Category: Sports Betting Tips

Betting Odds and Predictions to Win NCAA Tournament

The greatest and most exciting sporting event of the season is set to kick off on Thursday, and people can’t get enough of filling out brackets. Instead of trying to win NCAA Tournament pools, placing a bet on who will cut down the nets is a better option. Here is a look at the current odds to win the NCAA Tournament with a pick thrown in as well.

Number 1 Seeds:

Duke +225:

Duke has the best odds by a large margin, and they should. The Blue Devils were impressive in winning the ACC Tournament title, and they have just one loss when fully healthy this season. Zion Williamson has proven himself as the best player in the country, and RJ Barrett and Cam Reddish are NBA Lottery picks. The Blue Devils are loaded.

Virginia +550:

Everyone remembers Virginia being the first number 1 seed to lose to a 16 seed a season ago, but the Cavaliers are back. Virginia is once again the top defensive team in the country, but they can score better on the offensive end. The Cavaliers won’t let history repeat itself this season.

Gonzaga +600:

Gonzaga is the only team to beat Duke this season when the Blue Devils were fully healthy, and the Bulldogs have a ton of elite talent. The Bulldogs once again coasted through the West Coast Conference but stumbled in the tournament game in a loss to Saint Mary’s. Everyone seems to agree that this is head coach Mark Few’s best Gonzaga team.

North Carolina +800:

North Carolina shared for the ACC regular-season crown with Virginia, and the Tar Heels beat Duke twice this season. The Tar Heels almost beat their rival a third time, but Zion Williamson took over. North Carolina plays extremely fast, and they can score in a hurry. The Tar Heels won’t be an easy team to beat.

Number 2 Seeds:

Kentucky +1200:

Tyler Herro and PJ Washington lead an extremely talented Kentucky team. The return of Reid Travis gives the Wildcats some veteran leadership, and Kentucky has the depth to play with anyone. John Calipari has his team defending at an elite level, and that will carry them.

Michigan State +1200:

The Spartans are always a contender in March, and they enter the tournament with a ton of momentum. Michigan State is led by point guard Cassius Winston, but they have some studs in the paint as well. Bet against Tom Izzo if you want to, but Michigan State has a real chance to win this thing.

Tennessee +1400:

Tennessee is one of the most experienced teams in the country this season, and they can really score the ball. Admiral Schofield and Grant Williams get all the hype, but the Volunteers are deep. If Tennessee gets to the Elite Eight, a matchup with Virginia should be looming.

Michigan +1600:

Michigan was a Final Four team a season ago, and John Beilein has his team back in contention this season. The Wolverines are just behind Virginia in terms of best defense in the country, but Michigan struggles to score at times. If Michigan makes shots, they can beat anyone.

Contenders:

Texas Tech +2000:

Texas Tech had a terrific Big 12 Conference season, but they aren’t a real title contender. Forward Jarrett Culver is a future NBA star, but he is all the offense for the Red Raiders.

Auburn +2500:

Auburn set a new SEC record this season for three-point field goals per game, and they shoot at a ton of them. The Tigers made them all weekend long in the SEC Tournament, but they are a bad shooting night away from getting bounced early.

Florida State, Purdue, Virginia Tech +3300:

The most intriguing team from this group is the Florida State Seminoles. Florida State upset Virginia in the ACC Semifinals and battled Duke in the title game. Head coach Leonard Hamilton has a deep and athletic team that could bust some brackets this year.

Houston, Iowa State, LSU +4000:

This is a very interesting group of teams, and all three of them seem to have Final Four potential. Houston dominated the American Athletic Conference this season, and the Cougars can really score. Iowa State might be the best shooting team in the tournament, but they have some head-scratching losses. LSU will be without their head coach, Will Wade, but the Tigers have freakish athleticism. One of these teams might get hot and make a deep run, but they could also lose in the first weekend.

Everyone Else +5000 Or Higher:

There are certainly some teams in this group that are worth looking at, but realistically they don’t have a chance to win the whole thing. There might be a Final 4 team from this group, but that’s about it.

Betting Pick:

The two best teams in the country this season are the Duke Blue Devils and North Carolina Tar Heels. UNC was able to beat Duke twice this season, but Duke won the most recent game. I think that they will meet up in the NCAA Championship Game, and Duke will even the score by beating North Carolina for a second time. Bet the Duke Blue Devils +225 to win the NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship.

Euro 2020 Qualifiers Begin and it Promises to be an Interesting Year

Were back with international football this week after a lengthy period ofSoccer Spinner at Bet365 domestic and European football in the UK. After the success of the first Nations League last year, the European Championship Qualifiers will now get underway, with the full qualification tournament running from March through to November 2019.

A total of 20 teams out of the 24 teams contesting the 2020 Finals, will earn their place in the finals this way, with the remaining four coming from the Nations League Playoffs, which will take place in March 2020.

If you fancy a flutter on who will win Euro 2020, or even just on the qualifiers that take place this year from March through to November, then bet365 Sport is a great place to bet. New customers signing up using the latest bet365 New Customer Bonus will receive up to £100 in bet credits once they are betting on the site, which is a great way to have more cash to bet with.

Changes for Euro 2020

The 2020 European Championships are a special one-off event, first proposed by Michel Platini, as a celebration of 60 years of the tournament. Rather than holding the tournament in just one or possibly two host countries, the tournament has been expanded to 24 teams and will be held in 12 different venues across Europe.

  • Olympic Stadium, Baku, Azerbaijan
  • Parken Stadium, Copenhagen, Denmark
  • Wembley Stadium, London, England
  • Allianz Arena, Munich, Germany
  • Puskas Arena, Budapest, Hungary
  • Stadio Olimpico, Rome, Italy
  • Johan Cruyff Arena, Amsterdam, Holland
  • Arriva Stadium, Dublin, Ireland
  • Arena Nationala, Bucharest, Romania
  • Krestovsky Stadium, Saint Petersburg, Russia
  • Hampden Park, Glasgow, Scotland
  • San Mames, Bilbao, Spain

Each venue will host group games in the opening stages of the Euro 2020 finals, with a select number hosting Second Round and quarterfinal ties. The semifinals and final of the tournament have been slated to take place at Wembley Stadium. The tournament is scheduled to run between June 12 and July 12 2020.

