Golf tips: 5 US Masters best bets for Augusta

The world's best tee it up for golf's first Major of the season and Paddy's paying 10 places each-way before Thursday's tee off.



*All prices are bang up to date with our snazzy widgets, while odds in copy are accurate at time of publishing but subject to change


It’s been a long wait since Collin Morikawa landed the Claret Jug on the Kent Coast last July to win the last Major of the season, but The Masters at Augusta tees off on Thursday to launch the first Major of the 2022 season.

While the anticipation for the year’s first Major is always huge, this year it is at fever pitch predominantly due to the potential return of Tiger Woods. At the time of writing it is still not clear whether Tiger will tee it up but just to have him close to a return is incredible.

The recently deposed world number one Jon Rahm’s record is hugely consistent at Augusta with four straight top 10 finishes. However, the Spaniard is winless since his US Open triumph last year. His putting struggles continuing to frustrate him and he is not for me this week. The man who replaced Rahm at the top of the world rankings, Scottie Scheffler is on fire. With three wins in five starts, Scheffler’s ascendency to the top has been astonishing. However, my hunch is that he might struggle to live up to expectancy while the same applies to recent Players Championship winner Cameron Smith. Although the Australian boasts an excellent record at Augusta, it is a huge ask for him to produce a second consecutive win on such a big stage.

The key to success at Augusta is two-fold this year on the 7,510 yard, par 72. Firstly, the winner will need to take advantage of the four Par 5’s to build a score. Secondly, they’ll need to find the right spots on the greens with their approach play. Find the wrong level on the lightning-fast greens and it is nearly impossible to get down in two.

So, let’s take a look at some of the leading contenders.

1. Justin Thomas

I will start my team by siding with Justin Thomas. Now winless since his success at Sawgrass in 2021 Thomas currently ranks third on tour from tee-to-green and fifth in approach play, with the latter particularly important at the US Masters. He also ranks first in par 4 performance and third in the par 5 scoring. Basically he is doing superbly at the moment at everything you need to do well here to succeed.

Prior to a disappointing 21st last year, Thomas had improved his finishing position every year and this year in a quest to add to his lone Major to date he has secured the services of Phil Mickelson’s former caddy Jim ‘Bones’ Mackay on his bag. His experience could be crucial. He is the pick for me from those at the very top of the market.


2. Brooks Koepka

Just behind this leading quartet, we find Rory McIlroy and Dustin Johnson. McIlroy missed the cut in Texas last week and needs the elusive Green Jacket to complete golf’s Grand Slam. As for DJ, he appears to have upped his game of late, but I am much keener on the chances of Brooks Koepka as our second selection.

Koepka is a master of peaking for these biggest of events and after he missed the cut here last year on a return from injury, but he posted three more top 6 finishes in last year’s remaining Majors.

He finished 12th in his last stroke play start and then a last eight position at the WGC Matchplay appears to have been the perfect build up for Augusta. I expect him to make a bold bid to improve on his runner up finish here in 2019.

Shane Lowry Portrush The Open July 21, 2019

3. Shane Lowry

Ireland’s Shane Lowry has been in superb form of late with his long game in great shape. As someone who saves his best for the biggest events he looks primed for a big week. I can see him improving considerably on his best finish of 21st last year at this course.

Tony Finau (R)

4. Tony Finau

Finau has been somewhat quiet of late however his long game showed a good upturn in Texas last week and with three top 10s in his three April visits to Augusta, his credentials can’t be ignored.

5. Si Woo Kim

Kim meanwhile was a big factor here last year before frustratingly slipping out of the places on Sunday to finish 12th. However, that experience will have stood him in good stead and with his game firing strongly at the moment he could go even better this time around at nice each-way odds in an event that Paddy are paying to 10 places each-way before Thursday’s tee off.

*All prices are bang up to date with our snazzy widgets, while odds in copy are accurate at time of publishing but subject to change

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