Over 45s Club: Stricker, Singh and Couples can light up Masters
With the likes of Rory McIlroy, Webb Simpson and Jonas Blixt bringing down the average age of the golfing elite it is sometimes easy to overlook some of the older players on tour.
However, while the current betting has Tiger Woods as the runaway favourite to win a fifth US Masters title this year, a trio of players aged over 45-years will fancy their chances of toppling Jack Nicklaus, who at 46-years remains the oldest ever Masters winner.
Steve Stricker, 46
In so many ways the nearly-man of golf, Stricker is unlikely to tempt many golf fans as an outright winner. But, at 66/1, and with 10 top-10 Major finishes under his belt Mr September could attract a lot of attention in the each-way market.
Stricker’s best-ever finish at Augusta came in 2006 when he tied for sixth but he has failed to build on that over recent years, finishing as low as T47 in 2012.
However, the Wisconsin man has had a solid start to 2013, with three top-five finishes including a second place at the WGC Cadillac Championship in which he carded four successive sub-70 rounds.
Vijay Singh, 50
Champion in 2000, three-time Major winner and a 150-1 shot this year, Singh has finished inside the top ten in 23 Majors over the course of his career including six occasions at Augusta.
The Fijian started 2013 in decent form, carding 11-under par at the Sony Open in Hawaii to finish tied for 20th, and has made the cut in each of the six tournaments he has played in this year.
Singh has not finished inside the top-ten at Augusta since 2006, but led the money charts as recently as 2008 and started this year with five success sub-70 rounds. The 50-year-old will be hoping experience and form unite in Georgia.
Fred Couples, 53
The oldest of the trio and easily the most experienced at Washington Road, Couples boasts the highest number of consecutive Masters cuts in the history of the competition.
Couples may be in the twilight of his career, but the Seattle man has proven he is still capable of pushing the younger players to their limits. His 279 in 2010 remains the lowest score by a senior at Augusta and this was 10 shots lower than the score carded by 2007 champion Zach Jonson.
At 150/1 and having not won a Major since 2005, ‘Boom Boom’ is of course a long shot for the title, but with Ladbrokes set to offer a host of markets including top-ten and top-five finishes and the each-way market paying out on five places, the 1992 champion could tempt savvy investors.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.