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It was unthinkable just a few short weeks ago, but now Tiger Woods is officially the bookmakers favourite to win the 2018 Masters.

Across the bookmakers, Woods just shades Dustin Johnson at average odds of 8/1 and is joint favourite with DJ on the PaddyPower betting website.

As always the bookies motivation behind the installation of Woods as favourite is questionable but strong of body and mind, putting well, swinging hard and and after a T2 last week at The Valspar followed by a strong start at Bay Hill is does seem logical.

Woods last played the Masters, literally off the sofa and injured, in 2015 and remarkably sat in a tie for fifth after three rounds before finishing T17.

He last won a Green Jacket in 2005.

Are we about to see a miracle happen?  The bookies think so. And they are rarely wrong.

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**Breaking News** Congrats Angela and Sergio on the birth of their new baby Azalea Adele García in Texas. Pic via Sergio on Twitter!!!

Turned out this parody was prophetic!!

Sergio Garcia continued the tradition of Masters Champions donating an item of special significance to Augusta National by gifting his wife's Spain Bikini to the collection.

"I came back to the rental house at Augusta a bit down in the dumps after the first round last year and next thing Angela just jumped up out from behind the wardrobe with this Spain bikini on and she was like bouncing up and down and bending over and stuff and it just lifted my......spirits," Garcia told reporters.  "So much so that I actually wore the entire bikini under my clothes during the final round.  The excruciating tension of the knicker section on my ballsack really kept me focussed."
Related: 2018 Arnold Palmer Invitational Betting Preview And Tips

The bikini, adorned with the Spanish national crest on both boobs, will be displayed in the Augusta National grill room alongside Horton Smith's putter from the very first Masters and Tiger Woods famous 6-iron that came through the back window of his SUV.

And besides she's heavily pregnant right now, man she's huge, big as a walrus on a David Attenborough documentary, and she can't bear the sight of the bikini anymore!," Garcia joked as he left to meet friends for beers. "Better keep my phone on though in case there's some news!!"

More as it emerges.

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2018 Arnold Palmer Invitational Betting Preview And Expert Tips

March 15th – 18th, 2018
Bay Hill Club, Orlando, Florida
Par: 72 / Yardage: 7,419
Purse: $8.9 million with $1,602,000 to the winner
Defending Champion: Marc Leishman

2018 Arnold Palmer Invitational Betting Preview and Tips

Anyone who was worried that the popularity of the Arnold Palmer Invitational would wane following the passing of The King need not have and this 40th Anniversary field welcomes back Tiger Woods for the first time since 2013.  Arnold was there on the 18th green that day when Woods won for the eighth time and it will be intriguing to see how the fit again legend will fare.

Favourite Watch

Tiger is back and the world is good again.

Well no surprise with his Bay Hill record that Tiger is 13/2 with the bookies, but you have to take into account he's coming off a demanding week at The Valspar and there's still a fragility there given the physical demands of these two weeks on a player still in the early stages of his comeback.  For me the real value in this category is Jason Day at 12/1.  He won here in 2016 and looks back to his booming best this season with a win at The Farmers and T2 at Pebble.  One caveat, he may be rusty after time off.

Doc's Top Five Each Way Bets

Justin Rose 14/1

You just know Rosey didn't drink that pint.

I know I know I know it kills me to tip a guy with odds as low as 14/1 but Justin Rose putted so well last week at The Valspar that he simply cannot be left off your Bay Hill shortlist.  Rosey was T5 at Innisbrook and can look forward to the same TifEagle Bermuda grass on the greens this week.  Four top 10's from a dozen starts in this event, I think he can go one better and win this week.

Tyrrell Hatton 25/1

Tyrrell coming up on the rails.

Backed up early season promise in Abu Dhabi (T15) and Dubai (T3) with a strong T3 at the WGC Mexico and his stats there looked super strong across the board.  T4 on his debut here last year and looks a happy man on the course right now.

Kevin Na 66/1

Kevin loves a bit of rough.

