How to Bet on Golf

How to Bet on Golf

Golf has some of the most dedicated fans in all of sports and as the game has grown more popular, due to televised tournaments and superstar golfers, so has the desire to bet on it. Let’s take a look at the easiest way to make your first golf bet with a few simple steps.

  1. Understand the basics of golf rules.
  2. Learn about what types of bets you can make.
  3. Get some tips to improve your betting.
  4. Sign up at Sports Interaction to make your first bet.

Basic Rules of Golf

Golf has been around for a long time. The game as we know it today was first played in Scotland in the mid 1400’s. One of the first golf courses, the Old Course at St Andrews, has been around since 1574, and is on the bucket list of many serious golfers as a course to play on at least once in their lives.

The game is played on a course consisting of 18 holes (sometimes nine), with each golfer competing against the other players to finish each of the 18 holes in the fewest number of strokes. There are also several team tournaments that have pairs or country teams competing.

There’s a par score listed for each of the holes on the course, depending on the length of each hole from the tee to the pin/flag and difficulty. Usually, those pars are between three and five strokes. The names for the scores based on how much over, under or equal to the par are as follows:

Number of strokesScore
Four under parCondor
Three under parAlbatross
Two under parEagle
One under parBirdie
Equal to parPar
One over parBogey
Two over parDouble Bogey
Some of the most major golf tournaments include the Masters Tournament, the US Open and the PGA Championship. Those are generally the most popular with the betting public, but remember, you can bet on almost all of the professional golf tournaments, and you can check which ones are available at the Sports Interaction golf betting board. 

Betting on the Masters Tournament

The Masters Tournament, which is sometimes called the U.S. Masters outside of the United States, in one of the four major professional golf tournaments. These four tournaments are the most popular, not just with spectators but with bettors as well.  The Masters is the first of the four during the year, happening during the first week of April. It is always held at the Augusta National Golf Club in Georgia.

Started in 1934 by golfer Bobby Jones, the Masters tournament awards it’s winner with a now infamous green jacket. Jack Nicklaus has won more Masters Tournaments than anyone, with six victories. Tiger Woods now has five, after his huge comeback win in 2019.

According to Las Vegas oddsmakers, the Masters tournament takes about 20 times the betting action than the average non-major, like the Valero Texas Open for example. To wager on this tournament, check out our Masters golf betting odds.

Betting on the PGA Championship

The PGA Championship is held every year by the Professional Golfers’ Association of America. Up until this year, it had been played on the third weekend in August, but as of 2019 will be held in May on the weekend before Memorial Day. The PGA stated that the reason for the change was due to the addition of golf to the Summer Olympics, as well as the cooler spring temperatures opening up more options for host courses.

The PGA Championship has been taken place at a number of different courses since its inception in 1916. Once again, the golfer with the most wins in the PGA Championship is Jack Nicklaus with five. Brooks Koepka was the most recent winner. This tournament is very popular with bettors and here you can see the most recent PGA Championship odds.

Betting on the U.S. Open

Started in 1895 and held by the United States Golf Association, or the USGA, the U.S. Open Golf Tournament takes place in mid-June with the final round usually scheduled to land on Father’s Day. The U.S. Open is staged at a number of different course in the United States, and as of 2019 the tournament awards the winners a $12 million purse, making it the largest purse of all four majors.

Willie Anderson, Bobby Jones, Ben Hogan and Jack Nicklaus each hold the record for the most wins at this tournament, with four each. The latest winner was Brooks Koepka in 2018 and here are the most up-to-date U.S. Open golf odds.

Betting on the Open Championship

The Open Championship, which is more often called the British Open, is a yearly tournament held by The R&A aka the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews. It is the oldest of the four majors, as it was first played in Scotland in 1860. The British Open is now played in mid-July as of 2019, making it the last major of the golf season. It’s also the only major held outside of the U.S.

The most recent winner is Francesco Molinari, who won in 2018. The 2019 British Open Championship will be held at the Royal Portrush Golf Club in Northern Ireland, which will be the first time it’s been held in Ireland since 1951. Check out the most recent British Open golf odds.

Different Types of Golf Bets

The most common type of golf bet is, of course, betting on who will be the outright winner of a given tournament. Let’s look at some examples:

This is a selection of futures odds for players in the 2020 Masters Tournament. As you can see in our example, Tiger Woods is favored to win at +700. That means that if you bet $100 on Tiger to win the tournament, you’d get an $800 payout including your original bet. If you wanted to bet on a player with longer odds, the risk is higher but the payout is much higher if you win. If Hideki Matsuyama pulled off the win at +2500, your futures bet of $100 would earn you $2600 including your original bet. Remember, your payout for the bet is for the odds that were listed at the time of your wager.

For the 2019 Masters Tournament, Tiger Woods was not the favorite to win, but that didn’t stop bettor James Adducci, who bet $85,000 on a futures bet that Tiger would win it for the first time since 2005. When Tiger was victorious, so was James, who earned a cool $1.2 million on his very first sports bet.

Golf Prop Bets

Golf prop bets for tournaments are fun because you can pretty much bet on any aspect of the game. Our example above shows some of the props that were available during the 2019 Masters. You can place a wager on whether one of the golfers will get a hole in one, or if the tournament winner will be American or not. If you were looking for that long shots/bigger payout, you might have bet that a new course record of 62 or lower would be set, which was listed at +1200. A $100 bet on that happening would win you $1300 including your original wager.

Tiger Woods is such a huge star in the sport that he has become a huge draw for bettors. He often will have a list of prop bets tailored just for him, like the ones above that were listed for the 2019 US Masters. If you thought Tiger would Eagle (go two under par) at the 13th hole,  you’d be up $220 on your $100 bet.

Corey Conners is a Canadian golfer who was thrust into the spotlight when he won the Valero Texas Open and subsequently, a spot in the 2019 US Masters. Canadian bettors were excited about the 27-year-old’s improbable journey to one of the world’s most prestigious golf tournaments, so sportsbooks gave him his own set of player props for bettors to wager on. If you wanted to bet on Conners getting a hole in one, your $100 bet would pad out your bank account to the tune of $5100, including your original bet.

Golf Betting Tips

Any successful sports bettor will tell you the same thing when it comes to improving your bet game. Do your research.

Read a little about the golf course where the tournament is taking place. Are there specific holes that give golfers big problems? Some players are simply more suited to specific courses depending on their playing style. Will it be windy at the course during the tourney?

Look at the golfers that are playing, at their previous records and at their overall experience. How well will they play under the pressure of a major tournament? What’s their driving accuracy? There are tons of statistics available on every pro golfer, so it’s easy to do some reading up on them to improve your chances at a winning bet.  The PGA site has an updated list of all the golfers competing in their tournament and their statistics.

Make Your Golf Bet

Now that you’ve read up on the basics of golf betting, you’re all set to make your first wager. Your last step? Set up your account at Sports Interaction and start betting today.