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Saturday, June 30, 2007

Wimbledon : Federer rolls on - Hingis falls

Defending Wimbledon Mens open champion Roger Federer reached the fourth round at Wimbledon with a straight-sets victory over Marat Safin.

Safin finally began to match Federer in the third set, which went with serve, but by that stage it was already too late and some erratic shots in the tie-break allowed Federer to close out a 6-1 6-4 7-6 win.

Next up for Federer is a meeting with Tommy Haas, the 13th seed, who came from a set down to win in four against Dmitry Tursunov.

Roger Federer 1.40 @ BetFred
Rafael Nadal 9.20 at Betfair (be quick)
Andy Roddick 15.00 @ BetFred
Lleyton Hewitt 21.00 @ SportingOdds


In the upset of the day, former champion Martina Hingis crashed out at the third-round stage, losing in straight sets to Laura Granville.

Hingis had not played for a month before coming to SW19 because of injury but after having had to fend off match points against UK player Naomi Cavaday in her opening match, she seemed to regain some of her sharpness in her second-round win over Aiko Nakamura.

However, Granville never looked back after securing an early break of serve as she recorded a 6-4 6-2 victory. The unseeded American needed to fend off three break points early in the second set as Hingis briefly rallied but once that was achieved she cruised to victory.

Justine Henin-Hardine 2.50 @ SportingOdds
Serena Williams 5.00 @ SportingOdds
Amelie Mauresmo 7.00 @ Ladbrokes
Maria Sharapova 9.20 at Betfair (be quick)


Live Odds - Wimbledon Mens Open
Live Odds - Wimbledon Ladies Open

Friday, June 29, 2007

Copa America : Paraguay and Argentina score big wins

Group C : Paraguay 5-0 Colombia
Scorers :
- Paraguay - R.S.Cruz 30, 46, 81; S.Cabanas 85, 88;

Halftime 1-0


Group C : Argentina 4-1 United States
Scorers :
- Argentina - Hernan Crespo 11, 64; P.C.Aimar 78, C.A.Tevez 85;
- United States - E.Johnson (pen) 9

Halftime 1-1

Thursday, June 28, 2007

Tiger Tim bows out of Wimbledon

Tim Henman's latest agonising exit from Wimbledon proved a rollercoaster ride for punters as over £16million was traded on Betfair.

The British number two lost his second-round clash against Feliciano Lopez 6-7 (3-7) 6-7 (5-7) 6-3 6-2 1-6 to the dismay of the Centre Court crowd.

Henman was the clear favourite on Betfair at the outset at 1.68 while Lopez was trading at 2.46. But with the Spaniard taking the first two sets those odds quickly changed, Lopez being backed in to 1.07 while Henman drifted out to 13.

However just before Henman started his recovery he was matched at as high and 23 and those who backed him at that price were on good terms with themselves when he levelled the match at 2-2.

Heading into the deciding set the odds had flip-flopped yet again but this time Henman didn't have the necessary reserves as Lopez raced to victory. A massive £16.3million was traded on the game at the betting exchange and around £900,000 of that was matched on Henman at odds of 1.5 and lower.


And Henman has been expensive for punters over the years with Ladbrokes reckoning that Henman has cost British punters an estimated £50 million during his 14 years of Wimbledon failure and near-misses.

David Williams of Ladbrokes said: "The Tiger is now extinct and deep down we're a bit gutted. We hoped he'd make it to the second week if only to keep the dream alive.

"Where there's Henman there's always been hope but we'd be astonished if punters were willing to give him any more chances.

"He now joins the likes of snooker's Jimmy White and golf's Colin Montgomerie as an incredibly expensive nearly-man.

"He's given us countless sleepless nights down the years but ultimately we've kept the cash. We might just send him some bubbly to help ease the pain of defeat."


There should be one final hurrah for Henman who is 1/3 (1.33) with Eurobet to play at Wimbledon at least once more and 2-1 (3.00) not to return to SW19.

Copa America Results - Mexico stun Brazil

Football : Mexico and Chile grab vital wins

PUERTO ORDAZ, Venezuela, June 27, 2007
Mexico upset Brazil for the second straight time at a major tournament, beating the five-time world champions 2-0 Wednesday night in the first round of the Copa America.

