Bill Elliot reveals the strategy behind his betting, and explains why his money is on Phil Mickelson.

I DON’T know about you but I enjoy a flutter at the Open. It adds a bit of interest and keeps the focus going when slumped in front of a TV set.

Now there are various betting methods and I’m not trying to persuade you that I am any kind of expert – well, maybe a bit of an expert at losing money – but I do have one tried and mostly trusted method of laying a few pounds down.

Here it is…wait until the second round has gone and the cut has been made, then look down the list at somebody of real pedigree lying not ridiculously far off the lead but probably in 25th to 35th place. Then have an each way bet.

This has worked more often than it has failed for me over the years and that man who has come up trumps more than anyone else is your old friend and mine, Phil Mickelson. What you know is that he will be going for it over the last 36 holes. Winning is all that matters to him and though he doesn’t often pull that off, he frequently blasts his way into the top ten and often into the top four.

In the second round Mickelson shot a two under par 70 but it could have been at least three or four shots lower. That’s how well he played. “I’m close to being real good, really close, ” he said. “I’m striking it really well and if I putt the way I putted over the back nine for the weekend then I’m going to have a good chance. Having won already takes the pressure off. I’m not trying to force it and I’m much more accepting of being on the poor end of tee times. I’m looking forward to what comes next.”

When I placed my bet on Mickelson yesterday he was available at 50/1 and was lying tied for 34th place. Twenty minutes later he had moved up to 29th as the field stumbled and his price had drifted to 40/1. I’m not encouraging you to bet or to follow my template, but you might want to keep an eye on how my hero does from here on in.