GERARD DAFFY'S UBET NEWS – THURSDAY 14TH JUNE
Well the bubble well and truly burst on Melbourne last Monday at the MCG, but at the same time it sounded the arrival of Collingwood as a real force in season 2018. Melbourne have drifted from $6.00 out to $8.00 to win the flag on the back of that loss, while Collingwood are now in to single figures ($9.00) for the first time this year. Richmond remain premiership favourite's at $4.25, while Adelaide, who were vying for favouritism earlier in the season, are way out to $31 and $2.75 to even make the finals! The 'most losses' market is interesting in light of some of the match ups this week. Carlton head that market at $2.25, ahead of Brisbane ($3.00), St Kilda ($3.75) and the Gold Coast ($9.00). The Suns are fortunate they have some wins in the bank from earlier in the season as the loser of their match against St Kilda will be under the blowtorch next week. The Suns are the $2.35 outsiders in that game which will be played at Metricon on Saturday, and the early money is with the Gold Coast. They have won three of their last four home games against the Saints, but as we said, the loser will face intense scrutiny next week.
Carlton are in a similar boat, and Fremantle were in the same predicament before their big win over Adelaide last week. It was timely for the Dockers who drifted from $2.75 out to $3.75, but can they do it again? Their overall 'away' form is terrible but they have won their last two away games against Carlton. Punters quickly let us know what they thought, as there was close to $25,000 invested on Freo on Monday. This saw their price move from $1.68 in to $1.63.
Adelaide are another team under enormous pressure, and while they do still have a big injury list, they are getting further away from a finals berth, hard to believe. They will be in Melbourne on Saturday night to play Hawthorn, a side they have only beaten once in their last nine meetings. Hawthorn opened at $1.65 and that price has moved in to $1.60 so it seems punters expect the Hawks to win.
Tip: Gold Coast to beat St Kilda ($2.35)
Every week we say that this is the toughest season of NRL we have ever seen, and with 14 rounds behind us, nothing has changed. Currently Penrith and Souths share top billing at $5.50, narrowly ahead of the Storm, the Dragons and the Roosters, all at $6.00. At the other end of the spectrum, it looks like it is all over this year for North Queensland, they are $81 to win the comp and $6.50 to make the finals. The irony of that price is that they were $6.50 second pick to win the title going into round 1!
The Cowboys are home this week to the Warriors, and this would be one of the few times they are the underdogs at home with their side intact. New Zealand are $1.80 with the Cowboys at $2.05, and if the Cowboys can take anything into this game it is that they have won the last three at home between these two sides. It is an intriguing betting match as there are plenty of bets, all small, for the Cowboys but the bigger money is with the Warriors. The game of the round is definitely the Roosters/Panthers clash, and the early money here is with the Roosters who are currently $1.87, ahead of Penrith at $1.97. Both scored narrow wins last week with perhaps Penrith being the more fortunate of the pair in gaining the two points, but they just keep defying the critics. They have a pretty handy recent record over the Roosters having won two of the last three, but they continue to be the one side well in contention that the public just cannot warm to.
Tip: Warriors to beat the Cowboys ($1.80)
Golden State Warriors won another NBA title last week, and the market for next season is now open. Last season the Warriors opened at $1.72, and although they did touch $2.50 getting near the tail end of the season (when they had a decent injury list), the Warriors spent the major portion of the season as odds-on favourites. So it was interesting that they opened at $2.50 to win next season, but that was smartly snapped up and they are currently at $2.35. The Houston Rockets are second elect at $4.50, ahead of the Boston Celtics at $7.00, and while there has been some interest in those two sides, it is the next two that have been best-backed aside from the Warriors. Philadelphia have been $13 in to $11 while the LA Lakers have been $51 in to $17, so that would seem to suggest that both may have some key signings coming their way. Cleveland are currently a $21 chance, and there is only minimal interest in the Cavs at this early stage.
Dustin Johnson is the favourite to win the US Open after winning the St Jude Classic last week, but a word of warning, nobody has ever won the US Open after winning on the PGA Tour the previous week. Johnson was favourite to win the St Jude, and UBET punters were taken by his form there as they kept chipping away at the $10 for him to win the US Open across the weekend. Behind Johnson we have Justin Rose at $15 and Jason Day and Rory Mcllroy are next at $17, followed by Rickie Fowler and Justin Thomas at $19. Jason Day is the shortest (and most popular) of the nine man Aussie contingent. Spieth finished third in the Masters but he is yet to win on the US tour this year, hard to believe given most expected him to dominate the sport only two years ago. Brooks Koepka is the defending champion, but there is very little interest in him and he is a drifter from $21 out to $29. Tiger Woods is only a $26 chance, but surprisingly we haven't seen anywhere near the level of interest in Tiger that we did in the Masters. UBET will have live betting each day when the TV coverage gets under way.