Nery Castillo scored on a spectacular solo effort in the 23rd minute when he took a pass from Juan Carlos Cacho, flicked the ball over defender Maicon, collected it again and beat goalkeeper Doni.

Ramon Morales doubled the lead with a 25-yard free kick in the 29th that froze Doni so much that the goalkeeper didn't even attempt to stop it.

Mexican goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa made a half-dozen excellent saves in the second half to keep a clean sheet for El Tri, including several stops on Robinho and a diving save on Afonso in the 62nd.

Robinho, who put the ball over the crossbar on a first-half bicycle kick, saw an angled shot pushed off the crossbar by Ochoa in the second half. Ochoa took over in goal from Oswaldo Sanchez, who has been Mexico's No. 1 keeper in recent years.

Group B : Brazil 0 Mexico 2
Scorers :
Mexico - Nery Castillo 23, Ramon Morales 29

Halftime: 0-2.


In the opener of the Group B doubleheader, Chile rallied twice to beat Ecuador 3-2.

Carlos Villaneuva bent a free kick over a defensive wall and into the upper corner of the net for the winning goal in the 87th minute.

Ecuador, knocked out of last year's World Cup in the second round by England, got goals from Antonio Valencia in the 16th minute and Segundo Castillo in the 23rd. Humberto Suazo scored in the 21st and 80th minutes for Chile.

Group B : Chile 3 Ecuador 2
Scorers :
Chile - Humberto Suazo 21, 80, Carlos Villaneuva 87
Ecuador - Antonio Valencia 16, Segundo Castillo 23

Halftime: 1-2.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

2007 Copa America Results - 26th June

Football: Peru thumps Uruguay in Copa America opener

MERIDA, Venezuela, June 26, 2007
Peru kicked off its Copa America campaign by beating Uruguay 3-0 in a group A match here on Tuesday.

Miguel Villanta, Juan Carlos Marino and Paolo Guerrero were on target in the Metropolitano Stadium as Peru shocked their opponents, as Uruguay were considered by many as dark horses for the prestigious tournament.

The Uruguayans, missing Alvaro Recoba after the Internazionale forward was ruled out with a muscle problem, came out with more spark but it was the Incas who struck first as defender Miguel Villanta powered home a header from Juan Carlos Marino's corner after 26 minutes to give the Peruvians a narrow 1-0 half-time lead.

Manager Oscar Tabarez brought on Diego Rodriguez and Sebastian Abreu during the interval in a bid to make Uruguay more of an attacking threat and the duo combined after 66 minutes to give Rodriguez a great chance to level but it was wasted.

Marino doubled the lead three minutes later with a beautiful long-range strike. And two minutes from the end, Uruguay were hit on the counter as they desperately searched for a way back into the contest.

Julio Cesar Uribe led the breakaway before setting up Hamburg forward Paolo Guerrero to put the result beyond any doubt.

Group A : Uruguay 0 Peru 3
Peru - Miguel Villalta 27, Juan Carlos Marino 69, Paolo Guerrero 89.

Halftime: 0-1.


Group A : Venezuela 2 Bolivia 2
Venezuela - Giancarlo Maldonado 21, Ricardo Paez 56
Bolivia - Alejandro Cichero 39 own goal, Jean Carlos Arce 84

Halftime: 1-1

Copa America Betting Previews

Monday, June 25, 2007

Is Wimbledon Over? Paddy Power pays out !!

Wimbledon 2007 payoutWe told you that our favourite Irish bookie (rated at 93%) was a little bit Crazy - and Paddy Power has shown it again by paying out on Roger Federer as this year's Wimbledon champion, believing the SW19 contest is over before a ball is served.

The rain delayed Roger Federer from getting his defence under way today, but Paddy Power believe only bad luck can prevent him equalling Bjorn Borg's Wimbledon record of five in a row.

The payout looks set to cost the Irish layers close to a six-figure sum whilst they are also refunding all bets on Brit Andy Murray following his 11th hour withdrawal yesterday.

