The British Open golf tournament is an annual golf tournament organized by The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews (R&A) and traditionally held every mid-July. It is one of the four major golf tournaments in professional golf and the oldest among the four.

The first British Open golf tournament was held in 1860 at Prestwick Golf Club in Ayrshire, Scotland. The British Open is the only major tournament played outside the United States.

The 2019 British Open golf tournament will be the 148th Open Championship and it is scheduled for July 18-21, 2019. This year’s edition will be held at the Royal Portrush Golf Club in County Antrim in Northern Ireland. This will be the second time that the par-72, 7,337-yard golf course designed by Harry Colt will be hosting the British Open.

Last year, Francesco Molinari won the 2018 British Open at Carnoustie Golf Links in Angus, Scotland. Molinari finished two strokes ahead of Kevin Kisner, Rory McIlroy, Justin Rose, and Xander Schauffele to become the first golfer from Italy to win a major golf tournament.

This year, Molinari is expected to return to defend his title against a strong field that includes former British Open winners like Tiger Woods, Jordan Spieth, Henrik Stenson, Rory McIlroy, Phil Mickelson, Louis Oosthuizen, Darren Clarke, and Zach Johnson. Woods (3 wins)  is the only active British Open winner with more than one win.

Here are the favorites to win the 2019 British Open Golf Tournament. Odds were taken from as of 6/28/19:

Player Odds
Brooks Koepka +650
Rory McIlroy +1000
Dustin Johnson +1200
Tiger Woods +1300
Justin Rose +1600
Jordan Spieth +2000
Francesco Molinari +2000
Jon Rahm +2500
Adam Scot +2500
Xander Schauffele +2800
Rickie Fowler +3000
Tommy Fleetwood +3000
Justin Thomas +3300
Henrik Stenson +3300
Patrick Cantlay +3300
Louis Oosthuizen +3300
Jason Day +3500
Matt Kuchar +4000
Hideki Matsuyama +4000
Gary Woodland +4000

Golf Who Are The Favorites?

Brooks Koepka has ascended to the top of the OWGR and is also #2 in the FedEx Cup rankings. The 29-year old Florida State University product finished T57 in his last tournament played at the Travelers Championship last June 23rd. However, Koepka has shown up in big tournaments, especially the majors. He has won four out of his last nine major tournaments played in including the PGA Championship in May. In the five majors he didn’t win during this period, he finished second including the 2019 Masters and 2019 U.S. Open.

Rory McIlroy has been the most consistent golfer in 2019 with 11 Top 10 finishes in 14 PGA Tour events played including two victories. The world’s #3 ranked golfer won the RBC Canadian Open in early June and finished a T9 at the U.S. Open last June 16th. McIlroy was runner-up at the 2018 British Open and has finished in the Top 5 in his last three starts in this tournament. McIlroy is a former British Open winner, having won the title in 2014.

Dustin Johnson was third in the odds board more than a month ago and he remains there at the same price he was last month. DJ is the world’s #2 ranked golfer in the OWGR and 7th in the FedEx Cup rankings. He finished runner-up in the first two majors of the season and won the WGC-Mexico Tournament. Johnson has seven Top 10 finishes this season and has finished in the Top 4 of this tournament in four out of the last five years.

Tiger Woods‘ amazing comeback story has now made him a Top 5 golfer in the OWGR again. Tiger’s win at The Masters proved that he is back but since that victory, Woods has played in just three tournaments and has finished Cut, T-9 and T-21 in those. Tiger has four Top 10 finishes this year and prior to his win at the 2019 Masters, many were saying that his best chance of winning other major golf tournament was at the British Open because of its firm fairways and slower greens. Well, he won at Augusta. We’ll see what he does here. Woods was the golf betting favorite to win this tournament last May. He’s slid three spots lower in the current odds board.

Justin Rose is the 4th ranked golfer in the OWGR and currently 9th in the FedEx Cup rankings. The 38-year old Englishman is coming off a T3 finish at the U.S. Open. Rose has six Top 10 finishes this year including four in his last eight tournaments played in. The British Open isn’t Rose’s forte though as he only has two Top 10 finishes in this tournament since finishing 4th as a 17-year old in 1998. However, one of those Top 10 finishes was a T2 last year so that should give him some confidence here.

Golf Who Wins?

When we talk about current form, which is an important factor to consider when making golf bets, the golfer that comes first is Brooks Koepka who has won four out of his nine majors played in. When it comes to playing at the British Open though, it is Rory McIlroy who has finished in the Top 5 of his last four British Open appearances including a win in 2014.

There’s another fact about Koepka that makes him appealing. His caddie, Rickie Elliott, is from Portrush and grew up playing in a golf course which is an unknown venue for the other contenders. Elliott’s knowledge and experience playing at Royal Portrush could give Koepka an edge over his competitors.

But McIlroy even has a better edge playing in the 2019 British Open. That’s because while Koepka’s edge is his caddie, McIlroy himself is familiar with the course, being from Northern Ireland. In fact, he once shot a course record of 61 at Royal Portrush, back when he was 16. Still, that’s a huge mental advantage for a top golfer like him.

I’m torn between these two but I think McIlroy is the most consistent golfer this year and I think he also has the better knowledge of this golf course. When it comes to betting value, McIlroy is also more tempting to pick at +1000. So yeah, I’m going with Rory McIlroy but won’t mind if you go with the red hot Brooks Koepka.

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