British Open 2011 Odds: Handicapping the Leaderboard

Thomas ConroyCorrespondent IJuly 16, 2011

British Open 2011 Odds: Handicapping the Leaderboard

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    The Americans are coming…The Americans are coming!!!

    That might be the roar from the gallery at Royal St. George’s, as several top U.S. players have charged up the leaderboard at the 2011 British Open. No American has won a major championship since Phil Mickelson captured the green jacket at Augusta in 2010.

    Remember, sports betting is legal in the UK; so, let’s take a look at the latest odds (provided by the British oddmakers, Ladrokes) of who on the leaderboard is favored to win at the Open Championship:

Dustin Johnson Odds: 9/4

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    Coming into Sunday, Dustin Johnson's storyline will be big, especially after losing two majors last year.

    He fell apart at Pebble Beach, as he shot an 82 in the final round to lose a three-shot lead at the U.S. Open. Some will argue that his two-shot penalty at Whistling Straits is fully on the shoulders of the PGA.

    Does all this misfortune add up to valuable experience? Going into tomorrow’s final round, I would say it’s immeasurable for him. 

Darren Clarke Odds: 11/4

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    It’s the second time that Darren Clarke has led the British Open through 54 holes. If he had made half of his putts inside of 10 feet, Clarke would be leading by six strokes heading into Sunday.

    The fun part of watching the Open Championship is seeing how the players deal with the weather elements. Clarke played perfectly on Saturday, as he missed only two greens and is one of three players to par on the afternoon.

    The final round will come down to experience, as no golfer is going to run away with this major. 

Ricky Fowler Odds: 7/1

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    It would be grand for Ricky Fowler to record his first overall win at a major, and his play on Saturday has set up for a memorable final round for all. He had the round of the tournament (68, two-under-par) in the worst possible weather conditions.

    Coming into the British Open, none of the experts picked Royal St. George’s as the place where Fowler would win his first major championship. But, that all changed after his outstanding third-round performance. 

Thomas Bjorn Odds: 12/1

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    Thomas Bjorn’s play has been smooth and efficient all tournament long.

    If he can hit a few more quality shots and stay away from danger, then Bjorn is in position for a good Sunday.

    Hopefully, a good showing will refrain ESPN from showing his past collapse at Royal St. George’s on a continuous loop. 

Martin Kaymer Odds: 16/1

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    None of the golf commentators are predicting that Martin Kaymer will sneak up on the leaders and walk away with a major championship tomorrow. He will need his putter to catch on fire in order to make up some necessary ground.

    I love to see him win, but he failed to capitalized on too many opportunities to move up the leaderboard, and that will come back to haunt you. 

Miguel Angel Jimenez Odds 18/1

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    Miguel Angel Jimenez’s chances of winning this championship have increased, as the winner might need experience and patience to hold the claret jug.

    He has received little TV time, but his play has been steady all throughout.

    Does anyone believe Jimenez will win? Does Jimenez even believe he will win?

    We’ll find out on Sunday evening. 

Lucas Glover Odds: 18/1

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    It might be too many strokes to make up, but this has been a memorable Open Championship for Lucas Glover.

    His putter has betrayed him at times, as Glover will need a great round to win at Royal St. George’s.

    It’s amazing that he’s still in contention, despite going 28 straight holes without recording a birdie. 

Phil Mickelson Odds: 20/1

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    Is a big day ahead for Phil Mickelson? This is as close as he had been since being six shots off the lead at Troon in 2004.

    How ironic that his next major could be the British, after all of the near misses at the U.S. Open. Lefty has brought a different approach to playing on foreign soil by hitting low shots to be more effective.

    Tough odds for him on Sunday, as Mickelson must shoot a 65 and hope for everyone ahead to fall back.

    No matter how you feel about Lefty, it’s fun to watch him play.