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Behind the lines

Woods favored to win Open

June 11, 2008|Lonnie White | Times Staff Writer

Tiger Woods, playing for the first time since knee surgery in April, is listed as a strong favorite to win the U.S. Open, which will begin Thursday at Torrey Pines South Course.

According to Sportsbetting.com's updated odds, Woods is listed at 5-2 to win, strong numbers for a golfer who missed the cut the last time he had a long layoff between the Masters and the U.S. Open in 2006.

Phil Mickelson and "the field" have the next best odds at 5-1, followed by Sergio Garcia at 15-1 and Geoff Ogilvy, Padraig Harrington, Vijay Singh and Jim Furyk at 25-1. Trevor Immelman, who won this year's Masters, is listed at 30-1 with four other golfers.

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Over the last 20 years, there have been five golf playoffs to decide the U.S. Open but none since 2001.

Maybe that explains why Las Vegas Hilton's sports book has "Will there be a playoff?" Yes (+270) or no (-330), as one of the best paying proposition bets available for this year's tournament.

That means a winning $100 bet on a playoff this weekend would pay $270, while a winning $330 wager on a playoff-less U.S. Open would pay $100.

As expected, there are numerous proposition bets connected to Woods and Mickelson. Here are a couple listed at the Las Vegas Hilton: Woods' first-round score? Over 72.5 (-110) or under 72.5 (-110); Mickelson's first-round score? Over 72.5 (-140) or under 72.5 (+120); will Woods or Mickelson win the U.S. Open? Yes (+190) or no (-220).

Bodoglife.com also has several Woods/Mickelson U.S. Open proposition bets: Will Woods miss the cut? Yes (+500); will Woods achieve a hole in one? Yes (+4,000); will Mickelson achieve a hole in one? Yes (+ 4,000); where will the winner come from? U.S. (8-15), Europe (10-3), rest of the world (11-2), Australia (10-1).

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lonnie.white@latimes.com

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