Golf Betting Sites
If someone says "sports betting" to you, golf probably isn't the first thing that comes to mind. Golf just doesn't have that big gambling mystique about it the way horse racing and football do. However, golf does have a long gambling tradition.
Just ask any of the high stakes poker players or celebrities who are always challenging each other to high stakes games of golf. You probably don't see much betting on the pro circuit, but gambling does pair quite nicely with amateur golf.
You don't have to be a high roller to get in on the action, though. We come to you today with several golf betting sites that let you bet on everything from the US Open to the Najeti Hotels Open. There's a big world of golf out there and the following sportsbooks are the best places to get started.
How Golf Betting Works
Any time you get two amateurs together on the links, you're bound to see all kinds of interesting prop bets and hole-by-hole wagers. The possibilities are endless. I've seen people bet on who will win the next hole to who will have the best opening drive.
But what we're here to talk about specifically is betting on professional golf as a spectator. The nature of golf lends itself well to futures betting. Just about every major golf event is set up as a tournament with every player trying to do his or her best to end up with the lowest score.
Futures are perfect for tournaments because in a futures bet, all you do is pick who you think will win the whole thing. Your betting site provides you with a list of entrants and you choose the one to win it all. The odds for each player are determined by the oddsmakers. The players who are seen as the strongest always pay less than those who are seen as the underdogs.
For example, Tiger Woods might pay 10/1 while the new guy on the tour might pay 100/1 simply because Tiger is likelier to win it all. You can always check the latest odds by visiting your golf sportsbook of choice and heading over to the "golf" section.
Here's an example of what a typical futures bet looks like in action:
All you would do in this example is click on the check-box next to any player's name and choose an amount to bet. Here, a $100 bet on Phil Mickelson would pay $1400 if he wins the whole thing. Golf futures are hard to win, but you can see they pay very well when you get it right.
2-Ball and 3-Ball Betting
One of the more interesting types of golf bets is the 2-ball or 3-ball matchup. In most other sports, matches are played between two teams and you can bet on one team or the other with moneyline odds. Professional golf isn't played 1-on-1 like that, but the bookies have found a way to give you matchup betting via 2-ball and 3-ball bets.
In a 2-ball bet, you are given a matchup between two of the players who will be in a tournament. You then bet on the player who you think will perform the best out of those two players only. It doesn't matter who actually wins the whole tournament; your only goal is to pick the player who does the best out of the two.
3-ball bets work in the same manner except you choose who will do the best between three players. These wagers pay a little more than 2-ball matchups because you have to choose the winner out of three contestants.
Here's what a basic 3-ball matchup looks like:
In this wager, your goal is to pick who will have the lowest score after the first round. The moneyline odds show that a $100 bet on each player would pay the following:
- Lucas Bjerregaard: $150
- Henrik Norlander: $165
- Rob Oppenheim: $225
Proposition wagers cover just about everything else at a golf betting site. Props come in all different forms, but the central theme is that they revolve around events other than who will win. A couple of examples would be wagering whether or not someone will make the cut or if someone will make a hole in one.
The hole-in-one props always pay big money. In a recent PGA Tour event, Bovada was paying +10,000 on any single bet placed on someone to make a hole in one. A "yes" bet on Rory McIlroy to make a hole in one would have paid $1,000 on a $10 wager.
Other props include the likes of betting on someone to finish in the top 10, choosing who will finish in the top out of a group of golfers or who will be the highest American to finish. There are a ton of options at the various golf sportsbooks when it comes to proposition betting.
Author: Brad Johnson
Updated: March 2015
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