Normally, I would be taking positions on the Majors and money lists from the very start of the season. This year has been anything but normal though, due to the uncertainty about Tiger Woods‘ participation. Now at last, we know the great man will return to action at Augusta, and can bet accordingly.
 
Firstly to the Masters itself. I can say now that I am 99% certain to back PAUL CASEY, for reasons I will lay out in greater detail next week. He is currently available at 25/1, with five places for each-way bets. However, numerous bookies will be offering six or seven places next week and for that reason I’m prepared to wait.
 
Secondly, the time has come to roll out a well-worn argument in support of backing TIGER WOODS to win exactly two and three Majors respectively. I’ve had a variant of this bet in each of the past two seasons without success. In 2008, he missed the last two with injury and last year, he won none of them. This time will hopefully be different.
 
Whilst I accept there must be uncertainty over Woods‘ psychological wellbeing, and therefore his golf, I’m prepared to back him all the way until I see cast-iron proof of any deterioration. This is no ordinary sportsman or human being. He has repeatedly shown extraordinary mental reserves.
He wins Majors whilst being barely able to walk the course.
 
If Tiger does return at anything near his best, he simply has to contend strongly in the first three Majors. His great Augusta record is well-known, but it pales into comparison with this year’s venues for the US and Open Championship. The former is to be played at Pebble Beach, the scene of his finest hour, when winning the 2000 US Open by an incredible 15 shots. The Open is at St Andrews, where Woods‘ two previous Opens produced easy wins by eight and five shots.
 
Moreover, the uncertainty has naturally affected the odds, creating an outstanding betting opportunity. The combined price of these two bets equates to slightly above three to one. What that means is that so long as Woods wins one of the first three Majors, which are his best opportunities, we would be in a guaranteed winning position going into the USPGA.
 
If he wins one of the first three, we’d be on for the USPGA at a bigger price than I’d expect Tiger to be. If he’s won two, our bet will have already won at the full odds. If he’s won all three, a big profit could be guaranteed with a straightforward saver.
 
Advised golf betting for Tiger Woods:
 
20pts TIGER WOODS TO WIN EXACTLY TWO MAJORS @ 5/1 (CORAL)
8pts TIGER WOODS TO WIN EXACTLY THREE MAJORS @ 14/1 (STAN JAMES)