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Tiger Woods will have a lot of supporters when he plays at the Masters this weekend, both at Augusta National and watching at home. But one person will be cheering for him louder than everyone else. One person who has a lot to lose if Tiger loses, and even more to gain if he wins.
I’m talking about a sports bettor, of course.
According to Golf Digest, an unidentified Nevada individual placed an $85,000 bet on Woods winning the Masters. That’s not a small amount of money to wager on anything, but the reward is huge. With the odds at 14-1, the payout would be a massive $1,190,000.
That’s both a record golf bet and a record liability for the London-based casino and sportsbook operation William Hill. Golf Digest spoke to Nick Bogdanovich, the director of trading at William Hill, and he originally thought the bettor had made a mistake and added a few extra zeroes to the amount by accident.
But it wasn’t a mistake. Bogdanovich had to call his boss to talk about the wager before it was accepted, because the largest golf bets they normally get are in the $10,000 to $25,000 range, with payouts around $300,000.
Any bet is risky, but an $85,000 bet on a past-his-glory Tiger Woods seems especially risky — even with his excellent history at Augusta National. He’s finished in the top ten 13 times, including four wins and seven top five finishes. But his last win was in 2005, 14 years ago. He tied for 17th at the 2018 Masters, and didn’t play the two years before that.
Woods’ elite days are almost certainly behind him. He hasn’t won a tournament with more than 30 players in over five years. But maybe there’s still some magic left in his bright red polo shirt. We won’t know until he steps onto the green on Thursday.
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