Paddy Power, spokesman for the self named bookmaking firm, said: "No matter what the odds punters only wanted to back Federer. Wimbledon trophies are as regular as Swiss clockwork for the ace and once again it looks as much a certainty this year as rain stopping play."

Paddy Power is already offering just Evens that Federer goes on to break Borg's record with six in a row by winning the title this year and again in 2008.

Our full page review of Paddy Power bookmakers.

Argentina start as Copa America favourites.

Copa america 2007 in Venezuela
Argentina beginning the 2007 Copa America as favourites to win the event which starts on Tuesday 26th June.

The Argentines, who lost in a penalty shootout to great rivals Brazil in the 2004 tournament, are a best priced 2.60 at VC Bet to regain the trophy.

Holders Brazil, who have won three of the last four Copa Americas, are general second favourites at 3.00 while Mexico who looked out of sorts at the CONCACAF Gold Cup are 11.00 third best at SportingOdds.

Uruguay are priced at 13.00 at Betfred for an upset while hosts Venezuela are a longshot at 21.00 at Bet365.

If you fancy picking the top scorer then the favourite is Argentina's Hernan Crespo who is 7.00 at bet365 while West Ham striker Carlos Tevez is 11.00 at bet365 and ex-Man United man Diego Forlan is 13.00 at bet365

A Copa America preview from our insider at BetFred.
Betting Preview - 26 June 2007 - Peru v Uruguay

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Theirry Henry moves on - so should we.

It's been 48 hours now - and I probably should comment on the departure of Thierry Henry from Arsenal to Barcelona.

There have been all sorts of reactions on the net - but with the benefit of a wee break before posting perhaps I'll be able to get it into perspective.

Thierry Henry is/was Arsenal's greatest ever scorer, he was probably the most exciting player that I've ever seen in the famous red and white shirt, and in the last 8 years he has been a great servant for the club.

Over the last year he has struggled with fitness with a raft of injuries affecting his 6 ft 2 in frame, and he will turn 30 on the 17th August this year.

I think that it would be fair to say that we probably saw the best of Henry at Highbury, and that in his last year while at the Emirates he looked increasing frustrated resulting in increasingly whiny press releases about what the club must do to keep him happy.

I suspect that Henry left because he knows that he has just 1-2 years left at the top and that he'd like to win something big (league title / champions league) immediately - and does not think that Arsenal can challenge in England without the funds that Man United, Chelsea and even Liverpool now have at their disposal.

He is probably right. Arsenal continue to be a work in progress - and do not have the balance and mix of experienced and young players needed to win major trophies. Hopefully this departure will galvanise Mr Wenger and the boardroom into realising what is needed to compete at the very top.

I think that Gooners everywhere should pause and reflect on the pleasure that Henry's appearances for Arsenal have given us - and also realise that in 1-2 years time it may have been Arsenal that were selling off Henry as being past his use-by date.

We've seen it with nearly all of our former heroes with Patrick Vieria, Emmanuel Petit, Marc Overmars, Robert Pires, Anders Limpar and even Nigel Winterburn all being sold once they couldn't reach the required standard - football is a business too - and is very mercenary.

There are exceptions with Dennis Bergkamp coming to mind, and of course there was "Mr Arsenal" Tony "Donkey" Adams but these one-club men come once a decade and it's a measure of the man as much as it is a measure of the actual playing skill. These men are exceptions - not the norm.

So it's a parting of the ways for Arsenal and Henry - but we should not forget everything that Henry achieved in Red and White - and personally I wish Mr Thierry Daniel Henry well for his future club - except when he plays against Arsenal.

Adieu Roi Henry

Henin wins Eastbourne to cement Wimbledon favourtism

Wimbledon Womens previewJustine Henin made a statement ahead of Wimbledon by beating reigning Wimbledon champion Amelie Mauresmo 7-5 6-7 (4-7) 7-6 (7-2) in the final at Eastbourne.

Mauresmo began the stronger in difficult, blustery conditions and led 4-1 in the opening set but Henin broke twice to take the early initiative.

The Belgian claimed an early break in the second but Mauresmo battled back to force a tie-break which she took 7-4 after opening up a 6-1 lead.

