Golf Betting: Laying Tiger Woods to Win No Majors in 2009 Represents Great Value

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Golf Betting: Laying Tiger Woods to Win No Majors in 2009 Represents Great Value

It has been quite some time since an athlete has been as dominant in their sport as Tiger Woods is in golf today.
With 65 wins to date and 14 majors in just 13 years of professional golf, Tiger has set a pace that likely will never be broken for generations. In fact since 2005 Tiger has racked up 25 tour victories including 6 majors. Given that fact it is quite shocking that one could lay Tiger Woods at Betfair for a 2.2 dividend (5/4 or +120 odds) to win no majors in 2009. In past years for a similar prop Tiger Woods had odds as high as 6/1 (+600) to win no majors in that particular year.
The reason people are willing to accept such low odds on Tiger Woods failing to win a tournament in 2009 is obvious. After beating Rocco Mediate in the infamous U.S. Open playoff last year it was announced that Tiger would miss the rest of the season because he required reconstructive ACL surgery on his left knee. In fact it was only recently that Tiger began to practice once again and it is rumoured that Woods' first tournament in 2009 will likely be either the Arnold Palmer Invitational in March or maybe even the Masters in May. Naturally because he has been on ice for so long and because no one knows for certain how Tiger will react to the surgery, betting him to win any tournament, let alone a major, is a risky bet indeed.
So what makes Tiger a good sell at 5/4 (+120) odds to win no majors (i.e. 4/5 or -125)to win at least one major). The answer of course is that this is Tiger Woods; Mr. Incredible. Tiger has excelled in situations where no other mortal could. He came back from a 10 shot deficit on the final day a few years back in Asia to win a tournament. He birdied 7 consecutive holes to make up a 7 shot deficit to win the Player's Championship. And only last year he made an impossible comeback to pull off a win at the Match Play Championship. And don't forget Tiger also won the U.S. Open when he could barely walk. Anyone who watched that tournament will recall Tiger wincing in pain every time he hit a shot and wondering when he'll just pull out. Other players were in disbelief at Tiger's accomplishment and perhaps Kenny Perry said it best when he iterated after Tiger's victory "he beat everybody on one leg." So if Tiger could beat the best in the world at a major tournament when operating at less than 50%, certainly he could beat them when he returns when he'll be at least 80% healthy. And almost certainly by the last 2 majors Tiger will be at 100% once again.
Furthermore the current odds being offered at Betfair for each major dictates that 4/5 odds (-120) are fair. Right now Tiger is about 11/4 (+275) for each of the 4 majors in 2009 at Betfair. Other sportsbooks offer far less. Assuming that you were to place an "if" type bet at Betfair for the tourney then the true value of the bet is approximately 11/16 Thus, fair odds dictate accepting a dividend of about 2.5 (+150) to win a tournament rather than 2.2 (+120). But again those odds are offered assuming Tiger still won't be 100%. There is no reason not to expect that Tiger will be healthy and demonstrate he is at the top of his game come tournament time. If that happens then Tiger will be offered at the odds we have seen the past 3 or 4 years of about 2.8 (9/5 odds or +180) at Betfair prior to each major. In that instance Tiger's true dividend to win one of the 4 major tournaments is less than 1/2 making the 4/5 (-120) odds a steal. As well if Tiger fails to win the Masters or U.S. Open one could offer a sell on Tiger for each of the British Open and USPGA Championships at the 9/5 (+180) odds and if he loses both then the end result is a break even.
What odds would one offer on Jimmie Johnson winning no races in NASCAR Sprint Cup racing in 2009? What odds would one offer on Kimi Raikkonnen winning no races in F1 in 2009? What odds would one offer on Rafael Nadal not winning a major tournament in 2009? There really is no difference. So jump now because the odds will change guaranteed.


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