Summer of Betting: What to Look Forward to in Summer 201720th April 2017 / Julian
For most sports fanatics and sports bettors, there is nothing worse than a year that ends with an odd number. Why? Because this tends to mean that there will be no huge summer tournament to look forward to. No Fifa World Cup, no UEFA European Championship, no Olympic Games and no Commonwealth games. So, we may as well call it a day on 2017, right?
Let’s not be too hasty, because there are plenty of sporting events in the summer of 2017 for punters to put in their diaries. From international football to Rugby Union and from grand slam tennis to test match cricket, the coming months offer up a feast of opportunities for sports bettors to to keep their bankroll rolling.
So, before you put your online betting accounts into hibernation, here are some of the key betting events in 2017 along with a few hints and tips to inform your summer betting choices.
No Major Football Tournament? No Problem…
With no World Cup or Euros this year, football punters might be planning on taking up a new hobby to occupy themselves over the summer months of 2017. Anyone for wooden spoon whittling? But, not to fear, because there is still a decent amount of football to be played in-between May and August.
- FA Cup Final (27 May): the domestic football season is never truly over until the final whistle blows in the FA Cup Final. There are four very strong contenders left in this year’s competition – Chelsea (21/10), Manchester City (9/4), Tottenham (4/1) and Arsenal (9/2). With Chelsea’s current form, the easy money would be on them to lift the trophy but the elite calibre of the other teams and the grandeur of the Wembley occasion makes it anyone’s guess.
- Champions League Final (3 June): if the grand finale of domestic football is the FA Cup final, then the climax of European football is the Champions League Final. This promises to be the pinnacle of footballing spectacles and you can read an in-depth guide to Champions League betting here.
- World Cup Qualifiers (10-11 June): there may not be any trophy to play for, but there is still plenty of international football to bet on this summer as teams across the world aim to secure their place in the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia. All of the home nations are in action with some juicy clashes such as Scotland v England.
- Women’s Euro 2017 (16 July – 6 August): the men’s game may be winding down for the summer months but there is plenty to play for (and to bet on) in women’s football. The UEFA Women’s Euro 2017 tournament takes place in the Netherlands, with pre-tournament favourites Germany looking to win their 7th successive title. France and England are highly rated too with some strong outsiders like Spain, Sweden and Norway. Punters can also wager on the Women’s FA Cup Final and Champions League Final.
Two Top Tennis Tournaments
One thing that you can always count on, summer after summer, is grand slam tennis. There are two major tennis tournaments in the coming months and they are played on two very different surfaces, meaning that there is plenty to consider when it comes to backing a winner.
- French Open (22 May – 5 June): the red clay courts of Roland Garros offer something completely unique in the grand slam circuit. The slow court is suited to baseline players who can generate immense levels of topspin, which is how Rafael Nadal managed to win the tournament nine times between 2005 and 2014. The Spaniard is favourite (23/10) to win this years Roland Garros having seemingly overcome problems with injury and confidence but can Novak Djokovic (11/4), Andy Murray (4/1), Stan Wawrinka (9/1) or Roger Federer (16/1) stop the king of clay winning his 10th French Open. The women’s French Open isn’t always as predicable as the men’s. Serena Williams is the Favourite at (9/4) but a bet on any of her closest rivals wouldn’t be a bad shout with Garbine Muguruza (6/1), Simona Halep (11/1), Angelique Kerber (14/1) and Maria Sharapova (15/1) all capable of going the distance.
- Wimbledon (3-16 July): the prestige and history of Wimbledon makes it one of the most coveted prizes in men’s and women’s tennis. This grand slam is played on fast grass courts, making it a completely different ball game from the French Open. Andy Murray (9/4) is favourite to retain his Wimbledon title although Novak Djokovic (11/4) and Roger Federer (7/2) present some close competition while Milos Roanic (12/1) and Nick Kyrgios (16/1) could be dark horses. Again, Serena Williams (28/17) promises to dominate the women’s side of the grand slam with a bet on anyone else offering valuable returns: Angelique Kerber (9/1), Garbine Muguruza (9/1), Karolina Pliskova (12/1) and Maria Sharapova (12/1).
Best of British Rugby Down Under
Rugby may not be considered a summer sport in the UK, which is why the home nations tend to send off their teams to the Southern Hemisphere for international test matches. This year is a particularly special one as it sees the quadrennial British and Irish Lions tour in June and July followed by the Women’s World Cup in August which takes place a bit closer to home in Ireland.
- British & Irish Lions tour (24 June – 8 July): every four years, the home nations select their best players and send them on tour to play three test matches against stern Southern Hemisphere opponents. This year, the Lions face the toughest test of all against New Zealand. To put it into perspective, the All Blacks are better than evens (10/11) to win the series 3-0. That doesn’t mean that there is no fun to be had betting on the British & Irish Lions this summer, because punters can wager on a number of things from which player will named captain to which players will be picked to start the first test.
- Women’s World Cup (9-26 August): while the men toil for bragging rights down under, the women will compete for the right to be crowned world champions. The 2017 Women’s Rugby Union World Cup will take place in Ireland and will be televised on ITV, offering punters the chance to bet on a relatively under-publicised sporting event.
Cricket Gears up for the Ashes
Most cricket fans will argue that the main event of the year is the Ashes tour in which England travel to Australia in the hopes of retaining the little urn and edging ahead in the overall win stats (both teams are currently tied on 32 series wins apiece). However, the summer promises to get things warmed up with two big test matches as well as some explosive T20 action.
- Tests v South Africa and West Indies (July to September): as England gear up to face Australia later in the year, they will be looking to perform strongly in their summer test series against the Proteas and Windies. Test match cricket might not be everyone’s cup of tea, but there are loads of ways to make it interesting with in-play betting markets such as over/under run lines, under/over wickets and whether there will be certain events in the next over, such as a wicket, a boundary or a no ball.
- T20 Blast Finals Day (2 September): If you don’t have the patience for five-day-long games of cricket, then you should keep an eye out for the T20 Blast Finals Day. This explosive festival of cricket sees the semi-finals and the final of the limited over form of the game, meaning that there are three match results to bet on, not to mention loads of in-play cricket betting markets.
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