The exciting match swung once more in the decider and Mauresmo seemed well on top as she gave herself the chance to serve for the title.

But world number one Henin upped her game to break back and then ran away with the deciding tie-break.

Henin will now go to Wimbledon as a strong favourite for the title.

Justine Henin 3.25 @ Bet365
Serena Williams 4.33 @ PremierBet
Kim Clijsters 8.00 @ Canbet
Maria Sharapova 8.00 @ SportingOdds
Amelie Mauresmo 10.00 @ Betsson

Tennis Live Score and Results
Last 2007 Wimbledon Ladies Open Betting Lines

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Wimbledon Betting Promotions

Are you having a punt on Wimbledon this year?

If so then you may want to check out a couple of cash back promotions that the guys over at found that might appeal.

If your Wimbledon bet loses in five sets then PaddyPower will give you a free bet to the same value on any other wimbledon match.

If you bet on a top 5 seed and they lose in the first three rounds then Gamebookers will give you your stake back !!

Those are a couple of reasons to check out their sites and see if you might do some of your tennis betting at this bookmakers over the next fortnight.

Check out the Wimbledon promotions post at BookieLabrat for details.
Or visit Gamebookers and Paddy Power directly now!

Friday, June 22, 2007

Wimbledon Draw sees Murray Odds drifting

Wimbledon 2007 Betting
UK hope Andy Murray has slid out to 25/1 at Ladbrokes for the Wimbledon men's singles following the draw for the tournament.

The British number one has been drawn against unseeded Nicolas Lapentti in the first round. But with major doubts over his recovery from a wrist injury he sustained on May 15th the 20-year-old is friendless in the market.

Ladbrokes spokesman Robin Hutchison said: "We can't lay Murray for love nor money at the moment. I don't think that's anything to do with a lack of patriotism, more a bout of pragmatism. If he was fully fit he'd eat Lapentti for breakfast but it's a whole different ball game if he's hampered by injury."

The two players at the head of the betting - Roger Federer (1.45 at VC Bet) and Rafael Nadal (7.60 at Canbet) remain unchanged, but American Andy Roddick has drifted from out from 10/1 to a best priced 17.00 at Bet365 after being placed into Federer's side of the draw.

Over in the womens event Justine Henin is favourite (3.50 at Bet365) and Serena Williams close behind at 4.33 at PremierBet.

Last year's winner Amelie Mauresmo, who beat Henin in the final, is fifth favourite at 10.00 at Betsson but it hasn't stopped punters getting with her Belgian rival.

Hutchison added: "Following her form at Eastbourne, the world and his wife wants to be on Henin and we have laid several large bets including £6,000 at 9/4."

2007 Wimbledon Live Scores (from Monday)
Latest 2007 Wimbledon Mens Open Odds
Latest 2007 Wimbledon Womens Open Odds
2007 Wimbledon Mens Preview from Simon

Thursday, June 21, 2007

2007 Wimbledon seeds released - Federer & Henin top

Wimbledon get under way on Monday 25th June and the organising committee have released the top 32 seeds for the mens and womens event.

Defending champion Roger Federer is the top men's seed for Wimbledon, while world number one Justine Henin heads the women's singles.

The men's seedings are based on the current world rankings, but are slightly adjusted to take into account grass-court performances in the last two years.

French Open champion and last year's runner-up Rafael Nadal is seeded second, ahead of Andy Roddick. World number four Nikolay Davydenko is seeded sixth with Novak Djokovic and Fernando Gonzalez moving above him in the list.

Top 16 Men's singles seeds:
1. Roger Federer (Swi)
2. Rafael Nadal (Spa)
3. Andy Roddick (US)
4. Novak Djokovic (Ser)
5. Fernando Gonzalez (Chi)
6. Nikolay Davydenko (Rus)
7. Tomas Berdych (Cze)
8. Andy Murray (GB)
9. James Blake (US)
10. Marcos Baghdatis (Cyp)
11. Tommy Robredo (Spa)
12. Richard Gasquet (Fra)
13. Tommy Haas (Ger)
14. Mikhail Youzhny (Rus)
15. Ivan Ljubicic (Cro)
16. Lleyton Hewitt (Aus)

On the women's side, former champion Venus Williams moves from 31st in the world to number 24 seed and world number 19 Vera Zvonareva has been ruled out with a wrist injury.

