The Congressional Country Club will be lacking a little sparkle this year for the 111th US Open following Tiger Woods’ withdrawal due to injury.
Problems with his Achilles and his knee means the three-time champion will miss the US Open for the first time since making his debut in 2005, but while the golfing world will miss Woods, the punters certainly won’t.
There was a time when Tiger’s name would command instant favouritism at single figure odds, but his recent decline saw the three-time champion installed as the 14/1 second-favourite behind Phil Mickelson and Luke Donald at 12/1.
Since pulling out last night, the US Open betting remains unchanged with Mickelson and Donald still heading the market and Lee Westwood remains at 14/1.
Rory McIlroy has been clipped in to 16/1 from 20/1 but the rest of the field remain stable with Dustin Johnson, Martin Kaymer, Hunter Mahan, Matt Kuchar and Steve Stricker all available at 25/1.
The Tiger Woods’ aura has completely disappeared in relation to golf betting and the former world number one now finds himself ranked 15 in the world.
Punters are not afraid to take on Tiger anymore, his name is no longer synonymous with winning, and the US Open betting is now a market that offers real value to the punter.
Graeme McDowell’s victory last year saw him become the first European champion since Tony Jacklin in 1970, and the strength of the European Tour sees plenty of support for both Donald and Westwood.
But the stats would suggest studying the form of the American’s would prove more fruitful with just two winning Europeans in the post-war era.
In the 65 US Open’s since 1946, an American has won on 54 occasions and Nick Watney looks a huge price at 33/1.
After starting the season with four top-ten’s in a row before a win at the WGC-Cadillac Championship, Watney went off the boil for about six weeks despite two top-20 finishes.
The American is flying under the radar but has two top-10 finishes in his last two starts and is worth a punt ahead of next week’s US Open open.