At the previous major, Paul Krishnamurty bagged a 175/1 place on Chez Reavie. Check out his thoughts and outsider picks for Royal Portrush...
"Short game has long been Snedeker's forte and has earned him a stack of top-tens in the Masters and US Open...As a multiple Pebble Beach winner, one would expect him to fare well on links."
A major championship has a couple of implications for the strategy employed by this column. First, the pool of plausible, world-class players within our triple-figure odds range is much deeper than usual. So too are the number of markets from which choose.
Take the US Open as an example, where we earned a full place payout on 175/1 chance Chez Reavie in a market excluding five of the leading candidates. Had we chosen to back him each-way with ten places, that plan would have yielded extra place profits at 250/1.
However had we taken the enormous 680.0679/1 win only as a 'back to lay', the profit would have been much smaller as he would have only hit one of the lay targets. Decisions, decisions.
Snedeker suited to Portrush scrambling test
In the case of my first pick, win only odds of 240.0239/1 are tempting. However Snedeker has made a career of coming up just short in majors and the place part of this each-way bet - 20/1 about a top-ten finish - is rated superior value. He's in good form, registering a pair of top-fives last month.
In his comprehensive Open preview, Steve Rawlings identifies scrambling as the best stat to follow in this major and I think that will especially be the case at Portrush, due to the undulating greens and run-off areas.
Short game has long been Snedeker's forte - he's third for strokes gained: around the green - and has earned him a stack of top-tens in the Masters and US Open. He's only made that mark once in an Open when a competitive third in 2012 but, as a multiple Pebble Beach winner, one would expect him to fare well on links.
Improved Campillo under-rated on various markets
The other two selections are available at enormous odds on the exchange. Campillo is 590.0589/1 - incredible about a player who has a win among five top-three finishes since the beginning of March.
Granted he is not an obvious winner having missed the cut on his only previous appearance but this alternative market offers plenty of scope. By excluding the top-seven market leaders, this could be won without even getting close to winning the title. Twelfth overall could be enough for a full place at 32.5/1.
This consistent type is well up to that target and he has a good, improving record on relevant courses. Campillo finished third and seventh in the last two Irish Opens and two of his best 2019 results - winning the Trophee Hassan and second at the Qatar Masters - came in events that correlate very well with links.
Links-bred MacIntyre to thrive on debut
My final pick feels like more of an outsider than Campillo but is trading quite a bit shorter at 470.0469/1. Clearly others noted the potential for this very promising young Scot to thrive on links. By backing him for Top European, we are excluding 13 of the leading 19 contenders.
MacIntyre strikes me as just the type of homegrown youngster to make a name for himself on debut. When presented with winning opportunities in back-to-back second places in May, his bravery and attitude really impressed. One of those came on a links, Hillside, and has plenty of links experience from his amateur days.
Pepperell best value among the rest
Obviously if we're looking for a win only bet then others make better sense. Joe Dyer's each-way pick Eddie Pepperell is 110.0109/1 and my second best pick for the tournament after Adam Scott. Win and place, however, is preferred.
Both Dave Tindall and Steve Rawlings have gone for outsiders too, in Thorbjorn Olesen and Andrew Johnston. Two more players with excellent links pedigree on my radar are Tyrrell Hatton 120.0119/1 and Andy Sullivan at 260.0259/1 on the exchange.
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