This week’s OddsTrader golf preview looks at the side and prop markets for next week’s Ryder Cup.
Interestingly, both sides have four wildcards or Captain’s picks that are ringing in a new era for the bi-annual contest.
Both sides have non-playing captains – the European captain is Luke Donald, and the American captain is Zach Johnson
- Top European – Tommy Fleetwood (+800) at Bet365 (check our Bet365 Review)
- Top American – Justin Thomas (+1200) at Unibet
Ryder Cup 2023
September 29 – October 01, 2023 at Marco Simone Golf & Country Club
The format of the Ryder Cup is a unique one with pairs golf being the order of the day for the opening two days. On day 1 and day 2 there are two sessions, morning and afternoon with four matches in each and the home captain decides whether it will be foursomes or fourballs to start with, while the other format concludes the day’s play.
- Day 1 – 18-hole matches – four foursomes and four fourballs (home captain decides which order – morning or afternoon).
- Day 2 – 18-hole matches – four foursomes and four fourballs (home captain decides which order – morning or afternoon).
- Day 3 – twelve singles Matchplay over 18 holes.
How to Bet the Top Points Scorer?
At OddsTrader sportsbooks there are three main markets to bet.
There is the top combined points scorer that brings in all 24 players. Alternatively, there is the Top European and Top American.
|European Player||Qualification Route||Ryder Cup record (W-L-D)|
|Tommy Fleetwood||Captain’s pick||4-2-2|
|Justin Rose||Captain’s pick||13-8-2|
|Shane Lowry||Captain’s pick||1-2-0|
|Sepp Straka||Captain’s pick||Debutant|
|Nicolai Hojgaard||Captain’s pick||Debutant|
|Ludvig Aberg||Captain’s pick||Debutant|
As shown in the table above, the European team is rather young and inexperienced, indeed only Rory McIlroy and Justin Rose have played nine previous Ryder Cup matches or more.
I think, it is fair to say, that in the end, Europe’s talisman Rory McIlroy is the one who worries me most but that said, it creates a great betting opportunity for us with a false favorite for the Top European Market.
As punters, we have more power to our elbow with plenty of course form to use from the last three renewals of the Italian Open. We know Nicolai Hojgaard and Robert MacIntyre have won renewals while Matt Fitzpatrick and Tommy Fleetwood were runners-up at the track.
We can see how inexperienced the European team is so with his liking for Marco Simone, it is not hard to envisage Tommy Fleetwood being crucial to Europe’s chances and high in the captain’s thoughts, giving Luke Donald plenty of options as a solid partner for anyone in both formats. Remember, that Tommy Fleetwood’s partnership at Le Golf National with Francesco Molinari was pivotal to Europe’s triumph four years ago.
For those reasons, Tommy Fleetwood is a must-bet in the Top European market.
Golf Pick: Top European – Tommy Fleetwood (+800) at Bet365
|American Player||Qualification Route||Ryder Cup Record (W-D-L)|
|Brooks Koepka||Captain’s pick||6-5-1|
|Jordan Spieth||Captain’s pick||8-7-3|
|Collin Morikawa||Captain’s pick||3-0-1|
|Justin Thomas||Captain’s pick||6-2-1|
|Rickie Fowler||Captain’s pick||3-7-5|
|Sam Burns||Captain’s pick||Debutant|
There is an awful lot of guesswork needed for our Top American selection, given that their squad has been largely inactive since the Tour Championship.
Strangely, though that gives us an easy task reasoning the controversial wild card pick Justin Thomas. The controversy surrounding his inclusion over Keegan Bradley was unfortunate given his stellar record in the event with a 66%-win rate.
Interestingly, it could all work as a blessing in disguise for Thomas who missed the FedEx play-offs but freshened up at last week’s Fortinet Championship where he finished an impressive 5th.
Another positive factor for Thomas was how he finished the regular PGA Tour season when nearly making the playoffs and with his Wyndham Championship result. I believe Justin Thomas is high in Zach Johnson’s thoughts while his game is on the upswing, and he is a value selection for modest stakes to be Top American at the Ryder Cup given his exceptional record in the event.
Golf Pick: Top American – Justin Thomas (+1200) at Unibet