Sports Betting Odds – Weekly Preview
The irony of Manchester United’s recent week was that despite Wayne Rooney’s U-turn over a new contract, we got to see what the team would look like in Rooney’s absence as they registered their first away win of the season at Stoke City. Javier Hernandez was the hero at the Britannia Stadium, and it is the Mexican that Rooney will have to displace when he regains full fitness.
United play Spurs in the match of the weekend. Harry Redknapp’s side can cause United’s shaky defence some problems in this one and it promises to be an entertaining encounter.
West Ham remain rooted to the foot of the Premier League table after their disappointing home defeat to Newcastle United and I don’t expect Avram Grant’s side to improve their points haul after an away tie at Arsenal. There’s a North-East derby on Sunday as Newcastle play Sunderland before Liverpool face another tricky tie against an improving Bolton Wanderers.
Barnsley play struggling Hull City in Saturday’s live Championship match, whilst there is an eye-catching tie in La Liga as Barcelona host the always entertaining Sevilla. Two of the Italian greats meet at the San Siro as Milan play Juventus in Serie A.
After the supremely talented Matteo Manassero became the youngest ever European Tour winner last weekend aged just 17 years and 188 days, a strong field heads to the Andalucia Valderrama Masters as the Race to Dubai intensifies.
Martin Kaymer can dislodge Tiger Woods as the world number one this weekend by finishing in the top two places, and considering the German has won the last two strokeplay European Tour events in which he has competed, he has a great chance. Graeme McDowell is second in the current Race and is 12/1 to close the gap on Kaymer by winning at Valderrama.
Whilst it may not contribute to the money list, there is an invitation only field of 40 at the inaugural CIMB Asia Pacific Classic Malaysia this weekend. Ernie Els is the 9/1 favourite after his victory in the Grand Slam of Golf whilst the course should also suit European Ryder Cup star Luke Donald. In a less than full strength field, Thongchai Jaidee is another interesting choice at 28/1.
Pakistan’s forced away cricket fixtures continue this weekend as Abu Dhabi becomes the latest location to host the nation’s ‘home’ cricket fixtures. Pakistan play South Africa in two one day international matches on Friday and Sunday.
London Irish continue to set the pace in the early stages of the Aviva Premiership and registered another win last weekend with a narrow 12-9 win at Exeter. Toby Booth’s side have been playing some good rugby this season and can continue their excellent start with a home win over Sale this Sunday. Northampton had a terrific 37-10 win at Wasps last time out and can keep on Irish’s heels with a home win over struggling Newcastle.
Elsewhere, fourth place Gloucester play fifth place Leicester and bottom club Leeds Carnegie play Wasps.
Munster’s thumping 39-13 win over Benetton Treviso kept them top of the Magners League and they can continue their good run with a win over Ulster on Friday evening. The Scarlets leapfrogged the Cardiff Blues after their excellent 16-10 win and should be able to see off Glasgow this weekend whilst Leinster can continue to improve after a sluggish start with a win over Edinburgh.
Despite a brave second half fight back against world champions New Zealand, England’s first match of the Four Nations tournament last weekend ended in a 24-10 defeat by the home side. And, it doesn’t get any easier for Steve McNamara’s side as they face Australia on Sunday.
The Wallabies thrashed Papua New Guinea 42-0 last weekend and I’m afraid I can’t see England getting anything out of this one.
In the other match, New Zealand should also comfortably defeat Papua New Guinea.
The ATP Tour is spread across Europe this week with three events; in St Petersburg, the South of France and Vienna.
Mikhail Youzhny is the favourite to win the St Petersburg Open on home turf, although fellow Russian Sergiy Stakhovsky is defending the title he won in 2009. The Open Sud de France in Montpellier features joint favourites in Gael Monfils and Nikolay Davydenko in a tricky field which also includes Ivan Ljubicic, John Isner and Richard Gasquet.
Local boy Jurgen Melzer is the 5/2 favourite to win the Bank Austria Tennis Trophy in Vienna and retain the title he won by beating Marian Cilic in 2009.
After a great recent run of form, it is not surprising to see Caroline Wozniacki as the 15/8 favourite for the WTA Championships in Doha. Victoria Azarenka won last week’s Kremlin Cup, but is 11/2 here and will face much tougher competition in the form of Wozniacki, Kim Clijsters and Vera Zvonareva.
The pick of Saturday’s racing is over the jumps at Wetherby. The Grade 2 Charlie Hall Chase (3.25pm) is arguably the pick of the card with Nigel Twiston-Davies’ veteran Ollie Magern seeking his third success in the race. The West Yorkshire Hurdle (2.50pm) is the other Grade 2 event on the card.
Newmarket’s final meeting of the year features the mile long Montrose Stakes (3.10pm) which can be a useful pointer towards next year’’s Oaks whilst the three mile United House Gold Cup (3.40pm) is the highlight of the card at Ascot.
Elsewhere, there is also racing from Ayr and Wolverhampton.