Golf Form Guide: Louis to become king of Sawgrass

Louis Oosthuizen is in terrific form ahead of this week's Players Championship

It's not often that you can back a pair of in-form, recent winners at over 40/1 to win a golf tournament, but that's exactly what's on offer this week for Mike Norman, and his money is down.

Oosthuizen has become one of the very best players in the world right now and his consistency, perhaps not quite on a par with Lee Westwood and Rory McIlroy, is quite remarkable for a player that continues to be underestimated in the game.


As is normal in sports betting, soon after a great result you are more often than not brought back down to earth with a bump.

That's exactly what happened last week. Jamie Donaldson didn't even start in Spain, George Coetzee was never in it, and Nicolas Colsaerts - despite recording a very respectable top-10 finish - never landed a blow at the top end of the leaderboard. It was a similar story in America - all three picks were never in it from the get go.

So here's hoping for some better luck this week where I've - understandably I'm sure you'll agree - concentrated solely on the Players Championship. It's one of my favourite tournaments of the year, even if it is just because of that hole.

Let me commence by saying that, even though I've incorporated the last four year's of results into this guide, I don't believe course form is as important here as it is at other tournaments - the US Masters (Augusta) for example.

Many people will completely disagree with me and say that good course form here is vital, but I'm not convinced one bit. If you're playing well then you can play well at Sawgrass, if you're not playing well, then Sawgrass will find you out. It's a very fair track that suits neither average-length hitters nor long hitters any more than the other. If you do disagree, then by all means, let me know why.


The Players Championship

Louis Oosthuizen (3)... 30
Luke Donald (2)... 23
(T5 2011)
Ernie Els (3)... 21.5 (T10 2008)
Lee Westwood (2)... 20.5 (T5 2009)
Francesco Molinari (2)... 20 (T10 2010)
Carl Petterrson (2)... 20
Ben Curtis (2)... 18
Brian Davis (3)... 17
(T10 2009)
Ian Poulter (2)... 17 (T5 2009)
Jason Dufner (2)... 15 (T10 2011)


*number in brackets after a player's name is the number of top-10 finishes achieved in last eight weeks/tournaments on tour
**information after a player's points relates to wins (W), top-five (T5) and top-10 (T10) finishes in corresponding tournament in previous four years


I have to admit, I'm absolutely loving the odds on offer about Louis Oosthuizen - 48.047/1 - to win this week and can't believe that he has been matched at 75.074/1.

Oosthuizen has become one of the very best players in the world right now and his consistency, perhaps not quite on a par with Lee Westwood and Rory McIlroy, is quite remarkable for a player that continues to be underestimated in the game. He's completed a total of seven strokeplay events this season, finished in the top-20 every time, won two events on the European Tour, finished third at a high-class Shell Houston Open, and lost out in a play-off at the Masters.

His form is up there with the very best going into this event and yet he's currently bordering on not even being in the top 12 in the betting, remarkable! At the price, he has to be backed.

Leave the room now if you don't want to here yet more ramblings on Westwood. I've labelled him the worst putter on tour - and out of the world's top 50 golfers, I truly believe he is one of the worst - and I've said I'll never back him again.

But the fact remains that, in my opinion, he is the best player in the world tee to green, and suspect putter or not (he missed from two feet, then three feet on the same hole last week) he is in contention week in, week out, and if his putting improved by just one shot per round he would probably be winning almost every tournament he played.

As always, there's nothing wrong with Westwood's form going into this week - third at the Masters, a win in Indonesia, fifth last week etc - and with a new caddie on the bag, who knows, those putts might just start dropping you know (*pig flies pas Mike Norman's house*).

My final selection is the player who did me proud a fortnight ago, Jason Dufner.

Yet another highly consistent player and someone who should have won a few times before he actually did, but there's a chance that this 'in-form' player will have had his confidence boosted immensely by getting over the line. I'm quietly confident that Dufner will make huge strides in the game over the next few years, he's that good.

Recommended Bets: Louis Oosthuizen @ 48.047/1, Lee Westwood @ 16.015/1, Jason Dufner @ 42.041/1


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