Gary Woodland’s Favorite Golf Gambling Story: $32K Riding on the Final Hole

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Dennis Schneidler-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Gary Woodland

Jun 17, 2019, 10:00 PM EDT

The Action Network spoke with several of today’s top professional golfers to find out their favorite personal golf betting stories. This story was originally published in September 2018, nine months before Woodland won the U.S. Open at Pebble Beach.

  • Who: Gary Woodland
  • When: Two years ago
  • Where: Pebble Beach

As part of a buddies’ golf trip, Woodland and three friends from his hometown in Kansas took a trip to Pebble Beach. Woodland was a world top-50 golfer at the time; his buddies were decidedly not professionals.

Even so, there was some betting action, which got a little out of control when the lone pro golfer started winning every hole. This is the story of how Woodland kept these friendly wagers from becoming unfriendly.

“I went out to Pebble Beach with some buddies. Me and another guy were playing a shamble against two guys scrambling. Each team got three presses. The money got up to where it got to be a little uncomfortable.

“Fortunately, though, we were winning.

“It’s coming down to the 18th at Pebble and we give them a half-shot on the last hole, just because it got a little out of hand for guys who didn’t have it.

“There were a couple of us who could afford it, but we were playing the last hole for $32,000 each. That was a little much for some of the guys.

Michael Madrid-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Gary Woodland.

“I mean, it’s fun being on the winning side of it, but we gave them a half-shot and let them play for half the bet. They won the last hole.

“I was a little nervous. I didn’t want to win that last one.

“It was fun, but you don’t want to lose friends over something like that.

“And we’re all still friends, so it all worked out in the end.”

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