Woods celebrating

PGA Championship outright odds (As of May 13)

Tiger Woods: 11.00
Dustin Johnson: 11.00
Brooks Koepka: 12.00
Rory McIlroy: 12.00
Jon Rahm: 18.00


It will be one of the iconic sports photos of the year – Tiger Woods, dressed in that familiar Sunday red, with his hands raised in celebration on the 18th green at Augusta National, a major champion for the 15th time in his career but for only the first time since 2008.

Tiger returned to golf last year and provided optimism that perhaps he could one day return to glory at a major championship following a prolonged dry spell brought on by major injuries and scandals off the golf course.

Last month, Tiger prevailed at Augusta to capture the Masters – following a back-nine collapse from front-runner Francesco Molinari. Opportunity knocked and Tiger answered, taking his fifth Green Jacket. That also resulted in a huge payday for sports bettors at PlayNow.com.

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A total of 676 bets were placed and 19.7 per cent of money wagered was on Tiger to win, which meant a nice payday for bettors at the conclusion of the first major of the year.

The calendar has since turned to May. This week, Woods is once again among the world’s best golfers competing at the PGA Championship. What was once the fourth major of the season is now the second on the calendar, with this year’s tournament taking place at Bethpage Black beginning Thursday.

Tiger currently has odds of 11.00 to win, a co-favourite alongside Dustin Johnson, who finished in a tie for second at the Masters, just one shot back of Tiger.

While bettors backed Tiger to win at Augusta last month, the highest percentage of money staked for the PGA Championship outright market was, as of Monday, on Brooks Koepka to win. His odds are currently 12.00 at PlayNow.com, and he enters this tournament as the defending champion.

As of Monday morning, about 21.6 per cent of money wagered was on Koepka to successfully defend his PGA Championship title, while 15.7 per cent of the money was on Tiger to win his second consecutive major. As for Dustin Johnson, the World No. 1 golfer, about 7.4 per cent of money is on him to win.

Johnson has six top-10 finishes already this season – including that tie for second at Augusta – and could be knocking on the door for a breakthrough showing this weekend. Of course, this breakdown can shift over the next few days as the opening round gets closer.

Koepka not only won the PGA Championship a year ago, but he is fresh off a fourth-place finish at the AT&T Byron Nelson in Dallas, Texas, this past weekend.

Meanwhile, Tiger hasn’t played in tournament competition since his win at Augusta, having opted out of the Wells Fargo Championship at the beginning of this month.

Tiger has experienced victory at Bethpage Black before.

He captured the 2002 U.S. Open with a winning score of three-under par. He was the only player in the field that week to finish below par. Whether he can replicate that success this week is obviously yet to be determined, but all eyes will be on Tiger to see if he can get career major No. 16 – a number that may have seemed impossible to achieve only a couple of years ago.

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