This year’s British Open was full of surprises. With fierce winds that caused a Monday finish at St. Andrews, this was probably the most memorable Open since 2002, when Ernie Els overcame almost insurmountable odds to win. Many bettors took advantage of the online betting sites to wager on the outright winner of the 2015 Open Championship, and with the surprising outcome of the tournament, there were probably more than a few sour faces as favorites fell by the wayside.
The winner of the Open Championship was a massive surprise for most bettors. Zach Johnson shot 66 (-6) during Monday’s final round of the tournament, marking a career best for the golfer as well as the lowest final round in St. Andrews British Open history. The few bettors out there are bet on Johnson to be the outright winner are probably feeling like lightning has struck twice, hell has frozen over, pigs are flying, whatever you want to say. According to multiple sources including BestSportsbooksUSA.com, a mere $10 bet would have returned around $800 as indicated by the 80/1 (+8000) the American was given to start the tournament. You can be sure that many Zach’s friends who put money on him as a gesture, are now thanking their lucky stars.
Following Johnson in 2nd and 3rd place respectively are Louis Oosthuizen and Marc Leishman. While both golfers came up short in the 4-hole playoff, both said in post-game interviews that this was the best they had ever played. As for the odds, Oosthuizen was never far down on any sportsbook’s list, with 22/1 (+2200) odds going in to the tournament. Leishman, however, was marked as quite the underdog at 150/1 odds (+15000)…had the Aussie busted through, those lucky enough to have picked him would have returned $150 for every single dollar risked!
Perhaps one of the bigger stories of the tournament was Jordan Spieth finishing one shot short of the playoff. The game has never seen a star rise so fast and so young, but this is still a big letdown for the two-time Major winner. Spieth was at the top of the odds going in to the tournament at 5/1 (+500), and many golf aficionados had money on him especially with Rory McIlroy out of the tournament due to an ankle injury. Spieth had a stellar stretch leading up to the tournament, and the general consensus among professional bookmakers and fans alike was that he would conquer the Open. While Spieth came out fourth, he still displayed absolute mastery of the game throughout the tournament. It is disappointing to golf fans that we will not see a Grand Slam winner this year, but Spieth is still improving, so we can look forward to a great future and possible Grand Slam attempts in future years.
With the shocking results of this year’s British Open, there are probably more sour-faced bettors than lobster dinners. It just goes to show that putting money on a shot in the dark can sometimes be right on target. All of the top four players are primed for bright futures, so check out sites like Bovada to keep a finger on the pulse of the action leading up to the PGA Championship in August, and beyond with the FedEx Cup Playoffs.