Paul Williams

Paul Williams' US Open Longshots 2022

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With additional each-way places available from most bookies, the scope for grabbing a piece of the each-way action with a 3-figure chance this week is as good as ever, and there’s plenty of value to be found if you dig deep enough into the market at Brookline.

Last year’s US Open was a case in point that longer-priced players can place, or occasionally win, at the Majors. Guido Migliozzi was available at a whopping 500/1 pre-event last year before finishing in a tie for 4th, despite having finished runner-up on each of his previous 2 starts on the European Tour, as it was at the time.

For full background on the course and US Open trends, read Steve Bamford’s in-depth preview here or his final US Open tips page here.

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As ever, the each-way terms available from some bookmakers this week make for an interesting dilemma – do you stick rigidly to fairly standard each-way terms and grab a top price on an outsider, or do you accept a reduced price in exchange for more favourable each-way terms?

Personally I’ve opted to take as many places as is reasonably possible this week, with Betfair’s 12 place market a great option or, in the case of my third selection, Paddy Power’s 10 place market.

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My 3 longshots are as follows:

Luke List 1pt EW 150/1 (12EW, 1/5) with Betfair

For a player who resides well into the 3-figure range this week, Luke List ticks an awful lot of boxes.

We’ve talked about the Augusta resident a lot this year on the Golf Betting System Podcast, indeed I backed him as one of my longshots at the Masters when he was playing what was essentially a home tie, and although he let us down that week, I’m happy to give him another chance this week.

Let’s talk about those boxes that he ticks. Firstly, Steve Bamford’s research into US Open history picks out Driving Distance – All Drives as a key stat for recent US Open winners. As of the end of the RBC Canadian Open, List ranks 5th for that measure for the season to date, rubbing shoulders with the likes of Jon Rahm and Rory McIlroy who are available at less than a tenth of his odds this week.

41st overall at the US PGA Championship last month is borderline for the ‘top-40 in his last Major’ criteria that we touched on in the US Open preview podcast, however let’s not split hairs and exclude him on the basis of a solitary place on the leaderboard. In fact, if you dig into his performance at Southern Hills we see noteworthy long-game stats including 4th for Total Driving, 13th for Driving Accuracy and 2nd for SG Off the Tee – repeating those numbers with a slightly warmer putter won’t hurt his chances here at Brookline one iota.

A breakthrough victory at Torrey Pines in January shouldn’t be overlooked, given the challenging nature of the South Course and its Poa Annua greens, where the 37 year-old produced his best SG Putting numbers for nearly 3 years; his best putting effort prior to that was at Bethpage Black in 2019, which is also largely Poa Annua based (90% versus 75% this week), giving some hope that that ever-elusive part of his game might just fire this week. RESULT: MC

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Gary Woodland 1pt EW 125/1 (12EW, 1/5) with Betfair

Another player who I’ve previously backed in my 2022 Longshots articles, this time at the US PGA Championship last month, is Gary Woodland and the same, tempting 3-figure price is available about him again this week.

The fundamentals for thinking that he’ll go well this week are similar to Southern Hills, and that’s not surprising given the challenging nature of both courses on strict Par-70 setups. 34th overall last month wasn’t what we were looking for of course, however 10th after both 36 and 54 holes had given us hope of an each-way return, and on another Sunday things could have been different.

Combined with that effort at the last Major, Woodland also sits just inside the top 50 for Driving Distance – All Drives which ticks the first two and most fundamental boxes for me, however there’s plenty more to like when you dig a little deeper. His 2019 US Open triumph came on the tiny Poa Annua greens of Pebble Beach and whilst I understand the West Coast vs East Coast Poa debate, the very fact that he’s both a Major champion and US Open champion shouldn’t be underplayed.

Comfortable on challenging, classical tracks, the 38 year-old’s record at another Major venue, Bethpage Black, may also be of relevance given he’s finished 4th and 8th there in 2016 and 2019 respectively, having sat in 12th place at halfway at the US Open back in 2009, long before he established himself as a PGA Tour winner.

Of course, the reason we’re getting a 3-figure price on Gary this week is that he’s missed the cut on both of his starts since his US PGA effort. In truth, it’s been that kind of a year for the Kansas man: 7 missed cuts from 14 starts is disappointing, granted, yet 8th at the Texas Open and a pair of 5th place finishes at the Honda Classic and Arnold Palmer Invitational hint at something better bubbling just below the surface. RESULT: T10

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Victor Perez 1pt EW 200/1 (10EW, 1/5) with Paddy Power

Last year’s surprise package from across the Atlantic was Guido Migliozzi who hovered on the fringes of contention for the first 3 days at Torrey Pines before producing a final round 68 to catapult himself up to a tie for 4th place. On Major debut it was a stretch to see the talented young Italian make the frame before the event, hence his 500/1 price, yet a pair of incoming runner-up finishes on the European Tour, as it was at the time, was a fairly strong hint that he was playing some really nice golf.

12 months on and the most likely DP World Tour regular to achieve something similar may well be Victor Perez. Like Migliozzi, the Frenchman has a couple of wins to his name on his home Tour and arrives in great form: a win at the Dutch Open to close out May was followed by another contending performance at the Porsche European Open the following week where he eventually finished 3rd, and he could have quite feasibly won both events.

So with the current form box undoubtedly ticked, his game style also appeals too. Averaging over 308 yards from off the tee is a good starting point, as is 36th for SG Off the Tee on the DP World Tour for the season so far. 2nd & 6th for Total Driving over those aforementioned 2 most recent starts is ideal for this, as is 2nd & 9th for SG Off the Tee and 1st & 2nd for SG Tee to Green.

The biggest challenge may well be the leap in standard this week versus the DP World Tour events he’s been playing of course, however even then we have evidence to suggest that he could sneak into the paying places here. 2nd at the 2020 BMW PGA Championship saw him as Tyrrell Hatton’s closest challenger and ahead of Major winners Patrick Reed and Shane Lowry; prior to that, 4th at the 2019 WGC HSBC Championship behind Rory McIlroy, Xander Schauffele and Louis Oosthuizen isn’t too shabby either. 9th at TPC Sawgrass and 4th at the WGC Dell Match Play last year are two more recent elite-level efforts that deserve respect and he could surprise a few here and make the each-way places. RESULT: MC

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Odds and bookmaker offers correct at 14:20BST 13.6.22 but are naturally subject to fluctuation.