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Professional golf is all about The Majors. The greats of the game like Ben Hogan, Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods are compared by the number of Major Championship victories they have captured. But don't be fooled into thinking that the Majors are just the preserve of golfing legends though as Major Championship golf throws up more than its fair share of shock results. For every Jordan Spieth there's always a Michael Campbell, Todd Hamilton or Lucas Glover. As ever 2018 will see 4 Majors played across the United States (3) and the United Kingdom. Golf Betting System covers every Major, World Golf Championship, PGA Tour and European Tour tournament with expert analysis from Paul Williams and Steve Bamford - here's a brief overview of what to expect in 2018:
U.S. Masters Tips 2018
The US Masters, or the Masters Tournament to coin its official title, is always the first Major Championship of the golfing year. The 2018 US Masters is the 82nd edition of the tournament, taking place between Thursday 5th April - Sunday 8th April 2018, when the elite of world golf make their annual pilgrimage to Augusta, Georgia. The Masters is always played at Augusta National Golf Club and the manicured beauty of the course, in tandem with the history that goes with it, puts winning this title on a level with the Open Championship.
Since 1949, Masters tradition dictates that every winner receives the obligatory Green Jacket, presented by the previous year's champion, inside the Butler Cabin soon after the end of the tournament with the presentation then being repeated on the 18th green in front of the patrons. Jack Nicklaus has won the Green Jacket more times than any other player with 6 wins, the last featuring his famous back 9 'charge' in 1986.
Augusta National is a 7,435 yard, Par 72 which features extremely contoured fairways and greens. The bentgrass greens are traditionally some of the fastest putting surfaces of the year. Recent champions include Sergio Garcia, Danny Willett, Jordan Spieth and Bubba Watson. Steve will be previewing this year's event here in the run-up to the tournament and his US Masters tips will be published here on Tuesday 3rd April 2018.
U.S. Open Tips 2018
The U.S. Open is traditionally the toughest of the 4 Major Championships. Organised by the United States Golf Association (USGA), the Championship moves location from year-to-year following a championship rotation, but USGA Executive Director Mike Davis' remit is always to 'protect par'. For 2018, the 118th U.S. Open takes place between Thursday 14th June - Sunday 17th June and will be hosted at Shinnecock Hills Golf Club in New York. The Links-style layout has been used 4 times in the past for the event with Retief Goosen recording his 2nd US Open victory the last time the track was used for the US Open in 2004.
A field of 156 players will all be attempting to follow in the footsteps of recent champions Graeme McDowell (2010), Rory McIlroy (2011), Webb Simpson (2012), Justin Rose (2013), Martin Kaymer (2014), Jordan Spieth (2015), Dustin Johnson (2016) and last year's winner Brooks Koepka. With the exception of Kaymer - and Spieth who'd secured his first Major at Augusta a matter of weeks before - all were first time Major Champions and all are sure to feature high up in the 2018 betting market due to their shared characteristic of being consistent performers from tee to green. Steve will also be previewing this year's event here and his 2018 US Open Tips will be published here on Tuesday 12th June 2018.
Sergio Garcia, 2017 Masters; Brooks Koepka, 2017 US Open; Jordan Spieth, 2017 Open Championship; Justin Thomas, 2017 US PGA Championship.
Open Championship Tips 2018
The Open Championship is the original Major Championship. Now in its 147th year, The Open or the British Open as it's known in the United States, is the oldest of the Majors, established in 1860. Organised by the Royal & Ancient (R&A), it's the only Major Championship to be played outside of the United States, although there have been announcements from Ted Bishop, the President of the PGA of America, that they are seriously looking at taking the PGA Championship to international venues in the future. This year's Open Championship is being hosted at Carnoustie Golf Links from Thursday July 19th - Sunday 22nd July 2018 in what's sure to be a true test of links golf.
Jordan Spieth produced a mesmerising spell of putting to deny Matt Kuchar his first Major Championship at Royal Birkdale last year and the former world No.1 will undoubtedly be a popular bet to defend his title, although it won't be easy with the likes of Dustin Johnson, Hideki Matsuyama, Jason Day and Rory McIlroy headlining a very international field of players. Qualifying across Australia (Tour of Australasia), Asia (Japan and Asian Tour), Africa (Sunshine Tour), European and PGA Tours in tandem with automatic qualification for the associated Order of Merit winners plus the Top 30 in the European Tour's Race to Dubai makes for a truly international feel. Paul Williams will be previewing this year's event here and his 2018 Open Championship tips will be published here on Tuesday 17th July 2018.
U.S. PGA Championship Tips 2018
The fourth and final Major of 2018 is the US PGA Championship. The Wanamaker Trophy is not in the least understated, nor is the tournament's prize fund which for 2018 has been increased to $10.5 million. Following immediately from the WGC Bridgestone Invitational in Akron, Ohio this year's US PGA Championship is being hosted at the Robert Trent Jones Snr designed Bellerive Country Club in St Louis, Missouri. This will be the third time that Bellerive has hosted a Major Championship with Gary Player taking the US Open title here in 1965 before Nick Price won his first of three Majors here at the 1992 US PGA Championship.
Recent PGA winners include Padraig Harrington, Y.E. Yang, Martin Kaymer, Keegan Bradley, Jason Dufner, Rory McIlroy, Jason Day, Jimmy Walker and defending champion Justin Thomas. That's 9 winners from 6 different nations, highlighting the truly international nature of the final Major Championship known as 'Glory's Last Shot'. Steve Bamford will write his customary pre-event preview that your can read here; he will also be previewing this year's event and his 2018 US PGA Championship tips will be published here on Tuesday 7th August 2018.