This week we will take a break from the Premier League and Champions League to focus on some other sports in our betting tips. The reborn Champion of Champions tournament in Snooker goes into its fourth instalment. The Nedbank Challenge in South Africa is one of the European PGA’s biggest tour dates. International football returns and the pick of the games this week is England facing Germany on Friday.
Champion of Champions
The champion of champions is a unique tournament started by Matchroom Sports. It seems all the winners of the last 12 months in Snooker facing up. This year is the fourth occasion of the very best over the baize. It takes place in Coventry from today to the 12th.
Obvious favourite as long as he has the right footwear on is Ronnie O’Sullivan. While you would be wise to avoid him when tournaments are away from the UK this one is in his comfort zone. Far-flung destinations don’t seem to be too fun for the Rocket. Only last week we saw Ronnie leave early in the International Championship, held in China. This despite a dominating win in Barnsley at the English Open.
The man from Essex is at 9/2 with Unibet.
His nearest rival will be John Higgins who is the current holder of the title and defending champion. Higgins and O’Sullivan has been drawn in the same group and are set to go head to head before the final. This will likely result in whoever winning going on to lift the trophy. You can find Higgins at good odds of 81 with most major bookmakers.
Another year and we are back in Sun City at the Gary Player Country Club. The tournament has grown year on year and with prize money standing at $7.5 million, some of the best players in the world will be licking their lips.
Of the field, we have found three main contenders that could leave South Africa very happy men. Henrik Stenson is the first. He may not have had the best year but his performances have slowly begun improving, just coming into this tournament. He knows the the Gary Player course well and has won here in 2008. (Henrik Stenson is now out of the tournament with a freak injury!)
Stenson’s fellow countryman has also not had the best year but will be defending the title. We all know what a confidence player he is and if he gets a few early birdies then they may well keep coming. He is 22/1 with 10Bet to repeat the feat he made last year in South Africa.
Tyrell Hatton is the favourite for the title and it is easy to see why. He has the ability to destroy course with a flick of the wrists. While he certainly has the game to shoot low the Englishman’s weaknesses are all in the head. The fact that he is favourite with the bookies and sitting pretty at 14/1 might just be enough to make him lose the tournament before its even begun. Still, he will likely be thereabouts if he keeps his head screwed on.
England v Germany
Gareth Southgate’s side has been hit with a string of injuries from some of his most important men heading into two massive friendlies against Germany on Friday and then Brazil next week. Both Harry Kane and Harry Winks are ruled out which means Southgate will have to look elsewhere for his goals. Jordan Henderson is the other notable absentee.
This could open the door for a new hero to bang in the goals and a new leader in midfield. Even though this is only a friendly due to the level of competition, players won’t want to be injured.
Of those most likely to carry the torch is Raheem Sterling who has had a stormer of a season and is only a couple goals behind Harry Kane in the goalscoring leaderboard. As long as he is in the starting eleven at 17/2 with bookies he could be incredible value.
England are actually underdogs in this game with Germany 6/4 favourites. While the fans will be hoping for a Thunderdome style meet, in truth the player’s attention will be on club football and the score is likely to suffer. You can watch the match live on ITV but we are predicting a dull affair. A draw at 23/10 with William Hill might be a wiser move.