2018 US Masters Tips, Predictions and Betting Odds
Scroll down for our US Masters betting tips and predictions for 2018, view our explanation and what to look out for when picking your US Masters bets.
It’s the first major golf tournament of the year, played at one of the most iconic courses on the planet. This is the Masters. This is Augusta. This is a punter’s paradise. The Masters is legendary for a number of reasons, and if you’ve ever wondered about that famous Green Jacket then it is always handed from one winner to the next. Prior to the main event there is even a fun Par 3 contest on the Wednesday evening, where in 2015 75-year-old Jack Nicklaus popped in a hole-in-one. As this is an American sporting occasion, there’s the usual razzmatazz and tomfoolery too.
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THE COURSE: Augusta National, Georgia, is up there with St. Andrews in Scotland when you think of the most famous golf course on the planet. It has hosted the best of the four majors since 1934 and is the only major that is played at the very same course every single year. Each hole is named after a shrub or tree, for example the first hole is called the “Tea Olive” and the final hole is called the “Holly”. Measuring 7,435 yards, the course is a Par 72 and is not very long by PGA Tour standards but there are dangers hidden everywhere. The greens will be lightning fast and if a player is caught at the wrong side of the pin, he will do well to walk away with a bogey never mind a Par. This course is the truest test of golf and one mistake can result in a big number.
TIGER RETURNS: One of the most remarkable stories this season is the return of the greatest player the world has ever seen, Tiger Woods. Fresh off the back of a runner up finish in the Valspar Championship and a top five finish in the Arnold Palmer Invitational, he has surged an astonishing 551 places in the world rankings this year. Most of us including myself thought Tiger was finished and would never return to anywhere near his former self but wow has he proved us wrong! He has had recent back surgery and it has done the trick. He doesn’t have as much rotation as he used to have but he has figured out a new way to play the game and it is working. He was always dodgy off the tee but his iron game and short game looks absolutely sublime at present and it is fantastic to see him back. He will draw in millions of viewers and this could turn out to be the most exciting Masters in a very long ti
Augusta National – All You Need to Know
Founded in 1933, the Augusta National Club has played host to the Masters ever since. It’s a 7,435 yard behemoth that plays at Par 72, and indeed the stroke average in the 2015 Masters was around this mark; which highlights its complexity.
The course was designed by the legendary Rees Jones, although it has been significantly overhauled since – including the famous ‘Tiger proofing’ of the mid 2000’s, which was overseen by Tom Fazio.
Today, it is long, tight and hazard strewn, with lightning fast greens both aiding and hampering the players. But the length is the key: anyone unable to thump it off the tee is unlikely to challenge for honors here.
What to Look For in a Potential Winner
As mentioned, Augusta is a huge stretch, so naturally Driving Distance is a key statistic for your masters betting. Six of the previous eight Masters winners have ranked in the top 40 for this stat, with Charl Schwartzel and Danny Willett the only exceptions in 2011 and 2016.
As it tends to be across the tour these days, Greens in Regulation is of huge importance. Eight of the last ten winners have ranked top ten for GIR, and while the fairways are lacking in generosity it is clear that getting to the dancefloor in a timely fashion is essential.
Assuming that meeting GIR on every single hole is nigh-on impossible, Scrambling becomes crucial. Six of the last eight champions have finished top ten for this stat, and three of the last four winners have topped the pile.
Lastly, playing the Par 5s in efficient fashion is essential. Just take a look at Bubba Watson in 2014: he finished -8 for the tournament, and how did he do on the Par 5 holes throughout the weekend? -8. Indeed, both times that Bubba has won the Masters he has gone through the Par 4s in a relatively poor fashion.
Also worth considering is a player with proven Major pedigree; four of the last eleven here have gone to a play off, so nerves of steel will be required.
US Masters Tips 2018
From the shortlist of ten players we are going to pick out our five Masters tips for 2018 below!
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Jon Rahm was in the hunt for the Green Jacket twelve months ago and was bang in contention after the first two rounds. However, a third round 73 meant he was six shots off the lead heading into Sunday which put paid to his chances. He is still only 23 years old and is a multiple winner all around the world. It is hard to imagine that he was an amateur about two years ago, incredible. He finished 27th in his first Masters last year and had given up on the Sunday. With that experience under his belt, he could be a real force to be reckoned with this year. He is young, fearless and will be buoyed by the fact his fellow Spanish counterpart Sergio Garcia won the Masters last year.
Phil Mickelson seems to be ageless and the three time Masters winner bids to become the oldest winner of the tournament this year and he may well prove good enough to do just that! He went five years and 101 starts without a win but finally put all that heartache behind him with a brilliant win in the WGC Mexico Championship in early March, taking down Justin Thomas in a play-off. That was his 43rd career win and it is amazing to think he has never once in his career been the world number one! The joys of being around in the Tiger era! Genuinely, I don’t think I have ever seen Phil play as well as he did in Mexico. He is generally poor off the tee but lately he is very accurate, is finding fairways and if he does that around Augusta, his incredible short game makes him a huge player and of course, experience around here can be a huge advantage.
He may have blown his chance in Mexico a few weeks ago but this guy has got game and has a lot of it at that. He is marmite to the golfing fraternity, some like him and some don’t mainly due to his fiery character and behaviour on the golf course. He is not shy to express his anger when he needs to and to me, that is a good thing. Tiger Woods was always a very fiery character at the height of his prime. The stats suggest Tyrrell has a good chance around here! He hits 69% of greens in regulation and averages 300 yards off the tee whilst he is also a very steady putter to boot. If he can control his emotions, the world number 16 can get himself into contention on Sunday and if he is there, he won’t go down without a major fight.
Known as the “Money Machine”, Matt Kuchar might not be the strongest selection around for win purposes but he is usually a great man for a place on the big day and looks a spot of each way value for the Masters. He has four top eight finishes in this event in the last six years which is sublime playing on such a difficult golf course and the bookmakers may well be under-estimating him again this year. He finished in a tie for 4th behind Sergio Garcia last year and closed off with a fantastic final round 67. He is very steady off the tee and has a brilliant short game and his experience can see him get another top five finish this year all going well.
Charley Hoffman blows very hot or cold and is a hard man to catch right but he always plays well here at Augusta and at 125/1, he could well be overpriced. He is deadly accurate off the tee and is a very solid iron player. Putting isn’t his huge strength but if he has a good week with the short stick this week he is a contender. He has played in the Masters four times and the results have been T22, T29, T9 and T27. So, he is there or thereabouts without ever threatening to win but certainly is not far away at all. There are always risks attached when you back Charley as he is literally capable of absolutely anything but hopefully he can string four good rounds together and give himself a chance.