Top 16 Women's singles seeds:
1. Justine Henin (Bel)
2. Maria Sharapova (Rus)
3. Jelena Jankovic (Ser)
4. Amelie Mauresmo (Fra)
5. Svetlana Kuznetsova (Rus)
6. Ana Ivanovic (Ser)
7. Serena Williams (US)
8. Anna Chakvetadze (Rus)
9. Martina Hingis (Swi)
10. Daniela Hantuchova (Svk)
11. Nadia Petrova (Rus)
12. Elena Dementieva (Rus)
13. Dinara Safina (Rus)
14. Nicole Vaidisova (Cze)
15. Patty Schnyder (Swi)
16. Shahar Peer (Isr)

Related links :
Latest Wimbledon Live Scores (and other tennis events)
Latest Wimbledon Mens Odds at BookieLabrat
Latest Wimbledon Ladies Odds at Bookielabrat.

Monday, June 18, 2007

The BetFred Insider Guide to Royal Ascot 2007

Royal Ascot 2007 - BetFred GuideThe showpiece event of the flat racing calendar returns this week and all eyes will be on the weather forecast as the ground may be softened by the many predicted showers during the week.

Day One of Royal Ascot sees the two most recent 2000 Guineas winners in action. Most recent winner, Cockney Rebel is a warm order to take the St James's Palace Stakes and it will be interesting to see if he confirms form with Dutch art who finished third against him at Newmarket when drawn on the "wrong side". Earlier in the card last year's 2000 Guineas winner, George Washington, returns to the racecourse following a less than successful stud career. He faces Cesare who boasts a 100% record at Ascot and won't mind any rain, as well as Red Evie who took the Lockinge Stakes at Newbury last month.

On Day Two it looks as though Dylan Thomas will go off favourite in the Prince Of Wales Stakes, although he faces tough competition from the likes of Manduro, Notnowcato and Red Rocks. Notnowcato has already defeated Dylan Thomas once this season and it is hard to knock his chances of confirming that form while Manduro looks like he has grown up over the winter and he has a great chance of scoring a victory for the French.

The Ascot Gold Cup takes place on Day Three and we have an odds-on favourite for the race in the form of last year's winner Yeats. This leaves plenty of room for each way wagers and Sergeant Cecil will be popular amongst the betting public, whilst Baddam is a lively outsider having won twice at last year's festival.

On Day Four Finsceal Beo will take on Darjina, the only horse to beat her in three group one races this season. The Coronation Stakes will be a fascinating rematch and Finsceal Beo should be able to reverse form if she has recovered from her early season exertions. The unbeaten Mi Emma from Germany is another filly who adds interest to this contest.

On the fifth and final day of Royal Ascot the Golden Jubilee is the feature race and it will be interesting to have seen how the Australian quartet got on in the Kings Stand on opening day. It is a very open race and the market is likely to receive a shake up depending on Tuesday's result but it looks as though Miss Andretti is going to be very hard to beat.


Visit BetFred now to bet on Royal AscotBetfred are offering a free bet of up to GBP £50 for new customers during Royal Ascot (19th June - 23rd June inclusive).

Betfred also offer a cashback promotion on every Royal Ascot race, terms and conditions are as follows:

-This offer will pay-out each time Frankie Dettori rides the winning horse in a race at Royal Ascot 2007. Betfred will then refund losing, single stakes (win only) on the second place horse in that race.

-Losing stakes will be refunded in the form of a free bet which will be credited to the Betfred accounts bets by 2pm the following day.

- Refunds betwee GBP 1 to GBP 100 (or your currency equivalent) per customer per race and applies only to races at Royal Ascot between 19th and 23rd June 2007.

- Applies to call-centre and web bets only and Betfred Horse Racing rules apply.

Beckham finishes at Real Madrid with La Liga title.

