The Open Championship: After Cut Analysis 2018

Venue Name –Carnoustie Golf Links, Scotland, July 19-22, 2018

Weather Report

Saturday: Will be mostly sunny. 26 degrees Celsius. Humidity: 53%. Wind 16km/h

Sunday: Will be partly cloudy. 26 degrees Celsius. Humidity: 61%. Wind 18km/h

The wind played havoc on Day 1, with a lot of notable players falling out of contention. Wind, firm greens, and thick rough could see a winning score that is even par or over par.


Leaderboard Day 1

1st Kevin Kisner -5
T2 Erik Van Rooyen -4
T2 Tony Finau -4
T2 Zander Lombard -4
T5 Brendon Stone -3
T5 Ryan Moore -3
T5 Brendan Steele -3

Leaderboard Day 2

T1 Zach Johnson -6
T1 Kevin Kisner -6
T3 Tommy Fleetwood -5
T3 Pat Perez -5
T3 Xander Schauffele -5
T6 Rory Mcilroy -4
T6 Erik Van Rooyen -4
T6 Matt Kuchar -4
T6 Tony Finau -4
T6 Zander Lombard -4

Course Details

In 1999 Paul Lawrie hit a 4 iron into the final hole, this year Sergio Garcia drove it into the burn 20m short of the front edge. That gives you an idea of how firm the course is playing this year. If the wind starts to pick up, I think more and more players will find the pot bunkers and rough. It becomes harder to judge run outs on tee shots when the wind blows on any links course. Therefore “laying” tee shots and re-backing after the ball comes to rest could easily become a good trade. The bunkers even though they appear small visually, they play large in circumference when the course is firm, because a lot of the slopes on the fairways feed towards the bunkers.


Round 1 Summary

Jordan Spieth began well the first 14 holes and got as short as $9 tournament favorite in the in-play market, sitting on 3 under par. However as mentioned in the pre-tournament article, the 15th, 16th, 17th, 18th plays tough, even in benign conditions. After double bogeying 15, bogeying 16 and hitting in the burn on 18, Jordan was out to a high of $75. A very nice profiting trade if you had followed the in-play trading strategies mentioned in the pre-tournament article. Jordan wasn’t the only player to heavily drift on the closing holes, multiple high profile players came unstuck.


Round 2 Summary

The course played considerably softer in round 2, rain made it easier to score if keeping the ball in-play. Those that struggled to hit fairways, had to deal with the thick wet rough, bringing many notables undone. Justin Thomas, Dustin Johnson, John Rahm and Henrik Stenson just to name a few. Rory Mcilroy played very well today, and sits within striking distance coming the weekend, along with Jordan Spieth. Zach Johnson seems to always fly under the radar in majors, but the two-time major champion could easily be a serious threat on the weekend.


In-play betting for Round 3 & Round 4 –

As mentioned in the pre-tournament article, here are the good trading holes for “The Open”

1. Hole 14 – Is a Par 5, and plays very easy according the 1999 & 2007 field strokes averages, 4.55 strokes. Look for players to make a birdie on this hole, particularly if they are in a good position on the fairway.

2. Laying tee shots and re-backing after hole is completed.

Hole 2  – historically averages over par at 4.13 strokes, there are bunkers well placed to catch tee shots, the green is long and narrow and protected by bunkers.

Hole 5 – Averages 4.33, it requires a precision tee shot and Jockie’s Burn crosses the fairway. I will be laying tee-shots on this hole if I see players with driver in hand.

Hole 9+10 – Could prove to be a great trading hole, again laying the tee-shot and re-backing after the player completes the hole. It has out of bounds left and a drainage ditch close to the right rough.     In-fact you can let your trade ride until after the 10th hole is completed, because the 10th hole averages 4.34 strokes and if the wind is into, it will be two very good hits to get home in two. It also has 4 bunkers on the right and 1 on the left, and the Barry Burn coming into play, ready to catch players out.

Hole 12 – This hole played the second toughest in 1999 & 2007 averaging 4.39 strokes. It used be a par 5 in earlier British Opens. It has bunkers and a drainage ditch down the right side.

Hole 15,16,17,18 – I think this is the toughest finishing stretch in golf. I will be placing a lay bet on 15th tee and will be unlikely to trade out until the completion on the 18th hole. All holes average well over par, with the 18th ranking 1 in difficulty at 4.61 strokes. The final stretch of holes provides a great trading opportunity for this year British Open.

3. Odds fluctuate a lot in play on the 3rd and 4th Professional Golfers can appear to be in trouble, however often their recoveries can be remarkable. Therefore I am trying on Day 3 and Day 4 to try and get matched small bets at odds of $30 on the following players. 1. Zach Johnson, Rory Mcilroy, Kevin Kinsner, Tommy Fleetwood, Tony Finau, Rickie Fowler and Jordan Speith.


Summary

We haven’t seen the wind really blow yet, and if it does on the weekend look for good wind players like Zach Johnson and Rory Mcilroy to play well. If Brooks Koepka continues his aggressive approach to the course, as he did in the U.S Open, he could easily find himself in contention come Sunday afternoon. Tiger Woods is hitting the ball well, he still worries me with the driver in hand, but this is a course that he is hitting a lot of irons on, so he may figure, but Tiger normally wins when leading into the last round though! Kevin Kisner has experienced playing in the last group in a major before, so he should be able to draw from positive past experiences. Jordan Spieth stormed back into contention and sits alongside the consistent Rickie Fowler in a tie for 11th. It’s a packed leaderboard and should be a fantastic weekend.

Those of you that followed the tournament match bets in the pre-tournament article have done very well. Alex Noren and Tommy Fleetwood is the only match still alive, Alex will need things to go his way on Saturday if he is to catch Tommy. But based off the pre-tournament rankings, I still happy to oppose Tommy Fleetwood for top 5 with a small stake.


Betting Strategy

Below are some weekend bets to consider, you may also want to read the in-play betting notes as well

Lay – Tommy Fleetwood Top 5 for 1 unit

 Back – Rickie Fowler Top 10 for 2 units

Back – Jordan Spieth Top 10 for 2 units

Back – Zach Johnson Top 10 for 3 units


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