With Bay Hill a much tougher prospect now than years ago (-11 won last year) I'm bringing in Kevin Na at a generous 66/1. Na sits top of the stats on 0.933 for strokes gained around the green and his expertise will be needed here. Not a regular at this event but with 3 top-10's on his last six visits and coming off a T2 last time out at Riviera he can pay out each way.

Kiradech Aphibarnrat 50/1

You have to be 40 to understand

Didn’t play in the event last year but Kiradech putted his way to a pair of T6 finishes here in 2016 and 2015.  Coming in full of confidence after his win in Perth and T5 last time out at WGC Mexico.  Way overpriced at 50/1 and a super each way bet.

Adam Scott 33/1

It would make you puke right!!

It's really hard to believe how Adam Scott is as long as 33/1 but as excellent a ball striker as he is, he really has struggled to get the ball into the hole on the greens.  A T13 at The Honda and T16 at The Valspar where he hit 50 greens in regulation indicate he's simmering and just needs one good week with the flat-stick to contend.  Solo third here in 2014.

Long Odds Glory Shots

On yer bike LooLoo

Louis Oosthuizen 60/1 is trending upwards and looks to be timing his form just right for The Masters.  He's looking to back up a T16 at The Valspar with another solid showing this week.  Conditions are forecast warm and sunny for Bay Hill; I'm sure Louis will be hoping for some wind to blow.

Emiliano Grillo 66/1 had a  brain fart on Saturday in India last week (78) but a solo 6th there to go along with a T8 at The Honda and T12 at The Farmers say he's in good form.  T7 at Bay Hill last year and T17 on his debut in 2016.  Definitely worth your consideration.

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There was an uneasy atmosphere during the closing stages the Valspar Championship after local prick Derek Corless announced to everyone in the pub he had Paul Casey backed at 80/1.

The smug bastard, 27, spent up to 10 minutes passing his phone around with the Bet365 app open to demonstrate his superior intelligence to his fellow drinkers.

The mood in the pub then took a further nosedive as lads realised they would have to root for Patrick feckin' Reed if the know-all bollix was to be thwarted.

Corless, who is just back from 10 days skiing, has a fucking tan and drinks craft beers cemented his reputation as a hateful bastard by then winning five straight games of pool.

The absolute wank bag also reckons he put €100 on Tiger Woods to win The Masters. When Tiger was 1000/1 back in January.

More as it emerges.

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There were joyous scenes at the Copperhead Course at Innisbrook yesterday as Tiger Woods completed a glorious comeback to the top of the golf world by winning the Valspar Championship.

Tiger Woods holds aloft the Valspar trophy after his glorious victory.
Woods was imperious throughout his final round and sealed the win with a thrilling 44 foot birdie putt on the 17th.

Nobody could match Woods winning total of nine under par, especially not Patrick Reed or Englishman Paul Casey.

The win is Woods 80th on the PGA Tour.

Tiger is now a 10/1 shot for the Masters and he's going to win that too.

PS: Woods is also back to World No.1 in the latest rankings.

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This week as part of the Golfbidder Help and Advice series I tackle the topic of choosing the perfect set of wedges to suit your game and your golf bag.

Understanding the basics is the keys to choosing wedges.
Thanks to wedge expert Jeremy Stone from Titleist.  Please give the video a LIKE and Subscribe to Golfbidder's YouTube channel if you enjoy it!

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Russian Hackers are being blamed for the complete fuck up that is the 2018 Golf Digest Ireland Top 100 Golf Courses list, according to sources.

The Kaspersky Lab hacking group are believed to have gained access to the Golf Digest Ireland excel file containing the rankings using the secret password "showmethemoney" then rearranged the rankings to put a load of bang average courses in the top-20.

The hack was only discovered after the magazine had gone to print by a reader who noticed the famous Old Head Links was named "Best Parkland Course" in Ireland.

It is believed The European Club's ranking was left untouched by the hacking group after a direct order came down from Vladimir Putin himself not to fuck with Pat Ruddy.

Officially Russia is denying any involvement in infiltrating the list though officials from the Kremlin did say that Ballyliffin is a way better track than Portmarnock but it's a hoore to get to.

Here's some debate on facebook.

More as it emerges.

