From the Trading Floor

Join Jay and DAZN Bet’s trading team as they bring you the pick of this week’s sports bets in “From The Trading Floor”

 

South Africa v Australia – 2023 Cricket World Cup – Semi-Final – 08:30 – November 16

After 45 group stage games the final four of the 2023 Cricket World Cup is now known. There will be no repeat Ben Stokes heroics from four years ago, as England only managed to pick up three wins from their nine fixtures. However, New Zealand, who finished as runners-up in that memorable encounter in the 2019 final, will be featuring when they take on India at Mumbai’s Wankhede Stadium on Wednesday.

With hosts India rightfully being installed as heavy favourites to make it to the final this weekend, following their perfect record during the group stage, my focus will be Thursday’s encounter between South Africa and Australia in Kolkata.

Both teams enter the semi-finals having picked up seven wins from their nine matches, alongside losses to India, South Africa’s only other defeat was a shock 38 run loss to the Netherlands almost a month ago, whilst Australia’s other blemish came in a thumping 134 run loss to the South Africans in their second match of the competition.

Since that loss, Australia have gone on to win their last seven matches, with one of the highlights being their victory over Afghanistan a week ago, where the Aussies recovered from 91 for 7, in pursuit of 292, with Glenn Maxwell scoring an unbeaten double century from 128 balls.

It wasn’t the first time that the Australian all-rounder grabbed the headlines though, with Maxwell also setting the record for the fastest World Cup century a couple of weeks prior with a forty ball hundred against the Netherlands.

That record came less than a month after South African batsman Aiden Markram’s 49-ball century against Sri Lanka, whilst fellow compatriot Heinrich Klaasen also managed to race to a three figure score in 61 balls during their 229-run victory over England.

Despite the quality of bowlers that both teams have at their disposal, Australian leg-spinner Adam Zampa currently leads the way with 22 wickets to his name, whilst the South African duo of Gerald Coetzee and Marco Jansen have claimed 35 wickets between them, it feels like this has got the potential to be another potential runfest.

Alongside the exploits of Maxwell, both Mitchel Marsh and David Warner have managed to score more than 150 in a single innings for Australia during the tournament, whilst South African opener Quinton de Kock currently lies just three runs behind India’s Virat Kohli in terms of most tournament runs on 591, including a top score of 174 against Bangladesh.

The Australians are given the nod as the slight favourites for Thursday’s encounter, but I personally feel like this one could go the other way.

The South Africans have had the upper hand over their opponents in recent times, they have won their last four ODI encounters against the Aussies, including the last three games of their five match series in September and all by margins of more than 100 runs, and they’ve been just as impressive as their counterparts throughout this tournament, and I’ll be siding with them getting the better of them once again on Thursday.

Traders’ Tip: South Africa To Win @ 11/10. A £10 bet at these odds could return £21.

 

Georgia v Scotland – UEFA Euro 2024 Qualifying – 17:00 – November 16

Once the action in India has concluded on Thursday, it’s straight in to more International action of the Football kind with qualification for Euro 2024.

Scotland might have already sealed their own passage to next summer’s tournament in Germany, but there’s still plenty to play for when they travel to Georgia for their penultimate Group A fixture.

Knowing that seeding for Euro 2024 is based on qualifying performance, Scotland will no doubt be eager to pick up maximum points from their final two fixtures. They currently sit level on points at the top of Group A with Spain, and an additional six points would secure them a spot in one of the top two pots in the draw, potentially placing them a more favourable group next June.

It’s no less than Scotland have deserved too. Winning their opening five qualifying games before their recent 2-0 defeat away to Spain, but, even in that game, they certainly gave Spain a run for their money, with the hosts needing a goal during the last quarter of the game in order to see off a valiant Tartan Army, shortly after Scotland had a Scott McTominay free-kick ruled out at the other end following a VAR check.

Georgia know that they’ll be featuring in the play-offs courtesy of their Nations League performance, but they have little left to play for in a group sense despite their recent 4-0 victory over a hapless Cyprus in Tbilisi last month. Even with a victory over Scotland, they would still need to get at least a positive result in Valladolid against Spain to stand any chance of finishing any higher than 4th in the group, which looks a very tough ask considering that Spain put seven past the Georgians back in September.

Despite a run of three successive losses, I still think that Scotland have shown enough to be worthy of picking up three points. It was Scotland who came away with a 2-0 victory when the two teams met at a sodden Hampden Park earlier in the group stages, and it’s hard to ignore the strength of a team that have conceded just three times up to this point.

The carrot of a kinder draw, when they travel to Germany next year, is sure to be enough of an enticement for the Scots to lift their game once again, and I feel like their performances to date should have led to them being a much shorter price to come out on top in this encounter.

Traders’ Tip: Scotland To Win @ 23/20. A £10 bet at these odds could return £21.50.

 

England v Malta –UEFA Euro 2024 Qualifying – 19:45 – November 17

England are another team that have already booked their spot at Euro 2024, but that surely won’t stop them continuing their fine qualifying form when they welcome Malta to Wembley on Friday night.

Gareth Southgate’s men secured top spot in Group C following their 3-1 victory over Italy last month yet that’s no reason to believe that they’ll have mercy on the European minnows when they host them this weekend.

Amongst their attacking ranks they possess a group of players who have mainly been in fine scoring form so far this season.

