Many expected Gary Ablett to feature prominently in last week’s match between the Suns and the Giants, and they were proven correct. Ablett was the standout in the match, and is now back into odds on ($1.80) to win the Brownlow. Joel Selwood is the $4.00 second pick, and then the Collingwood duo of Dane Swan and Scott Pendlebury at $7.00. Tattsbet has an abundance of Brownlow exotics open including the top vote getter for each team as well as groups and head to heads.
While the Brownlow is still a few weeks away, the first week of the finals get under way on Friday night, and it will be a rematch of last year’s Grand Final as well as the Friday night game from last week. Sydney won the 2012 GF and were valiant in defeat last week whilst missing a few players. They expect those players back this week and Hawthorn will be without Lance Franklin, but there is an amazing stat surrounding Buddy and when he is out of the side. Of the 18 matches that Franklin has missed, Hawthorn have won 14, so they can win without him. The game is shaping as a huge betting event with Hawthorn hovering around the $1.48 mark, but there has been twice as many bets for the Swans to win at $2.65.
There has been a lot of conjecture over the move of the Geelong v Fremantle game to Geelong, and while the Cats are the hot $1.30 favourites, there has been a big surge of bets for Freo to win at $3.60 and also to cover the line of 21.5. Punters can only see Collingwood beating Port Adelaide by a big margin Saturday night with the big bets being for Collingwood at $1.25 and also -25.5. The last match for the weekend will be at the MCG on Sunday, and in a really good betting battle, Carlton have more early supports at $2.70 than Richmond at $1.45. The Tigers have a history of failing at short odds, and in big games, and although Carlton had a tough match last week against Port, it seems as though many think that Richmond might suffer from stage fright. Betting on the following week’s matches will open as soon as the match-ups are known.
There have been some significant early betting moves on the final round of NRL for this season. Ben Barba looks like being a surprise inclusion into the Bulldogs side tonight against Brisbane, and the saw the Dogs price crash from $1.58 into $1.45. Brisbane have drifted from $2.40 out to $2.85, and although their season is effectively over, they have been copping a barrage of criticism in the QLD press this week, so we expect them to rise to the occasion.
The minor premiership will be decided on Friday night, and the money says that the title will go to Souths. After opening at $1.65, Souths were into $1.51 in the first 48 hours of betting, attracting one big bet of $15,000 at $1.56 on the way down. The Roosters on the other hand have been hard to sell, and there is no doubt they need to improve on a dismal performance against the Titans last week. There are 4 matches that involve a favourite that is $1.16 or shorter, and in each of those games the money on the handicap has been for the side getting the start (the plus). Canberra host Cronulla on Sunday night in the last game of the season proper, and there has been a couple of moves in this game. Paul Gallen is already out for the Sharks, but the talk doing the rounds is that as Cronulla can’t really go anywhere on the ladder, they are likely to leave a few players at home. That created a bit of a wave of betting for Canberra who firmed from $2.25 into $2.00, but a couple of hefty bets came for Cronulla after a price move. Those bets included $7500 to win at $1.80 and another of $5500 for them at -1.5 ($1.90), but they have now drifted out again to $1.85. The Raiders have had their share of headlines this season but this looks a good opportunity for them to go out on a winning note.
England will field a relatively inexperienced ODI side when they take on Australia in the first of a 5 game ODI series on Friday night.
With the Ashes series out of the road, and a couple of T/20 matches played, the Australian side look like they are primed to regain some lost pride in this series. The gloss has disappeared from the 50 over form of the game over the last few years, but with some of these matches due to start around about 7.30pm in Australia we are sure they will be well patronised. Shaun Marsh and Aaron Finch weren't in the test side but each has made a big impact with the bat over the past week. Betting on game 1 has seen Australia open as the $1.70 favourites ahead of England at $2.15, and the series betting is similar with the Aussies at $1.68 and England at $2.20. The favourite way in the correct series score' option is a 3-2 win to Australia at $2.75. It won't come as any real surprise that the most popular batsmen in both the series and game 1 for Australia are both Finch and Marsh, while Kevin Pietersen is by far and away the most popular of the English batsmen. Tattsbet will be betting live during the first half of each of the earlier matches.
We are down to the final couple of days of the 2013 election and everything points towards a big win to the Coalition. The prices on Thursday had the Coalition at $1.02 and Labor at $14, their biggest price in a year. When Julia Gillard was in charge of Labor their price touched $8.00, but zoomed into $2.80 in the days following on from Kevin Rudd's elevation back into the top job. The Coalition touched $1.42 around that stage, but the price for Labor has been in free fall since the election was called. Scanning through all of the marginal seats that Tattsbet offered on this election makes for interesting reading as the Coalition have been backed in practically every one, in some instances from outsiders to clear cut favourites. Looking at the price moves it appears as though Labor will be hit hard in Queensland, and that was not part of the plan when Kevin Rudd was given the reins again. The 'handicap' option that opened last week was set at -26.5 seats for a Coalition win, but with that now $1.45 for the minus, a new handicap has opened at -37.5, $1.90 for either side. For the Coalition to win by 38 the numbers would have to fall 93 Coalition, 55 Labor, and 2** Other, and that would be a staggering result.