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With the Masters around the corner and Tiger Woods slowly but very surely getting back up to tournament speed it seemed almost crazy that he should take this dangerous shot on from against a tree during his first round at The Valspar, knowing that it could have resulted in serious injury.

Tiger could have punched out of the woods to safety but took on the glory shot which carried with it a heavy blow to the hip.

A post shared by PGA TOUR (@pgatour) on

There's also a full 2 minute video of the shot on facebook here

The result? A 70 for Woods and three shots off the lead.  Maybe it was worth it.

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Gary Player today recounted a completely different version of events to Jack Nickalus regarding the case of the stolen Rolex.

Gary demonstrating the ball sack kick he used on Barry.

This is Player's account.

And here is what Jack had to say last year.

Which do you believe?
I believe it is more fantastic impressionist work from the very talented Steven Connolly.  Make sure to follow him on twitter and on YouTube 

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2018 Valspar Championship Betting Preview And Expert Tips

March 8th – 11th, 2018
Innisbrook Resort (Copperhead Course), Palm Harbor, Florida
Par: 71 / Yardage: 7,340
Purse: $6.5 million with $1,170,000 to the winner
Defending Champion: Adam Hadwin

Last week: Phil Mickelson Winner 22/1

Every week I pick the best odds available across the bookies and if you need a new betting account or fancy some free bets make to check out the New Customer Offer for the latest deals.
2018 Valspar Betting Preview and Tips
2018 Valspar Betting Preview and Tips

Favourite Discussion

No surprise really to see Jordan Spieth as heavily fancied 8/1 favourite. His "slump" has actually  included 5 top-20 finishes from six starts and his T14 in Mexico showed serious signs of improved putting.  I never back win only but in this category I would choose Sergio Garcia at 16/1 all day long.  It's his first time back to Palm Harbour since 2013 when he tied seventh but on this tight tree lined and undulating track he'll be at home.  Impressive T7 in Mexico last week and will enjoy the wind and TifEagle Bermuda greens here.

Doc's Top Five Each Way Valspar Bets

Henrik Stenson 20/1

Henrik doesn't try to be cool at home. He just is.

I'm discounting a T60 last time out in Malaysia as strange (sweaty and belly) things happen there and looking more at Henrik's early season 8th in Abu Dhabi and T6 in Dubai for comfort.  The Masters is coming fast on the horizon and this is his chance to build momentum. T7, T11 and 4th on his previous three starts at Copperhead, a course tailor made for his game.

Tony Finau 28/1

Tony Finau. He can dunk. Wearing warm clothes

I'm going to go with Tony Finau this week even if the track is a par-71 tight and tree lined!  That's because it still retains a full set of four par-5's AND Tony went a cumulative -5 for the five par-3's on his way to a solo 5th last year. (I know!!! Who else knows this shit!!!)  He also ranked T2 in Greens in Regulation last year and after recent good showings the Genesis (T2) and Farmers (T6) he can contend.

Kevin Streelman 50/1

Kevin Streelman is straighter than The Rock

Kevin Streelman knows what its like to win at Copperhead and even though the greens have been reseeded since his 2013 victory I think he enters this year in very solid form with a top-20 driving accuracy clip in his last six starts and top-two Greens in Regulation numbers in four of his last six.  Recent best of solo sixth at Pebble.

Related Post: Video: Phil Mickelson's Act Of Sportsmanship To Help Shubhankar Sharma Was Class

Ryan Moore 40/1

Ryan Moore is not reliable and yet I tip him!

Treat this one with caution. Because Ryan Moore has been my rasher pick (streaky) over the years who has flummoxed me on more than one occasion. For instance last time out at The Honda, nobody drove it straighter OR found more greens than Ryan who then took 128 putts and finished T45th! And this after a T9 at Riviera when plenty dropped!  Two top-fives from his last three visits to Palm Harbor says he makes my five. If he practised his putting!

Byeong Hun An 40/1

Ben An. His caddie Dan is handsome enough for both of them!

