US Masters: 7 players the traders fear at Augusta

We're 24 hours from tee off at Augusta and it's not just the players who are feeling the pressure...

Henrik Stenson 944 x 600 Masters


It’s the first Major of the season and with Paddy paying 10 places, the Traders literally don’t know which of these 7 players they’d like to win less. We’re guessing Rory, but it’s a tight call.

Rory McIlroy 6/1

Will this finally be his year to complete golf’s Grand Slam? We thought it was happening last year before he made a balls of a few putts early on in his final-round pairing with Patrick Reed, and his challenge was over before it had really begun. The Ulsterman did get the job done in the final pairings of the Players Championship though, which should give him renewed confidence if he finds himself in the same position come Sunday. His new-found love of meditation and eh, juggling, might just help to squeeze him over the line in front this time.

Dustin Johnson 9/1

DJ is back to being a happy chappy after patching things up with Paulina Gretzky – and that could mean bad news on the trading floor. We don’t know if DJ is superstitious, but by not being the world No. 1 in Masters week, (the world’s highest tanked golfer has never worn the Green Jacket since Tiger’s win in 2002) he’ll be happier than Gretzky in an Instagram pose, not to have to deal with that stat. With a win and two Top 10s in his last five appearances, DJ is one of the most popular form ponies in the field.

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Justin Rose 11/1

This is the Major that Justin Rose seems ideally suited too and came closest with a sudden death play-off defeat to Sergio Garcia in 2017. DJ’s gain is Justin’s loss though as he must carry curse of being World no. 1 this into Thursday’s tee off and as we’ve said only three players have won the Masters in history while being top of the pops. On the flip side, Rose hasn’t finished outside the Top 20 in his last five years – T12, 2nd, T10, T2, T14 – and is sure to be on the premises again.

Tiger Woods 14/1

The four-time Masters winner’s resurgence has shifted the golfing dial big time and we should all be grateful that he’s back to something like his best. How thankful we’ll be on Sunday night is another story though. If the Woods-meister starts shooting the lights out everyone will want a piece of the action and that could mean carnage for Paddy’s book.

He won his first Tour title in five years last season and while there’s a slight doubt about a niggling neck injury, we’ll be diving for cover if Woods starts to put on a Masters-class over the weekend. See what we did there…

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Jordan Spieth 18/1

You dismiss the Texan at your peril – no matter how bad is current form is. A runner-up in 2014, winner in 2015 and a five-stroke leader in 2016  before a complete brain fart on the par 3 12th, resulted in a quadruple-bogey and destroyed his chance of back-to-back Masters victories. Danny Willett anyone? However, a record-equalling 64 last year on the final day catapulted him into third place to prove he can never be ruled out at Augusta, no matter what. Ever.

Hideki Matsuyama 25/1

The Japanese starlet is Mr Consistent at Augusta and has attracted plenty of support at Augusta, where Paddy’s paying 10 places. Still only 27, he’s had four consecutive top 20s and is a tee-to-green machine. If conditions turn as bad as forecasted, his straight shooting will be a big plus if he’s in contention at the weekend.

Bubba Watson 28/1

The Masters is the one Major that is played at the same venue every season – so if you’ve form there, you’ve always got a chance. Two-time winner Bubba Watson would go most of the golf season unnoticed if it wasn’t for his loud shirts and regular bust-ups with whoever is on the bag.

But once he drives down Magnolia Lane – he comes alive.

Punters have latched on – but it’s a case of which Bubba turns up this week. The ‘I want to win another Masters’ Bubba could yet surprise us all.

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What do you think?