With an expanded 24-team roster for the finals, this means that there is now no requirement for playoffs at the end of the Euro 2020 qualifying campaign. Instead, the top two teams in each of the ten groups will qualify for the finals.

The ten groups are outlined below:

Group A Group B Group C Group D Group E
Bulgaria Lithuania Belarus Denmark Azerbaijan
Czech Rep Luxembourg Estonia Georgia Croatia
England Portugal Germany R.o.Ireland Hungary
Montenegro Ukraine Holland Switzerland Slovakia
Kosovo Serbia N.Ireland Gibraltar Wales

 

Group F Group G Group H Group I Group J
Faroe Isl. Austria Albania Belgium Armenia
Malta Israel Andorra Cyprus Bosnia & Herzegovina
Norway Latvia France Kazakhstan Finland
Romania Macedonia Iceland Russia Greece
Spain Poland Moldova San Marino Italy
Sweden Slovenia Turkey Scotland Liechtenstein

They will be joined by the four teams that qualify from the Nations League playoffs, which will take place in March 2020. The playoffs will pit the top teams from each of the Four Leagues (A,B,C and D) in the Nations League 2018 against each other with the winning team earning a qualification spot. Should a team already be qualified through Euro 2020 qualifying, then their place will be taken by the highest ranking team in their division that have not qualified for the tournament thus far.

Euro 2020 Fixtures

Insert bet365 Odds

*Odds shown are correct as of 12pm on Monday 18th March 2019

Euro 2020 Qualifiers – Preview and Tips

  • Kazakhstan v Scotland

The Scots travel to Astana to take on an improving Kazakhstan side in a game that looks easier on paper than it actually will be in reality. At least the Scots will have skipper Andy Robertson in their team after his dental abscess did not rule him out of the trip.

Away form had been a problem for Scotland but they put that to bed with a fine 4-0 win over Albania in Tirana in the Nations League last year and they will be hoping that excellent form on the road can be replicated after the long trip east.

Kazakhstan are an improving side and they will no longer be such a pushover as they used to be at this level, but even so, Scotland have the edge in terms of quality and I am backing them to put that into action here to claim the win.

Scotland to win – 4/5 at bet365 Sport.

  • Belgium v Russia

Two World Cup quarterfinalisist clash in Brussels in what should be one of the best games of the night on Thursday evening. Belgium reached the World Cup Semifinals in the summer of 2018 in Russia and but they will know that to cement their place as a genuine top team, they need silverware and Euro 2020 could be their best chance to achieve that.

Russia though are a team that are emerging from a rather poor spell at the highest level and in their last match, they battled to a 3-3 draw with Belgium in 2017, although that game was held in Russia.

With the talent Belgium have available for this game, and home advantage, I do feel that they should win it comfortably but Russia made it tough for some teams at the last World Cup and I feel they could make it a tough night for Belgium here, even though I still expect the home side to earn the victory.

Belgium to win – 3/10 at bet365

  • England v Czech Republic

After a positive World Cup and a hugely positive Nations League where England bettered Croatia and Spain to make it through to the semifinals of the tournament, Gareth Southgate will know that Euro 2020 is a key tournament for his team and he will be expecting his charges to put on another good display in the finals.

First though, England have to get there, which has been a problem in the past and their opening game sees them take on a Czech Republic side who are not quite the same force as they were in European Football a few years ago.

The Czech’s still have some talented players though and they are good enough to give England’s back line, which has been leaking goals of late, a real worry but even so, with the likes of Kane, Rashford and Sterling in great form for their clubs, it is hard to see how England cannot pick up the points here.

Tip – England to win 2/7

Updated Betting Odds to Win 2019 World Series

With the 2019 Major League Baseball season still a few weeks away, there is still plenty of time to make a futures bet on the 2019 World Series Champion. The teams with the best odds haven’t changed since the end of the 2018 season, but there are a few other teams creeping up with their free-agent signings. Let’s take a look at the updated betting odds and talk about each team listed below.

Boston Red Sox, New York Yankees, Houston Astros +600: These three teams have clearly risen above the crowd in the Major Leagues, and they will likely slug it out again in the playoffs. Neither of these teams did a lot to improve in the offseason, but they didn’t really need to. The Red Sox are the reigning World Series Champions, and the Astros won it the year before. Don’t be surprised if the New York Yankees get past both teams this season and win the title. There aren’t many weaknesses in any of these three teams.

Los Angeles Dodgers +700: The Los Angeles Dodgers made some interesting moves in the offseason, and will likely be without their ace, Clayton Kershaw, for the beginning of the regular season. The Dodgers still have one of the best bullpens in baseball, but their offense is likely to take a step back this season. Still, the Dodgers have been the class of the National League in the last two years, and they will be tough to knock off again this season.

Philadelphia Phillies +850: Philadelphia saw their odds increase a great deal when they signed prize free agent Bryce Harper to a 13-year deal. Harper is comfortable in the National League East and has done plenty of damage in Philadelphia. The Phillies still have big question marks in their starting rotation, but they are hoping that Harper and Rhys Hoskins can slug their way to a World Series Championship.

Chicago Cubs +1100: The Chicago Cubs were relatively quiet in the offseason, but they are still one of the most talented teams in the National League. The young core for the Cubs has gotten a year older, but some of them need to take the next step in their game. The Cubs are betting on a talented, veteran group of starting pitchers, and their performance will likely determine the fate of the Cubs. Chicago is in arguably the toughest division in baseball, and they have a big target on their backs.

