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Stick with home players on PGA Tour and time could be now for Na

| 15.02.2012

Riviera Country Club hosts the Northern Trust Open for the 50th time this week, with Phil Mickelson 9/1 favourite to collect a win that would allow him to build on his success at Pebble Beach, but his compatriot Kevin Na is a great each-way shout at 33/1.

American players dominate the upper echelons of the FedEx Cup rankings thus far and it could be those appearing on home soil that perform better than those from abroad in California.

Therefore, 20/1 shot Dustin Johnson, who finished joint-fifth at Pebble Beach, appears a better value punt than second-favourite Englishman Luke Donald, who last missed a cut at a non-major at this course, and it will be the first time he has competed in the States since October.

Na also looks way too big in the golf odds bearing in mind he has tied for fifth place in each of his last two events, and posted an under-par score in every round at Pebble Beach last week.

His third-place finish in this tournament last year demonstrates his credentials, and some punters will be more willing to invest in him at a longer price than last week’s Pebble Beach winner Mickelson.

While the Americans pose an obvious danger, Australian players should not be discounted in the golf betting and they can have an impact in this competition, as proved by last year’s winner Aaron Baddeley.

Baddeley is 25/1 to defend his crown here successfully, and after hitting the most birdies of any players en route to a fourth-place finish at Pebble Beach, that price could interest some punters.

His fellow countryman Jason Day has struggled at this course in the past, but his recent form makes his 33/1 odds look too lengthy, while Adam Scott has won this tournament as well as finishing a runner-up in it in the past, and is an interesting each-way proposition at 25/1.



John Klee