This week sees the final Major of the year take place at Carnoustie Golf club in Scotland just 1 hour North of last week’s Scottish Open. The 6th Major of the year if you count the Olympics is one of the final events where the Solheim cup players can cement their places on their respective teams or get themselves into the captain’s minds for picks. Carnoustie’s takes its turn to host the 45th edition of the championship for the 2nd time in the Open history having held previously in 2011. 16 under was the winning score in 2011 however, the cut was made at +1 so it played to its usual “Carnasty” nickname for the majority of players. Who can take home the share of the $4.5 million purse & place their name in history as the Open Champion 2021? Will it be one of the Asian players who have dominated the Open in recent years winning 10 of the last 20 Opens or can European add to the 5 they have won in the same period.
Carnoustie is located in the east of Scotland just north of Edinburgh. It has held The Open 7 times for the men but only once before for the ladies. Everybody knows how brutal this course can be when then wind gets up so the ladies will be praying for nice weather this week & currently the golfing gods look to be giving them calm dry conditions. 6606 yards will be making up the par 71 which is 116 yards longer than 2011. 3 par 3s, 13 par 4s & 2 par 5s will complete the scorecard. This week will see plenty of rough around the greens & fairways to make mistakes off the tee & missed approach shots punished so accuracy will be key this week.
The Open was held here back in 2011 where Yani Tseng defended the title she won in 2010. Her score of -16 was at the time one of the highest winnings scores but in recent years double figures have become the norm for winning scores at The Open except for Sophia Popov’s -7 winning score last year but that was in very high winds & tough conditions all week.
How it finished
Also, worth noting that 2 Amateurs made the cut & finished +2 & +11 who were Danielle Kang & Sophia Popov who are both now Major winners.
Lydia Ko 14-1 Unibet 6 Places
Lydia will turn up to Carnoustie still gleaming with pride after winning her 2nd Olympic medal & finishing joint 2nd at the Scottish Open after a final round 63 which was one of the rounds of the week. she was quoted after her 1st round saying how much she loves links golf & that the Scottish Open was prefect prep “I love playing links golf. You have to hit some different types of shots and be very creative. It’s fun and I think this course is a really good lead-up to Carnoustie” Lydia’s average scoring this year is up there with the best averaging 69.78 with 36 rounds under par out of 54 played. Ko already has a win this season winning the Lotte championship by 7 shots in April. Recent form reads 2-3-6-22-52
Attaya Thitkul 18-1 Skybet 7 Places
Attaya is my go-to so far this season picking her nearly every week & it’s easy to see why. In her last 10 starts this year she has finished outside the top 6 only once with a 25th place finish. She had a 2nd place last week at the Scottish Open & has a win at the Czech Open a few starts ago. She has played in the British Open 3 times before but only as an amateur winning low amateur the last 2 times she played in 2018 & 2019. She has the most birdie’s this season on the European tour with 127 & also leads the most eagles with 6. Jeeno jat as she is nicknamed is a green in regulation machine hitting 75.12% of greens & also 65.8% of fairways which will certainly help her birdie & eagle count. Current form reads 2-4-5-4-2
Ariya Jutanugarn 25-1 Unibet 6 Places
Ariya’s 4th place finish last week was enough for me to take her on this week. She already has an Open title to her name & will look to become a 2-time champion. She had lost her way it seemed through parts of last year but a win in her home country of Thailand at the beginning of May appears to of turned her fortunes around. She won the mixed event with her sister just 4 starts back so will have plenty of confidence this week from that & last week’s prep just a few miles from Carnoustie. Stats wise she is consistently one of the better players in all categories, she ranks 25 on putting average, 12 on scoring average & hits 69.5% of greens in regulation. Current form reads 4-46-19-1-15
Matilda Castren 50-1 Skybet 7 Places
The 2-time winner this year is in great form coming into this week’s final major. After getting herself into the frame of the Solheim cup by winning her home Open she can play knowing she will more than likely be on the plane to Ohia regardless of her result this week. She is one of the best green finders on tour ranking 4th in Greens in Regulation but it appears to be the putter which can let her down some weeks as she ranks 151st in putting average. Even with that stat she is still up there nearly every week as in her last 5 starts she has finished 18-19-1-15-2
Akaya Furue 130-1 PaddyPower 6 Places
A 3-time winner in 2020 she was on fire last year. This season no wins yet but she has 1 2nd 1 3rd & 6 top 10s. She predominantly plays on the Japan Tour & leads the field in scoring average with 69.99. Akaya is one of the best putters on the tour with her 3-putt avoidance ranking 1st & her average putts per round ranking 4th. 13 par 4s to play this week & she ranks 4th on par 4 scoring on the Japan tour so can use that to her advantage this week. Recent form reads 4-14-17-31-11
Danielle Kang – I really wanted to back her this week with her winning low amateur in 2011 but she lost her clubs during her flight to Scotland so will have limited time to prep with her clubs should they turn up in time.
Emily Pedersen – She won the British Amateur during her early days & finished 11th last year in very tricky conditions. No wins yet this year but has 5 tour wins & is the reigning Race to Costa Del Sol champion.
Good Luck with all Bets