Ben didn't do well on his debut at Copperhead (T49th) last year but comes in rested this year after a T5 at The Honda which included a weekend 69, 65 and an excellent putting performance.  A T23 in Phoenix and T6 in Dubai and team Ben and Dan are on track for a big week.

Long Odds Glory Shots

Stricks. Still cool.

Steve Stricker 66/1 plays on the big boy Tour this week after winning the Coolgaurd Classic on the Seniors version last Sunday. Loves Copperhead and if Phil can win aged 47 who's to say a confident Stricks can't place.

When Charles Howell 80/1 wants money he just goes out and gets some! He has four career top-10's at Copperhead and looks super odds.

Dominic Bozzelli 125/1 might not be a household name but he was T3 here last year and has improved in his last starts from a T26 at Riviera to a T13 at Palm Beach Gardens.

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Phil Mickelson's win at the WGC Mexico was absolutely thrilling but for me the moment when he took time out during a high pressure moment to help playing partner Shubhankar Sharma.

Rather than bring in a referee to give a ruling over a TV wire close to his ball, Phil talked the Indian players clearly through the process of taking relief and stayed with him while he took it.

Well done Phil. Pure Class.

Vid tnx: Kashif I. Arshad @kashifiarshad

What's In The Bag Phil Mickelson 2018

Driver: Callaway Rogue Sub Zero (9 degrees) with a Project X HZRDUS T1100 shaft.
Fairway Wood: Callaway Rogue Sub Zero (13.5 degrees) with a Mitsubishi Fubuki J shaft.
Hybrid: Callaway Rogue (19 degrees) with a KBS Hybrid shaft.
Irons: Callaway Epic Pro (4-iron), Callaway X Forged 18 (5-PW) with KBS Tour V 125 shafts.
Wedges: Callaway Mack Daddy PM Grind (56, 60, 64 degrees) with KBS Tour V 125 shafts.
Putter: Odyssey Versa No. 9 White
Golf Ball: Callaway Chrome Soft X

Phil's Winning Stats Breakdown

As always with Phil Mickelson he defied the performance stats to win WGC Mexico.  Leftie hit just 27 fairways over the four rounds (T57 in the field) with his Callaway Rogue Sub Zero driver and fairway wood averaging 302.4 yards at altitude.
However its with his X Forged 18 irons that Leftie's magic begins and he found 50 greens in regulation (just six less than field leader Bubba Watson) then needed just 27.3 putts average or 109 total with his Odyssey Versa No. 9 White putter.  With brother Tim on the bag, Phil crafted 22 birdies over the week to craft a cumulative -2, -7, -7 split on the Par 3's ,4's and 5's.

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The startling drop over the last five years of people watching golf on TV is primarily down to sites like Pornhub, say the PGA Tour.

In a new "grow the game" report released today the PGA Tour point to its ongoing battle with hardcore pornography for viewers.

Pornhub Golf

"Back in the 2000's golf was at the height of its popularity because porn was slow to load and once you went on a site two or three times you'd seen all the good clips," PGA Tour boss Jay Monaghan told reporters. "Nowadays golf is up against excellent hardcore porn, often in HD and because of high speed broadband you can watch full movies without them stalling to load every 30 seconds.  You can have your categories like Matures, Vintage, Classic, German Grannies; its serious competition for us."

 "We will continue to strive to find ways to make watching Webb Simpson or JB Holmes stand over a shot for 5 minutes a more attractive proposition than Christy Canyon Compilation 6 including Honey Wilder bonus scene," Monaghan added.

More as it emerges.

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Concerns are growing that several American golfers attending this weeks WGC Mexico Championship are planning to flee the brutal regime in their own country and seek asylum in Mexico after it finishes.

Rumours grew credence after journalists noticed several American players, including Matt Kuchar and Bubba Watson arriving at Naucalpan, on the outskirts of Mexico City with their entire extended families in pick-up trucks heavily laden with suitcases and household pets.

Related: 2018 WGC Mexico Betting Preview And Tips

It is now thought that up to 30 American players who have grown exasperated with drug cartel violence and gun crime in the USA believe it is safer to live in Mexico and will make an attempt to flee the country for good on Sunday night.

Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto today warned American players against the move saying that without the appropriate documentation they could face lengthy detention periods in 6 star hotels in Cancun before deportation back to the USA.

“Our border controls are working 24/7 trying to stop the influx of illegal immigrants from the United States,” Nieto said, “I have also issued an order to ban all McDonalds and KFC restaurants from the environs of this weeks golf event in a bid to discourage any Americans thinking of staying”.

More as it emerges.

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European Tour boss Keith Pelley made his first public appearance of the year this morning on Sky Sports News and it wasn't what he said that grabbed attention so much as his choice of eyewear.

The Canadian, known on Tour as Dame Edna for his penchant for flamboyant glasses,  turned up at Sky Sports News HQ in London wearing a pair of skiing goggles and insisted on wearing them throughout the interview.

Pelley was appearing on the primetime 10.20am sportswomen slot to promote his new idea called The UVEX Series; a number of new mixed tournaments where shittier players that cant get into the Rolex Series get to play with women AND be stunned by electric cattle prods if they don't hit within 20 seconds then sprint like bejesus up the fairway.  Ryder Cup Captain Thomas Bjorn was mentioned as celebrity prodder.

Soon however attention turned to the goggles, with Pelley refusing to remove them when asked.

"I really don't see what all the fuss is aboot," he said.  It's snowing ootside and there's also a lot of glare in here off those studio lights. UVEX have wonderful all light condition goggles which protect my eyes in a highly skilled manner against harmful UVA and UVB rays. And hey, they come in a range of really trendy frame colours."

More as it emerges.

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2018 WGC-Mexico Championship Betting Preview and Tips

March 1st – 4th, 2018
Club de Golf Chapultepec, Mexico City, Mexico
Par: 71 / Yardage: 7,330
Purse: $10 million with $1,660,000 to the winner
Defending Champion: Dustin Johnson
2018 WGC Mexico Betting Tips

Favourite Discussion

Defending champ Dustin Johnson is super tight odds at 15/2 but I like the look of Jon Rahm at 12/1.  He putted great here last year but mucked up at the end for a T3.  A little older and a little wiser this time around he can get it done.

Doc's Top 5 Each Way Bets At WGC Mexico

Phil Mickelson 22/1

Phil returns after a week off and he'll be hoping to get right back up to the speed which has brought him a T5 in Phoenix, T2 at Pebble  and T6 last time out Riviera.  Lefty's 2018 putting splits are off the charts, he's driving it long and he's scrambling great again.  I never "fully expect" Phil to perform but let's just say all the stars are aligned this week. T7 here at Chapultepec last year.

Tommy Fleetwood 18/1

No surprise here really.  The Abu Dhabi early season winner found his PGA Tour legs last week with a solo 4th at Palm Beach Gardens with all around excellent stats (T11 Fairways, T14 Greens, T18 Putting)that suggest even greater things are to come. Solo second here last year. A no brainer.

Alex Noren 25/1

Alex is on a brilliant run of form since a T2 at The Farmers and contended all the way at The Honda last week before settling for solo third.  In his last four starts the Swede has not been outside the top-20 in driving accuracy, nor outside the top-15 in greens hit and his par-5 scoring stats rank with the elite.  His T55 in Mexico last year came after a MC in Perth in a poor run of form that's totally forgotten about now.

Patrick Cantlay 33/1

Impressed me with a T4 at Riviera hitting 52 greens in regulation, something that would be very welcome this week. Already a winner on the wraparound at The Shriners.  Looks for all the world like a man who can win a WGC.

Joost Luiten 100/1

Absolute lunacy that Joost is out at 100/1 this week and I'd be watching closely to see if the bookies trim his odds after this post.  The Dutchman is coming off a win last time out in Oman and finished T25 at Chapultepec last year when he hit 45 fairways and 58 greens in regulation; topping the field in both stats.  If he repeats that and gets the putter going on the on the fast Poa-bentgrass greens in Mexico he will contend.

Long Odds Glory Shot

Xander Schauffele  at 70/1 drives it long (not always straight mind) and is a very solid putter and after T9 at the Genesis last time out gets the nod from me!

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