Golf can’t exactly compare with disciplines like basketball or soccer in terms of overall popularity, but there’s simply no denying the fact that it has a faithful crowd of diehard fans located all over the globe, particularly in English-speaking countries. Consequently, many online sportsbooks offer a wide range of golf betting opportunities, which range from betting on the outright winner of a given match to complicated combination bets or golf futures.
While the golf markets usually tend to differ from the betting options available for popular team-based sports, understating how each type of wager works shouldn’t take much of an effort even if you aren’t an experienced punter – in fact, if you’ve been following this sport for the past few years, odds are high you’ll become a fairly successful bettor right off the bat.
Betting on the outright winner is the easiest way to put your money on a golf tournament – all you need to do in order to receive a payout is to predict who’s going to take the entire event. As you’d expect, online sports betting sites are well aware of the fact that not every player has the same chances of reaching one of the top spots. Consequently, each player is assigned different odds, which reflect his skill level and give you some idea what the potential returns on your investment might be. Once you click on the list of outright winner markets, you’ll see something like this:
Martin Laird +450
Kevin Na +500
Brandt Snedeker +200
Paul Casey +250
Adam Scott +150
Henrik Stenson +600
If you’ve ever tried betting the money line on other sports, the first thing you should notice is the fact that there are no negative, clear favorite lines here – due to the nature of the sport, betting on any golfer is going to give you a shot at collecting more than you put on the line. In our example, betting $100 on one of the contenders that are least likely to win, such as Stenson, Na or Laird is going to provide you with a chance to win between $450 and $600. However, if you bet on Adam Scott who’s expected to place high in the event and he ends up winning the entire tournament, you’ll get only $150.
Two and three ball bets are more manageable than going for the outright winner, as you need to guess who will win individual matchups throughout each round of the event. In order for the bet to be successful, your golfer is required to have the lowest score in his pairing or group. However, most sites will require the golfers to complete three holes or more for the relevant wagers to stand. Two and three ball betting is often picked over betting the outright winner by bettors who like to minimize the variance and risk, as making the right prediction with this type of bet is considerably easier.
Top three betting is very similar to putting your money on the outright winner. However, in this case you are wagering whether the golfer will manage to place in the top three of the tournament in question or not. As you’d expect, the odds offered on wagers of this kind are somewhat lower, so you should always compare the prices between the two in order to get the most advantageous deal.
Parlay bets in golf are no different from the combination bets offered in football or basketball. Basically, a parlay allows you to put multiple wagers on a single ticket. However, there is a catch here, as all selection have to be covered in order for your parlay to pay off. Consequently, if one of your predictions on a four-selection parlay is wrong, and the remaining three are right, you still won’t receive any money. Quite obviously, the more selections you include, the higher the potential return on your investment will be.
Betting on golf futures requires you to predict the outcome of the entire season rather than individual bets, which means that the odds offered on wagers of this kind tend to be very high. For example, most sportsbooks allow you to wager on who will receive the European Order of Merit or who will place on top of the PGA Money List – in the end, the specific vary from site to site, so you should keep that in mind when making your deposit if you’re interested in making this kind of long-term commitment.
Proposition bets are wagers that don’t fall into any of the aforementioned categories. Props aren’t all that popular in golf, but they provide you with an amusing alternative to more serious wagers like outright winner bets or golf futures. Most golf props are related to individual golfers, which means that in most cases you’ll have to guess whether someone will manage to score a hole-in-one or record a hole in one.