The Bookies Are Really, Really Tired Of Losing Money On Tiger Woods

Because as The Guardian's Dan Roebuck reports, these prices look "short"...

Despite Woods' absence from the fairways as he recovers from surgery following his incredible win at Torrey Pines in June, the world No1 still heads the betting for the two 2009 majors the layers have priced. Woods is 5-2 (Sky Bet) for the Masters and 3-1 (Hill's and Totesport) to win the Open . Even for a man that has so often defied the odds those prices look short.

Woods will not make a competitive return until the spring – Sportingbet offer 9-4 he will next tee up in the Arnold Palmer Invitational in March, two weeks before the Masters. He may, of course, not make the line-up at Augusta which means Phil Mickelson would almost certainly take over at the top of the market.

Lefty, who has won twice and rewarded each-way backers six times in eight years, is 10-1 generally. If Woods, who is 13-8 (Sky Bet) to lose his top spot in the world ­rankings in 2009, looks out of touch on his return, Mickelson's price will go only one way – so the advice is to back him now.

I think I'll take a rain check on that.