Singh When You're Winning

  • By: Ben Coley
  • Last Updated: August 11 2012, 12:01 BST

Vijay Singh: Superb value at the price

2pts Vijay Singh to win his two-ball at 5/2 (sportingbet).


A total of 156 players started the PGA Championship and one of them is causing havoc from a betting perspective.

No, I'm not talking about Tiger Woods, who has moved into a three-way tie of the lead. I'm talking about Joost Luiten, somehow the only man in the field with a hole of his second round still to play.

Currently at +1, Luiten can't affect the top 10 so bookmakers have priced up the final five matches, but at this stage nothing more.

I was half tempted to side with Blake Adams, who played superbly on Friday to shoot 71 and on this season's form shouldn't be 5/4 to outscore Trevor Immelman.

Adams hits a lot of greens and is among the best short-range putters on Tour, a valuable asset when players are likely to face a fair few five to 10 foot par putts.

However, Immelman is the one with major-winning form whereas for Adams, this is a whole new ball game. He's 115th in round three scoring average this season, and may struggle now within sight of the lead.

With that in mind, it's a match I have to leave alone from a punting perspective.

Adam Scott is the one I'd consider having a good wager on at a short price. He's up against compatriot Aaron Baddeley and, as well as owning a far superior record in majors, is in a different league when it comes to ball-striking.

I expect Scott to outscore Baddeley, but I can't argue that odds of 4/7 are inaccurate so he too is left alone.

It's a similar case when it comes to Rory McIlroy and Jamie Donaldson, with McIlroy the man most likely but priced accordingly.

In fact, there is a temptation to back Donaldson given that he's 9/4 and is proven in the conditions players are likely to face.

However, camp McIlroy reckon he's more than capable of coping in the wind and while I'm well aware that calm conditions suit him better, I can't help but think that the 'McIlroy can't play in the wind' argument has rather been blown out of proportion, if you'll forgive the accidental wordplay.

Again, I expect Rory to put his major experience to good use and emerge best of the pair, but I can't back him at 1/2.

Ian Poulter and Carl Pettersson looks a pick 'em, and so to the final two-ball - Tiger Woods and Vijay Singh

Don't get me wrong, if you offered me even-money each of two I'd run to Tiger, but there's no way in my eyes Singh should be chalked up at 5/2 and he's a superb bet at the price.

We are talking about a guy who has finished ninth and seventh in his last two starts, and who just so happens to be a former world number one, Hall Of Fame golfer.

Of course, that doesn't entitle him to anything in the here and now, but his current form and stunning second-round 69 do entitle him to a good deal more respect.

Singh is an incredible ball-striker, putts better on these slower greens nowadays and, best of all, fears nobody. He's one of few men who can say they'll relish playing with Tiger and mean it.

One of the hardest workers - no, the hardest worker - in golf, Singh has talked about being more focused and trusting his swing, and the results suggest it's really starting to pay off.

Tiger, meanwhile, is putting like a man ready to win another major. But wasn't that the case when he shared the lead after two rounds of the US Open, only to fall back with a third-round 75?

Woods is the most likely winner of this two-ball, and he's the most likely winner of the PGA Championship, but Singh is no 5/2 chance to outscore him today.

  • Preview posted at 1045 BST on 11/08/2012.