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Dan Roebuck’s Presidents Cup preview: Stricker to do biz for US

| 03.10.2013

The USA head into the 10th renewal of the Presidents Cup looking to extend their winning run to five and defeat the Internationals for the eighth time all told.

And while the current quote about Fred Couples’ side may look prohibitive, there are worse 1/3 odds-on chances to trust, especially when you consider the USA have won every single one of these biennial clashes held on home fairways.

It’s been 10 years since the International side tied with the USA in South Africa, and since then those that play under the Stars and Stripes banner have won four matches on the spin, with all four victories by three points or more.

This season’s contest should be just as clear cut, as the Americans ooze quality and strength in depth at a venue they have far more experience at.

Muirfield Village stages the event with the dozen members of the home side racking up 86 starts at the Ohio track compared to the Internationals 52. The USA can boast seven wins to the visitors’ one, and have the edge in top ten finishes 20-9.

The make-up of Nick Price’s side, which consists of six rookies, must also be a concern to International supporters. Sure, the Americans have four newcomers of their own, but two of those players are Major winners.

And speaking of Price, he hasn’t got the experience that Couples has as captain. The Zimbabwean takes charge for the first time, while for Couples, this is his third go and furthermore he is looking to make it three wins from three.

Tiger Woods, inevitably, is the favourite to top score in Ohio for the home side at 5/1, but at a bigger price of 8/1, his likely partner in foursomes and fourballs, Steve Stricker, is much better value.

The pair might have been disappointing in the Ryder Cup last year, but they were devastating the last time they played in the States in this competition back in 2009, winning all four matches in which they teamed up in. This time around, Stricker’s better current form of 2-4-2 in his last three starts marks him down as the man to follow.

For the away side, take a chance on Jason Day at 6/1. The Australian is an honorary member at Muirfield Village and found some form two starts ago with fourth place at the BMW Championship in the PGA Tour Playoffs.

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

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Dan Roebuck