Golf Betting Tools
I don't believe you can make it pay these days without a PC or laptop. Without one, you are slow out of the stalls as regards runners, comparative prices and Betfair, which has revolutionised golf prices, particularly regarding outsiders where 80-1 and 100-1 shots with bookmakers are frequently available at two, three or even five times those odds.
The brilliance of Betfair is that it is a hedging medium backers never had before. If their pre-tournament fancies get into position, they can now lay them back to guarantee a good profit come what may. And the in-running odds knock spots off those put up by bookmakers, some of which are tighter than an Aberdonian when the bill arrives for his round of drinks.
But tread warily with the outright place markets on Betfair, which are only occasionally good value, and steer well clear of the minority markets such as the LPGA (US women) and Champions Tour as these are usually a joke, aimed at catching out the ill-informed. Odds of 1-2 for world No 1 woman Annika Sorenstam when she's a 7-4 chance, and 15 or so runners at 20-1 or less in the over-50s markets await some mug to take them up.
Sadly, there are a fair few mugs about. Who can forget the poor chap who lost his entire life savings, some £10,000, after laying 2003 Madeira Open favourite Bradley Dredge at immense odds on Betfair because he had seen on the European Tour website that the Welshman had taken 30 shots on his first hole. It turned out that somebody at HQ had inadvertently pressed an extra button. In reality, Dredge had recorded a birdie three, a slight difference of 27 strokes, and went on to win the tournament by eight.
Anyone in golf knows that no professional shoots a 30 however difficult a hole is - and the first in Madeira is pretty easy. So it pays to know at least something about your subject before you venture into betting on it.
Look out, too, for any special offers knocking around during big events. In the 2004 Open for instance, two firms were offering to refund losing bets if Tiger Woods won while another did likewise if a British or Irish player was successful.
And three layers gave an extra sparkle to each-way betting by offering a quarter the odds for the first six players. It is pleasing to report that during that tournament, the major bookmakers finally did the decent thing and relented on their horrendous standard each-way rule which saw them pay out only on the first four placed players. A quarter the odds the first five is now, thankfully, a universal offer.