St. Louis Cardinals +1200: The St. Louis Cardinals made a huge splash when they acquired Paul Goldschmidt early on in the offseason. Goldschmidt is one of the most underrated players in baseball but has put together a terrific career with the Arizona Diamondbacks. There are still plenty of question marks surrounding the Cardinals pitching staff, but they have plenty of pieces that could make the Cardinals the team to beat in the National League Central.

Cleveland Indians, Milwaukee Brewers, Atlanta Braves +1400: This is an extremely interesting group of teams, who all made the playoffs a season ago. The Milwaukee Brewers feel like the best team on this list, but playing in the NL Central is no easy task. The Braves and Indians should be able to control their respective divisions this season, but the playoffs are a completely different story. One of these three teams could easily win the World Series, but they are all going to have to take huge steps.

Washington Nationals +1800: The Washington Nationals might have lost Bryce Harper this offseason, but they are loaded with young talent in the outfield. Washington will still be a threat to win the National League East due to their tremendous starting rotation. Don’t sleep on the Nationals this year as they look to get some revenge on Philadelphia for stealing their superstar away.

Colorado Rockies +2000: Nolan Arenado has agreed to a long contract extension with the Rockies, meaning that Colorado will be a contender every year in the near future. Pitching is always a huge question mark with the Rockies, but they can score runs with the best of them. The National League West is always a wild division, and the Rockies will be a contender.

New York Mets +2200: The New York Mets have been trying to improve their offseason in recent seasons, but they have struggled to score runs. Noah Syndergaard and Jacob DeGrom are two of the best pitchers in baseball, but they can’t win games on their own. The Mets should be much improved this season, but they are still the fourth best team in the National League East.

Oakland Athletics +2700: Oakland was one of the surprise teams in the Major Leagues a season ago, and they should be a contender again. The Athletics are still well behind the Houston Astros in the AL West, but they are a legit Wild Card contender. Oakland can slug with the best of them, and they won’t be easy to beat this season.

Everyone Else +3500 or Higher: The rest of the Major League teams fall in this category, including the San Diego Padres, who signed Manny Machado in the offseason. There is certainly a chance for someone from this group of teams to win the World Series, but it would be a major surprise.

Champions League and Europa League Previews And Tips

There’s a busy week of European action ahead of us once again this week with four Champions League Round of 16 second leg ties being played across Tuesday and Wednesday evening, followed by eight Europa League Round of 16 second leg ties being played at split kick off times on Thursday, three ties kicking off at 5.55pm and the others at 8pm.

In this article we are going to give you a quick preview and then our tip for each of the dozen games being played this week, together with who we think will make it through to the last eight of both the Champions League and the Europa League from each tie.

If you fancy a flutter on any of the games this week in the Champions or Europa Leagues, then bet365 is the place to head. New customers can sign up with the latest bet365 offer, the bet365 New Player Bonus which can see you earn up to £100 in bet credits once you have registered with the site and started betting at bet365.

So without any further ado, here’s our tips for the Champions League, followed by our Europa League preview and tips. First leg results are shown in brackets following each game and kick off is 8pm unless otherwise stated.

Champions League

Tuesday 12th & Wednesday 13th March

Juventus v Atletico Madrid (0-2) – Juventus to win – 7/10

After a dramatic first leg, Atletico seem to hold the aces here but Juventus are unbeaten at home this season and they are well capable of coming back from this 2-0 deficit in Turin. Cristiano Ronaldo will be key and if he plays well Juventus have a chance, but I just feel while the home side will win the game, Atletico will score too and that could be enough to take the Spanish side through to the next round.

Manchester City v Schalke 04 (3-2) – Man City to win – 1/7

After a dramatic first leg which saw VAR decisions galore, a man sent off for City and then the English champions come from 2-1 down to beat Schalke 3-2 with 10 men, City should be confident of making easy progress in the second leg. Schalke’s form this season is woeful domestically and they are not on City’s level to be honest. This should be an easy home win for the English side.

Barcelona v Lyon (0-0) – Barcelona to win – 1/4

The first game between these teams was something of a damp squib to be fair, with both sides knocking in plenty of goals in the group phase but both being held goalless. I think that plays into Barcelona’s hands a little more with the home leg still to come but I do feel Lyon will make it tough and I can see the French team scoring a goal, but I don’t think it will be enough.

Bayern Munich v Liverpool (0-0) – Bayern to win – 23/20

The German side produced a polished performance at Anfield to nullify the home team and I am expecting them to do a similar job in the home leg where they should be much more offensive minded. Liverpool could snatch a draw and perhaps sneak through on away goals but they have lost all of their last five in the Champions League away from Anfield and I can’t see that run improving here.

Europa League

Thursday 14th March

Dynamo Kyiv v Chelsea (0-3) (5.55pm) – Draw – 12/5

Chelsea produced a solid, dominant display in the first leg of this game and secured a healthy lead to take into the second leg. Kyiv is never an easy place to go and get a result and I can see Chelsea profiting from Kyiv’s need to score a goal, which is why I have backed the draw in this game.

Red Bull Salzburg v Napoli (0-3) (5.55pm) – Salzburg to win – 29/20

I was very surprised with how easily Napoli won the first leg of this game as Salzburg had been one of the stronger teams in the Europa League in the Group Stages. However, the Italian side outclassed them and have done enough to make the second leg a formality. I think Salzburg will win it for pride alone, but Napoli will do more than enough to make comfortable progress.

Krasnodar v Valencia (1-2) (5.55pm) – Draw – 5/2

Valencia take a narrow lead into Russia for the second leg of this tie and things are far from cosy for the Spanish side. Krasnodar have beaten some good teams at home in this competition and a 1-0 win would put them through but I do feel Valencia, who are something of a specialist when it comes to drawing matches, will grab a goal to ensure they get the draw they need to progress.

