Only three of the last 10 winners of the Open Championship have been ranked inside the world’s top 10 at the time of their triumph.
The tournament’s ability to spring a surprise – there have been two champions since 2000 who sat outside the game’s top 100 when winning – means that looking at the sharp end of the betting isn’t a necessity for 2016.
Instead, taking a punt on a longshot to prevail could pay off handsomely and, with that in mind, we’ve found three who particularly catch the eye for the Royal Troon event:
Brandt Snedeker – 80/1
The Tennessee native is usually a popular bet for the major tournaments, and for good reason.
In 36 appearances in the game’s four biggest events during his career, the consistent Snedeker has made the cut in 23 of them, finished top-25 in 18, landed in the top-10 eight times and has four top-five finishes.
His best effort at the Open came four outings ago when sharing third place at Royal Lytham and St Annes, while Americans’ record at Royal Troon, where they’ve won all four previous editions, do him no harm.
Ernie Els – 125/1
The last time the Open was held at Royal Troon, in 2004, Els finished second. In fact no matter where it has been held, this particular major has been the South African’s favourite over his illustrious career.
Els has only missed the cut four times in 25 appearances at the Open. He has finished inside the top five in an incredible 16 of those, so an each-way flutter on the 2012 champion is certainly worthwhile.
Colt Knost – 150/1
Another American who is worthwhile backing to continue the USA’s dominance in South Ayrshire, Knost gets the nod more on recent form rather than historical Open brilliance.
In his last five starts on the PGA Tour the world number 94 has finished in a share for fourth or better on three occasions.
The 31-year-old Open debutant will hope to remain in that groove to record his best ever major finish, having been cut at the 2012 US Open in his only previous appearance.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.