Digest: Latest golf news round-up

Tiger Woods' odds for the US Open lengthen while increased betting on Europeans shows punters believe a 'home-grown' winner is just around the corner.

Punters not convinced by Tiger

The odds on Tiger Woods winning the US Open this week were shunted out as far as 4/1 by William Hill on Wednesday morning. Hill's spokesman Graham Sharpe said, "There has been extraordinarily little public support for the favourite, Tiger Woods, so we tried to stimulate the market by pushing him from 11/4 to 4/1".

Sharpe said Hill's worst-case scenario was a victory for Sergio Garcia, Padraig Harrington or Colin Montgomerie as punters predicted a European winner.

But by Wednesday afternoon Tiger fans had forced the bookmaker to cut the world number one's odds back to 3-1.

Open spots still up for grabs

This year?s Open Championship at Carnoustie has received no fewer than 2,425 entries.

And for those not already exempt there are still places up for grabs at tournaments such as the Smurfit Kappa European Open, Barclays Scottish Open, AT&T National and John Deere Classic. A further spot is available to the winner of this year's Amateur Championship being played at Royal Lytham & St Annes and St Annes Old Links from June 18-23.

A full list of exempt players can be found at www.opengolf.com

R&A Annual Review

The R&A has announced a strong financial performance in its 2006 Annual Review.

Operating profit, for the year to 31 December 2006, stood firm at £9.1m (£9.1m) after increased grants totalling £2.9m (£2.3m) were awarded to external golf development bodies. More work in the Asia-Pacific region is reported where initiatives such as an agreed programme with the China Golf Association, to train over 100 new Chinese golf referees, is underway. The full report can be viewed at www.randa.org

Extreme Golf Challenge

Three Hertfordshire golfers are set to play an Extreme Golf Challenge to raise money for a local charity called the MS Trust that supports those with Multiple Sclerosis. The guys will be playing 126 different holes in a day over seven local courses, including Moor Park, Sandy Lodge and West Herts.

They will be starting at Moor Park in the early hours of June 18 and hope to finish by sunset with European Tour pro David Griffiths accompanying them for the final few holes.

For more info on this event visit www.justgiving.co.uk/mstrustgolfathon

Matthews wins Links Trophy

Llewellyn Matthews of Wales has won the prestigious St Andrews Links Trophy. Played over both the Old and Jubilee courses at the Home of Golf, Matthews enjoyed three sub-70 rounds. With a closing 67, the young Welshman finished at -15 for the tournament, three shots clear of a strong field that included players such as top Scottish amateur Lloyd Saltman.

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