Arsenal v Rennes (1-3) – Arsenal to win – 3/10

After a dismal performance in France, the pressure is on Arsenal to earn the 2-0 or better win they need in order to progress. However, they face a Rennes side that beat Real Betis in Seville in the last round and who looked very dangerous on the counter. This could well be another game that Arsenal win, but could be one that requires extra time in order to decide the winner.

Benfica v Dynamo Zagreb (0-1) – Benfica to win – 9/20

I was surprised that Benfica went down to a 1-0 defeat in Zagreb the last time out. The Portuguese side had been in superb form going into that game and that result was a shock for me. Zagreb are a decent side but they are not as strong on the road and despite that one goal deficit from the first leg, I am backing Benfica to go through and to win this game comfortably.

Inter Milan v Eintracht Frankfurt (0-0) – Inter to win – 13/10

Given the attacking nature of both these sides I was surprised the first game ended goalless between the two of them, although Inter perhaps should have won but didn’t thanks to Brozovic’s penalty being saved by Kevin Trapp. Frankfurt will have plenty to say in this game, they are a good side, but I think with home advantage, Inter will have just enough to ensure they get the win to go through.

Slavia Prague v Sevilla (2-2) – Draw – 11/4

After securing a brilliant draw last week away to five times winner of this competition Sevilla, Slavia Prague now have the advantage of the second leg at home, however I still think this tie is far from over and I feel both sides will feel there is plenty to play for. Sevilla are not winners of this tournament five times by a fluke and I think they will have plenty to say here and extra time and even penalties could well be needed to decide the winner.

Villarreal v Zenit St Petersburg (3-1) – Villarreal to win – Evens

Villarreal put in the best away performance of any team in the Europa League last time out with a superb display of counterattacking football in their 3-1 win over Zenit. The Russian side do not travel well in Europe and this trip to Spain may well be a tough evening for them, especially given the result of the first leg. I think Villarreal will win the game but perhaps by just the one goal.

Updated Betting Odds to Win 2019 NBA Finals

With less than 20 games left in the NBA regular season, the playoff races in each conference are starting to be decided. The NBA Playoffs are always exciting, but this might be the most competitive playoffs in quite some time. Let’s take a look at the updated betting odds to win the 2019 NBA Finals.

The Huge Favorite:

Golden State Warriors 1/2: It should come as no surprise that the Golden State Warriors are the overwhelming favorites to win the 2019 NBA Finals. The Warriors are the top seed in the Western Conference and have made some acquisitions to improve their roster. Beating the Warriors four times in one series isn’t going to be easy.

Contenders:

Milwaukee Bucks 8/1: The Milwaukee Bucks are the best team in the Eastern Conference, and look like a real threat to the Warriors. Milwaukee is led by Giannis Antetokounmpo and can score with everyone. Surviving the East will be tough, but the Bucks have to be considered the favorite to win the conference.

Toronto Raptors 12/1: The Toronto Raptors are once again one of the top teams in the East, but this time won’t have to contend with the Cleveland Cavaliers. Kawhi Leonard is thriving in his first season in Toronto, and the addition of Marc Gasol has the Raptors poised for a deep playoff run. The Raptors have a ton of depth, and this could be the year that they get to the Eastern Conference Finals.

Houston Rockets 15/1: The Houston Rockets very nearly knocked off the Warriors a season ago, and they are back to playing great basketball. James Harden is putting up eye-popping numbers, and the Rockets can shoot. Don’t be surprised to see a rematch of last year’s Western Conference Final again.

Longshots:

Oklahoma City Thunder 25/1: Russell Westbrook is averaging another triple-double this season, and Paul George looks like an MVP candidate for OKC. The Thunder are absolutely for real, and they won’t be afraid of anyone in the playoffs. Don’t sleep on the Oklahoma City Thunder.

Philadelphia 76ers 25/1: When Philadelphia brought over Tobias Harris before the trade deadline, it might have given them the best roster in the league. The Sixers can score points in many different ways, but they still need more buy-in at the defensive end. If the Sixers are able to get some momentum, they are hard to stop.

Boston Celtics 30/1: The Boston Celtics have been a complete mess of late, but they just pulled off an impressive win against the Golden State Warriors. Boston nearly made it to the NBA Finals a season ago and has one of the talented rosters in the league. The Celtics might be the number 5 seed in the East, but don’t overlook Boston in the playoffs.

Denver Nuggets 30/1: The Nuggets still struggle to score points, but their defense will keep them in every game throughout the playoffs. All-Star Nikola Jokic and Jamal Murray are capable of carrying the offense to some wins, and the Nuggets should have the 2 seed in the Western Conference. They don’t get a ton of publicity or hype, but Denver is really good.

Huge Underdogs:

Utah Jazz 50/1: The Jazz lack consistency and depth, but have had another solid season. Utah will be a tough out for any team in the playoffs, but they likely won’t be able to win a playoff series. The Jazz are a good team in a great conference.

Portland Trail Blazers 75/1: It’s kind of surprising to see the Trail Blazers this far down on the list. Portland has a dynamic duo in the backcourt, and they are next to impossible to beat at home. The Blazers know that they can beat the Warriors, and they won’t be scared of anyone. Portland is my sleeper pick to win the 2019 NBA Finals.

Los Angeles Lakers 150/1: Not even LeBron James can save the Los Angeles Lakers. The Lakers are going to miss the playoffs for the 6th straight season and will fall off of this completely soon. Los Angeles needs to greatly improve their roster, or their odds won’t improve much heading into next season.

San Antonio Spurs 150/1: The San Antonio Spurs are clinging to the eighth and final playoff spot in the Western Conference. Even if the Spurs make the playoffs, they aren’t getting past the Warriors in the first round. San Antonio isn’t the same team as they once were.

