2011 Masters Odds: Martin Kaymer and the Top 10 Europeans Who Could Win

Mark MillerCorrespondent IApril 6, 2011

2011 Masters Odds: Martin Kaymer and the Top 10 Europeans Who Could Win

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    DORAL, FL - MARCH 11:  Martin Kaymer of Germany plays a bunker shot on the 15th hole during the completion of the first round of the 2011 WGC- Cadillac Championship at the TPC Blue Monster at the Doral Golf Resort and Spa on March 11, 2011 in Doral, Flori
    Scott Halleran/Getty Images

    It used to be an American onslaught in the World Golf Rankings, as it seemed that foreigners rarely held the majority in the top 10.

    Mainstays like Tiger and Phil would hold down the top while the rest would back them up.

    Things have certainly changed. As of this past week, only four of the top 10 spots in the world rankings were held by Americans, and we're seeing more and more international players contend on Sundays.

    With the Masters less than two days away, a number of European players find themselves in great shape, aiming for a green addition to their wardrobes.

1. Lee Westwood: 14 to 1

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    HUMBLE, TX - MARCH 31:  Lee Westwood of England hits a drive during the first round of the Shell Houston Open at Redstone Golf Club on March 31, 2011 in Humble, Texas.  (Photo by Michael Cohen/Getty Images)
    Michael Cohen/Getty Images

    Coming off of a second-place finish in last year's Masters, Lee Westwood is swinging a good club as he heads to Augusta.

    Currently ranked No. 2 in the world, Westwood hasn't finished outside of the top 25 in a major tournament in nearly two years, so there's no reason to think he won't be contending once again this weekend.

2. Martin Kaymer: 14 to 1

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    DORAL, FL - MARCH 12:  Martin Kaymer of Germany hits a bunker shot on the 16th hole during the third round of the 2011 WGC- Cadillac Championship at the TPC Blue Monster at the Doral Golf Resort and Spa on March 12, 2011 in Doral, Florida.  (Photo by Mike
    Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

    Martin Kaymer failed to make the cut in each of his first three appearances at Augusta. This year promises to be a different story.

    Kaymer is currently No. 1 in the World Golf Rankings and has finished in the top 25 three times this season, including a second-place finish in the WGC Match Play Championship.

    If he's able to continue his strong putting and take advantage of his skill from the sand, he should be able to contend as the weekend approaches.

3. Rory McIlroy: 20 to 1

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    DORAL, FL - MARCH 13:  Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland hits his tee shot on the ninth hole during the final round of the 2011 WGC- Cadillac Championship at the TPC Blue Monster at the Doral Golf Resort and Spa on March 13, 2011 in Doral, Florida.  (Photo
    Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

    He hasn't played in the States since his 10th-place finish at the WGC Cadillac Championship in March, but that shouldn't deter from his stock this week.

    McIlroy has amazing talent and plays without fear. He missed the cut at the Masters last year but managed to finish tied for 20th at Augusta in 2009.

    If he can play within his limits and avoid making the mistakes that players pay dearly for at Augusta, he should make the cut once again and may find himself playing late on Sunday.

4. Luke Donald: 22 to 1

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    DORAL, FL - MARCH 13:  Luke Donald of England hits his tee shot on the third hole during the final round of the 2011 WGC- Cadillac Championship at the TPC Blue Monster at the Doral Golf Resort and Spa on March 13, 2011 in Doral, Florida.  (Photo by Mike E
    Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

    Since winning the WGC Match Play Championship in late February, Luke Donald has made only two starts on tour. 

    A 10th-place finish at the Honda Classic and a sixth-place finish in the WGC Cadillac Championship show that Donald is capable of playing with the best the world has to offer.

    With two top-10 finishes at Augusta, he should continue his 2011 trend of consistent contention this weekend.

