Our weekly review of the latest betting news with five things for you to consider, including odds for the upcoming Euro 2016 play-offs and the ATP World Tour finals.
1. Villa show resolve but remain 4/6 for the drop
If Aston Villa are to avoid relegation they will need to show much more of the fighting spirit that earned them a goalless draw with title favourites Manchester City on Sunday afternoon. New manager Remi Garde took charge of a side which has not won since the opening day of the season but he will have been pleased with the effort his players showed as they picked up just their fifth point of the campaign. Villa remain odds-on for the drop at best odds of 4/6 with William Hill and that looks a fair assessment given their dreadful start under Tim Sherwood.
2. Rampant Tigers are new promotion favourites
Away from the Premier League, the most eyecatching result of the weekend was Hull’s 3-0 victory over promotion rivals Middlesbrough at the KC Stadium – their fifth straight league win, during which time they have not conceded a goal. Prior to that defeat, Boro had the best defensive record in the Sky Bet Championship and were strong favourites to gain promotion as champions. After extending their unbeaten run to 10 games, Hull are now top of the table and have been installed as the new favourites for the title at best odds of 3/1 with Coral (just 5/2 elsewhere). Steve Bruce’s side boasts plenty of top flight experience still, with Mo Diame and Tom Huddlestone among their scorers on Saturday, while the form of Abel Hernandez and Andrew Robertson has been particularly impressive.
3. Norway can claim first leg advantage
Next week we will discover the final four qualifiers for Euro 2016 as the play-offs take place, with the main focus on the Republic of Ireland and their fascinating contest with Edin Dzeko’s Bosnia. After their 1-0 home win over world champions Germany, the Irish will be confident of securing at least a draw from the away leg on Friday to set up a thrilling night in Dublin the following Monday. In Thursday’s first play-off, Norway look a good bet to get the better of Hungary, who were unimpressive finishing third in their group behind Northern Ireland and Romania. Norway narrowly missed out to Italy and Croatia in a much tougher group and it’s worth checking out the prices of a 1-0 or 2-0 home win against a Hungary side with a good defensive record.
4. Victorious Djokovic cut for O2 title
With just a week to go before the ATP World Tour finals in London, Novak Djokovic underlined why he is such a strong favourite on Sunday with a comfortable straight sets victory (6-2, 6-4) over Andy Murray at the Paris Masters to claim his 10th title of the season. It was also his 10th win in the last 11 meetings with the Scot. Several firms have cut the Serb’s price to win at the O2 Arena, with the best odds available now just 4/7 with Bet365 and BetVictor. Roger Federer is the second favourite at best odds of 4/1 with Stan James, while Murray is a distant third having been pushed out to 12/1 by Paddy Power (although as short as 8/1 elsewhere). Rafa Nadal is a stand-out price of 20/1 with Sportingbet.
5. Kisner suffers another near miss
We have tipped up Kevin Kisner for victory on the PGA Tour on several occasions through 2015 and he has put in some solid performances and despite not being one of our selections for this weekend’s WGC-HSBC Champions event in China, he went close once again, finishing second behind Scotland’s Russell Knox. Three times he has missed out in play-offs this year as he seeks a maiden tour title, but that first win can’t be too far away.