Real Madrid 3-1 Real Mallorca

I'm not a huge David Beckham fan - but I've been impressed with the way he's handled himself since the last World Cup and I can say that I was pleased to see Real Madrid clinch the La Liga title on the final day.

Beckham didn't actually have much influence on proceedings today, as he was substituted off midway through the second half with Real Madrid still 0-1 down after they fell behind when Fernando Varela broke the offside trap to score on 17 minutes.

His replacement was Arsenal loan player Jose Antonio Reyes who immediately scored with his first touch, to ease the panic that was running through the home side.

Then in the 80th minute Mahamadou Diarra's downward header trickled over the line after a double deflection off goalkeeper Miguel Angel Moya and defender Basinas before Reyes curled in a delightful third goal from the edge of the area with about 5 minutes left.

(As a Gooner I can hope that will raise his standing in Spain and lift his value - as Arsenal look for a buyer for the homesick Spaniard)

But in the end today was not about Reyes, it was about Real Madrid finally claiming some silverware after four long seasons, and sending off Beckham and Brazillian left-back Roberto Carlos in style.

The scenes of celebration at the final whistle spoke volumes for the depth of feeling at the club - for both the achievement - and the quality of the departing players.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

UEFA U21 Competition - Nothing worth a punt?

I'm getting a few emails asking why we're not providing previews for the UEFA U21 competition in the opening few rounds ...

I think that the answer is summed up in the first four results, 1-0, 0-0, 0-0 and 0-1.

As I suggested in the background piece before the start of the tourney, these sides change almost completely for every edition aty this level and it really is hard to get a good form line prior to seeing the first few games.

Holland just squeezed past the "weakest looking" side Isreal in the opener, while 5-time winners Italy butchered a number of chances and then lost to Serbia,

England looked incredibly defensive in drawing 0-0 with the Czech Republic (and missed a late penalty) while Belgium and Portgual showed nothing at all.

Inexperienced strikers, hot weather, ultra cautious coaches have all meant a lack of good action early on - but you cannot even have a punt on UNDER 2.5 GOALS because the format means that this second round of group games are turning into "must win" games.

Let's just look on for the moment - and see if we can get a line n the side for use later in the tournament ...

I hope that the Copa America is better later this month or else it's gonig to be a long football-less summer eh?

Louis Saha Has Knee Op : Out for 5-6 months

Manchester United striker Louis Saha is likely to be out of action until "around November or December" ... according to his agent.

The French forward has undergone a knee operation in America in a bid to repair an injury which contributed to his disappointing season last term.

The Manchester Evening News reports "Louis has had surgery in America and he won't be on the field now for a few months."

United have already been tipped to bring in reinforcements up front - and with Alan Smith currently looking unsettled and now Saha's long-term absence - the need seems to be more pressing.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Hellmuth wins 11th WSOP bracelet.

Hellmuth receiving the bracelet from Brunson and ChanAfter a week of non-descript winners the drought has been broken for the pros with Allen Cunningham and Phil Hellmuth winning bracelets at the WSOP.

Get the full details at the WSOP section on their blog.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Greg Raymer talks poker at the WSOP (VIDEO)

Greg Raymer Speaks about the WSOP and the US Internet Poker Ban

Here's a rare thing - after hearing from all the doofus amateur players in the first week someone has actually decided to seek out some quality players - and we finally get an interesting interview with a poker player at the WSOP!!

Greg Raymer gives an interview during an event in this years WSOP and has some pretty interesting things to say about the WSOP level structure, about the internet gambling ban, and other things.

Well worth a look - and I've gotta say I was impressed with the man.

Real Madrid big favourites to win Spanish League Title

Real Madrid are now a best 1/9 at bet365 to win La Liga after Saturday's dramatic penultimate round of matches.

Trailing twice and with title rivals Barcelona winning against Espanyol, Real's title hopes looked to have been ended for yet another season.

But ex-Manchester United striker Ruud van Nistelrooy's goal forced a 2-2 draw and a last-gasp equaliser for Espanyol at the Nou Camp ensured Real Madrid go into the final round of games next Sunday top of the table.

Madrid are level on points with Barca but in front on head-to-heads, so a home win against 12th-placed Real Mallorca will guarantee a title for the first time in four years at Real Madrid.

