World Golf Championships Betting Odds 2015

Written by:
Carrie Stroup
Published on:
World Golf Championships Betting Odds 2015

Carrie Stroup here with your 2015 World Golf Championships betting odds, the Bridgestone Invitational

Bridgestone Invitational

Firestone Country Club – Akron, OH

The third leg of the WGC series will commence in Akron this week as the top players from around the world compete in the Bridgestone Invitational. The event first began back in 1999 along with the other two WGC tourneys that have already taken place this year and has been played at this par-70, 7,400-yard course in all but one installment. The field will consist of golfers from the most recent President’s Cup and Ryder Cup teams, players ranked in the top-50 of the Official World Golf Rankings both a week and two weeks ahead of the event and selected winners from the PGA Tour of Australia, Sunshine Tour, Asian Tour and Japan Golf Tour.

Plenty of late additions were made to the group and are highlighted by Troy Merritt, who jumped from 180th in the OWGR to 99th with his victory in the Quicken Loans National after a Saturday round of 61 which vaulted him to his first PGA TOUR win and a first visit to a WGC event. The only two players from the top-50 that will not be making the trip this week are No. 1 Rory McIlroy, who is dealing with his ankle injury, and No. 22 Chris Kirk, who is out with an injured hand.

Speaking of McIlroy, he was the winner here last year with a score of 15-under-par, shooting eight-under over the weekend as he was joined by just Sergio Garcia (-13) and Marc Leishman (-12) in double-digit numbers under par. It was Garcia who had a three-shot lead late on Sunday in the event, though, but carded a 71 on the final day and allowed McIlroy to win at a WGC event for the second consecutive time.

Since the inception of this event in 1999, Tiger Woods has won in an amazing eight of them, most recently in 2013, but will not earn a chance this season as he did not qualify. There will be plenty of opportunities to score on this course as evidenced by the winners here going 10-under-par or better in each year but 2005 and 2007 while Tigers Woods, to nobody’s surprise, holds the tourney record with a score of 21-under back in 2000 when he defeated the runners-up, Justin Leonard and Phillip Price, by an astounding 11 strokes.

Let’s now go through the players and find some names that could stand out amongst this strong field when the dust settles at Firestone.                      

Adam Scott: (+1500) Scott doesn’t get quite the recognition that he once did after rising to the top of the OWGR rankings and now sits just outside of the top-10. While he has not had a big win since the 2013 season, when he took down the Masters and the Barclays, he has continued to be a force in events with strong fields.

Since the start of the 2011 campaign, this Aussie has been in the top-10 at 11-of-19 majors; including ranking in a tie for 10th at the Open Championship and a tie for fourth at the U.S. Open most recently. WGC stroke play events have been a forte of his as well and since 2010 he has earned seven top-nines in 16 attempts and came away with a tie for fourth at the Cadillac Championships earlier this season. His putter (-0.710 strokes gained putting, 186th on TOUR) is a problem and will continue to be when the TOUR eliminates his anchored style, but he makes up for it with a huge driver (309.6 yards per, 4th on TOUR) and the ability to consistently stick greens (73.17% GIR, 2nd on TOUR) better than anybody in the circuit not named Henrik Stenson. The 35-year-old takes his game to a different level in big events and Scott will likely be dotting the top of the leaderboard at this course where he has three top-10s and a victory in his last five attempts.

Jim Furyk: (+3000) Earlier this year, Furyk was able to end a five-year winning drought with a victory at the RBC Heritage, his 17th career PGA TOUR win. Breaking through was huge for the 45-year-old who always seems to be in the mix, but cannot finish when it comes down to the wire. Overall on the year, Furyk has made it to the weekend in 12-of-14 (86%) events, and besides his victory in April, has four other top-10s. He’s continued to play well of late with a fifth at Memorial and a fourth at the Canadian Open as he looks to put on another show in Akron where he has three top-nines, including a runner-up showing in 2012, over the past five years. Furyk is more accurate than most off the tee (70.96%, 11th on TOUR) and has tremendous ball striking as evidenced by his 1.442 strokes gained from tee-to-green (7th on TOUR), so he should have no issues posting some impressive numbers during this tournament.                                                                                                       

Branden Grace: (+8000) Grace may not have a win when playing in a PGA TOUR event, but he does have plenty under his belt, taking home six trophies on the European Tour and five on the Sunshine Tour out of South Africa. He has become a name to know for many golf fans recently with a tie for fourth at the tough U.S. Open and has been solid when in the majors over the last few years, going 9-for-14 in cuts made with three top-25s. Grace also did well in the last WGC event, making it to the round of 16 in the Match Play Championship and netted a 23rd last year at this course. The 27-year-old grabbed two of his European Tour wins earlier in 2015 and comes in playing well with a finish no worse than 20th at his last five outings between the WGC events, majors and Scottish Open since March. Grace’s spot in the top-30 of the OWGR is no joke and another solid outing this week should vault him even higher.

Marc Leishman: (+4500) Leishman has been establishing himself as a force in the golf world over the last couple of years as he continues to put up big efforts under the lights of majors and WGC events. He is fresh in most memories after making it into a playoff, but eventually losing out to Zach Johnson, at St. Andrews a few weeks ago, but that was not his first great showing at such an event as he had a fifth at the 2014 installment of the Open Championship and also has three top-10s at the past four WGC outings. One of those was a third-place finish at Firestone last season when he was one of three players to reach double-digit numbers under par behind 17 birdies; the most in the field. Leishman is one of those players who seem to always be around, but is unable to get it done; this week may change that as he uses his momentum from the British Open to vault him into contention.

Robert Streb: (+11000) Streb will be making his debut in a WGC stroke play event when he tees off at Firestone this week after winning the McGladrey Classic earlier this year, as he also jumped into the top-50 of the OWGR this week. Each tournament recently has seen Streb’s name toward the top of the leaderboard and over his last seven outings he has just one finish worse than 19th. In that time he also just missed out on his second win of the year with a runner-up showing at the Greenbrier Classic and proved he could compete with the best after a score of eight-under at St. Andrews; a mark that put him in a tie for 18th. Streb is amongst the top-50 golfers on Tour in tons of statistical categories, but seems to excel best at hitting greens (70.61% GIR, 10th on TOUR) and makes the most of those situations with 0.404 strokes gained putting (28th on TOUR). He should be feeling good after competing with the best in the world at the Open and could put up another great effort in Ohio this week. 

- Carrie Stroup, Senior Reporter

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