Who Could Cause a Surprise at the Open Championship?

By Brian Weis

Brooks Koepka caused a surprise last week in the US Open at Erin Hills as the American won the first Major of his career in a stunning performance that saw him finish four shots ahead of the field at the end of the weekend. Many of the big names in the sport missed the cut in Wisconsin, including Dustin Johnson, Jason Day and Rory McIlroy as they struggled in their opening two rounds around the tough golf course.

The world's best players will now be focusing on the Open Championship, the third Major on the calendar, which is taking place at Royal Birkdale in Southport this year. Here is a look at some of the players who could cause a surprise at the tournament.

Rafael Cabrera-Bello
Photo Credit (above): Federacion de Madrid via Twitter

Rafael Cabrera-Bello is still looking for the first Major win of his career, which is 85/1 to come at Royal Birkdale. With this in mind, click here if you wanna bet online on golf where there are a range of different markets already available on the tournament. The Spaniard is a winner of five events around the world and has just recently started playing regularly on the PGA Tour in the USA. He was in contention going into the final day of the St Jude Classic after a brilliant round of 65 on the Saturday. Sadly for the European, he was unable to convert that into a win the following day as Daniel Berger defended his title. Cabrera-Bello has only once missed the cut in the last five years in the Open Championship so he clearly enjoys playing link golf.

Kevin Kisner
At the age of 33, Kevin Kinser is a late developer on the PGA Tour, where he has been successful twice in the last two years. The American prevailed recently at the Dean & DeLuca Invitational in Texas where he played superbly well to hold off the challenge of Jon Rahm, Sean O'Hair and Jordan Spieth. The tournament next month will be Kisner's third visit to the Open Championship. He will travel to Southport under the radar; however, if he continues to play some of the iron shots he has been executing recently, he can be in contention at the Merseyside course where he is available at a huge 125/1 in the betting.

Charley Hoffman
Credit: PGA TOUR via Twitter

Charley Hoffman crept into contention on the final day of the US Open at Erin Hills to record his second top ten finish in a Major Championship. The man from California has been a professional since 2000 and has won four times on the PGA Tour, the most recent being the Valero Texas Open in 2016. Sadly, it has never worked out for him in the big events. As we have seen with the likes of Stewart Cink, Darren Clarke and Ben Curtis, the Open often throws up a surprise result so this could be Hoffman's year. One of Hoffman's biggest strengths is his putting so he won't be giving away too many shots on the greens. If you can fancy backing the American, he is a huge 140/1 to lift the Claret Jug.

Steve Stricker

Steve Stricker is one of the best golfers never to win a Major Championship. At the age of 50, he now shares his time between the PGA Tour and Seniors Tour, where he has made a strong start following his induction. Despite his age, Stricker has finished inside the top 20 of both of the two majors so far in 2017. Royal Birkdale is not the biggest course in the world and may instead suit someone like Stricker, who can use all his experience to get around safely with a winning score.

If any of the five above are successful at Royal Birkdale, it will be the eight consecutive major that a first-time winner has come out on top on the Sunday.


Revised: 06/22/2017 - Article Viewed 572 Times

Written By: Brian Weis

Brian Weis Brian Weis is the Publisher of, a network of golf travel and directory sites including,,,, etc. Professionally, Brian is a member of the Golf Writers Association of America (GWAA), International Network of Golf (ING), Golf Travel Writers of America (GTWA), International Golf Travel Writers Association (IGTWA) and The Society of Hickory Golfers (SoHG). In 2016, Brian won The Shaheen Cup, an award given to a golf travel writer by his peers.

All of his life, Brian has been around the game of golf. As a youngster, Brian competed at all levels in junior and high school golf. Brian had a zero chance for a college golf scholarship, so he worked on the grounds crew at West Bend Country Club to pay for his University of Wisconsin education. In his adult years, his passion for the game collided with his entrepreneurial spirit and in 2004 launched In 2007, the idea for a network of local golf directory sites formed and was born. Today, the network consists of a site in all 50 states supported by national sites like, and It is an understatement to say, Brian is passionate about promoting golf and golf travel on a local, regional, national and international level.

On the golf course, Brian is known as a fierce weekend warrior that fluctuates between a 5-9 handicap. With a soft fade, known as "The Weis Slice", and booming 300+ drives, he can blast it out of bounds with the best of them.

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