TattsBet News 26th April

RUGBY LEAGUE

Favourite punters got out of jail on ANZAC Day when the Dragons came from eight points down with a few minutes on the clock to beat the Roosters 28-24. The Dragons were backed from $1.42 into $1.36 in that game, and they were also coupled up with the Storm ($1.42 into $1.30) in multi’s, so we were looking for the Roosters to hang on. They couldn’t get the job done, and punters have wasted little time charging in to a few of the favourites coming up.

Brisbane have firmed up slightly from $1.26 into $1.24 to beat the Titans on Friday night, and the Broncos have been anchored up in most multi’s with the Tigers ($1.47) to beat Parramatta and Newcastle ($1.40) to beat Penrith. There is huge betting interest in the other Friday night game between the Bulldogs and Manly, and of course this ‘grudge’ match has dominated the headlines this week. Manly have firmed from an opening $1.85 into $1.74 on the back of some solid betting and also the news that the Stewart brothers and Keiran Foran have been named in the side. We are not so sure that all three will play, and don’t forget they were beaten by the Titans at their last start! While he has been talking it down there is little doubt that Des Hassler will have the Bulldogs up for this match, and we are also seeing big support for them at $2.10. It is a really good betting duel, something that you rarely see when teams are close together in price.

AFL

There isn’t a lot that we can say about the ANZAC Day clash that hasn’t been already said, but it would be fair to say that those who backed Collingwood from an opening $1.75 into $1.65 had to endure a nail biting finish before collecting. It is still too early to define whether Collingwood are as good as they were last year, but for the time being they are in slightly to $6.50 to win the flag. The Bombers eased slightly to $21.00 after their first loss, still pretty good odds considering their form, but punters aren’t interested in either them or the Swans ($15.00) at this stage of proceedings. Hawthorn remain flag favourites at $4.35 ahead of the Eagles ($5.00) and Carlton at $5.25.

The price for Gary Ablett to win the Brownlow doubled in the space of a week after he injured his knee against the Lions. Ablett was $4.50 last week but has drifted out to $8.00 equal favourite with Marc Murphy and Scott Pendlebury, while Dane Swan is hot on their heels at $9.00 after winning the ANZAC Day Medal.

The Friday night clash between Fremantle and Carlton is a real betting battle with money split down the middle. The Blues are slight favourites at $1.85 with Freo at $1.95, although the Dockers did touch $2.05 when there was some talk that Aaron Sandilands could be out. The big guy resumed training on Wednesday so appears set to play, and that will make them very hard to beat.

The Suns get a bigger start than GWS this week, and we are not sure that will occur too often this year! The GWS are +65.5 against the Bulldogs, but this game will be played in Canberra and there is always a strong chance of bad weather there. The Suns will be missing Ablett, Harbrow and possibly Rischatelli, and for that reason they are receiving 83.5 points start against the Kangaroos. The Roos play Etihad Stadium so well that it is hard to put up any argument to suggest that they won’t cover that line.

MOTOR BIKES

The Spanish motoGP will be held on Sunday night, and local hero Jorge Lorenzo is the $2.20 favourite before the practise sessions begin. Lorenzo won the season opener in Qatar, but more importantly has won the last two running’s of this event on his home soil, so his price is justified. Second elect is Casey Stoner who has struggled at this venue in the past, but there were also some worrying signs for the Aussie in Qatar. He qualified fastest but dropped out of contention during the race with fatigue problems. All as a result of injuries suffered last year. That is not good news, and we have noticed that his fans have not been too keen to take the $2.50. The only other realistic chance as far as betting is concerned is Dani Pedrosa ($4.50), and he ticks all the right boxes here as well. Pedrosa ran second in Qatar, is also Spanish, and has finished second in this event the past three years, so is at home on the course. There has been a few bets placed on Valentino Rossi at $34.00, the diminutive Italian is a long way short of his best this season.

