When it comes to matched betting, Golf is certainly a weird one. Very clearly it is a market that very few, if any, bother to try and predict. One minute a golfer can look like he can tame any course in the world, the next they are struggling to make the cut for a nothing tournament in the far east – it is completely and utterly unpredictable.
Nowhere is this more obvious than with the bookmakers themselves. They seemingly (and somewhat justifiably) have absolutely no idea how to price certain golfers. Take the below example found on Oddschecker for this week’s Open Championship. Keep in mind that the gap in odds between the bookmakers you’d expect for any other sport is, at best, 5.
As you can see, there is a whopping 13 points difference between the two bookmakers for Justin Rose. This is a trend you will see in golf markets for nearly all the players except the top 3 favourites.
So, for gamblers, Golf is an absolute minefield. However, for us risk-adverse individuals it is a huge matched betting opportunity.
When a major golf tournament is on the horizon it is not uncommon to see the Heads&Heads Oddsmatching software absolutely clogged with ridiculously high ratings for said golf tournament. This happens because of the aforementioned gulf in the odds from bookmaker to bookmaker – which in turn makes the job of the exchanges next to impossible when it comes to finding a good position.
Unfortunately for matched bettors, most bookmakers will not do offers for golf tournaments – because of the issues mentioned above. However, what they do instead can be just as profitable. Extra Places (Each Way Betting) reign supreme through golf tournaments.
This is thanks to the sheer size of the field (number of players) in each tournament. As a result, the bookmakers feel safe to offer up to 10 places verses the exchanges 5. So, when this is combined with the profitable odds gap between bookmaker and exchange it can create a very lucrative opportunity for us matched bettors.
All of this brings us to The British Open (The Open Championship), which starts this Thursday and ends on Sunday!
As previously mentioned, many bookmakers are running extra place offers, including SkyBet, Betfair Sportsbook and Paddy Power, who are paying out the top 10 places.
At this point it is important to note that Extra Place betting is an advanced matched betting tactic and is not for the inexperienced. It also requires large exchange balances to fund high liabilities. With this in mind, if this is all new to you, I recommend taking a look at the two Training Guides linked below.
For those just looking for a brief explanation, I’ve got you covered.
With an 'Each Way' bet, you are backing a golfer twice, once to win and once to come in the top 5 places.
For example, if I place a £10 each way bet (£20 total stake) on Tiger Woods to win the British Open, I am placing two bets:
£10 bet on Tiger Woods to win (odds 11.0)
£10 bet on Tiger Woods to come top 5 (odds 3.0)
I can then lay off Tiger Woods on either Betfair or Smarkets for a small trigger bet loss, due to the lay odds being higher than the bookmaker back odds.
As a special British Open offer, some bookmakers will pay out if the golfer finishes in even more places. Paddy Power, Coral, Betfair Sportsbook and Skybet are paying out the top 10!
This means if our chosen golfer(s) finish 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th or 10th, we win both our Each Way bookmaker bet (because the golfer has finished in the top 10) and each way lay bet (because the golfer has not finished in the top 5) for a very solid profit!
It is worth noting that this is not risk free as our golfer may not finish 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th or 10th and so will result in a small loss on our qualifying bet.
To finish up, I am going to cover some frequently asked questions that I get on Live Chat for every major golf tournament.
1 How do I find a good odds match?
There are a couple of ways you can go about looking for a golfer to bet on. Ideally, you can combine all these tactics to help find the perfect match.
First, it is a good idea to just focus on the bookmakers who are giving the greatest number of extra places. In the case of the Open Championship, the max places offered is 10 and the bookmakers listed below are the ones providing this:
- Paddy Power
- Sky Bet
- William Hill
Once you have these bookmakers, enter them into the Heads&Heads Oddsmatching software filters, making sure to display only results for golf. See below for what that should look like.
You will not need to worry about it bringing up unrelated tournaments. When there is an event in the golfing world as big as The Open, the oddsmatching software will be showing you nothing but The Open.
Keep in mind that these results only show you the ‘win’ part of an Each Way bet. You will need to find the ‘place’ part of the bet yourself. However, when you have the bookmakers and exchanges open in your browser tab this should take seconds.
This is already a long blog so we won’t go into further details on placing an each way bet. Once again if you want to know more, the guides are below.
The second thing you can do to help find the best odds is to open up Oddschecker (hyperlink). This will show you which bookmaker is supplying the best odds on each Golfer. More details on how to utilise this can be found in the ‘Extra Place Betting during big events’ guide listed above.
2 How do I calculate an Each Way bet?
Use the Heads&Heads Extra Place calculator. Found by either opening a fresh Add Bet form on your Dashboard or by clicking ‘Add’ then ‘View Bet’ on an odds match within the Oddsmatching Software
3 What happens if there is a dead heat?
Due to the nature of golf as a sport, deadheats are very common. This is because it's possible for more than one player to finish in any one position on the same score. As a result, the bookmakers all apply a dead heat rule if your player is tied. You don't have to do anything as both bookie & exchange will sort itself out, but, essentially, they will just share the extra place with each other.
So if your player finishes joint 10th with 4 other players, you will still qualify for the extra place pay out and thus have nothing to worry about.
4 Which Bookmakers are giving Extra Places?
We have already listed the ones doing 10 places for the Open Championship. But if you wish to know what the others are doing or indeed want this information for any golf tournament – it can be found in the Heads&Heads Reload section. Direct link below
So, there we have it. Bookmaker confusion over pricing can lead to some great opportunities for us. Extra Place betting does take some practice (and bank roll) but if you are willing to commit, there is money to be made.
Good luck everyone!