2023 British Open Golf Betting Tips and Odds
Welcome to the SAO British Open sports betting preview. You will find a free pick at the bottom of the page, provided by one of our top SAO handicappers. You could scroll down right now to find it, but you should read the entire page because it has some exciting information and advice on maximizing your British Open bets.
British Open = Open Championship
First, let’s get something out of the way. Yes, we know the official name of the British Open is the Open Championship or The Open. On this page, we will refer to the tournament as the British Open because that is what Scott Van Pelt calls it, and we trust him implicitly.
When Is The British Open?
The 2023 British Open will occur from July 20 through the 23rd at Royal Liverpool Golf Course (more on the venue later). If you plan to follow along from the U.S., NBC will have the broadcasting rights.
British Open Observations
Here are some questions that often come to mind when watching television coverage of the British Open:
- Where are the trees?
- Why is it so cold there in July?
- Why is the golf course so uneven, and why is the green part of the fairway and/or the fairway part of the green?
- Why is it on TV so godforsaken early? (6:00 a.m. on the west coast!)
- Why are the diabolically designed bunkers bigger than a semi-trailer and seemingly impossible to hack out of? Also, the bunker cam is really cool. Who came up with that idea?
- Is it just me, or do all the drives look like they bounce down the brown, rock-hard fairways almost as far as they fly in the air?
To answer a few, the British Open is held in Britain. The time zone is different, the climate is different, and the course is different (look up links golf!). The British Open has been an annual tradition since 1860, and the British supporters love their golf.
British Open 2023 – Royal Liverpool
The 151st British Open is being played at Royal Liverpool, a glorious links course in northwest England, nestled in the small town in the Wirral peninsula in Merseyside. Royal Liverpool is one of the most famous courses in the UK and has hosted several British Opens, most recently in 2014 when Rory McIlroy won his third career major. Tens of thousands of golf fans and 156 players will descend on Wirral, a town of over 300,000 people.
Of those 156 players, many are from Europe, but dozens of Americans will also be there due to their position on the official golf world rankings. Similar to the US Open, players worldwide can qualify for the British Open, including a few amateurs. Unlike the US Open, Europeans are more likely to compete in and win this major, with European players having won the British Open an impressive 55% of the time.
More on the Royal Liverpool Golf Course
As we alluded to above, Royal Liverpool is a seaside links course. For those who don’t know, the British Open is always played on a links course and is one of the main characteristics that separate it from other majors held in the United States.
A links course is the oldest style of golf course there is – they are all around Europe especially.
So, what does this mean? Links courses offer firmer playing surfaces, meaning golf shots tend to “run” much more. This results in longer shots (depending on the wind) but also makes for more variance in your shots in terms of bouncing around into the rough and can result in trickier approach shots and greens.
Links land features sand dunes and an uneven playing surface with plenty of peaks and valleys. Because of its geographical uniqueness, these playing surfaces often breed a distinct style of play.
The most prominent challenges that links courses present fall under the topography and the often windy conditions. Regarding topography, the uneven playing surfaces cause balls to bounce from fairways and greens into the thick rough much more frequently. Additionally, ball flight becomes much more critical. Without any trees and being alongside the water, wind plays a crucial element in each shot. Players will often be much more cautious in their approach to avoid disaster.
Accuracy and precision are the names of the game, and as we saw from 2022 Open champ Cameron Smith, you can make up plenty of shots around the green if that’s your strength.
British Open Betting Favorites
If the British Open slightly favors European players, does that mean European or non-American players are favored to win? Not necessarily. Nearly all the same players that have been betting favorites in every 2023 Major are featured at the top of the DraftKings British Open futures betting board. Of course, these players are also at the top of the world golf rankings and are among the best players in the world, so it is not surprising that they are also favorites to win the Open.
That said, the betting board does have an international flavor, with some Europeans appearing on the list, alongside a number of Americans. Odds updated 07/18
- Scottie Scheffler (USA) +650
- Rory McIlroy (Northern Ireland) +750
- Jon Rahm (Spain) +1200
- Brooks Koepka (USA) +1800
- Cameron Smith (Australia) +2000
- Viktor Hovland (Norway) +2200
- Patrick Cantlay (USA) +2300
- Rickie Fowler (USA) +2500
- Tyrell Hatton (England) +2500
- Xander Schauffele (USA) +2500
- Tommy Fleetwood (England) +2800
A closer look at the list reveals two past British Open champions (Rory McIlroy, Cameron Smith), four recent Major champions (Scottie Scheffler, Jon Rahm, Brooks Koepka, and Cameron Smith), and the others have had tremendous success over the last few months on the PGA Tour.
Betting on Golf
The thing about betting on golf is not to expect a win every week. It’s just too hard to pick a winner. Most bettors who focus on golf, including the SAO handicapping team, use statistics and analysis to determine which players have a good chance and place relatively small amounts on them to win. A $100 bet on Justin Thomas will yield $3500 if he wins. That’s a wise investment if your betting system determines he has a statistically better than 35/1 (2.78%) chance to win the tournament.
The key is to find value. If you pick Justin Thomas based on educated handicapping and he doesn’t end up winning, that doesn’t mean it was a poor bet to make. It’s different from picking one team over another. You’re doing well and probably making money if you hit one outright winner every two months in golf.
That may be the case for picking outright winners. Still, if you want to increase your winning probability while decreasing your potential payout, many prop betting strategies exist. These bets include picking whether a player will make the cut, finishing in the top 5, top 10, top 20, or even top 40, and finding valuable matchup bets among the dozens of pairings during Thursday and Friday’s rounds.
Intriguing British Open Picks
Englishmen are excited to play in front of their home country’s supporters:
- Tyrell Hatton +2500
- Tommy Fleetwood +2800
- Justin Rose +5500
Players that have won on the PGA tour and/or Major championships during the 2023 season:
- Matthew Fitzpatrick +5000
- Wyndham Clark +5000
- Tony Finau +5500
- Keegan Bradley +11000
- Emiliano Grillo +35000
Other interesting players with long odds that you may not want to take outright but you want to dabble in other prop markets:
- Sam Burns +7000
- Sungjae Im +11000
- Russell Henley +12000
- Sahith Theegala +20000
SAO Premium picks
The experts at SAO, and all the premium subscribers who have used their picks as part of their handicapping strategy, have had a terrific 2023. Our golf betting experts are up nearly 200 units this year, correctly picking several outright winners on the PGA Tour.
As we inch closer to The Open, here is our free SAO Premium pick:
Tommy Fleetwood Top 10 Finish (+250)
Before you say anything, yes, I am very aware that Fleetwood never seems to close the door when he’s in contention on Sunday. However, he’s been in one of the final groups at three events already this season: The Valspar, the RBC Canadian Open, and the Scottish Open. He still doesn’t have a major, but he’s always played his best on the biggest stage, and now he gets one in his backyard. This is essentially his home Open, as he grew up and lived close to the course for many years. He doesn’t have a weakness in his game, he loves links golf, he’s been terrific at Open Championships in the past, and he’s a great fit for this course given his ability to keep it in the fairway.
I’m ready to get my heart broken once again, but maybe, just maybe, he can close one of these out.
–“Notorious, SAO’s top Golf Picker” who is +24.78 units on golf picks this season
When it comes to golf, SAO’s experts are landing on winners at greater than 70%. Get involved by signing up for SAO Premium today!