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Good opening round makes Woods favourite for US PGA

| 13.08.2010

Tiger Woods has now become sole favourite to win the US PGA Championship after a solid opening round at Whistling Straits.

The world number one has shortened from 14/1 into 9/1 after his one-under-par 71, which included birdies on three of his opening four holes and another on his last.

Woods remarked after that he had played “too good” not to finish under-par and added that judging the speeds of the greens proved the source of his biggest frustration.

The four-time US PGA Championship winner felt that the greens looked faster than they were rolling, which meant he left a lot of putts short.

However, he found reasons to be cheerful after his disappointment at the recent WGC Bridgestone Invitational, where he endured the worst tournament of his career and finished second from last on 18 over par.

Heavy fog in Wisconsin delayed the start of the tournament by three hours and this has resulted in a number of players still needing to finish their first round.

Two of which are Phil Mickelson and Rory McIlroy, who are both one-under through 11 and 13 holes respectively and 12/1 to win the tournament.

Bubba Watson and Francesco Molinari are the joint leaders in the clubhouse after rounds of 68, with both relying on different formulas to shoot their scores.

Watson, who is 25/1 to win a first major, relied on his power and by his own calculations hit one tee shot with the wind at his back 445 yards, while Molinari settled for accuracy as he only missed two greens in regulation and is available at 16/1.

Ernie Els is 10/1 as he is also four-under with four holes of his opening round left, with Nick Watney and Matt Kuchar the others to currently be holding a share of the lead.

The late starters will now have to get up early to finish their incomplete rounds before preparing to move straight into their second 18 holes.

Watney and Kuchar still have the opportunity to hold the outright lead after the first round and are both 14/1 to win the major. See the complete US PGA tournament winner’s market.



Ed Needham