Barcelona are now considered almost out of the running and are priced at a huge 6/1 (7.00) at Paddy Power. Barcelona are away to bottom club Gimnastic in their final fixture.

Seville's title hopes remain alive but only just after their 0-0 draw goalless draw with Real Mallorca. They go into the final weekend two points off the pace and it's 50/1 that the other two slip up and they sneak through by scoring a home win over Villarreal.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

How MANY Hot Dogs in 12 minutes ?!!

How many Hot Dogs will be eaten in 12 minutes?

America will celebrate it's independence day with an athletic event of truely epic proportions - the annual Nathan's Hot Dog eating contest !!

I can't tell you much more about this - I thought that this was always won by a small Japanese guy who looked like he'd starved for months beforehand ... but apparently the US has found a challenger.

It all takes place on July 4th - so check out this blog post on the Nathan's 2007 Hot Dog eating contest over at where they've checked out the form of two contestants - found a recent video - and even found a good online bookie to bet on it with ...

Yep - only in America ...

RUGBY : All Blacks 61-10 France : France all at "C"

After the pre-match jousting where the French tourists were annoyed as being described as France "C" by the New Zealand managers and media - they simply showed that the locals knew best.

New Zealand ended the test as a contest before half-time - taking a 30-3 lead into the break and continued on on the second half for a nine try blitz and a final 61-10 score.

Joe Rokocoko's first-half double set New Zealand on their way adding to Byron Kelleher and Anton Oliver's close-range touchdowns before halftime.

Leon MacDonald, Isaia Toeava, Jerry Collins and Nick Evans added to the scoreline after the break, with Julien Laharrague scoring a consolation try.

France who had left as many as 28 quality players at home playing domestic club competitions were no match for the All Blacks in any area.

France tour captain Olivier Magne told Sky Sports: "We're very disappointed to lose by so many points, but it is all preparation for the World Cup and I hope we will be on time for this competition."

But perhaps France would be far better to admit that this was a 3rd choice team (or dare I say it "C" side) and that the tour was little more than a farce and a devaluation of the famous Tri-colour reputation.

Friday, June 08, 2007

Take a look at a WSOP Bracelet

The 2007 WSOP bracelet

WSOP Bracelet Less Tacky Than Usual !

I still don't know that these will be actual fashion accessories (except for wanna-be rapsters who don't know when to stop the BLING) but the new WSOP bracelets do look much less gaudy - and are certainly an improvement on previous events.

The bracelets are manufactured by watchmaker Corum and are fairly carefully crafted looking at the detailing and the tiny inserted jewels.

The normal event winners will receive a bracelet with 53 diamonds as shown in the picture.

The $50,000 buy-in H.O.R.S.E event will feature a special version with 91 black diamonds and two rubies.

While the winner of the $10,000 Main Event will get a bracelet with 136 grams of 18-carat white gold set with 120 diamonds in an extravaganza of over-the-top bling that even celebrity jail-bird Paris Hilton or Elton John would not wear.

Internet Gambler wins GBP 2,000,000

An internet gambler has scooped the UK's highest ever online jackpot - winning £2,058,888 from the comfort of his own PC at home.

The man who lives in Birmingham, won the record-breaking prize while playing on slot machines on Littlewoods' Millionaires Club.

The punter - who has chosen to remain anonymous apart from disclosing his online username, Mojo - won a progressive jackpot which had been accruing in value for about two years.

He bravely passed through three bonus rounds - at which point he could have lost his entire winnings - before scooping the amazing jackpot.

In a statement issued by the online casino, he said: "I'm ecstatic to win such an amazing amount from playing online slots. I came back to their casino last month after an 18-month break and I'm so glad I did."

Thursday, June 07, 2007

French Open - SportingOdds Free Bet Promo.

2007 French Open - SportingOdds Free Bet Promo

I'm not a great tennis fan - but I do like a good free bet offer !!
SportingOdds French Open Tennis Free Bet

UEFA U21 Euro 2007 Betting Analysis

UEFA U21 Euro 2007 - Tournament Starts June 10

The UEFA under 21 Championships kicks off in Holland on Saturday.

