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Open field at Augusta ahead of Golf’s first major of the year

The 2018 US Masters is almost upon us, with the triumphant individual not only receiving the honour of donning the famous green jacket at the Augusta National, but also taking home a $1.9m slice of the $11m purse.

It could be argued that a plethora of names are serious contenders to be on top upon the tournaments culmination this Sunday (April 8), with Coral having as many as twelve of the worlds best priced between 8/1 and 18/1.

Factor in the fact that last years winner, Spain’s Sergio Garcia, was available for as much as 40/1 before last year’s offering, could it be argued that this is one of the more bookmaker friendly sporting competitions on the annual calendar?

John Hill, Public Relations Manager at Coral, has been addressing this, in addition to the unusual situation bookies could find themselves in this weekend: “We have taken an even spread on the majority of the leading contenders for the tournament, however, just like in the 00s, we will be fearing Tiger Woods who has been subject to a huge gamble for the past couple of months.

“We may end up with a rare scenario where we could be cheering on one of the younger players at the top of the betting such as Jordan Spieth or Justin Thomas.”

World number four Spieth is the current favourite (8/1), ahead of Rory McIlroy (9/1) and the United States duo of Justin Thomas and Dustin Johnson, who are currently available at 10/1.

On the eve of golf’s first major of the year, with the US Open, The Open Championship (British Open) and PGA Championship still to follow, Hill states who has been interesting punters thus far: “We are paying 10 places this year to our each-way customers which is proving extremely popular.

“Punters are not being afraid to back many of the bigger priced players with this concession. Thomas Pieters, Ian Poulter and Matt Kuchar are three men who we’d love not to see inside the top 10 at the end of the weekend.”

Before concluding with those who are spearheading this year’s UK charge: “Justin Rose went very close last year to becoming the latest British player to land the Green Jacket. With McIlroy, Rose and Paul Casey all playing well at the moment, there is every chance we could have another winner from these shores. The British players are always popular with punters so it would unlikely be a great result for us.”

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