Indiana Pacers 225/1: The Pacers looked like a real contender to win the NBA title a few months ago, but a season-ending injury to Victor Oladipo knocked them down a peg. Indiana has still maintained the third spot in the East, but the Pacers don’t have enough offense to truly challenge for the NBA title.

Sacramento Kings 500/1: The Sacramento Kings are still just outside of the playoff race, but they have had a terrific season. The Kings aren’t a real threat to win the 2019 NBA title, but their time is definitely coming. Sacramento is loaded with young talent.

Everyone Else 1000/1 or Higher: This group of teams is barely hanging on to eligibility, and most will be eliminated in the coming weeks. Not much to see here.

Virtual Sports Fans Now Have Two New Options to Bet on at Bet365 Sport

One of the nicest things about being a sports betting enthusiast is that there is always something new to try and this week, we are bringing you news of precisely that at one of our favourite betting sites, bet365 Sport.

However, what is unusual about this new offering is that it isn’t to do with any real life sporting event that you may wish to bet on. Nor is it to do with bet365’s outstanding Live Streaming service, which streams over 100,000 events a year, or its superb In Play betting service. Instead, we are going to take a delve into the world of Virtual Sports, one of the fastest growing markets in the sports betting industry today.

If you fancy trying out the latest Virtual Sports on offer at bet365, then why not sign up today? New customers can join using the current bet365 Sport New Customer Promotion, which means that once you start betting on the site, you could earn up to £100 in additional bet credits to spend on extra bets at no additional cost to you.

Before we take a closer look at both the new Virtual Sports at bet365 though, let’s learn a little more about Virtual Sports betting, how it works and why it has grown to be so popular with customers over the last few years.

What are Virtual Sports?

Virtual Sports are computer programs that simulate a real world sporting event for the purposes of generating betting across a number of markets on that event. In order to facilitate more betting opportunities, the Virtual Sport tends to run over a matter of a couple of minutes (3-5 minutes being standard) rather than the real amount of time a sports event tends to take.

A Virtual Sport has two distinct phases. The first phase is the betting phase, when the player can look through the different markets for Virtual Sports and then decide which bets to place, and then place them. The second phase is the simulation phase, which is when you see the depiction of the sporting event and the results are generated from this depiction.

After the result is finalised, a brief summary of the winning markets are displayed and then the next simulation will begin with the betting phase once again.

Virtual Sports have been one of the biggest growing sectors of the sports betting industry in recent years and they are now the third most important market in terms of generating revenue for betting sites behind football betting and horse racing betting. As such, a number of companies are now making sure that their Virtual Sports offering is in tip top shape.

And that is precisely what bet365, through their partnership with Virtual Sport software providers Inspired, have done by releasing two exciting new Virtual Sports offerings on the site.  First though, what exactly does bet365 offer when it comes to Virtual Sports betting?

Virtual Sports at bet365

Prior to the release of the two new Virtual Sports, bet365 offered the following on its site:

  • Virtual Horseracing – from three tracks, meaning you can bet on one race per minute
  • Virtual Greyhounds – from two tracks
  • Virtual Soccer – from three competitions
  • Virtual Motor Racing
  • Virtual Speedway
  • Virtual Cycling
  • Virtual Tennis
  • Virtual Trotting

For each of these Virtual Sports there are a number of different markets available that players can bet on for each individual Virtual Sports event. The markets available depend on the Virtual Sports played, although the race-based Virtual Sports tend to have more similar markets than the game-based Virtual Sports.

However, earlier this year, the number of Virtual Sports available at bet365 increased by two with the introduction of two additional options for players.

The new Virtual Sports at bet365

  • Virtual Cricket

The first of the newly introduced Virtual Sports games is Virtual Cricket. This is one of the first Virtual Sports from Inspired that offers a more realistic approach to Virtual gaming as the site uses real, filmed footage of cricket teams as the basis for the simulation part of the game, with commentary provided by former England cricket spinner and Question of Sport team captain, Phil Tufnell.

Virtual Cricket is a game played between two test-playing countries which include Sri Lanka, India, England, Pakistan, Australia, New Zealand, West Indies and South Africa. Each game is contested over two overs. The first with the home side batting, the second with the away team batting. The winning team is decided solely by the number of runs scored by each team.

The opening phase of the game is the betting phase and there are a number of different markets you can bet on in the game as outlined below:

  • Match Winner
  • Total Match 4s
  • Total Match 6s
  • Total Match Boundaries
  • Total Match Runs (Odd/Even)
  • Both Teams to Hit a 4 (Yes/No)
  • Both Teams to Hit a 6 (Yes/No)
  • Home Team Total Runs
  • Home Team Total Boundaries
  • Home Team 1st Method of Dismissal
  • Home Team – Total Runs (Odd/Even)
  • Home Team Total 4s and 6s
  • Home Team Runs of 1st Deliver
  • Home Team Total Wickets Lost
  • Home Team to Lose Wicket

Each team is given a star rating for fielding and batting to help you make your decision and to introduce a handicap element into the game, which helps provide the range of odds available on the games generated.

After the betting period, the highlights package begins and it is notable that the new software is much improved over the older games with more realistic highlights and commentary that has a nice comedic value alongside providing an accompaniment to the game.

Each Virtual Cricket game takes four minutes to complete and it is fair to say that the game has been a real hit since being introduced onto the site earlier this year.

  • Virtual Darts

The second Virtual Sport game to be introduced to bet365 this year is Virtual Darts and if anything, this game highlights how the next generation of Virtual Sports games will look in the coming years.

In terms of presentation, Virtual Darts looks identical to real life darts that you would watch on television. Inspired have used the senior tour players, many of whom are household names from their days on the standard tour, and this addition adds a huge level of realism to the game.

The way the game is presented too, using the familiar split-screen view of the player throwing and the dartboard, and scorer Russ Bray shouting out the scores in his distinctive brogue, all mean that this is less like a Virtual Sport and more like a real game of darts.

