Previewing the Week in Sports Betting »
There’s plenty to keep punters interested in the upcoming week. As Euro 2012 approaches, the squads have been finalised and prices are starting to emerge from the bookies. The cricket season is well under way and starting to draw in far larger crowds now that the sun has come up and the pitches have flattened. Super League is also heating up nicely and with six games taking place this weekend, there’s going to be all sorts of markets to try and make a buck or two. Further afield, the NBA is entering the latter stages of the season, with one mouth-watering Conference semi-final in particular unfolding in the coming days.
The Euros Approach
Next Friday Europe’s finest national teams will kick off Euro 2012 and, now that the majority of squads have been announced, the timing couldn’t be better for those fans interested in placing a few bets on the team they think could remove Spain from atop Europe’s throne.
Paddy Power offers Spain at 5/2, Germany at 3/1 and Holland at 7/1 as hot favourites for the title, while England are priced at 12/1 along with France. Despite a Champions League final to forget, Mario Gomez is the bookies’ favourite to grab the golden boot award at 8/1, closely followed by Arsenal captain Robin van Persie at 10/1 and Cristiano Ronaldo at 14/1.
The cricket season is in full swing and there’s plenty of domestic stuff to have a wager on, plus the third and final Test Match between England and the West Indies. Cricket betting at this time of year is always a little safer given the dying down of the April (and May) showers, so it’s worth having a look at the Clydesdale Bank 40 match-ups between Kent vs Warwickshire on Friday and Glamorgan vs Surrey on Saturday.
Meanwhile, England have already won the Test Series against the boys from the Caribbean, but you can expect a lot of pride in the West Indies’ performance. At the time of writing, Ladbrokes has England at 4/11 favourites to complete the whitewash.
The Super League season is hotting up nicely, especially following “Magic Weekend”. With plenty of lost tempers in amongst a great flurry of points, this weekend promises to be similarly exciting as a number of teams come out to prove critics wrong.
Watch out for Leeds vs Wigan on Friday evening, which is certain to be feisty as seventh place Leeds try to topple the league leaders. The next day, there’ll be loads of opportunities for Rugby League betting, as four massive games are scheduled to take place.
Miami Heat vs Boston Celtics
Wednesday night saw the beginning of the NBA conference semi-finals and, while the first game generally grabs the most attention, Game 3 is normally considered pivotal for the outcome of the series. On Monday night, Lebron James and Dwyane Wade take their Miami Heat to Boston for the third game of the series, with the Heat massive favourites everywhere from 888 to Bet365. Miami missed out last year and will be hungry to overcome their fierce rivals on their way to a final.
However, the Celtics haven’t won the title since 2008 and a couple of big names such as Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett are desperate for one final hurrah before bowing out of the sport. NBA betting is always exciting, and this series could well be closer than expected.