GOLF

The Zurich Classic is the PGA Tour event this week, and it sees the return of Bubba Watson after winning the Masters a few weeks back. Watson is the second elect at $14.00 behind Luke Donald ($13.00), and it is worth pointing out that Watson is also the defending champion of this event. There were plenty of Tattsbet punters who benefited from Bubba's win in the Masters, and many of those have backed him again this week. Keegan Bradley is the third favourite at $19.00 ahead of Justin Rose ($21.00) and Webb Simpson at $23.00. Simpson was runner-up here last year but his form has dropped off recently. There will be a big Aussie contingent lining up in the Zurich, and John Senden is the shortest of those eleven players at $51.00 ahead of Greg Chalmers at $61.00. There has been money for Chalmers to be the Top Aussie at $4.50, and there has been some support also for Geoff Ogilvy at $4.75.

The European Tour event is the Ballantines Championship, and it will be played in Seoul, Korea. Adam Scott heads the betting at $8.00, and while he hasn't chalked up a win for a while, Scott won this event back in 2010. Ian Poulter is next in line at $14.00, and has attracted some support at that price after closing out with a final round of 66 in China last week. There is a strong field of locals in the Ballantine headed up by Sang-moon Bae ($19.00), K.T Kim ($21.00) and Y.E.Yang ($26.00), with Bae the best backed of that trio. Bae has been in good form and was beaten in a playoff for the Transitions Championship by Luke Donald a few starts back.

TENNIS

The French Open is still a month away but there has been some movement in both markets as the tours move to Europe.

Rafael Nadal easily defeated Novak Djokovic on clay last weekend, and that impressive victory has seen his price cut from $2.00 into $1.90. Nadal has had knee problems for years, but is definitely more at home on clay, and has won six of the last seven French Open's. Djokovic is the second favourite at $2.50 (out from $2.25) after having a fabulous 2011, but was beaten in a semi here last year by Roger Federer, who is a $10.00 pop this year.

The Womens title looks extremely open. Victoria Azarenka is $3.25 favourite ahead of Petra Kvitova at $5.50, Serena Williams ($6.50), Sam Stosur ($10.00) and Maria Sharapova ($13.00). Stosur has firmed from $13.00 into $10.00 after a terrific performance in the Fed Cup, and is at home on this surface. Kvitova was the big improver in 2011, and she was beaten in 3 sets by eventual winner Li Na in the fifth round last year. Li Na is currently a $17.00 chance, but hasn't met with any support to date.

RACING

Black Caviar fever returns this week when the mare goes around in the Robert Sangster Stakes at Morphetville. The $1.04 on offer is becoming standard practise now, as is the number of ‘odd’ bets coming for her. There have already been dozens of bets on Black Caviar of $5 or less, clearly people are backing her just to say that they have. The Schweppes Oaks is on the same program, and Empress Rock is the opening favourite at $3.80. Most of the early money (one bet of $1500) has been for Empress Rock, so it looks as though punters are will to forgive her last start failure. There were excuses that day as she apparently sweated up before the race and did miss the start. There has been a sprinkling of support for a couple of others in the Oaks including Rahveel ($8.00), Kasumi ($13.00) and Crimson Lady ($16.00)

Randwick will host the Sydney Cup on Saturday, and in-form stayer Permit is the public elect at the moment. Permit opened at $3.40 after the final field was announced, and several four figure bets have already been placed at that quote. Niwot ($4.40) has had an ideal preparation for this race, and although he is the second pick, there hasn’t really been a very big push for him. Drunken Sailor ($6.50) and Older Than Time ($9.00) have meet with solid support, but the real surprise is Efficient. Outside of Permit, Efficient has been easily the best backed at $13.00 even though he has been a late scratching a couple of times recently. Efficient has been a terrific stayer for a number of years, and we always see money for him every time he runs, and his legion of fans think he can add the Sydney Cup to his trophy cabinet that already holds a Melbourne Cup.