There’s not too many markets to bet on with Virtual Darts, there are essentially just five different types of markets, Match Winner, Checkout Markets, Player First Three Darts, Match Events and Wincast bets available, but there’s still plenty of scope for players to enjoy a bet on the game.

Each Virtual Darts game is played over one single leg of darts and the whole leg is shown in full and as a result, Virtual Darts takes five minutes to complete one event from start to finish.

Virtual Darts is a huge improvement on the standard Virtual Sports offering and is a beacon for how the future of Virtual Sports game development needs to go over the coming years.

Will more Virtual Sports be added to bet365?

Although we have already seen two new sports added to the bet365 Virtual Sports range this year, this may not be the only sports to be released in 2019. We already know that Inspired have almost completed work on two next-generation games for existing virtual sports, these will be Rush Horseracing and Rush Greyhound racing and it is likely both of these will be released at some point in 2019.

Also set to be released at some point in the year is a Rush Basketball game which has recently finished shooting the footage to be used in the game in Las Vegas. So it is entirely possible that we may see a further three, if not more Virtual Sports added to bet365’s already burgeoning selection of games over the coming year.

 

NCAA Basketball Weekend Betting Picks and Prediction

The 2018-19 men’s college basketball season is reaching the final few weeks, and conference races are starting to get extremely heated. There aren’t a ton of top-25 matchups on the schedule this weekend, but there are several great games. Let’s take a look at the four best games on the weekend slate and make a betting pick and prediction for each game.

Tennessee Volunteers vs. Kentucky Wildcats:

The best game of the weekend will take place in the SEC when the Tennessee Volunteers host the Kentucky Wildcats in a top-10 clash. Tennessee will no doubt be looking for some revenge after getting blown out by Kentucky just two weeks ago. The Volunteers are a very experienced team that is averaging 83.6 points per game. Forward Grant Williams leads the team with 19.0 points and 7.6 rebounds per game this season, but Tennessee also has a terrific group of players in the backcourt. The Volunteers managed to score just 69 points in their first meeting with Kentucky and must shoot the ball better in this rematch. Kentucky is getting the job done with their defense this season, allowing just 64.9 points per game. Forward P.J. Washington has emerged as a real threat in the low post, averaging 15.2 points and 7.9 rebounds per game. These two teams should meet up again in the SEC Championship Game, but the Volunteers are winning this game. Bet the Tennessee Volunteers over the Kentucky Wildcats.

Saint Mary’s Gaels vs. Gonzaga Bulldogs:

Gonzaga is back to being the top-ranked team in the country, but they have a difficult game on Saturday night against the Saint Mary’s Gaels. Saint Mary’s has always played Gonzaga tough through the years, and they might be the only team capable of giving Gonzaga a loss in the West Coast Conference. Gonzaga beat the Saint Mary’s by 48 points earlier this season, but this game will be much closer this time around. The Gaels are one of the better defensive teams in the country, allowing just 65.4 points per game this season, but Gonzaga is even better allowing just 65.2 points per game. Gonzaga is much better on offense, scoring better than 90 points per game and they have an extremely deep and talented roster. The Gaels will need guard Jordan Ford (21.8 ppg) to go off in this game if they are going to have any chance. Don’t expect this game to be another blowout, but Gonzaga is going to win again. Bet the Gonzaga Bulldogs over the Saint Mary’s Gaels.

Utah State Aggies vs. Nevada Wolf Pack:

One of the most underrated games on the weekend schedule is a Mountain West Conference clash between Utah State and Nevada. Nevada is trying to lock up the regular season Mountain West Conference title, but Utah State can move into a first-place tie with a win. Utah State is led by guard Sam Merrill who is averaging 20.2 points and 4.3 assists per game. The Aggies have also been great on defense this year, allowing just under 66 points per night. The Wolf Pack are led by a trio of future NBA stars in Caleb and Cody Martin and Jordan Caroline. That trio has combined to score more than 48 points and grab 20 rebounds per game. Nevada plays an aggressive defense that is holding opponents to 65.9 points per game this season. The Wolf Pack beat the Aggies by 23 points earlier this season, but this matchup is going to be much closer. Nevada should have enough talent to come away with the win, but expect a close, low-scoring game. Bet the Nevada Wolf Pack over the Utah State Aggies.

Maryland Terrapins vs. Michigan Wolverines:

The Maryland Terrapins will host the Michigan Wolverines in a battle of top-four teams in the Big Ten Conference. Michigan beat Maryland by 13 points earlier this month, but Maryland has been tough to beat at home. Both teams are in the top 30 in team defense, but Michigan is the third best defensive team in the country, allowing just 58.4 points per game. Anthony Cowan Jr. leads the team with 16.0 points per game this season, but center Bruno Fernando has been the real star. Fernando has poured in 14.4 points per game while also averaging 10.6 rebounds per contest. The Wolverines also have a star big man in Iggy Brazdeikis, but Michigan is led by a trio of talented guards. Point guard Xavier Simpson is the catalyst of the offense, leading the team with six assists per night. Don’t expect many points in this game, but Michigan will find just enough scoring to pull off the upset on the road. Bet the Michigan Wolverines over the Maryland Terrapins.

Double Whammy of Premier League Tips for Midweek and the Weekend

Last weekend saw Manchester City claim their second trophy of the season, adding the Carabao Cup to the Community Shield that they won in August at Wembley, both of those wins coming against Chelsea.

This week though, City will be turning their attention back to the Premier League where they, along with the other 19 teams, face two games in the space of four or five days as we have a full midweek fixture list for Tuesday and Wednesday nights, followed by a full weekend of games across Saturday and Sunday.

Remember, if you fancy a flutter on any of the Premier League games shown below, or indeed on any other match over the course of the season, then bet365 is the place to head. Not only is Live Streaming and In Play betting available for a wide range of sports, but you can also sign up with the current bet365 Sport New Customer Promotion and receive up to £100 in bet credits once you are up and running on the site.

