The Open Championship may have ended but as one big event comes to a finish, there are plenty of others ready to fill the void in what promises to be another exciting week of sports betting, with some massive sporting events to enjoy across the next seven days at Bet365 Sport.
There’s the Third Test Match in what is becoming an intriguing series between England and South Africa later this week. England’s women’s football team are also gunning for glory at the Euro 2017 Championships in the Netherlands, but face stiff competition from a number of top European women’s teams. All this week there’s also top darts action to enjoy with the World Matchplay Championship which takes place at the Winter Gardens in Blackpool.
We’ll take a look at each of these events and some of the top betting available on each a little later, but lets first begin by taking a look at what promises to be an exciting weekend in F1 as the circus arrives at the Hungaroring in Hungary for the final race before the mid-summer break.
Will Hamilton or Vettel enjoy their F1 2017 Summer Break the most?
It is fair to say that the conclusion of the British Grand Prix a fortnight ago could not have been any sweeter for home driver Lewis Hamilton. Not content with a dominant victory in front of his home fans, he then saw his nearest rival and Driver’s Championship leader Sebastian Vettel drop from second to seventh in the finishing positions due a puncture on his penultimate lap of the race.
That combination of factors means that heading to Budapest this weekend, Hamilton now trails his German counterpart by just a single point heading into what is now a pivotal race weekend at the twisty and demanding Hungaroring circuit.
Add into this the fact that this is the last race of the first part of the season, with the teams and drivers enjoying their mid-summer months break before reconvening in Belgium at the end of August, and this race takes on an added edge. Both Hamilton and Vettel will want to go away on a short holiday during this hiatus knowing that they lead the Driver’s Championship.
Bet365 Sport offer a wide choice of betting on this crucial race starting with qualifying and also on the race itself, including a wide choice of In Play betting markets. Hamilton, on the back of his dominant performance in Great Britain, is the 4/5 favourite to win in Hungary ahead of Vettel at 10/3 and Hamilton’s teammate Valtteri Bottas is a 5/1 shot.
Outside of that the bookies reckon the only other realistic winners are either Red Bull driver Max Verstappen or Daniel Ricciardo who are both 12/1 shots, while the flying Finn Kimi Raikkonen of Ferrari is a 14/1 shot. Outside of these six, the lowest price you can get is 250/1 on Perez or Ocon in the Force India cars.
My gut feeling here is that the mechanical reliability of the Mercedes car may be the key here. Ferrari’s brakes struggled at Silverstone and again they will be tested at the Hungaroring on what is a brake-heavy track. That for me means the two Mercedes drivers have the advantage and as such, I think Hamilton will snatch the win here, though I do expect Bottas to push him hard for that top spot on the podium.
Fantastic Darts betting to enjoy all week at Bet365 courtesy of the World Matchplay
This week sees one of the biggest tournaments of the darts season taking place at the Winter Gardens in Blackpool as the best PDC players on the planet contest the World Matchplay Championship.
This famous event is played under a leg format, rather than sets, with each match a race to a set number of legs. This means every leg matters and players cannot afford to lose a single leg if they are to win the game. It is intense and dramatic action and over the years has seen Phil Taylor win an unprecedented 15 times, while in recent times Michael van Gerwen has dominated the event in the past two years.
The action got under way on Saturday night at the famous venue and the first round is the first to ten legs. Second seed Gary Anderson and third seed Peter Wright both made it through tough encounters, but sixth seed James Wade was beaten by Darren Webster while Steve West sprung a shock beating 11th seed Michael Smith.
Across the whole of the week, you will be able to bet on the second round, quarter final, semi final and then the final of this hugely important event, which features a top cash prize of £115,000 for the winner. There is extensive betting available on the pre-match market, including match betting, plus a wide range of In Play betting available too.
Will the Lionesses Roar in Holland?
Also ongoing this week and into the next couple of weeks are the Women’s Euro 2017 Championships in the Netherlands. This week we reach the end of what has been an entertaining and enlightening group stage, with perhaps a notice that the established powers in the women’s game are starting to wane and a new group of talented teams seem to be coming through.
Germany and France were both expected to do well in this event but both haven’t really shone as yet in the Group stages, while the likes of Sweden, the Netherlands and England have looked like they could challenge the status quo in the women’s game at international level in Europe.
This week sees the final group games to enjoy a bet on through until Thursday night and then after that, all eight of the quarter finalists will be known with betting available on each of the four quarter finals, which get under way with two on Saturday 29th July and the second two matches on Sunday 30th July.
Currently, Germany are still the 5/2 favourites to win the event, with the French women a 16/5 shot, but it it notable that these have drifted in the betting over recent weeks, while England have come in to 5/1 from 7/1 and the home nation Holland have also seen their odds shortened to 7/1. Sweden are another that have seen money for them, as they are now a 9/1 shot to win the event.
Bet365 are running a large number of markets on this event including individual match betting on a wide range of markets and of course, In Play betting when the games are taking place. You can tune in to watch all the games live on Eurosport, with selected games also shown live on Channel 4 and its subsidiary channels in the UK.
Can England strike back against a dominant Proteas at The Oval?
Lastly, on Thursday this week, Joe Root’s England team will need to dust themselves down after their 340-run defeat against South Africa in the Second Test Match at Edgbaston as they face the Proteas once again in the Third Test of a four-test series at The Kennington Oval.
The series is nicely balanced at 1-1 after South Africa were beaten comprehensively in the opening Test Match at Lords, before they bounced back last time out at Edgbaston. The South African side will also be strengthened by the return to the bowling attack of Kagiso Rabada, who has now served his one test match ban for unsportsmanlike conduct.
England have also made a change, which has been enforced by a broken finger suffered by Gary Ballance. His replacement is Essex batsman Tom Westley who is likely to make his test debut at the crucial Number 3 position and with a batting line up that has come in for some criticism following their lacklustre performance last time out.
England’s one positive however is that their bowling attack too shows a lot of potential with Moeen Ali the leading wicket taker in the series so far with 14, plus the likes of James Anderson and Chris Broad always likely to cause South Africa some problems with the ball.
The bookies have England as the favourites to win at the Oval at 11/10, with South Africa 2/1 shot and a draw being the 3/1 option. Personally, I feel England are too short at that price and their last performance isn’t deserving of such short odds. I have the feeling though that this one could well end up in a tie (3/1), on a wicket which has been good for batting in recent times.
Ian has been a lifelong avid poker player, and is also well-versed in the worlds of online sports betting, casino gaming, and the burgeoning eSports industry. UK-based Ian has written for several years for a wide variety of online publications, and is especially adept at bringing readers inside the latest and greatest games.