Golf specialist Ben Issatt (@BenIssatt) previews the 2018 Ryder Cup and provides us with his best bets for three-day match between Europe and the United States.
2018 Ryder Cup Betting Preview, Odds & Tips
- Date: 28th-30th September
- Venue: Le Golf National, Paris, France
- Channel: Sky Sports Ryder Cup
Golf’s biggest event outside the four majors heads to France for the first time in its 91-year history as the 2018 Ryder Cup between Europe and the United States takes place at Le Golf National in Paris.
Once again the 12 best players from each side of the Atlantic have been decided through a two-year points system plus a number of captain’s picks and this year, Thomas Bjorn will lead the Europeans against Jim Furyk for the Americans.
A three-day event which begins with four sets of pairs matchplay using the fourball and alternate shot formats over the Friday and Saturday will culminate in the 12 singles matches on Sunday to determine the destination of the famous Ryder Cup trophy.
The USA head in as the current holders following a comprehensive 17-11 win at Hazeltine two years ago, but Europe is undefeated on home turf since 1993 at the Belfry and has only lost a total of three times since.
Consensus heading into this year’s matches, however, is the American team is among the strongest in recent history with the winner of three of 2018’s four majors but Europe has the current world number one and is full of young talent breaking through combined with established stars.
Many of the veterans of the Ryder Cup had to rely on captain’s picks this year, however, with Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson on the US side as well as Sergio Garcia, Ian Poulter and Henrik Stenson for the Europeans all requiring a call up.
All of the drama will unfold on what is one of the toughest courses on the European Tour at Le Golf National.
Very much a risk and reward course, the design has many features comparable to links golf with high rough and dunes but also features nine water holes including the island greens at 15 and 18.
The final four holes provide the perfect opportunity for ups and very big downs so expect some big-time birdies and a few watery graves.
Key Stats & Facts
- Five of Europe’s team will be making their debut compared to just three for the Americans
- Le Golf National hosts the French Open each year, potentially giving the Europeans an experience advantage
- Phil Mickelson becomes the most experienced Ryder Cup player making his 12th appearance as a player
- European team members Alex Noren and Tommy Fleetwood have won the last two French Open’s at this venue
- US – 9/10 (SkyBet)
- Europe – 7/5 (Unibet)
Dustin Johnson – 11/2 (SkyBet)
Jordan Spieth – 8/1 (SkyBet)
Tiger Woods – 10/1 (BetFred)
Rory McIlroy – 11/2 (SkyBet)
Jon Rahm – 8/1 (BetFair)
Sergio Garcia – 14/1 (Unibet)
With little really to be made by betting on the outright win market, it’s the individual performances at the Ryder Cup where some good odds can be found.
The first choice we have gone for is Dustin Johnson as scoring the most points because when on form, no-one can stop the long-hitting American and perhaps of all the players teeing it up in Paris he does carry the biggest fear factor for the opposition.
Next, the overall winning margin and here, helpfully, the same odds cover arguably the two most likely outcomes.
Should the strength in depth of the American side prove too much, they could run out comfortable winners by late Sunday. But a scrappy European win on a course all their players can’t be ruled out either making them both good choices.
Thirdly, though Justin Thomas is the more successful debutant at this year’s Ryder Cup, Jon Rahm has strong history at Le Golf National with two top 10’s each of the past two years at the French Open, so expect him to a key member for Team Europe.
Finally, absolutely no theory behind this but imagine it as the story of the Golfing year if Tiger Woods was to return to form and sink the winning putt for Team USA in Paris. Glorious… unless you’re European.