The US PGA Championship heads to Bellerive this week for the 100th edition of the Championship - but who should you back this week?
World No.1 Dustin Johnson is the bookies favourite to win his second major title at the PGA Championship - and it's not difficult to see why.
After missing the cut at the Open Championship at Carnoustie, DJ bounced back with a victory the very next week at the RBC Canadian Open, and followed it up with a Sunday charge at Firestone to finish in third place at the WGC Bridgestone Invitational.
He'll have to contend with the likes of defending champion Justin Thomas though, who claimed an emotional first WGC victory in Akron on Sunday.
And then there's the likes of Tony Finau, who is the only player to finish inside the top 10 of all three of the year's majors so far. Seven others have finished inside the top 10 on two occasions this year; DJ, Patrick Reed, Rory McIlroy, Henrik Stenson, Jordan Spieth, Justin Rose and Xander Schauffele.
The course is a long one, but it has proved before that it doesn't necessarily favour a long hitter. Gary Player claimed the 1965 US Open, Nick Price the 1992 PGA Championship, and Camilo Villegas the 2008 BMW Championship.
Justin Thomas said of the course: "It's a good, kind of old school place. If those fairways are firm, they're going to be hard to hit, and from the looks of it, that rough is going to be pretty healthy."
"I feel like it could be a pretty similar set-up to Quail Hollow (the sit of last year's PGA Championship) where it could be pretty easy to shoot three or four over but, you know, a good round is a couple-under."
So who should you be placing bets on this week? We've summarised the top 10 bookies favourites - plus a few others you should keep your eye on.
Betting Tips: PGA Championship
Dustin Johnson - 8/1
Last five results: T3-1-MC-3-1
Comes in to the third major of the year following a win at the RBC Canadian Open and an impressive Sunday charge which saw him finish T3 at Firestone. His only missed cut of the year came at The Open two weeks ago, and otherwise he has had just one other result outside the top 20 in his last 18 starts. Four top 10s in eight starts at the PGA Championship for DJ, his most recent being a T7 in 2015. Ranks 1st for SG: Off the tee, SG: Tee to green, Birdie Average, Par 4 and Par 5 Scoring Average, and 2nd for putting average and Par 3 scoring.
Rory McIlroy - 12/1
Last five results: T6-T2-T28-T12-MC-T8
The two time PGA Champion was in the final group but stumbled around Firestone on Sunday to finish T6 – yet it was still his second top 10 in a row after he briefly hold the clubhouse lead with Justin Rose on the final day of The Open. He's now posted four top 10s in his last seven starts, and is searching for that fifth major title. Ranks 6th Scoring Average, 9 SG: Tee to green, 10th SG: Off the tee.
Justin Thomas - 14/1
Last five results: 1-MC-T8-T56-T25
The defending champion eased to his first WGC title, winning by four shots in Ohio while surrounded by his family. It was his third top 10 in six starts, third win of the year, and like DJ was a victory in just his first start after missing the cut at The Open championship. In three starts at the PGA Championship has gone T18-T66-1. Ranks 2nd SG: Tee to green, 3rd for scoring average and SG: Approach the green, and 5th for birdie and putting average.
Jason Day – 18/1
Last five results: T17-T12-MC-T44-T5
Two victories and three other top 10s in 12 starts this year already, including a T10 at last week’s WGC. Day claimed the 2015 PGA Championship and in his last five starts at this major has four top 10s and a worse finish of 15th – so we reckon this tournament definitely suits him! Ranks 1st for SG: Putting, 2nd SG: Around the green, 6th for Biridie Average and 8th for Scoring Average.
Brooks Kopeka – 18/1
Last five results: 5-MC-T39-T19-1
Koepka had a couple of disappointing results following his successful defence of the US Open, but was consistent at Firestone as he produced a three-under final round to end up solo 5th. Like Day, has a worst result of T15 in his last four starts at the PGA Championships, which includes back-to-back top 5s in 2015 and 2016. Ranks 6th for Birdie Average, 11th for Scoring Average, 8th for overall putting average and 14th for SG: Off the tee.
Justin Rose - 22/1
Last five results: T2-T9-T10-T6-1
One of the most in form players on the planet right now, Rose has been enjoying a run of top 10s – which includes a victory at the Fort Worth Invitational. He had a chance to overtake DJ as World No.1 last week but ended up pulling out before the tournament even started with a back injury. Three top 10s at the PGA Championship, with a best of 3rd in 2012. Ranks 8th SG: Putting, 2nd Scoring Average, 3th Birdie Average, 7th SG: Tee to green and 15th SG: Around the green.
