This Thursday sees the start of the 2023 USPGA Championship, the second of golf’s Majors to be played this season and a chance for a number of players to add their name to the list of Major winners.

In this article, we are going to preview the tournament, the course and take a look at some of the players that bookmakers such as bet365 Sport think are very much in contention to land the win on Sunday evening.

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We will then give you our verdict on which players to back in the event and perhaps more importantly, which type of bet to back each of our tips with in order to stand a chance of a return.

I’ve been pretty good with my golf bets in recent times. I tipped Jon Rahm to win the Masters back in April and more pleasingly, I also nabbed an each way bet on Patrick Reed to finish inside the top eight (he finished joint fourth) which was at odds of 1/5 of 66/1 (15.2/1).

So I am pretty confident heading into this week’s second Major of the season, so let’s learn a little more about the challenges that lie ahead for 156 of the best golfers in the world today.

The 2023 USPGA Championship

  • Venue – East Course at Oak Hill Country Club, NY
  • Date – 18th to 21st May 2023
  • Likely Weather Conditions – Dry in the main with a slight risk of rain on Friday. Temperatures will be between 12c and 17c across the four days. Winds increasing to gusts of around 20mph on Sat/Sun, but generally pretty calm the other days of the tournament.
  • Defending Champion – Justin Thomas (US)
  • Number of Entrants – 156 before the cut (around 78 after Friday’s cut depending on scores)

This year the USPGA Championship returns to the East Course at Oak Hill Country Club for the fourth time (only Southern Hills has hosted the tournament more often with 5) but it is fair to say that the course is much-changed since the last event was held here in 2013 when Jason Dufner landed his sole Major victory.

LIV Golf stars will be able to play alongside other players from various tours around the world that have qualified for the event, as well as a number of other players selected by the USPGA committee as being eligible to compete in the event.

Justin Thomas is the defending Champion having won the event last year at Southern Hills with a score of -5 under par. That was his second victory in the tournament after his first at Quail Hollow back in 2017.

The East Course at Oak Hill

Located in the north east corner of the United States in the town of Pittsford, New York, it is fair to say that Oak Hill is one of the most northerly venues to host the USPGA Championship.

Originally a nine-hole course when established in 1901, it expanded to 18 holes in 1921 when it swapped land with the University of Rochester, receiving a great deal more land on which it built two courses, the East Course and West Course both designed by Donald Ross.

The East Course hosts the big tournaments and it has been redesigned several times over the years, bu Robert Trent Jones Sr. in the 60s, Tom Fazio in the 80s and 90s and then most recently, and perhaps controversially, by Andrew Green in 2019.

Now measuring 7,390 yards from the Championship tees, Jason Dufner holds the course record with 63 and given the changes to the course made in the latest redesign, it is felt that it is unlikely anyone will beat that score any time soon.

East Course Hole Guide

  • Hole 1 – Challenge – 460 yards par 4
  • Hole 2 – Breather – 405 yards par 4
  • Hole 3 – Vista – 230 yards par 3
  • Hole 4 – The High and Mighty – 615 yards par 5
  • Hole 5 – Little Poison – 180 yards par 3
  • Hole 6 – Double Trouble – 500 yards par 4
  • Hole 7 – Creek’s Elbow – 460 yards par 4
  • Hole 8 – Wayside – 430 yards par 4
  • Hole 9 – Needle’s Eye – 480- yards par 4
  • Hole 10 – Council Grove – 430 yards par 4
  • Hole 11 – Creekside – 245 yards par 3
  • Hole 12 – Leaning Oak – 400 yards par 4
  • Hole 13 – Hill of Fame – 595 yards par 5
  • Hole 14 – Bunker Hill – 320 yards par 4
  • Hole 15 – The Plateau – 160 yards par 3
  • Hole 16 – Straight Away – 460 yards par 4
  • Hole 17 – Twin Tees – 500 yards par 4
  • Hole 18 – Goin’ Home – 490 yards par 4

Rory McIlroy is believed to be a member of the club, so he may well be worth watching as the tournament unfolds over the weekend.

What Are The Current Odds On The Tournament At Bet365?

We have taken a look at the odds available at bet365 for the USPGA Championship this week and the top odds (players priced at 33/1 or shorter) are shown below:

  • 15/2 – Scottie Scheffler (US), Jon Rahm (Spa)
  • 12/1 – Rory McIlroy (N.Ire)
  • 16/1 – Xander Schauffele (US)
  • 18/1 – Patrick Cantlay (US)
  • 20/1 – Tony Finau (US), Brooks Koepka (US)
  • 25/1 – Dustin Johnson (US), Justin Thomas (US), Jason Day (Aus)
  • 28/1 – Cameron Young (US), Viktor Hovland (Nor)
  • 30/1 – Matt Fitzpatrick (Eng)
  • 33/1 – Collin Morikawa (US), Cameron Smith (Aus), Sungjae Im (S.Kor)

*odds were correct at time of writing with bet365 Sport but may have changed over time.

So Who Are The Golfers Worth Backing And Why At Oak Hill This Week?

There are a couple of things I would like to note about this week’s tournament. Firstly, given the extent of changes on the course, I don’t think any previous form at Oak Hill will be indicative of anything this week.

Secondly, the changes made do tend to favour the players who can consistently carry the ball over 300 yards, especially on the two par five and longer par four holes.

Add into this rather cool, but generally dry weather, with the potential for some wind on the last two days of competition and I would say that this tournament is going to have a very European feel to it, given the temperatures and whatnot.

As such, Rory McIlroy (12/1) has to be a consideration, as does Jon Rahm (15/2) while Xander Schauffele’s good form see’s him a popular bet at 16/1.

So, if you wanted a bet on a golfer to win the event outright, those three would be my selections.

However, I feel there’s much better value available on the each way markets with bet365 offering payouts of 1/5 of the odds on the top eight finishers and ties.

That does open up the field a bit more and I think Viktor Hovlund (28/1) is one to consider as an each way bet, as is the big hitting Gary Woodland (80/1) who has started to show some better form in recent times.

Phil Mickelson is a stunning 225/1 to win the tournament, but it is worth remembering he did win it back in 2021, and he produced a superb final round 65 at Augusta to finish second in the Masters earlier this year. At those odds, he is fantastic value as an each way bet.

Good luck if you decide to have a bet on the big golf tournament this week!