Sergio Garcia came into the final round of The Barclays as a warm $2.25 favourite, but not for the first time the Spaniard collapsed with a final round of 2 over par. Victory went to Henrik Stenson who was a $21 pop prior to the first round, and the win was justified as Stenson has had a very good year. Steve Stricker ($26) finished in 2nd position after sitting out the previous week, while Jason Day was the first Aussie home (8 behind Stenson), narrowly ahead of Marc Leishman, who may well end up in the President's Cup side.
With The Barclays carrying over into the long weekend in the USA, the next leg of the FedEx Cup, the BMW Championship, will be played next week.
The European Masters is the Euro Tour event for this week and it will be played in Crans Montana, Switzerland. In a wide open betting event, Joost Luiten is the $19 favourite ahead of Paul Casey and Miguel Angel Jiminez at $21. Jiminez is a previous winner here having won in 2010, and the veteran Spaniard is always popular. Another to attract early support is Italy’s Matteo Manassero at $26 along with Richie Ramsay ($51-$34). Ramsay is another of those in the field who has won previously, and the same applies to Brett Rumford. Ramsay won last year and Rumford won in 2007, and while Ramsay’s form since has been so-so, Rumford has had a good year including back to back wins in Asia in the earlier part of the season.
Australia’s record at Suncorp Stadium and the likelihood that Quade Cooper will be back into Saturday night’s team to play South Africa has certainly inspired some confidence in the Wallabies to get their first win of this season’s Rugby Championship. The Wallabies opened at $1.60 to beat South Africa but were quickly into $1.50, and betting would suggest that they may firm again. Australia have played the Springboks at Suncorp 6 times for a perfect record of 6 wins, but the South Africans travel to QLD in form having won every test they have played in (8 in total) since October last year. The Wallabies have won 7 of their last 9 matches against the Springboks (2 losses in Pretoria), but have only won 1 of their last 5 matches against the British and Irish Lions and the All Blacks, conceding 115 points alone in their last 3 matches. So there are plenty of reasons why both sides can win or lose looking at those statistics, but punters think the Wallabies will get the job done.
Prior to that match, New Zealand will be playing Argentina at Waikato Stadium in Hamilton, and the records suggest that this should be an easy victory for the home side. Argentina have never beaten New Zealand in 16 attempts although they did get a draw back in 1985, and the average win by the All Blacks in their 15 wins has been 30 points. Tattsbet has set this line at 26.5, probably not enough when you consider that Argentina was beaten 73-13 in South Africa a few weeks ago. The Pumas improved to only go down 22-17 at home 2 weeks ago, and it is worth noting that in the corresponding match last year in Wellington, the line was similar (-24.5) but the All Blacks only won by 16 points. That points towards the Pumas having some hope of covering the big line that has been set but punters disagree as all of the early money has been for the All Blacks at the minus.
Kyle Busch continued on with his good recent form by winning in Atlanta last weekend, and that has seen his price cut for the Sprint Cup Championship. Busch is now $6.00, on the third line of betting with Kasey Kahne, but Jimmie Johnson remains the $2.50 favourite ahead of Matt Kenseth at $5.00.
Richmond Raceway is the venue for this week’s Nascar race, Kyle Busch opens the $5.00 favourite. Jimmie Johnson is a multiple winner here but the last of those wins was back in 2007 (won both races), and while it is rare for him not to be the opening favourite, he will be hard to beat at $7.50. Busch gets a terrific opportunity to claw back some of the lead in the title as he is another with impeccable form at Richmond. Busch won a race here four years running (2009-2012), and on current form looms as the one to beat at $5.50. Kevin Harvick ($11.00) won here earlier in the season and has recorded a couple of wins here before, so must be included as a major chance.
Sebastian Vettel is $2.50 to continue on his winning way in this week’s Italian F1 GP, but a few drivers have been backed to beat him.
Vettel won the Belgium GP in impressive fashion from Fernando Alonso and Lewis Hamilton, and it now seems that only bad luck will cost him the Drivers’ Championship as he is into $1.11. The Italian GP has been dominated by those who qualify on pole position (won 5 of last 6), and that betting is a battle between Vettel ($2.75) and Hamilton ($2.50 fav). Hamilton was fastest in Belgium but the long open spaces in Spa suited the Mercedes. Vettel has 2 wins in Italy (2008, 2011) while Hamilton won last year’s race, with Vettel finishing 4th. Alonso is the second pick at $4.00 and he is another with good form in Italy with wins in 2007 and 2010 as well as a few podium finishes. Mark Webber’s career at Red Bull is fast coming to an end and although there has been early support for him at $10, Webber has never been placed here before.