Rory McIlroy and Brooks Koepka have been installed as the favourites for the 2019 Open Championship, held at the Royal Portrush Golf Club in Northern Ireland for the first time since 1951.
Bet365 (h/t Oddschecker.com) have handed McIlroy odds of 9-1, while Koepka comes in at 10-1. Here is a look at some other top contenders:
Dustin Johnson: 16-1
Jon Rahm: 16-1
Tiger Woods: 20-1
Justin Rose: 20-1
Francesco Molinari: 25-1
Here are the latest World Golf Rankings ahead of the tournament:
McIlroy's status as one of the favourites shouldn't come as a surprise. The 30-year-old has consistently performed well at the Open for years now, finishing in the top five in the last three editions and winning in 2014.
He also knows Royal Portrush well, having set the course record at the age of just 16:
He has two wins on the season and finished in the top 10 in the last two majors. The pressure will be on when he plays in front of his own fans, but for good reason, as his strong form makes him a top contender.
The same holds true for Koepka, who won two majors last year and has finished in the top 10 at the Open on two occasions. He won the PGA Championship earlier this season, and while his form since hasn't been great, he always seems to turn it up on the big stage.
Defending champion Francesco Molinari was one of the standouts of 2019, but according to Golf Central's Jaime Diaz, the Italian hasn't been the same this year:
Golf Central @GolfCentral
Some would argue that Francesco Molinari – not Brooks Koepka – had the better complete season last year. But one thing is for sure: once-bulletproof Molinari has lacked that firepower this year as he begins his defense at #TheOpen, writes @JaimeDiazGC: https://t.co/O5JVqUKyPY https://t.co/ypPq3NQs0B
Molinari took fifth place at the Masters this year, but he has struggled since.
Henrik Stenson carries great form into the tournament, with top-10 finishes in Canada, the U.S. Open and Scottish Open. He also has a sterling track record in this tournament, winning in 2016 and cracking the top three twice more.
Tiger Woods has been absent during the preparations for this year's Open, taking on a light workload as far as tournaments go. He hasn't been sitting still, however, adjusting to the time difference well in advance:
The 43-year-old has won the Open three times, and his last win was in 2006.
Prediction: McIlroy delivers on a unique chance to win on home soil.