US Open Golf 2024 – Tournament Outright Tips and Betting Preview

It is time for the third major of the season as the superstars of golf head to Pinehurst Resort and Country Club for the US Open, the supposed toughest of the four biggest tournaments to win and one which looks like it will take plenty of winning.

Wyndham Clark broke his major duck when he won this tournament at Los Angeles Country Club a year ago and he will be looking to be the first man since Brooks Koepka in 2018 to successfully hold onto this crown.

Recent Winners

2023 – Wyndham Clark

2022 – Matthew Fitzpatrick

2021 – Jon Rahm

2020 – Bryson DeChambeau

2019 – Gary Woodland

2018 – Brooks Koepka

2017 – Brooks Koepka

2016 – Dustin Johnson

2015 – Jordan Spieth

2014 – Martin Kaymer

The Course

The tournament is at Pinehurst Golf and Country Club for the fourth time in the men’s US Open and the first time since 2014. Martin Kaymer was the last man to win here with Michael Campbell and the late Payne Stewart the other men to have triumphed on this famous course. As with the majority of the US Open tracks Pinehurst is a par 70 which this year can stretch as long as 7,548 yards so it is a monster but it is said to be firm and very fast this week so it won’t play quite that long.

The fairways here are pretty wide by US Open standards with the quirks to them that there isn’t much traditional rough around them. Instead they are flanked by wispy grass and wasteland so you are dicing with danger if you miss the fairways. The real test of this course is the greens. They are described as upward saucers or turtlebacks and they all have run off areas where this year the grass will be the gnarly Bermuda which might well take away the lag putting masterclass which Kaymer delivered 10 years ago. The greens here are large but the reality is the landing areas on them are tiny so precise iron play, both long and short, is a must. I don’t see a poor putter winning on these greens.

The Field

Whenever the three majors which use different tracks each time come along we often have two ‘defending champions’, the official one which is Wyndham Clark and the one on this course which is Martin Kaymer. Both are in the field this week as are the other three current major champions – The Masters winner Scottie Scheffler, USPGA champion Xander Schauffele and The Open winner Brian Harman. Recent former winners of this tournament such as Matthew Fitzpatrick, Bryson DeChambeau, Brooks Koepka and Gary Woodland are in the field but the 2022 winner Jon Rahm has pulled out injured.

There are plenty of other huge names teeing it up this week including Rory McIlroy, Collin Morikawa, Viktor Hovland, Ludvig Aberg and Tommy Fleetwood. Recent major champions such as Cameron Smith, Matthew Fitzpatrick, Justin Thomas, Jordan Spieth and Hideki Matsuyama are also allotted tee times this week. Other notables in the field include Dustin Johnson and the two legends of the modern game in Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods.

Market Leaders

Scottie Scheffler has never won the US Open but he has won pretty much everything else that is major in America including The Memorial last week and he is no bigger than 3/1 to finally get his hard on the third leg of the Grand Slam this week. Scheffler has won five times this season including the first major of the year and looks about as unbeatable as any golfer has looked since Tiger Woods in his prime. The one concern is his putter though and whether these greens will find him out.

Xander Schauffele is the other major champion in 2024 so far and he is 10/1 to immediately double his tally. I always thought he was a potential winner of this tournament but whether he doubles up in successive majors I’m less sure because there will be a huge amount of scrutiny on him in this tournament. At three times the price of Scheffler he would probably appeal to me slightly more but he is still a little skinny to me.

Rory McIlroy is a 12/1 shot to get his hands back on the US Open and win a first major championship in over 10 years. I don’t think he is anything close to his best golf at the minute with the various off course things he has gone through over the last few months both personally and politically golf wise. I do think Pinehurst works out well for him though if he can putt well because he has a strong imagination and quality around the greens and you’ll need that here but clouded minds aren’t going to win here.

Collin Morikawa was in the final group at the USPGA Championship and at The Memorial last week but couldn’t get the job done on either occasion. He is 16/1 to get his hands on a third major title here but if there is a weakness in his game then it is with the putter and I just don’t see a player who isn’t confident with the short stick winning this week. He has all the long game skills needed but on these greens you are going to naturally get plenty of 5-10 foot putts for par and I’m not convinced he’ll hole enough of them.

