Ryder Cup Captain Jim Furyk Doesn’t Tip Hand on Picks, Oddsmakers Say Tiger, Phil Shoo-Ins
Posted on: August 14, 2018, 04:00h.
Last updated on: August 14, 2018, 12:42h.
The 2018 Ryder Cup will be played next month in France at the Albatros Course of Le Golf National. Tiger Woods will be there regardless of whether US captain Jim Furyk selects him as one of his four picks, as the 14-time major champion is already booked to serve as a vice captain.
When Furyk appointed him to that role back in February, the odds seemed long that Woods’ game would be in a position for even consideration of actually playing on the US squad. Following a strong year where he’s made the cut in 12 of 14 tournaments, and is fresh off back-to-back strong showings in majors, and oddsmakers now believe he’s a lock for the team.
However, Furyk is trying to paint the picture that his mind isn’t entirely made up on Woods.
“We have some big tournaments coming home. We get an opportunity to see more guys play well,” the captain said of the upcoming FedEx Cup Playoffs.
Oddsmakers aren’t buying it. After Woods was in contention late on Sunday at both The Open (T6) and PGA Championship (2nd), they believe there’s no way Furyk doesn’t name Tiger as one of his four captain’s picks.
Woods, Mickelson Favorites
The points race to automatically qualify for the 12-person team concluded on Sunday evening. Eight players secured their positions: US Open and PGA champ Brooks Koepka, Dustin Johnson, Justin Thomas, Masters winner Patrick Reed, Bubba Watson, Jordan Spieth, Rickie Fowler, and Webb Simpson.
Bryson DeChambeau was first out, followed respectively by Phil Mickelson and Woods. British bookmaker SkyBet says all three have strong chances of representing Team USA. But their odds are in the exact reverse order of where they finished in terms of points.
DeChambeau is at 8/13, or implied odds of 61.9 percent. Despite missing the cut at the PGA, Mickelson is at 1/8, or implied odds of 88.9 percent. Woods is even shorter at 1/14 (93.3 percent).
Feel pretty confident regarding Woods’ chances to grab a spot? To net just $100, the sports bettor will need to wager $1,400 that Tiger will indeed be a captain’s pick.
Fan-favorite Matt Kuchar (10/11), Tony Finau (13/8), and Xander Schauffele (9/4) will fight for the fourth spot. Furyk will announce his selections early next month.
USA Team to Beat
The European Team will be composed of the first four players on the European Points List, followed by the next four qualifying leading players in the World Rankings. Europe captain Thomas Bjorn will then select four others of his choosing.
Currently, Open winner Francesco Molinari, and three Englishmen, Justin Rose, Tyrrell Hatton, and Tommy Fleetwood, have secured spots.
As for the actual three-day US vs Europe match, the Westgate SuperBook in Las Vegas has the Americans the favorite at -140, and Europe the underdog at +120. With the US currently the reigning champion, they only need a draw to maintain the Cup.
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