Ryder Cup: Rahm to lead off…

The Ryder Cup starts on Friday, and let’s turn our thoughts specifically to the European team.

One of the novelty bets that catches our eye is the market to hit the first tee shot for the European team.

Favourite for this honour is Justin Rose, and you can understand why. He was world no. 1 as recently as last week, he’s just pocketed $10 million by winning the FedEx Cup and he has hit the first shot for Europe on the last two occasions.

However, we think differently. Rose was partnered with Henrik Stenson on both occasions and they were initially successful before running into a Spieth/Reed juggernaut last time out. We think it’s unlikely they will be asked to go out first again.

A partnership that has looked very impressive during practice this week has been Rory McIlroy and Jon Rahm. They have played together on both practice rounds and look set to be one of Europe’s top pairs.

McIlroy is priced at 5/1 to hit the first shot for Europe, compared with Rose at 15/8. But the real value lies with Rahm at 14/1. A cautious punter could put half a point on both Rory and Rahm, but we’re going all out on the Spaniard.

This leads to another bet. We think this partnership could be very successful for the European team. Given they are both relatively young men, they have a chance of playing all five matches.

McIlroy is favoured to be the top points scorer for the European team, jointly with Rose, at 11/2. However, we’ll take the 8/1 that Rahm achieves this feat given we think he could be Rory’s partner this week.


First European tee shot: Rahm, 1 pt, at 14/1, bet365

Top European points scorer: Rahm, 1 pt, at 8/1, BetFred

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