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Tiger Woods massive favourite at the halfway stage of the USPGA

| 11.08.2012

Tiger Woods has been slashed to 13/8 to win the USPGA Championship after an excellent second round 71 left him tied for the halfway lead with Vijay Singh and Carl Pettersson.

On a day when the world’s best were struggling with 20mph winds at Kiawah Island, Woods produced some stunning shot-making and even better putting to put himself firmly in contention for his 15th major.

Woods took just five putts through the first five holes but was unable to maintain that fast start in brutally tough conditions that saw the likes of Luke Donald and Lee Westwood struggle to post decent scores.

Even Rory McIlroy who played so brilliantly in his opening round 67 shot a 75 on Friday to push him out to two-under and drift to 7/1 to claim his second major title.

Vijay Singh was the day’s top performer though with his three-under round of 69 which goes to show exactly how tough the South Carolina course is playing.

Singh hasn’t won a tournament of any description since 2008 though and hasn’t bagged himself a major since he won this event back in 2004, making his halfway odds of 12/1 seem less than tempting.

Meanwhile, Pettersson laboured somewhat to a second round 74 and it’s hard to see him maintaining a challenge throughout the weekend.

English hopes appear to rest with Ian Poulter who is currently one off the lead after rounds of 70 and 71. He can be backed at 10/1 to win his first major although the 36-year-old has only ever finished tied ninth in this event and that was back in 2006.

Whilst Woods is undoubtedly the overwhelming favourite, it’s worth remembering that he was in a similar position at the US Open earlier this year and failed to mount a serious challenge, whilst his conservative approach at the Open last month also cost him a shot at the Claret Jug.

However, as Woods keeps saying, if he puts himself in the mix enough times then he will surely pick up another major and, based on the solid golf he’s played so far, this could be the weekend his major drought ends.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Richard Anderson