Welcome to Golfalot's golf betting guide where we explain 5 Things You Need to Understand to Succeed at Golf Betting, as well as the Key Betting Terms so you can get the most from your golfing wager. Read through the information and once you have decided your plan, find the best odds and who to bet on with our Golf Betting Tips.

5 Things You Need To Understand About Golf Betting

Courtesy of friends over at BettingExpert.com, here are the key things you need to understand to succeed in golf betting.

1. Understand where the value is in the tournament

This is easily the most important thing anyone betting on sport requires to be successful. And when betting on golf and in particular the outcome of any tournament, it is especially valuable to have considering the large number of competitors involved in each event.

In terms of odds, the favourite for any given golf tournament is typically around the 10/1 mark with the top 5 usually ranging between 10/1 and 20/1. They might be the names you know but are the odds being offered on the players at the top of the bookmakers list really giving you any value? It's more often not likely to be the case. It's the roughie around the 35/1 or 50/1 mark or even higher that will surprise everyone by playing a great tournament and it's hitting those roughies often enough, that'll make you successful in the long-term.

Assessing the value for each participant in such a large field of competitors can be a daunting task, but if you don't put the time in and do your homework, you will too often find yourself on the wrong side of the odds.

2. Understand the importance of money management

Unless you have a viable and consistent money management plan, you're not going to come away a successful long-term golf bettor. And it's particularly important in a sport such as golf where you can find multiple value bet opportunities in any one tournament.

Firstly, you need to begin with a betting bankroll that is capable of absorbing losses. Yes, you're not going to win every time you place a bet on a player. And when betting on golf, you're bound to lose more bets than you win. But as you'll be consistently betting on players with odds offered in excess of 10/1, you only need to win a small percentage to come out on top.

So start with a bankroll of at least 50 units and have a management plan that allows you to place multiple bets on the one tournament without threatening the overall health and sustainability of your bankroll. Your bankroll is everything. Protect it. And once it begins to grow, steadily increase the size of your bets proportional to that growth. Don't over extend yourself by placing bets that your bankroll won't be able to sustain over time. Keep it conservative and you'll be a long-term winner.

3. Understand how the bookmakers frame the odds

Most people don't understand this at all. In fact many people believe that bookmakers set odds solely based on who they think will win, that the odds reflect an assessed probability of a particular outcome.

While this is partly true, ultimately bookmakers are trying to balance their liability and take their commission, that little slice they take out of the full price of the odds. How do they do this? By assessing where they believe the general betting public is going to put their money.

This then means that you can find value in competitors that the general public either doesn't believe in or simply don't know about. Bookmakers will often lower the prices of the big names, because they know that's where a great share of the public money is going to go to. This leaves great value opportunities for intelligent bettors who can spot value in the players whose prices are inflated simply due to them having a low profile.

4. Understand that successful golf betting is a marathon, not a sprint

If you want to come out on the right side of the profit/loss ledger, you have to realise that successful betting takes time. Sure, we would all love to make the big score and have it raining riches in a short amount of time, but it isn't going to happen. You have to think long-term. Have a plan and stick to it.

You need to start with your bankroll, build it and steadily increase the amount you bet as your bankroll grows. Don’t go for the home-run. Apply your ability to recognise betting value in each tournament, make you bets, take the wins with the losses and over enough time, you'll find you're starting to build a healthy bankroll. And although it takes time, you'll find that you only have to consistently gain a small average return of profit to see that bankroll grow into a handsome sum.

5. Understand that the good will come with the bad

Betting on golf can be a bumpy road. Betting on competitors in such large fields, you're sure to have runs where the wins aren't coming as regularly as you'd like. This will happen. But it's nothing to panic about. With enough experience, you'll see that with each loss you're only closer to your next win, and that over time, with good enough value recognition, the good will outweigh the bad.

Don't get too down about a bad run. Continue to apply your plan and manage your money correctly and have faith in the process. At the same time, don't get too caught up in a good run. Don't overstep the mark and get ahead of yourself. Keep to the plan and consolidate on your winnings with sound management of your bankroll.

Key Betting Terms


If a player is 10/1, this means that if the player wins you get £10 for every £1 you bet, plus your original stake back. If a player is 'odds-on' then the odds are expressed as 1/10. This means that you for every £10 you bet you get £1 back if you win, plus your original stake.

Betting to Win

You place your bet on a player to win at 10/1. If the player obliges, then you are in the money.

Betting on a Place Finish

What counts as a place and the proportion of the odds you receive varies from one bookmaker to the next. Place finishes can vary from the first three to the first six places in a tournament and it is the same proportion of odds whether the player finishes 2nd or 6th. Say you place £1 on a player to finish in a 'place' at 20/1. If the player does this, you win a proportion of the 20/1 odds, plus your original stake back. If the proportion is a quarter (0.25), your place odds are 0.25 x 20 = 5/1 and you would win £5 for every £1 you bet.

Betting Each Way

This is a combination of Betting to Win and Betting on a Place Finish. You pay the same stake for each part of the bet. For example, £1 each way for a player winning at 10/1 would mean you get £10 for the win plus £2.50 for the place. If the player does not win but finishes in a place you lose the win bet, but win on the place bet.

Match Bet

Bet on whether one player will beat or tie another over a strokeplay tournament.

Two Ball Bet

Bet on whether one player will outscore another player over one round.

Three Ball Bet

Bet whether one player will outscore another two nominated players over one round.

Group Betting

The bookmaker selects a group of players, gives them odds of beating the rest in the group and you have to pick the winner.

Combination Bet

As it sounds, a Combination Bet involves combining more than one of the above bets. You must win all the bets in the combination to win. The value of the payout is equal to all the individual odds multiplied together. For example if you bet Player A to win at 10/1 and Player B to beat Player C in a Match Bet at 4/1 then the overall odds would be 40/1 if both bets came through.

Spread Betting

Spread Betting operates like a stock market where you 'Buy' and 'Sell' against a predicted outcome in an event. The bookmaker quotes a prediction, or 'Spread' on the final outcome for a player in a particular event. You then place your bet according to your view of this prediction. If you think the player will perform better than the prediction then you 'Buy' or 'Back' the bet. If you think the player will perform worse than the prediction then you 'Sell' or 'Oppose' the bet. You will win, or lose, the difference between the prediction and the final result multiplied by your stake. Therefore your potential win, or loss, is unlimited.

Spread Betting is applied to most of the types of bets mentioned above. However, unlike other bets, you can also place Spread Bets during the tournament and, like the stock market, the 'prediction' or 'Spread' will vary too. This is not for the fainthearted and you should fully understand what you are doing before flexing your plastic. Some bookmakers offer 'stop loss' schemes, so check carefully with each one before you take your chances.