2011 The Players Championship Betting Lines and Odds – Ben Crane Ready to Cash In at the TPC at Sawgrass: Heading into the Players Championship, only three golfers are getting better odds to win than Ben Crane (+2700). Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson are two of those players, but neither is setting the Tour on fire right now. More importantly, the duo has just two wins in 30 combined starts in the TPC. The other golfer ranked ahead of Crane is Luke Donald, but with his current odds of +1400, bettors are going to get more for their money with Crane.
For starters, Crane has a pretty darn good track record at Sawgrass. In his last three starts in the Players Championship, he has finished sixth, fourth and fifth. He doesn’t have a win in the event, but Crane has been in the mix on a regular basis. A few more big shots or lucky breaks this week, and he could pick up a win in a tournament regarded as the unofficial fifth major.
His success in the event shouldn’t come as a surprise. Sawgrass is a course that places an emphasis on putting and iron shots more so than distance off the tee. In other words, the course challenges golfers in all facets of the game. Crane currently ranks in the top 25 in terms of the PGA’s All-Around Ranking index, and he ranks 12th on the Tour in driving accuracy and greens hit in regulation.
Crane’s only below-average categories are driving distance and his ability to hit shots out of bunkers. As discussed earlier, driving distance isn’t going to be the deciding factor at a course like Sawgrass. In addition, Crane’s elite ability to stay out of the sand negates his inability to recover from his trips to the bunker.
Last but not least, Crane is playing well in 2011. He has made the cut in seven of his eight starts this year, finishing in the top-25 in all seven of those events. With Crane, bettors are getting a hot golfer with a game that fits the Players Championship. Throw in the sizeable jump in the payout between Crane and the top-three options as well as his history of success in the event, Crane should see plenty of action before the tournament begins Thursday.
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