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Japan, Darren Clarke: The Day of the Big Underdogs

Written by:
Dan Shapiro
Published on:
Jul/17/2011
Japan, Darren Clarke

Two huge underdogs one their respective sporting events.

Japan, while not a huge underdog to beat the USA in the Women’s World Cup Final, was a very big underdog to win at the start of the actual event. 

Japan was listed with 12/1 odds of winning the final just a few weeks ago.

Just when it seemed that Team USA had the game sealed, Japan forced overtime.  Once again, in the final minutes of overtime, Japan managed to tie the game once more in improbable fashion.

Shannon Boxx, Carli Lloyd and Tobin Heath all missed penalties for the Americans, which allowed Japan to win for the first time against the Americans in 26 tries.  It is the first time an Asian nation has ever won a World Cup.

"It's obviously heartbreaking," Wambach said. "Japan played well. They never gave up."

The other upset of the day came with a giant underdog Darren Clarke winning the 2011 Open Championship.  He was at 150/1 odds of winning heading into The Open Championship.

Despite meaningless bogeys on the last two holes, Clarke closed with an even-par 70.

"Pretty amazing right now," Clarke said. "It's been a dream since I've been a kid to win the Open, like any kid's dream is, and I'm able to do it, which just feels incredible."

Clarke continues Ireland’s triumphant success in the sport of golf.  Many in his homeland consider Clarke “a man of the people” while the oddsmakers didn’t think much of him at all, everyone going gaga over Ireland’s other native son, favorite to win Rory McIlroy. 

"I'm a bit of a normal bloke, aren't I?" Clarke said, the claret jug at his side. "I like to go to the pub and have a pint, fly home, buy everybody a drink, just normal. There's not many airs and graces about me. I was a little bit more difficult to deal with in my earlier years, and I've mellowed some. Just a little bit. But I'm just a normal guy playing golf, having a bit of fun."

- Dan Shapirio, Gambling911.com

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