5. Paul Casey: 25 to 1

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    PALM HARBOR, FL - MARCH 17:  Paul Casey of England plays a shot on the 7th hole during the first round of the Transitions Championship at Innisbrook Resort and Golf Club on March 17, 2011 in Palm Harbor, Florida.  (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Images)
    Sam Greenwood/Getty Images

    With three top 20 finishes in four events this season, Paul Casey has been the model of consistency that he had hoped for after a strong 2010. 

    Casey is a very long hitter who is also ranked 14th on tour in greens in regulation, so it's no surprise that many are picking Casey to contend on Sunday.

6. Graeme McDowell: 25 to 1

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    ORLANDO, FL - MARCH 24:  Graeme McDowell of Northern Ireland drives from the 16th tee during the first round of the 2011 Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by Mastercard at the Bay Hill Lodge and Country Club on March 24, 2011 in Orlando, Florida.  (Pho
    David Cannon/Getty Images

    The reigning U.S. Open champion is playing with a sense of determination in 2011. Graeme McDowell has finished in the top 10 in three of his five starts on tour this season and he is showing the mechanics of a disciplined player ready for the test that Augusta presents.

    McDowell has made the cut only once in three appearances at Augusta, but the No. 5-ranked player in the world seems poised to improve on the 17th-place finish he posted in 2009.

7. Padraig Harrington: 33 to 1

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    PALM HARBOR, FL - MARCH 18:  Padraig Harrington of Ireland plays a shot on the 9th hole during the second round of the Transitions Championship at Innisbrook Resort and Golf Club on March 18, 2011 in Palm Harbor, Florida.  (Photo by Sam Greenwood/Getty Im
    Sam Greenwood/Getty Images

    After getting off to a relatively slow start this year, Padraig Harrington emerged this past weekend in Houston.

    Finishing in a tie for eighth in his final tuneup before the Masters, Harrington appears to be playing well enough to improve further.

    Harrington has finished in the top 10 at Augusta three times. While he missed the cut in all but one major last year (U.S. Open), he knows the course well and could contend with some improvement on his driving accuracy.

8. Ian Poulter: 40 to 1

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    ORLANDO, FL - MARCH 24:  Ian Poulter of England hits his tee shot right at the 16th hole during the first round of the 2011 Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by Mastercard at the Bay Hill Lodge and Country Club on March 24, 2011 in Orlando, Florida.  (
    David Cannon/Getty Images

    Having finished in the top 25 in each of the last four years at Augusta, Ian Poulter clearly knows what it takes to contend for a Green Jacket.

    Poulter lacks distance, so he'll need to rely on his precision if he's going to avoid all of the obstacles that the course presents. But being ranked third in sand saves, he surely has what it takes to get up and down in a pinch.

9. Justin Rose: 50 to 1

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    ORLANDO, FL - MARCH 27:  Justin Rose of England plays his second shot on the 18th hole during the final round of the 2011 Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by Mastercard at the Bay Hill Lodge and Country Club on March 27, 2011 in Orlando, Florida.  (Ph
    David Cannon/Getty Images

    Justin Rose has quietly had a very good year on tour thus far. In eight events played, Rose has finished in the top 10 three times, including two top-five finishes.

    Rose has only once finished in the top 10 at Augusta but is ranked third on tour in greens in regulation this year, a stat that could put Rose in good shape if he's able to continue the trend.

10. Francesco Molinari: 50 to 1

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    DORAL, FL - MARCH 12:  Francesco Molinari of Italy lines up a putt on the first hole during the third round of the 2011 WGC- Cadillac Championship at the TPC Blue Monster at the Doral Golf Resort and Spa on March 12, 2011 in Doral, Florida.  (Photo by Mik
    Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images

    Francesco Molinari hasn't made many appearances on tour this season, so we don't have much of a sample size to go off of.

    Two things that are in Molinari's favor: driving accuracy and greens in regulation. Molinari is the top-ranked player on tour, hitting an impressive 78-percent of greens in regulation, and he ranks third in driving accuracy at 75 percent.

    At a course that penalizes for inaccuracy, Molinari should be able to capitalize on his consistent production.