Rory McIlroy has taken over as sole favourite for The Open this week as punters grow increasingly confident his major drought is about the end.
A victory in the final major of the year would be McIlroy’s first major championship win in eight years, having last landed one of golf’s big four at the 2014 USPGA at Valhalla in Kentucky.
However, the Holywood man is going in buoyed by a strong run of form this year which has included top-8 finishes in all three major championships.
McIlroy, who skipped the Scottish Open and stepped up his preparations with a warm-up round at Ballybunion in County Kerry on Thursday alongside Tiger Woods, has been clipped into 9/1 from 10/1 with BoyleSports, while previous joint favourite Scottie Scheffler was eased to 12/1 from 10/1 following his opening round of thee-over-par 73 at the Scottish Open.
Among those being backed are Shane Lowry, who is now 16/1 from 20/1 to land a second Claret Jug, and recent US Open winner Matt Fitzpatrick, who is also 16/1 from 20/1 after he shot up the leaderboard in Scotland on Friday with a second round of 66.
Lawrence Lyons, Spokesperson for BoyleSports commented: “There have been a few near misses in the majors this year for Rory McIlroy, but there is a strong feeling among punters he is back at his peak. He’s being so well backed for The Open that he’s just gone clear favourite at 9/1 from 10/1 and they are turning away from some of the leading Americans struggling with the wind at the Scottish Open.”