Tip: Justin Rose to win the US Open ($15)
Hidden Valley in Darwin is a purpose built racing course and history shows that the fastest cars are the ones to beat there. The betting points toward that being the case again this year. There will be two races this weekend, one of 42 laps on Saturday then a much longer race of 70 laps on Sunday. There were two mini upsets at the last meeting held at Winton in Victoria. Rick Kelly and Fabian Coulthard were the winners, with short priced favourite Scott McLaughlin only grabbing one podium finish (a third in race 1) behind Kelly who was one of the outsiders. McLaughlin won race 1 at Hidden Valley last year before finishing second in Sunday's race behind Coulthard. The market for race 1 on Saturday has McLaughlin the $2.70 favourite, and already he has commanded about 70% of the early betting, and he is clear favourite over Coulthard, Jamie Whincup and Shane Van Gisbergen at $5.50.
Tip: Scott McLaughlin to win race 1 ($2.70)
Jorge Lorenzo turned the clock back when he won in Italy a fortnight ago defeating Andrea Dovizioso and Valentino Rossi. Marc Marquez showed us he was human after all when he parted company with his machine, but he did remount and finish in 16h place. Marquez is again clear favourite to win in Catalunya this week, with Dovizioso and Lorenzo behind him in the market. Marquez has a win around the Barcelona circuit back in 2014 and finished in second place the past two years behind Dovizioso last year and Rossi in 2016. Lorenzo won here in 2015 and now that he has found some form, there is no reason why he cannot win again this week.
Rafael Nadal won his 11th French Open title and Simona Halep won her first Major there as well, and that was the way the pre-post market had them placed. Nadal went into day 1 as a raging $1.40 pop, the shortest he had ever been in Paris, while Halep was the $6.00 favourite going into day 1. The action now moves to grass with Wimbledon only a matter of weeks away, and we have the markets updated for those titles as well. Roger Federer is a short $2.25 chance to win the men's title, ahead of Nadal at $6.00, then follows Novak Djokovic ($8.00), Alex Zverev ($11) and Marin Cilic ($12). We haven't seen Federer since the start of the year but Wimbledon was always going to be his focus, and he has to be short given his record and the question mark over most behind him in the betting.
In the women's, Serena Williams is the $5.00 favourite, but there must be some concerns over her availability due to the injury she picked up in Paris. That has seen early interest shown in the two players behind her, Petra Kvitova and Garbine Muguruza (both at $8.00), as well as Halep at $13 and Maria Sharapova at $16.00
Tonight (Thursday) will see the running of the UBET Flying Amy and the UBET Gold Cup at Albion Park in Brisbane. In the Flying Amy there has been a huge go for the Victorian Hasten Slowly. After opening at $2.50 last Friday post box-draw, the Jeff Britton trained sprinter was in to $1.90, and punters look likely to take that as well. Hasten Slowly ran an unlucky third in his heat at his first look at the track, but has terrific form from inside draws means he does look the winner. The main danger appears to be Hara's Honey who has run 29.78 on the track a couple of times recently, and can lead here.
The UBET Gold Cup has drawn together a fantastic field of stayers, and Rob Britton, brother of Jeff, is on track to add another Cup to his trophy cabinet. Britton won this race last year with the champ Fanta Bale, and he has the first three in the market for tonight's race. Tornado Tears is the $1.65 favourite, and he along with his kennelmates will benefit from a look at the track last week. The only problem he has is that he has two fast beginners in boxes 4 and 5, and from box 3 he might find himself in early bother as he did last week. Rippin' Sam (brother and kennelmate to the favourite) is a dour stayer who has drawn the red box, and he can capitalize on any trouble. Local hope Jalapeno was a fast heat winner, and has been well-backed early ($18-$13), and must be included among the chances.
Tip: Rippin' Sam in the UBET Gold Cup ($3.40)
While there is plenty of sport on in Australia at this time of the year, the World Cup will ensure that betting will go through the roof over the next month. Australia are one of the bolters of the Cup at $301, and while most soccer purists would admit that that is about the extent of our hopes, it has definitely lifted the interest levels. Brazil are now the standalone Cup favourites at $5.00, ahead of Germany ($5.50), Spain ($7.00) and France ($7.50). Next follows Argentina ($10.00-$9.00) and Belgium ($12.00-$11.00), both of whom have been well-backed.
All of the group matches have been open for betting for several months, and while most of the favourites have firmed up marginally in each match, Spain have been one of the best-backed sides in their match with Portugal early Saturday morning. A $15,000 bet led the way on Spain at $1.92, but have now drifted back out to $2.05.
Naturally UBET will have live betting on every match throughout the World Cup, and there will be dozens of bet types available for live betting as well. No doubt there will be plenty of interest in most of these bet types on the France v Australia match Saturday night. The Socceroos are rank outsiders at $13, so while the price suggests they have little hope (fingers crossed that is wrong) we do expect to see massive interest in a lot of those other bet types.
Most of the 'futures' markets on the Cup will open at the completion of play each day.
* Prices are correct 2pm Thursday