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Sergio Garcia surged to the top of the leaderboard and betting after an opening day 65 at Sawgrass

Players Championship Odds: Sergio Garcia Betting Favorite After Day One

Golf’s fifth major got off to an eventful start on Thursday with fast greens (and water!) causing chaos for many players at Sawgrass. Some of golf’s finest including Rory McIlroy, Xander Schauffele, Tyrell Hatton and Tony Finau struggled to manage conditions at the Players Championship and already look to be out of the tournament at an early stage. Sergio Garcia was one such player not fazed at Sawgrass and carded one of the best rounds of the year so far to take an early lead. As such he tops the betting as you can see from the odds below.

Players Championship Odds After Day One

Sergio Garcia+550 
Bryson DeChambeau+900 
Matt Fitzpatrick+1600 
Collin Morikawa+1800 
Jordan Spieth+1800 
Corey Connors+2000 
Justin Thomas+2000 
Brian Harman+2500 
Dustin Johnson+2500 
Jon Rahm+2500 

View the full Players Championship odds here.

Players Championship In-Play Picks

It’s not often that Sergio Garcia has a hot putter and it’s even rarer to see him gaining a whopping 3.77 shots on the field with it, so it’s going to be an uphill task for the field to catch him if that continues. We all know the quality the rest of his game has, so a good putting performance will give him an outstanding chance over the next three days to add a second Players Championship to his resume. The sportsbook agree and make him a +550 favorite after the first day’s action, but there must be major doubts over that putting performance continuing and it’s best to look elsewhere when looking for an in-play wager.

Looking slightly further down the leaderboard and the eye is immediately drawn to the big man; Bryson DeChambeau, who won last week’s Arnold Palmer Invitational in a Sunday battle against Lee Westwood. Bryson has found his touch around the greens again and with his driving obviously the big weapon, his overall game looks in very solid shape. He has an early tee time today and you’d expect him to make his move towards the leaders by Friday lunchtime. His odds of +900 look very fair.

Looking at the putting stats, it’s surprising to see Jason Day losing shots on the field on the greens, Day has been one of the best with the flat stick in recent years, but has struggled for form for a while now and despite looking imperious with his ball striking, he’s reluctantly passed over for another Aussie. The second pick is Cameron Smith, who has come to age in recent months with a second-place finish at Augusta the highlight of his young career so far. That showed Smith has what it takes to compete at the highest level and the young Aussie can put his superb short game to good use over the next three days and make a good run at capturing a second PGA tour title. Smith putted well on day one, but didn’t have his eye in with his approach play, you can expect that to improve and with the fast greens playing to his strengths, the gritty Australian could well be the perfect type of player to prosper at Sawgrass and odds of +5000 look very appealing.

Players Championship Picks:

Cameron Smith @ +5000

Bryson DeChambeau @ +900

View the full Players Championship odds here.

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