Top goalscorer Harry Kane added another two goals to his Bayern Munich tally over the weekend, taking his total domestic goals for his new club to 21 in just 15 appearances, whilst young starlet Jude Bellingham has picked up 13 goals since his summer move to Real Madrid.

Even if England do start with a much-rotated line-up when compared to the XI that took to the field against the Italians, there’s still a very good reason to believe that this will still be a procession for the Three Lions given the plethora of attacking talent that Southgate has at his disposal.

Ollie Watkins has scored 11 times this season for Aston Villa, West Ham’s Jarrod Bowen has 8 Premier League goals to his name, and even recent call up Cole Palmer has already bagged his first four career Premier League goals since moving from Man City to Chelsea at the start of September.

Malta have picked up successive victories in Friendlies this year, with 1-0 wins over both Luxembourg and Gibraltar, but they’re still a long way off being competitive against the bigger European nations.

They have lost all seven games in Group C, including a 4-0 home loss to England in the reverse fixture back in June, and it’s difficult to see them posing any sort of challenge in London on Friday.

England meanwhile have typically been ruthless in these kind of fixtures. They picked up a 7-0 victory over North Macedonia five months ago, and their last qualifying campaign saw them also pick up 5-0 Wembley victories against both San Marino and Albania, whilst also putting four past Andorra.

I would put Malta in a similar category to those teams, which makes the odds against for England to win by at least a five goal margin very tempting.

Traders’ Tip: England -4.5 @ 8/5. A £10 bet at these odds could return £26.

 

Harlequins v Saracens – Gallagher Premiership – 17:30 – November 18

There’s plenty more Gallagher Premiership action to get stuck into this weekend, with one of the most appealing being the action at Twickenham Stoop between Harlequins and Saracens.

Quins currently lead the way at the top of the Premiership, with four wins from their opening five fixtures. They have certainly been one of the more consistent teams over the opening few weeks of the season, with last weekend’s 29-25 success at Leicester rounding of a run of four straight victories. One of the standout performers for the visitors was Italian lock Dino Lamb who scored twice, including a 70th minute match-winning try when Harlequins were trailing 24-25. Lamb has managed to pick up three tries in his last two outings, whilst South African back Tyrone Green also scored a second try in as many games, showing that the hosts certainly have consistent try scorers littered around the field.

Saracens began their season with two defeats, but they have since bounced back with convincing wins against Newcastle, Leicester and Gloucester.

Alarm bells may have been ringing back in Hendon when they were completely outclassed in their opening round 65-10 defeat at Sandy Park against Exeter, but the reigning Premiership champions have seemed to grow stronger each week since then, culminating in their most recent 50-12 victory away to Newcastle last Sunday.

The return of the England quintet of Theo Dan, Elliot Daly, Maru Itoji, Ben Earl and Owen Farrell from World Cup duty has certainly bolstered an already stacked Saracens side and helped turn their early misfortunes around, with last weekend’s procession in the North East was certainly an early indicator of how solid they can be when they are in full flow.

It’s no surprise to me to see Saracens given the nod as favourites ahead of this one, they have won nine of the last ten Premiership encounters between the two teams, and it feels like they’re making the short trip across London at just the right time.

I’m taking nothing away from Harlequins though, they have managed to reach the apex of the league on merit up to this point, but it’s going to be difficult for them to cope with a revitalised Saracens team who will be heading into this fixture brimming with confidence.

Given that the visitors are a relatively short price to come away with the spoils, going with the slightly more appealing selection of Saracens winning by at least four seems to be the sensible choice.

Traders’ Tip: Saracens -3.5 @ 17/20. A £10 bet at these odds could return £18.50.

 

Las Vegas Grand Prix – Formula 1 – 06:00 – November 19

The Formula One season enters its penultimate race weekend as the teams head to Nevada for the first running of the Las Vegas Grand Prix.

The Brazilian Grand Prix of two weeks ago didn’t really see too much in the way of surprises as Red Bull’s Max Verstappen continued his dominance over the field with a fairly comfortable victory ahead of McClaren’s Lando Norris. There’s no reason to believe that the Dutch driver won’t pick up a record-extending 18th success of the season during the early hours of Sunday, so once again it’s a matter of finding the value elsewhere in the betting.

Having gone through the markets for this weekend, one particular selection that stands out for me is that of Alpine’s Esteban Ocon picking up a points finish.

The French driver only real highlight during the 2023 season was finishing on the podium at Monaco, however, Ocon has shown a fairly decent level of consistency in placing inside the top ten.

From twenty races so far, Ocon has managed eleven finishes inside the points, including four in his last five outings, with six of the other nine races ending in retirements.

Given how he’s had a fairly consistent level of success when finishing races, I find it difficult to ignore the price on him landing amongst the points once again this weekend, even if there’s a lot of uncertainty given that Las Vegas is a completely new circuit.

There’s been six other street races this season, Ocon has finished in the points in three of them, including Monaco, and was also running inside the top 10 when his race ended prematurely in both Australia and Singapore and, as long as he can make it to the chequered flag, I believe he’s got a great chance of scoring points once again.

Traders’ Tip: Esteban Ocon – Top 10 Finish @ 13/10. A £10 bet at these odds could return £23.

A £10 5-Fold on the above selections could return £499.49.

 

*Odds correct at the time of publishing. Available to UK residents (excluding Northern Ireland) aged 18+ only. T&Cs apply. www.begambleaware.org

 

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