South Africa’s Louis Oosthuizen plays his shot from the 17th during the first round British Open Golf Championship at Royal St George’s golf course Sandwich, England, Thursday, July 15, 2021. (AP Photo/Peter Morrison)
- Louis Oosthuizen leads the 149th Open Championship by one shot after round one
- Jordan Spieth is the slight betting favorite to win outright over Oosthuizen
- See the updated odds at Royal St. Georges Golf Club below for Friday’s second round within the story below
There are only three certainties in life – death, taxes, and Louis Oosthuizen on the first page of a leaderboard at a major championship. The 2010 Open champion, who has finished runner-up in the last two majors, shot a sizzling 6-under, 64 to grab the early edge over 2017 champion Jordan Spieth and Brian Harman. Going low was the easiest it’s ever been in the 149-year history of this prestigious championship, as 70.9 was the lowest first-round scoring average in the history of golf’s oldest championship.
Tournament favorite Jon Rahm shot a pedestrian 1-over, 71, and finds himself a full seven behind Oosthuizen. Other big names who don’t find themselves near the top of the board include Rory McIlroy (EVEN), Bryson DeChambeau (+1), Justin Thomas, and Patrick Reed (+2). 2021 PGA Champion Phil Mickelson is tied for last after posting an 80. 52 of the last 60 winners have been at or within four shots of the lead after the opening round.
Read on to see the updated Open Championship odds and the best bets heading into Friday’s second round.
Updated 2021 British Open Odds
|Golfer||Position||Score||Odds at FanDuel|
Odds as of July 15th at 4:30pm EST
2021 Open Championship Odds Tracker
Morikawa Continues Solid Form
We were high on 2020 PGA champion Collin Morikawa entering the week with his +3500 odds to win outright, and he didn’t disappoint, shooting a 3-under, 67 to sit three off the pace. He’d been playing phenomenal golf entering the Open, but his odds were higher than they would’ve been because this was the first time playing this event.
That didn’t faze him en route to his first major title at Harding Park last year, as he also won the PGA in his debut performance. The last Open champion to win in their first try was Ben Curtis in 2003, coincidentally also at this track.
Collin Morikawa’s Last Six Individual Tournaments
|Charles Schwab Challenge||T-14th|
Morikawa’s recent play has been outstanding, as he’s racked up six straight top-20’s, including two top-10’s in the last two majors, and a runner-up in a playoff at the Memorial. He also putted better than the field average on day one (and has been much better recently), which is his downfall if he doesn’t play as well since he’s first in strokes gained tee-to-green on the campaign compared to 172nd in putting.
His odds of +1600 are much more intriguing than that of leader Oosthuizen and betting favorite Spieth simply because they’re more than three times as long as the other two, and the 2021 WGC-Workday Championship winner has already proven he can win big tournaments.
2021 British Open Best Live Value Picks
- Dustin Johnson (+1800): Dustin Johnson was another one of our pre-tournament picks because he’s played much more solidly of late following an uncharacteristic swoon. He was also appealing because he was T-2nd at this venue back in 2011. After day one, DJ is just four back after hitting 14 of 18 greens.
- Tommy Fleetwood (+1800): Englishman Tommy Fleetwood did one better than Johnson on Thursday, looking to build off his runner-up finish at the last Open in 2019. He made five birdies in round one and has had three top-5’s in his career at majors, two of which were second place finishes. Has knocked on the door in the past and this could be the week he goes through it.
Michael “Hound Dog” Harrison is well known in the sports industry as the resident statistician for the SC with Jay Onrait Show. He has worked at TSN for over 13 years, where he’s been featured on Sportscentre, That’s Hockey, That’s Hockey 2Nite, The Masters preview shows, and several more.