Team USA could barely have asked for a better start and take a commanding 6-2 lead into day two. Is there a way back? Paul Krishnamurty isn't convinced and is backing a thrashing...
Latest score: USA 6-2 Europe
Saturday morning's foursomes draw
Is it all over bar the shouting? You will hear plenty of that this morning, for understandable reasons. Europe were well and truly bossed yesterday. By a superior side on paper and in better form, with the crowd behind them. They have a huge mountain to climb, no question. They need to reverse yesterday's one-sided scoreline merely to enter the Sunday singles on level terms. And even if reaching that position, the better set of individuals with home advantage are sure to start very strong favourites.
Money buyers beware - miracles do happen!
However I'm not going to dismiss the possibility. Not after a lifetime of betting. Nine years ago, I vividly recall chatting to a mate on the phone, wondering whether odds around 1.051/20 about USA were in fact too big, just as the Miracle of Medinah started. This is a man who dared to write on the third morning of the last Ashes test at Headingley, that there was no conceivable way England could win. I will never be allowed to forget spurning the opportunity to cash out of a massive Hillary Clinton position when she hit 1.081/12 for the 2016 US Election after the exit poll.
So, no, don't back USA at 1.141/7. It isn't worth the stress. If sport were so predictable, we wouldn't bother watching it. I will not, however, manufacture an argument to lay it and reckon there are some good value, less stressful ways of backing what seems highly likely based on the evidence.
On everything we saw yesterday, Europe are really struggling. There's no Rory McIlroy, Ian Poulter or Tommy Fleetwood in these foursomes. I find that inexcusable. Yes they were all poor yesterday, but great players rise to these occasions and golf form frequently transforms from round to round. The only bright spots yesterday were Jon Rahm, Sergio Garcia and Tyrrell Hatton. In total contrast, Team USA are absolutely flying.
Foursomes draw points to more of the same
To stay in this, they really must win the morning session. I just can't see it. Garcia and Rahm have a good chance in the opener, but Koepka/Berger will be no pushover. They did their jobs yesterday, sat out the afternoon, and I expect will come out strong. That is so often how it works with Ryder Cup winners. There is immense pressure on the Spaniards.
After that, I'm struggling to find another point for Europe. Cantlay and Schauffele were absolutely superb yesterday and look banker material against Westwood and Fitzpatrick. Neither were terrible but they made enough mistakes, missed too many putts and would look a weak pair against any US permutation. Let alone this very formidable pair of debutants, who renewed their successful Presidents Cup alliance in blistering fashion.
Spieth and Thomas weren't as formidable as in the past, but are a proven, class pairing. JT finished brilliantly last night to salvage a half point against Hovland and Fleetwood. Again, this Euro pair didn't disgrace themselves. They were just, predictably, behind the very best.
I'd give Casey and Hatton a squeak in the last, but still prefer Johnson/Morikawa on yesterday's evidence. Dustin is enjoying his best ever Ryder Cup by miles and may have finally found a foursomes partner.
Cantlay and Schauffele are the morning banker
Specifically for these morning matches, I'm only having one confident bet on Cantlay/Schauffele at 8/11. Otherwise I'm focused on the various options regarding winning margin or correct score.
Back USA to win by seven or more, and ten or more
One bright personal spot for me amid an otherwise grim day was backing USA for the -4.5 and -6.5 Handicaps before the second session at 2.01/1 and 3.185/40. The latter is now around even money and also across various options. In the Winning Margin market, USA by 7 or more is 2.0621/20. Likewise backing all the relevant correct scores amounts to the same.
That amounts to 11.5-8.5 for the remainder. So even if they merely tie 4-4 today, they'll need to win 7.5 out of 12 points in singles. Likely, perhaps odds-on depending on the draw. And made particularly plausible by the fact the Europeans may well be completely demoralised tomorrow as the crowd go ballistic. How many times have we seen that dynamic in reverse?
That bet is rated top value and lets also try a more ambitious win. 19-9, 19.5-8.5 and Any Other Home Win (20-8 plus) combines to around 4/1 on the Sportsbook market.
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