He might be ranked number seven in the world golf rankings, but few would argue Tiger Woods is the odds on favorite to win the Masters when it kicks-off Thursday morning at Augusta. One group that completely agrees with that sentiment are the guys who set the odds for the sportsbooks around the world.
Mike Colbert is the risk director for Cantor Gaming in Las Vegas and he told Sports Illustrated this week, “It doesn’t matter if it’s a computer, my brain or anything else, this year Tiger and Rory are the favorites.”
I think what he’s saying is that he has a little common sense.
Sportsbook.com would agree. Listed in their current odds, they have Woods and Rory Mcllroy atop the list of favorites followed by Phil Mickelson who already has three green jackets tucked away in his closet.
After that, the odds drop way off but include the world’s top ranked player, Luke Donald, and Lee Westwood, Hunter Mahan, Keegan Bradley, and Justin Rose.
- Tiger Woods 7/2
- Rory Mcllroy 5/1
- Phil Mickelson 8/1
- Luke Donald 15/1
- Lee Westwood 18/1
- Hunter Mahan 20/1
- Justin Rose 25/1
- Keegan Bradley 25/1
- Adam Scott 25/1
A lot has to go right for a guy to win a golf tournament, but after watching Tiger’s gradual improvement throughout the spring, it’s hard to envision him not being in contention during Sunday’s final round. Even when he wasn’t at his best the past two seasons, he still managed top five finishes in 2010 and 2011 coming in fourth both years.
While winning one tournament as he did two weeks ago at Bay Hill doesn’t necessarily mean he’s all the way back, it does mean he’s closer than he’s been in some time and that probably isn’t a good thing for the rest of the field.
Having Tiger back isn’t just a good thing for the casual golf fans, but it also means big business for those accepting wagers on the tournament. “When it comes to golf, we don’t take more bets on any other event than the Masters,” Colbert says. “The fact that Tiger is back and playing well is big for us. With Tiger, it’s probably 10 times the action compared to without him. He creates the action.”
Woods begins the quest for his fifth Masters title on Thursday morning at 10:35 EDT with playing partners Miguel Angel Jimenez and Sang-Moon Bae. He will play with the same group on Friday with a tee-time set for 1:42 EDT, the second-to-last pairing of the day.