This competition has proved a fertile spawning ground for future super-stars, while some of faces on show will already be familiar to bettors.

The future soccer talent of Europe will be show in Holland for the next two weeks as the continent’s eight best under-21 national teams clash. The tournament has existed since 1978 but has undergone regular modification.

For 2007 the competition has been moved to odd years so as not to clash with the major international senior competitions, while for the first time the hosts – Holland – were chosen before qualification began, thereby sidestepping that process.

The Dutch are coincidentally the holders of the trophy, which they lifted in Portugal last year, after beating the Ukraine 3-0 in the final. That was the first time the Jong Oranje had claimed the title, but they have another great chance as hosts.

Holland kick-off two weeks of action against Israel, with PinnacleSports promising to offer top asian handicap odds on every UEFA U21 Euro 2007 game throughout the tournament.

The key issue to keep in mind is that there is little continuity from one competition to the next as players must be under the age of 21 when the qualification process begins. Given that stipulation, few of the winning Dutch side in 2006 will remain, but success in the event is a reflection of the effectiveness of international you acadamies.

Italy have enjoyed the most success in this competition, lifting the trophy on five occasions since their first success in 1992. On that evidence alone the nation that produced the current World Champions will be popular with bettors.

England fielding several high-profile players, warmed up for their opening against the Czech Republic by thrashing Slovakia 5-0, after which coach, Stuart Pearce staged a mock penalty shoot-out. Pearce has first-hand experience of the pain of losing on spot-kicks going back to Italia 90, so hopes the rehearsal will pay dividends. The Czechs were rocked by the withdrawal of their captain, Martin Latka, four days before the off.

Israel take a football team to an major international event for the first time since the 1976 Olympic Games, with several of the squad, including Chelsea's Ben Sahar having already made their debuts in the full senior side. They have a tough Group A opening game against the hosts and holders, while the sections other two sides, Portugal and Belgium, play later in the evening.

The final side making up the eight team event are Serbia, who lifted the event in 1978 when it first appeared in this format. Coach Miroslav Djukic can call on four senior international players who should add invaluable experience.

Check out the UEFA U21 odds at PinnacleSports now

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Hou's in at Man City ?

Gerard Houllier is now the favourite to be the next Manchester City manager following the news that former market favourite Claudio Ranieri has taken over at Juventus.

Ex-Chelsea manager Ranieri left his role at Parma last week after leading the club to Serie A safety and had been widely expected to join Manchester City.

However, Juventus have installed Ranieri as the successor to Didier Deschamps to take charge in their return to Serie A.

It all means a wide-open market again for the City job and Houllier tops the Betfair prices at 4/1 at BetDirect while Juande Ramos (who?) has popped up and is favourite at some bookmakers now.

Sven-Goran Eriksson has also shortened to betwen 3.50 to 5.50 while Gordon Strachan can be got at 18.50 at BetFair

While it's double figure prices and upwards about the rest with Billy Davis, Co Adriaanse, GRaeme Souness and Paul Jewell all getting some action.

Be careful though - as Ranieri had been backed at as short as 1/2 with Sky Bet for the Eastlands vacancy while he's traded at a low of 1/8 on Betfair.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

2007 World Series of Poker (WSOP) starts

The World Series of Poker has alreeady started in Las Vegas, with the first event beginning on Friday.

It was a $5,000 buy-in "mixed holdem" event (where you have to play both limit holdem and no-limit holdem) and it attracted 452 entrants.

It's taking 3 days to play out and the final table has just been determined with 9 players left after Saturday's play. Check out the Poker Lab Rat blog as they'll give daily updates in their WSOP category.

Other details of the WSOP event is that it's taking 47 days to complete the 55 poker events running from June 1st all the way through to July 17th !!

The "main event" is of course #55 on the list and being the finale does not start until July 6th, while the biggest buy-in event is the $50,000 H.O.R.S.E Championship (Event #39) which starts on the 24th of June.

That's one hell of a buy-in, and the action is sure to be fierce as the professional players seem to consider the H.O.R.S.E event their true World Championship - mind you that's probably because none of them can get near the final table of the main event these days.