There’s some big games to look forward to this week, especially for Tottenham who face two massive games against London rivals Chelsea and Arsenal. Plus there are crucial six-pointers at the bottom of the table too with Fulham in particular facing two games that manager Claudio Ranieri must feel are must-win games for his team.

Let’s now preview the two sets of matches forthcoming this week, starting with the games taking place on Tuesday and Wednesday night, followed by the games taking place across Saturday and Sunday.

Matchday 28

*Odds shown are correct as of 10.40am on Tuesday 26th February

  • Cardiff City v Everton – Away Win – 23/20

This isn’t the easiest game to call as neither side is in particularly great form. Cardiff were humbled at home by Watford last time out and Everton’s away form has been inconsistent. I can see both sides scoring a goal and if one team are to win it, I think it may just be Everton although I would not expect that to be by more than a single goal.

  • Huddersfield v Wolverhampton – Away Win – 17/20

A vital game for Huddersfield who are now at the point of no return and need to pick up wins. But I can’t see that happening against a Wolves side who have been in excellent form over the last few weeks and are showing excellent fighting spirit to the death in many games. As such, I am backing the Wolves side to come away with the points here.

  • Leicester City v Brighton – Home Win – 10/11

With Claude Puel now sacked, Leicester fans will be expecting a reaction from their team in the game against a struggling Brighton and I think they will get it. After losing 4-1 at home last weekend, the Foxes will have to put it right here against one of the out of form sides in the Premier League and I think they will do precisely that.

  • Newcastle v Burnley – Draw – 23/10

This is a tough game to call. Both sides perhaps lack a little bite in attack but are strong defensively and both are in relatively decent form. I can’t see there being too many goals here and it could well end up as a 0-0 draw, hence I am backing this one to finish all-square.

  • Arsenal v Bournemouth – Home Win – 4/9

Although their away form has been pretty poor, Arsenal have been strong at home in recent weeks and I’d expect that to continue against a Bournemouth side that are not only consistent but who don’t have the best of records against the top six sides in the Premier League. This should be a comfortable win for the Gunners.

  • Southampton v Fulham – Home Win – 10/11

This could well be the most crucial game of the season for both sides. A win for Southampton moves them 10 points clear of Fulham, a win for Fulham cuts that gap to four points to the Saints.Home advantage and the fact Fulham still concede too many goals is the crucial factor here and I think Southampton will just about earn the victory.

  • Chelsea v Tottenham – Home Win – 13/10

This is a crucial game for both sides, for Chelsea to improve their chances of a Champions League place at the end of the season and for Spurs to keep the pressure on Man City and Liverpool at the top of the table. Chelsea’s record at home against Spurs is pretty good and I think Sarri has a point to prove here and as such, I am going against the perceived wisdom and backing Chelsea to win.

  • Crystal Palace v Man Utd – Draw – 5/2

I’d have backed United to win this game ordinarily, but two things changed my mind on that. First is Manchester United’s lengthy injury list and secondly is Palace’s improved form in front of goal against Leicester at the weekend. If Palace can take their chances with such aplomb again tonight, then I fancy they could well earn a point from this tough game.

  • Liverpool v Watford – Home Win – 2/7

After two games without scoring (or conceding), Liverpool need a win and a decent performance against Watford at Anfield. Watford will be no pushovers having won 5-1 in Wales against Cardiff last weekend, but I still feel that the Reds should be more than capable of getting back to winning ways in this one.

  • Manchester City v West Ham – Home Win – 1/6

Manchester City do tend to enjoy their games with West Ham in recent times and have inflicted some heavy defeats on the Londoners in those games. In truth, I can see the same thing happening again at the Etihad this week.

Matchday 29

*Odds shown are correct as of 10.40am on Tuesday 26th February

  • Tottenham v Arsenal – Home Win – 9/10

Spurs second London derby in two games will be a huge one against Arsenal. The Gunners away form at the moment isn’t particularly great and with Spurs welcoming back Harry Kane from injury, I feel that they will want to put one over their rivals here and will likely do so.

  • Bournemouth v Manchester City – Away Win – 1/4

After playing Arsenal in midweek, it doesn’t get any easier for Bournemouth with the visit of Manchester City. City are in superb form of late and Bournemouth are so inconsistent. I can’t see this being a great day for the home fans to be honest as I am expecting a relatively comfortable win for the visitors.

  • Brighton v Huddersfield Town – Home Win – 8/11

Brighton are in desperate need of picking up some points as they have been in free-fall down the Premier League table of late but a home game against Huddersfield is about as easy as it gets and the Seagulls should claim the win here. If they don’t then there’s going to be a worrying few weeks ahead for Brighton fans.

  • Burnley v Crystal Palace – Draw – 9/4

Burnley will have played two of the teams closest to them over the last two games and I think they will be happy to come out of those games with a couple of points. Palace are a dangerous side and I think are the better attacking team, but I feel Burnley’s improving back line can keep Palace’s attack quiet and ensure that this one ends all-square.

  • Manchester United v Southampton – Home Win – 1/2

It’s a very tough test for Southampton to head to Old Trafford, even with United having a number of players missing through injury. The Saints form under Ralph Hassenhuttl has improved but they are still very much in danger and at the end of this game, I don’t feel their league status will have improved any.

  • Wolves v Cardiff City – Home Win – 4/9

I’ve been so impressed with Wolves this season and especially of late, with their determination to get something from matches that they have been behind in. Cardiff are struggling but that was to be expected this season and in truth, I can’t see them getting much from their trip to the Midlands at the weekend as I expect a comfortable win for the home side.

  • West Ham v Newcastle United – Home Win – Evens

The Hammers have beaten some good sides at the London Stadium this season and while I think Newcastle United will give them a test, I feel that the quality the Hammers possess going forward is going to be the difference between the teams as I can’t see the Newcastle back line keeping West Ham out over the 90 minutes.

