously don’t include his two LIV events

Max Homa: 7900: +4500 – After some rounds last week at the Scottish Open he played another practice round at a nearby links course to get more experience on that style of course, 16,47,5,23,13,1,48,13,17,10,14,MC finishes this season, 40th finish at last year’s British Open, 11th in approach, 17th in Par 4 scoring, 14th in SG: OTT, 16th in driving distance, 57th in sand saves, 62nd in SG: ARG, 7th in putting, 29th in 3 putt avoidance, 16th in bogie avoidance, 35th in opportunities gained, paired with his hero Tiger Woods for the first time ever in rounds 1 and 2

Model

Approach (20%)

Par 4 Scoring (20%)

SG: OTT (5%)

Driving Distance (10%)

Sand Saves (5%)

SG: ARG (15%)

Putting (5%)

3 Putt Avoidance (5%)

Bogie Avoidance (10%)

Opportunities Gained (5%)

Stats based on past 36 rounds

DraftKings/Betting Notes

  • This is the only event of the year with no split tees, so everyone starts on 1 and no one starts on 10. This means there’s going to be some long days of golf and stacking tee times for weather splits has to be done so in shorter pockets than in just AM/PM waves
  • I really like Tiger to have a good week at a place that is relatively flat and where he’s won twice before, but don’t see him winning this tournament and being able to put it together and compete for four full rounds. That being said, I like the odds on him being first round leader and although I don’t typically bet FRLs, I’ll take the GOAT this week with the T6 each way
  • I have way more high priced golfers inside 25:1 this week with a smaller card, I think the winner comes from that range anyway and with my free bet on Rory, that opens a good amount of bankroll for me this week and I’m not playing DFS since I don’t like the lower price ranges

Bets

Outrights

1u Rory McIlroy (+900) – free bet

.4u Xander Schauffele (+1600)

.3u Justin Thomas (+2000)

.24u Will Zalatoris (+2500)

.2u Dustin Johnson (+3300)

.14u Max Homa (+4500)

T7s

.3u Justin Thomas (+400)

.24u Will Zalatoris (+500)

.2u Dustin Johnson (+660)

.14u Max Homa (+900)

First Round Leader

.1u Tiger Woods (+6600)

First Round Leader T6s

.1u Tiger Woods (+1320)


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