Veteran golf bettors know that golfers have no control over who they get to play with in their pairing every week, yet those pairings can have a big impact on how well they play. A good pairing can lift a player up, while a poor pairing can leave a player frustrated, distracted, or otherwise not at his best. Most bettors rarely pay any attention at all to pairings. Those that do, though, can often find a nice edge – especially in the head to head pairings bets that are increasingly popular in golf betting. Here are five factors for golf bettors to consider when looking at the pairings in a PGA tournament:
Do the players have history? – A lot of golfers may have only a casual relationship with their playing partners, so that won’t have a particular impact on the players during the round. It’s when the players do have a relationship that the pairings can have an impact. That can be either a positive or a negative impact depending on the nature of the relationship. If the players are friendly then they can have a good time on the course, and that can loosen the players up, or it can distract them if they are having too much of a good time. Most times, though, the impact in a case like this will be positive or neutral for the players. If the players don’t have a good relationship, though, then you have to be more aware of the potential impact. If they have a tense rivalry or have had controversial encounters in the past then they could be particularly tense on the course or distracted by the situation, and tat could impact their play. It’s important to think about what the relationship is really like, though – how fresh the issues are, how significant the problems have been, and so on. Sometimes the rivalry seems far more significant to the media and fans than it really is to the players, so it won’t have nearly the impact that people expect it to.
Do their playing styles clash? – It can be annoying and frustrating for players to play with a partner who has a very different playing style. For example, a fast player can grow very frustrated over the course of a round by playing with a slow player. A bigger hitter can be frustrated when playing against a shorter hitter because they always have to wait before they can go to their ball and get ready for their shot. It can be less specific than that, as well. If one player is really cocky and aggressive while another is more traditional and reserved then they can get on the nerves of each other. The more diverse the styles of the players are, the more potential there is for one or more players to be affected in a negative way.
Is there an intimidation factor for one player? – There are two types of players in the PGA – the megastars and the mere mortals. For a player who is relatively inexperienced on the tour, playing with one of those megastars can be very intimidating and overwhelming. It can lead them to second guess their shot selection as they feel the pressure and try not to look out of place. Time and again we’ve seen otherwise solid golfers fall apart in these situations.
Will the public be attracted to the pairing? There are two considerations to look at here. First, if the public is going to be drawn to the pairing on the course then the galleries will be big and loud. That can have a distracting impact on players who aren’t used to it, but won’t really affect players who play in front of big galleries every time they are on the course. Second, if the betting public is going to be drawn to the pairing – like if the rivalry between the players seems noteworthy, for example – then you need to be particularly aware of the impact that could have on how the lines are set, how they move, and where the value is as a result.
Will the media attention be significant? – As a bettor be sure to note if the pairing provides storylines that the media will be drawn to; if so, then those golfers will have a higher profile than they otherwise might in the tournament. What the media is talking about can have a big impact how the casual public bets on the tournament, so the pairings can have the impact of determining where value is, and where it is bet out of existence. The higher the profile of the tournament the more significant this impact can be.