Francesco Molinari Open Championship a Win for Las Vegas Sportsbooks
Posted on: July 23, 2018, 08:31h.
Last updated on: July 23, 2018, 08:31h.
Francesco Molinari made history on Sunday at Carnoustie when he became the first Italian golfer to win one of the sport’s four major championships.
Almost 5,000 miles away in Las Vegas, oddsmakers cheered on Molinari’s surprising Open Championship victory.
The Italian was listed at 60/1 following his T25 finish at the US Open. Strong play in the weeks following, including a win at the Quicken Loans and runner-up finish a week later at the John Deere, shortened his line at the Westgate SuperBook to 25/1.
Despite being one of the hottest players on the planet, the No. 15 ranked golfer in the world arrived in Scotland for The Open relatively under the radar. In major golf tournaments, “boring” play consisting of grinding pars is often needed, and on Sunday that’s precisely what Molinari did.
He rattled off 13 straight pars with an impeccable short game and unwavering flat stick. He birdied holes 14 and 18, the last which would turn out to be an insurance stroke to win by two.
Clearly in my group, the attention wasn’t really on me, let me put it that way,” Molinari said of his pairing with Tiger Woods. “If someone was expecting a charge, probably they weren’t expecting it from me.”
Woods held the lead alone at -7 as they finished the 10th hole. A double-bogey on 11, however, turned his day for the worst.
The most money wagered at the SuperBook prior to Thursday was on Tommy Fleetwood, Brooks Koepka, Woods, Jordan Spieth, and Rickie Fowler. Heading into Sunday, it appeared the house was on the hook for a substantial payout with Spieth tied for the lead at -9 with Xander Schauffele and Kevin Kisner, both players who have never won a major.
Kevin Chappell was two back at -7, and Molinari 5th at -6. Those two players also had never won a major.
The Open appeared to be Spieth’s to win, and bettors liked his chances. The three-time major champ and defending Open winner entered Sunday’s round at 7/4. Schauffele was at 5/1, Kisner 11/2, and Molinari, Woods, and Rory McIlroy at 14/1.
Molinari’s steady -2 final round got the job done after Spieth had his worst final round at a major since his 2016 Masters collapse. Jordan shot +5 to finish in T9.
Oddsmakers are already looking to the fourth and final major of the year. The PGA Championship heads to Bellerive Country Club in St. Louis, Missouri, for the tournament’s 100th edition next month.
Dustin Johnson, Spieth, and McIlroy open at the SuperBook with the shortest odds at 12/1. A $100 wager nets $1,200 should the bettor correctly identify which of those three players will hoist the Wanamaker Trophy.
After finding himself with the lead in a major on a Sunday for the first time in more than a decade, Woods is tied for the fourth-shortest odds with Fowler and Justin Thomas (16/1).
As for Molinari, he opens at 25/1. Francesco has never missed a cut in a PGA in nine appearances, and is coming off a runner-up finish a year ago at Quail Hollow.