TattsBet News 31st May

RUGBY LEAGUE

Round one this year saw a major upset when the Gold Coast travelled north to take on the Cowboys, and came away with a 18-0 win. Fast forward 12 weeks, and these two will be at it again, and there is little in the betting. A month ago the Titans were under siege both on and off the field, but in amongst a few rounds they have recorded wins away against Manly and Newcastle, so they are a show this week. The Titans opened at $2.25 with the Cowboys at $1.65, the prices haven’t moved, and there is betting both ways.

There have been plenty of disappointing sides this year, and Canberra fir right in to that category. Granted they have had injuries, but so have most other sides. Josh Dugan is back this week after being stood down, and although he has been moved from his preferred spot of full-back, there are punters out there who think they can beat the Tigers. The Raiders opened at $2.65, but are now in to $2.60, with the line coming in from +6 to +5.5. One of the early bets was $3000 at the line, and there has been little or no interest in the Tigers.

At the start of the season, Newcastle had been backed from $15.00 into $9.00 to win the competition on the back of luring Wayne Bennett and several high profile players. It just hasn’t worked, and although they have also been hit with injuries, their effort against the Gold Coast last week was terrible. They now travel to Brisbane and it is hard to believe that the ex ‘boom’ side will be $4.85, and completely unwanted in betting. Even a high line of +14.0 hasn’t been enticing to punters with all of the early trading coming for the Broncos.

The Bulldogs v Souths game is similar to the Titans match with betting coming for both sides. The Bulldogs landed a big plunge when disposing of the Roosters on Monday night, but are slight underdogs against the Bunnies at $2.00. The betting hasn’t moved since it opened, and the action is split both ways.

AFL

It is always a good thing for footy when Richmond are a force, and while talk of a premiership ($21.00) might be a little premature, their effort to beat Hawthorn last week was huge. It was one of the upsets of the year, and saw the price for a Hawks flag crash from $4.50 favourite to $6.50.

But, Richmond have done this before and then disappointed, so it is going to be very interesting to see how they go against St Kilda on Friday night. The Tigers opened up slight outsiders at $2.05, but the first $4000 bet on the game was for them, and that saw a little move in to $2.00. St Kilda have eased out to $1.81, and at the current prices there is interest in both sides. Etihad Stadium is a venue that St Kilda play well at, and that may be enough to get them over the line.

Hawthorn were terrible last week, but go to Tasmania for the clash with North Melbourne as hot $1.27 favourites. There is plenty of action on them through multis, but punters have been apprehensive to take the line of -24.5. We can understand why after last week, but it is worth noting that in this game in Tassie last year, Hawthorn didn’t hit the front until a couple of minutes from full time. This is a real danger game, and the Hawks are poor value.

Those who take the lines are probably aware of a couple of teams that have a good record of covering, but it might surprise most that the GWS have been the most successful side in 2012. The youngsters have only failed to cover the big lines twice, and that would explain some early interest in them at +74.5 against Geelong.

Collingwood are the current flag favourites at $4.75, just ahead of the West Coast at $5.00, and the Pies have found themselves in that position thanks to a stellar start to the year by Scott Pendlebury. The Collingwood midfielder is now a clear favourite for the Brownlow at $3.25, ahead of Jobe Watson at $8.00. Richmond duo Trent Cotchin and Brett Deledio have entered the fray, now on the $21.00 line of betting.

SUPER RUGBY

The Bulls return to South Africa after several weeks, and although they did beat the Waratahs and the Rebels, they could have quite easily have won all four games. They take on an injury riddled Stormers this week, and there has been plenty to say that they will win at home. The Bulls opened at $1.70 but in the first 24 hours of betting had firmed to $1.63, with the Stormers drifting to $2.25. The money trail on the South African games has been quite successful this season, so that might be a good lead for that particular game.

The Waratahs have been copping it in the press this week, and they are $1.78 to turn it all around against the Hurricanes. NSW rugby fans should be used to this by now, it seems to happen every year, but the Waratahs just seem incapable of putting teams away. They let a 10 point half time lead against the Cheetahs lapse last week, and while they will be at home, they have had the long trip back to contend with. The Hurricanes however have come good, and put on 66 points against the Rebels last week, so at the odds of $2.02, we are more than happy that punters prefer the Waratahs.

The Super Rugby competition will have a break after this week when several International matches will be played, and Tattsbet will be offering a full service on those.

TENNIS

The second round of the French Open continues tonight with Aussie Bernard Tomic taking on the clay-loving Columbian Santiago Giraldo. Tomic started as a $2.50 underdog when beating Giraldo a few weeks ago on the dirt of Rome but he starts tonight at as a slight $1.80 favourite with Giraldo at $2.02. We took a bet of $5,000 on Tomic upon opening the match yesterday and expect more money today.

Rafael Nadal remains the prohibitive odds-on favourite for the title at $1.60, with recent arch-nemesis Novak Djokovic at $3.50. Roger Federer is the only other player in commission at $8 and clearly represents Tatttsbet’s worst result.

