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Kisner Enjoys Strong Start At Carnoustie

July 19, 2018

The Open provided drama on the first day of the competition at Carnoustie from the major players from around the globe, although the opening round belonged to Kevin Kisner.

The American produced the performance on the day to take a one-stroke lead into the second round. He was solid throughout and has momentum to take on the rest of the week in an attempt to secure his first major.

Tony Finau has been in contention at all the majors this term, including on a dislocated ankle at The Masters. He continued his fine form to move just one stroke off the pace. Rory McIlroy, Jon Rahm, Danny Willett and Justin Thomas are among the other names that are within striking distance.

We’ll now breakdown the leading contenders after the first day of action at Carnoustie.

Kisner leads the way after round one

Kevin Kisner

Kisner has had his moments on the PGA Tour this term. He came close to winning the World Golf Championships-Dell Technologies Match Play, only to beaten by Bubba Watson in the final. The 34-year-old had a solid start to his round before making a mistake at the fifth. However, he bounced back in perfect fashion with an eagle on the sixth before notching a birdie on the eighth to enter the back nine on two-under. After the turn the American was solid once again, carding three pars on the bounce, displaying his cautious nature on the course.

He upped the ante to find three birdies in a row to move to the top of the leaderboard. Kisner held his composure to end his round with another mistake, leaving him alone at the top. The 34-year-old does not have a great deal of experience of success at the majors. His previous best finish in one of the four major events came last season at the PGA Championship when he placed tied-seventh. Therefore his odds of 22/1  with BetVictor should be met with caution, despite the quality of his opening round.

Tony Finau

The 28-year-old has made another good start to a major backing up his performances at The Masters and the US Open. He finished tied-10th at Augusta, despite being hampered after dislocating his ankle in the par-three competition. Finau improved the level of his display at Shinnecock, placing in fifth just off the pace of Brooks Koepka. The American has made a statement of intent at Carnoustie with a round of 67 on the opening day. He began his round with back-to-back birdies on one and two before dropping a shot on the third.

Finau’s up-and-down front nine continued with a birdie at the sixth, only to a drop a stroke at the seventh. A birdie on the ninth sent him round the turn at two-under, although the back nine proved to be just as dramatic. A bogey on the 12th set Finau back, but he responded with three birdies on the spin before dropping a stroke on the 16th. He was to end his round on a high note with a birdie on the 18th. Given the inconsistency of his play, the American could be one to monitor at odds of 14/1  with Betway.

Jon Rahm

Rahm missed the cut at the US Open, with two disappointing rounds. However, he has managed to bounce back with a solid outing on his first day at Carnoustie. The Spaniard has been inconsistent on the tour this season, but appears to be on his way to having one of his good bursts, which could be enough to guide him to his first major. Rahm began his round with two pars before notching his first birdie of the day on the third.

The Spaniard immediately dropped a stroke on the fourth, but was able to bounce back with two birdies in succession to leave him two-under at the turn. A bogey on the fourth checked his momentum and he was not able to get the shot back before the 14th. Rahm ended with four-straight pars to card a 69. The 23-year-old was solid, but expect more from him as the competition progresses. Back Rahm at odds of 10/1  with BetVictor to take the Claret Jug.

Rory McIlroy

McIlroy has put himself in contention for his second Open title with a solid performance on the opening day. The Northern Irishman was off the pace at the US Open after a decent outing at The Masters. It has been four years since his last triumph at a major event and he will be desperate to capitalise on his solid start. McIlroy’s performance on the course was fairly innocuous, beginning with two pars before notching his first birdie of the round on the third.

A mistake at the fifth knocked him back down to even par, where he remained until the back nine. The 29-year-old found rhythm to birdie the 12th and the 14th to move within three strokes of the lead. He was unable to make a further impression, parring the remaining four holes. McIlroy has the calibre and he now has a solid opportunity to chase down the crown on the remaining three days at odds of 10/1  with Betway.

Henrik Stenson

The 2016 champion is lurking four shots off the pace of Kisner, but is more than capable of making a charge in the coming days. Stenson has been in solid form in the majors this term, finishing fifth at The Masters before placing in sixth at the US Open. He has been consistent on the tour and can move through the gears after a decent first day at Carnoustie.

The Swede was solid through the first five holes before notching his first birdie of the round at the sixth. He dropped a stroke at the eighth to enter the back nine at even-par. Stenson had issues at the 12th to drop his second shot of the day, although he recovered with back-to-back birdies at the 14th and 15th to end his round on one-under. He has intriguing odds of 28/1  with Betway to win the tournament from this position.

Tips Summary

Kevin Kisner To Win The Open
Friday 20th July 2018 – Sunday 22nd July 2018
Odds: 22/1

Jon Rahm To Win The Open
Friday 20th July 2018 – Sunday 22nd July 2018
Odds: 10/1

Rory McIlroy To Win The Open
Friday 20th July 2018 – Sunday 22nd July 2018
Odds: 10/1

  • henrik stenson
  • Jon Rahm
  • Kevin Kisner
  • Rory McIlroy
  • The Open
  • Tony Finau

    About the author

    Simon Sinclair
    Simon Sinclair

    Sports Writer

    Simon is a freelance sports writer from the UK. He passionately writes about all kinds of sports, sharing his predictions on everything from the latest cricket matches and golf tournaments to major horse racing events and popular American sports.