FOX sports betting expert
“Bear Bets” are actual bets that Chris “The Bear” Fallica actually makes.
The fourth and final major tournament of the season is upon us as the world’s best golfers will compete for the 151st Open Championship from Thursday to Sunday at the Royal Liverpool Golf Club in Merseyside, England.
The Open Championship is the oldest golf tournament in the world and one of the most prestigious, with the Claret Jug being presented to the winner.
Cameron Smith won his first major at the Open Championship last year.
Who will be raising the claret jug after the last round this year? I assure you with my best tips.
Let’s take a look at the bets I’m making for the event.
RELATED: Open championship odds, predictions, favourites, tips
Rory McIlroy: Top 10 Score -105 (Wager $10 to win $19.52 in total)
Did you hear that McIlroy won the Open at the Royal Liverpool last time? That was a joke.
McIlroy’s price for winning the tournament is far too low for my liking, especially for someone who hasn’t won a major in nine years and has to contend with Scottie Scheffler, Brooks Koepka and others. But a top 10 result? Now let’s talk about it as Rory has secured six straight top 10 finishes, crowned by his win at the Scottish Open last week.
Scottie Scheffler: Top 10 Result +100 (Bet $10 to win $20 in total)
In his last 13 majors, Scheffler has had nine top 10 finishes and eleven top 20 finishes. He’s about as sure of something as the sport gets right now and could have won the last two Majors very easily. His putting has failed him at times, but historically the greens at The Open aren’t that fast so this might help him – like he needs it. Incidentally, he has only finished in the top 5 in seven consecutive events and ten of the last twelve he has competed in, earning 15 top 10 finishes in 19 events this year. It represents the best in golf betting: you don’t have to bet on the outright winner to make money.
Brooks Koepka: Winner +1800 (bet $10 to win $190 total)
Brooks Koepka: Top 20 Result +105 (Bet $10 to win $20.50 total)
Koepka made no secret of his dislike for the Los Angeles Country Club during the US Open, and we like an angry Brooks. I always felt that this would be a big win for Koepka and today is no different. He could easily have added the Masters to his PGA win in 2023, and at an event where he already has four top 10 finishes and is second or third behind McIlroy and Scheffler, it’s fair to say that he is picked for a great win chance for career major win #6.
Victor Hovland: Top 10 Result +220 (Bet $10 to win $32 in total)
Hovland is finally at the point where he can compete regularly in Majors, as evidenced by his T-4, T-7, T-2, 19 run in Majors since St Andrews last year. He wobbled a bit in some of them on Sunday but he was in his 60s all four times in the opening round to put himself in position. That year he was at his best in the bigger events, adding to his success in the majors a win in the Memorial and a T-3 in the Players Championship. You’ll be hearing from him again this week.
Shane Lowry: Top 20 Result +140 (Bet $10 to win $24 in total)
Lowry has been in the top 20 of five in his last six events – including the PGA and US Open – and has had one win (T-12, T-21) in each of the last three Open Championships. Also remember that he played very well at Royal Liverpool in 2014 when the Open was last here, finishing a T-9 place despite a 75 in the second round. I expect Lowry to do well again.
Head to head: CameronSmith -115 over Patrick Cantley (Bet $10 to win $18.70 total)
Are we really doing this again while people are expecting Cantlay to play seriously in a Major? The defending champion already has two top 10 finishes at the majors this year and should beat Cantlay at this distance.
Head to head: Min Woo Lee -115 over Sunjae Im (Bet $10 to win $18.70 total)
Except for the Masters in fall 2020 and then in the top 10 in Augusta in 2022, I haven’t really played well at majors. His two Open Championships resulted in a missed cut and a T-81 finish. He’s missed the cut in eight of his 16 career majors and meets Lee, who finished in the top five at the US Open and has had some decent finishes in Europe since.
Head to head: Ryan Fox +105 over Russell Henley (Bet $10 to win $20.50 total)
Fox only missed one cut this year, so he’s the type of guy you like to have in a match because you expect him to play on the weekends. He’s also had top-30 finishes in both the Masters and PGA while finishing a T-12 in Scotland last week. Yes, he’s only managed a top-20 finish in one Major (the 2019 Open Championship), but it’s not as if Henley was the strongest player in that Major (four missed cuts in eight events).
Chris “The Bear” Fallica has been covering sports for nearly three decades. While his primary focus has been college football, he also enjoys playing in the NFL, soccer, golf, tennis, MLB, NHL and horse racing, “occasionally” betting on such events. Chris recently won the inaugural Circa Football Invitational and finished in the top 10 in the Golden Nugget Football Contest. He has qualified multiple times for the NHC Handicapping Championship. Remember, “The less you bet, the more you lose when you win!” Follow him on Twitter @Chrisfallica.
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