2012 Talisker Australian Masters: The 5 favourites

We take a look at the five favourites going in to this week’s Australian Masters.
The 2012 Talisker Australian Masters is now only two days away and we thought it’s worth taking a look at who the bookmakers have installed as the favourites to win the gold jacket at Kingston Heath.
Depending on who you talk to, it’s a toss up between Adam Scott and Ian Poulter for outright favouritism this week. As far as we’re concerned, we think it’s the defending champ who should get top billing, so we will start with him.

Ian Poulter $5

It is tempting to say Ian Poulter has had an amazing last few months following his Ryder Cup heroics and winning the WGC event in China a few weeks ago. But the truth is, he has had a very good 2012.
Poulter hasn’t missed a cut this year, he’s finished top-10 in three of the four majors and has entrenched himself back into the world’s top-20 ranked golfers. The guy is a fighter and squeezes everything out of his golf game. Like last year, he’s not here to take the appearance money and run. He hates losing and will be in contention Sunday afternoon.
Adam Scott $5.50
You would find it hard to find any golfer in the world who has hit the ball better than Adam Scott this year, and right now he is absolutely flushing it. Seriously, get yourself along just to see him hit the golf ball – stunning.
Kingston Heath will suit Scott as a pure ball striker. He finished in a tie for sixth here in 2009, but he just needs to be solid on the greens and avoid three putting to claim his first gold jacket.
Graeme McDowell $9
It is a little hard to know which Graeme McDowell will turn up at Kingston Heath after an erratic 2012. Take his US Open for example. He missed the cut in two tournaments before the major, but then almost forced a playoff on the final hole after four days of intense golf. But we will always have a hard time shaking the memory of that mis-hit three wood during the final round of the Open Championship in July, which ruined any chance he had of claiming the Claret Jug.
McDowell has been prone to throwing in one bad round among three good ones at tournaments this year. and Kingston Heath won’t be too kind to golfers who throw in one bad round this week.
Stuart Appleby $13
What exactly is Stuart Appleby doing as fourth favourite to win?! 
Granted he won the gold jacket in 2010 but it has been lean times ever since that has lead to Appleby losing his PGA Tour card and finishing 144th on the money list. Luckily for Appleby, he has a one-time-only exemption to use next year as one of the tour’s top-50 all-time money earners and will be keen to step into the 2013 with some decent golf.
Appleby has shown brief glimpses of form in his past two tournaments and shot some decent scores again. A return to his home town will do him wonders and he always has an extra spring in his step on the sandbelt courses. All the same, he still shouldn’t be at such short odds.
Richard Green $13
The 2004 Australian Masters winner is a good chance this week after putting together a few good performances. None more so than at last week’s Singapore Open. Like everyone else, Green will need to be patient around Kingston Heath that can occasionally be his undoing. May surprise.

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