GOLF

One event that Tiger Woods has made his own is the Memorial Tournament, and there are many out there who think Tiger will bounce back this week.

Woods has been easily the best backed to win at $16.00 and $15.00, and while there are massive question marks still hanging over his form, there is no doubting his imposing record in Ohio. After wins in 1999, 2000 and 2001, Tiger won again in 2009, and he has won two of his last ten starts. Clearly he isn’t the player he was, but an ‘ordinary’ Tiger is still capable of winning, and the odds are better!

Luke Donald is the $10.00 favourite after winning in England last week, but punters have given him a wide berth this week. Apart from Woods, there has been really good money for Rory McIlroy ($14.00), Justin Rose ($17.00) and Jim Furyk ($26.00). Furyk is a past winner here, and was the only player to card four sub 70 rounds last week, so is obviously in form. Justin Rose won this event in 2010, and the defending champion is Steve Sticker, but he has been ignored this week. Stricker opened at $26.00 and remains at that quote.

It is a different story in Europe however as defending champ Alexander Noren has been the target of some good support. Noren opened at $26.00, but firmed into $17.00 in the first 24 hours of trading.  Francesco Molinari is the favourite at $12.00, narrowly ahead of Paul Lawrie ($14.00) who tied for second behind Luke Donald at Wentworth last week.

MOTOR BIKES

Casey Stoner ($1.65) and Jorge Lorenzo ($2.20) have cleared out in the motoGP Championship betting, and it appears as though the same thing is going to happen each time there is a raced coming up.

Stoner is the opening $2.20 favourite with Tattsbet to win the Catalunyan GP this week, narrowly ahead of Lorenzo at $2.25, with Dani Pedrosa ($4.50) the only other rider in contention. Lorenzo defeated Stoner at the last meeting in France, and both have a good record in Catalunya. Stoner won last year beating Lorenzo, finished third in 2010 (Lorenzo won), and finished third the previous two years, so on form he looks hard to beat this week.

FORMULA ONE

There were plenty of happy Tattsbet punters after Mark Webber’s win in the Monaco GP at the weekend. The Aussie was well supported at $13.00 before the practise sessions, and as we said last week, he did have very good form around the tight street circuit. Although qualifying second fastest, Webber ended up on pole, and was then backed from $2.50 into $2.40. Once he came out of the first turn in front, it was only a matter of car reliability, and everything went according to plan as he recorded his second victory in Monte Carlo. Webber comes in for plenty of criticism, but he has now won a race in each of the past four seasons, and that is no mean feat.

The title betting has opened right up with three equal favourites, Vettel, Hamilton and Alonso, all at $3.75. Although Webber is only 3 points adrift of leader Alonso, he is still an $8.00 chance as most would agree his car is a little off the pace of the others. Webber is also at $8.00 to win the next race in Canada where Vettel and Hamilton share top billing at $4.25. That race will be held on June 11.

NETBALL

A month ago it appeared as though the ANZ Championship title was at the mercy of the Melbourne Vixens, but haven’t the wheels fall off there? The Vixens have lost their last three on the trot, and two of those losses have been to the NSW Swifts. The Vixens lost 49-43 at home to the Swifts last Sunday, and after a rocky start to the season, the Swift have now won six in a row. They have been the big movers in premiership betting, now $4.50 behind the Thunderbirds ($4.00) and the Mystics ($4.25). The Vixens have blown from $2.50 out to $5.00, while the Firebirds remain at $7.00. The Firebirds and Mystics both had 1 point victories last week, and the Mystics were 16 point favourites in their match against the Tactix. It does just go to show how open this competition is this year.

RACING

We are deep into the Brisbane winter Carnival, and this Saturday will be ‘Ladies Day’ at Eagle Farm, with the Oaks the highlight.

The barrier draw has opened the Oaks right up, and Quintessential ($4.60) is the new favourite after drawing favourable. She did make good ground in the Doomben Roses, and does look suited to the trip. The weather in Brisbane is expected to be wet leading in to Saturday, and that has seen a few fillies with wet track form backed. One of those, Scorpio Queen, is currently a $7.00 chance, and she did win the Gold Coast Bracelet in the wet, and the other is Dowager Queen, who is now a $9.00 chance after being $15.00 early in the week. Dowager Queen has had 2 starts on heavy ground and won both, and ironically was sold at a mares sale early this week for in excess of $700,000.

The Tattsbet race analysts think that the boom on Mental will be lowered this week in the Queensland Guineas. There are plenty of takers for Mental at $2.20, but the guys think he is some risk on a wet track from a bad draw, and may need too much luck. Free Wheeling is the second pick at $4.60 ahead of Amah Rock ($9.00) and Shopaholic ($10.00), with the latter a definite risk on a heavy track. For those looking for value, perhaps an interest on Punch On and Double Impact, both around the $26.00 mark, might be a safe way to go.