Main Bets

Ludvig Aberg is playing in his first US Open but I wouldn’t be surprised to see him walk off with the title because I think he has a great game for Pinehurst. The first box he ticks is that he has played here in the past having competed in the US Amateur here five years ago but the other things to like is that he sits sixth on the PGA Tour in the all around ranking which shows how all departments of his game are in good order. He arrives here off the back of T5 in The Memorial last week where he was ranked 15 for strokes gained putting and he sits at seventh for scrambling on the Tour this year. As a youngster he has no fear but he is also a clever player and I think he’s primed to land this title.

This feels like a layout that Cameron Smith will really enjoy. As an Australian he will have grown up on firm and fast courses and he certainly gets one here. The strength of his game is his iron play and he is one of the best putters in the world if not the best putter in it right now. He also has an excellent imagination with his short game and he is going to lap a good deal of the field with the irons here. He is 45/1 to win this tournament but would surely be half of that if he wasn’t playing LIV Golf these days. Smith was T6 at The Masters earlier in the year and T2 in Singapore on the LIV Tour so his form looks to be in good shape. I expect him to go well here.

The other main bet I’ll have this week comes in the form of Sahith Theegala. He won the season opening tournament on the PGA Tour and he sits at eight in the all around ranking on the PGA Tour this season. He is just outside the top 20 on strokes gained on approach and putting this season and bang on that number off the tee. If there is a negative it is that he hasn’t gone well around the greens on the campaign as a whole but he was in the top 15 on a tough course to chip at in The Memorial last week which gives me more confidence in his short game. If that stands up for four more rounds he shouldn’t be far away for a second major in succession.


I’ll also go with three outsiders this week with the first of those being a man who is renowned for being an excellent iron player and chipper in Alex Noren. Noren sits in the top 10 for strokes gained around the green this season and third for scrambling while he arrives here off the back of a top 10 finish in terms of strokes gained with the putter at The Memorial last week, which is significant because those greens were firm and fast like the ones he will get here. Noren is 25 on the all around ranking on the PGA Tour and with nine top 25 finishes in his last 10 starts, including a T12 at the USPGA Championship, the Swede looks in good enough shape to go well here.

Denny McCarthy has only played in two US Open tournaments but he seems to have a game for them because he has finished T7 and T20 in them and I think he can emulate that first effort here if not better because I’m certain this tournament will be won on and around the greens which is where the real strength of his game lies. McCarthy lost out in a playoff at The Memorial last year where the greens and short game test is very much on a par with the one he is going to get here. McCarthy is fifth in scrambling this season and second in strokes gained on the greens. That can push him into contention here.

The last bet I’ll take is for Mackenzie Hughes to go well at a big price. The Canadian player is another who has a decent short game. He is T13 in strokes gained around the greens this season and a place outside the top 10 in scrambling and then he sits at 12 in strokes gained putting as well so if he can work to those numbers here and hit his fair share of greens then he is going to have a decent week. Hughes has three top 10s this season and two of those have come in his last four starts so he is arriving here at the right time from that point of view. Hughes has two top 25 finishes in three starts in this tournament and looks a big price for this particular track.


Back L.Aberg to win US Open (e/w) for a 1.5/10 stake at 21.00 with William Hill (1/5 1-8)

Back S.Theegala to win US Open (e/w) for a 1/10 stake at 46.00 with William Hill (1/5 1-8)

Back A.Noren to win US Open (e/w) for a 0.5/10 stake at 101.00 with William Hill (1/5 1-8)

Back them here:

Back C.Smith to win US Open (e/w) for a 1/10 stake at 46.00 with Sky Bet (1/5 1-8)

Back D.McCarthy to win US Open (e/w) for a 0.5/10 stake at 126.00 with Sky Bet (1/5 1-8)

Back M.Hughes to win US Open (e/w) for a 0.5/10 stake at 201.00 with Sky Bet (1/5 1-8)