Jordan Spieth - 22/1
Last five results: T60- T9-T42-MC-MC-T32
It’s difficult to describe Jordan’s year. A T3 at the Masters after a phenomenal final round, and then the opposite of that as he held the lead but dropped to T9 at The Open. He does seem to turn up for the Majors though, being one of seven players to record top 10s in two majors this year alone … and the PGA Championship is the one that could see him complete his grand-slam. And while he might have been having a difficult year, Spieth’s stats are still impressive across the board. Ranks 16th for GIR, 13th for Birdie Average and 5th for Scoring Average (actual)
Rickie Fowler - 22/1
Last five results: T17-T28-T6-12-T20-T8
Fowler is still targeting his first major title this week, and has a string of good results this year including two top 10s in his last six starts. A T17 last week but will come in with confidence after finishing 5th in last year’s PGA Championship. Ranks 6th for Scoring average (actual) and 6th in par-four scoring.
Jon Rahm – 25/1
Last five results: T17-MC-T4-T5-MC
A T17 last week after his second missed cut of the year at The Open, but has had four top 10s and a victory in his last nine starts – including back to back weeks prior to teeing up at Carnoustie. Playing in just his second PGA Championship after a T58 at Quail Hollow last year. Ranks 2nd for birdie average and SG: Off the tee, 6th for GIR and 11th for Scoring Average (actual).
Tommy Fleetwood – 25/1
Last five results: T6-T12-MC-T59-2
Fleetwood followed up his T12 at The Open with a solid final round finish at the RBC Canadian Open to end up T6 – his sixth top 10 this year (which includes a victory in Dubai), and a T14 last week. The only drawback to Tommy is his previous PGA Championship record – has two missed cuts and a best of T61 in three starts. Ranks 4th Scoring Av, 8th Birdie Average, 8th SG: Off the tee and 10th SG: Tee to Green
Tiger Woods - 28/1
Last five results: T31-T6-T4-MC-T23
An impressive start and disappointing weekend for Tiger at Firestone saw him drop back to T31 after back-to-back top-six finishes on Tour (which included briefly holding the lead on the back nine at The Open). Woods is a four-time winner of the PGA Championship, but didn’t play here at the BMW Championship in ’08 so has no particular course advantage. He currently ranks inside the top 15 on Tour for SG: Approach the green, SG: Around the green, SG: Tee to green, and Scoring Average.
Other players to keep your eye on
Tony Finau: 35/1
Last five results: T10-T37-T9-T21-T5
Finau is a really solid bet this week. He has one of the most consistent string of recent results and is the only player on Tour this year to finish inside the top 10 in all three of the year’s majors so far... and that includes after popping his ankle back in to place at The Masters. He says his game suits every style of golf, and he’s proved it on the big stages this year. Ranks 2nd Par 5 scoring, 3rd Driving distance, 13th Scoring Average, and 15th SG: Tee to Green.
Henrik Stenson – 40/1
Last five results: T35-T6-T26-T13-T23
In just 13 starts in 2018 Stenson has six top 10s, the most recent coming at the US Open before a T35 at The Open and T39 last week. Three top 10s in his last five starts at the PGA Championship, as well as a T13 at Quail Hollow last year. He’s also had two top 10s in majors this year. Ranks 1st for GIR, 2nd SG: Approach the green and driving accuracy, 4th for SG: Tee to green and Scoring Average.
Xander Schauffele - 60/1
Last five results: 68-T2-T21-MC-T6
Schauffele is one of seven players to have finished in the top 10 at two majors this year, including most recently at the Open Championship, losing out to Francesco Molinari on a thrilling final day. Has four top 10s this year which includes a further runner-up finish at The Players, and last year's Tour Championship winner has proved he can produce his best golf on the biggest stage. No particularly stand-out stats.
Ian Poulter - 80/1
Last five results: T10-T12-MC-T30-T21
Ian Poulter had a chance to win his first WGC on Sunday but faltered in the final round. Yet it was still his sixth top 10 of the year, which includes a victory at the Houston Open - making him a good outside bet this week. His best result in the PGA Championship was 3rd in 2012, with one other top 10 in 2009. Ranks 6th total putting and 19th for SG: Total.
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