  • Watford v Leicester City – Draw – 23/10

Two mid-table sides who should not be in any danger of the drop but I think Watford have been the more consistent this season, although Leicester have beaten some of the top sides. This is a tough game for any team and I think the Foxes may be forced to accept a point from their trip to Vicarage Road.

  • Fulham v Chelsea – Away Win – 3/5

It’s another London derby for Chelsea at the weekend following on from their game with Spurs but this one should be a little easier for them against a Fulham side who I think are already doomed to relegation. Chelsea’s away form of late is shocking, but even so, they should have more than enough quality to take the win here.

  • Everton v Liverpool – Away Win – 8/15

Everton will be massively fired up for this game especially after how they went down to a last minute defeat at Anfield in the autumn. Liverpool though need to string some wins together and while this will be a war of attrition at times, I still feel the Reds have enough quality to claim the victory.

NCAA Basketball Weekend Betting Picks and Prediction: February 23-24

As we get closer to the beginning of March, conference races are heating up all around college basketball. Middle of the pack teams are trying to secure big wins that help them get into the NCAA Tournament field as well. This weekend offers a ton of great games, but we have picked out the four biggest and best games. Let’s take a look at these four matchups with a betting pick and prediction for each game.

Louisville Cardinals vs. Virginia Cavaliers:

Virginia will travel to Kentucky to take on the Louisville Cardinals on Saturday afternoon. This is the first of two meetings between the ACC heavyweights this season, and this should be a terrific game. Virginia is the top defensive team in the country, allowing just 54.6 points per game. The Cavaliers are 23-0 against every other team besides Duke this season, and they are a legit Final Four contender. Virginia still struggles to score, but they have plenty of experience in Kyle Guy and Ty Jerome. Louisville is averaging 77.4 points per game this season, but they have some work to do on defense. The Cardinals very nearly pulled off a massive upset against Duke a week ago, but it turned into an epic collapse. Jordan Nwora leads the team with 17.5 points and 7.7 rebounds per game, but he needs some help. Louisville is tough to beat at home, but Virginia is tough to beat anywhere. Bet the Virginia Cavaliers over the Louisville Cardinals.

LSU Tigers vs. Tennessee Volunteers:

LSU and Tennessee begin this week with identical 11-1 records in SEC play, and this game will likely decide the regular season champion. LSU has won four straight conference games, including an upset win over Kentucky at Rupp Arena. Tennessee was just blown out by those same Wildcats last weekend, and lost for just the second time this season. LSU is led in scoring by Tremont Waters at 15.9 points per game, and they have three other players averaging double figures. The Tigers play extremely fast, but they have some work to do on the defensive end of the floor. Tennessee is one of the most experienced teams in the country, and have four guards who are all averaging double-figures. Admiral Schofield is one of the best perimeter players in the country, while forward Grant Williams leads the team with 19.3 points per game. LSU is playing with a ton of confidence right now, but the loss to Kentucky will wake Tennessee up. The Volunteers will rebound with a great road win at LSU on Saturday. Bet Tennessee over LSU in this game.

Texas Tech Red Raiders vs. Kansas Jayhawks:

The Kansas State loss to Iowa State over the weekend allowed Texas Tech and Kansas to get right back into Big 12 contention. Both Texas Tech and Kansas come into the week with a 9-4 record in conference play and are just one game behind Kansas State. Kansas and Texas Tech met earlier this season, and the Jayhawks came away with a 16 point victory, but things have changed since that point. Kansas is without their best shooter, Lagerald Vick, who is taking a leave of absence from the team. The Jayhawks have managed to win three straight games, but they still struggle to score points. Dedric Lawson has been the one constant for Kansas this season, leading the Jayhawks with 19.2 points and 10.3 rebounds per game. Texas Tech is the second best team in the country this season, allowing just over 57 points per game. The Red Raiders are led on offense by Jarrett Culver, who is a future NBA star. This will likely be a low-scoring affair, and the Red Raiders will get revenge at home. Bet Texas Tech over Kansas in this game.

Michigan Wolverines vs. Michigan State Spartans:

First place in the Big Ten Conference will be on the line on Sunday afternoon when in-state rivals meet up. This is the first of two meetings between Michigan and Michigan State in the final four games of the regular season. Michigan is allowing just 57.6 points per game this season and will look to slow down the pace against Michigan State. The Spartans are averaging 80.6 points per game, and push the basketball every chance they get. Michigan State has looked like a Final Four contender at times this season, but they will be without two stars for this game. Joshua Langford was lost for the season earlier this month, and center Nick Ward is out with a broken hand. Cassius Winston is averaging 18.5 points per game this season, but the Spartans are just too banged up to win this game. Michigan has a ton of experience, and they aren’t losing this game at home. Bet the Michigan Wolverines over the Michigan Spartans on Sunday.

Two Massive Games For Football Fans to Enjoy This Weekend in England

It is always a special event when two of the elite teams in the English gameclash against each other in the Premier League, even more so when it involves arguably the most heated rivalry in English football. Add into the mix the first domestic cup final of the season between two other top six sides and the fact that Sunday could see a new team atop of the Premier League and you have as much drama as you can handle for one weekend.

There are just eight Premier League games this weekend to enjoy and the reason for that is the Carabao Cup Final is taking place at Wembley on Sunday between Manchester City and Chelsea. City have already played the game they would have played this weekend (away to Everton) and won it, meaning they have played a game more than their rivals.

That gam and goal difference is what is keeping City at the top of the table but they could lose that position at the weekend if Liverpool win. However, Liverpool face the now daunting task of a game against their bitter rivals Manchester United, who just so happen to be undefeated in the league since their 3-1 defeat at Anfield in December.

You can be absolutely 100% sure that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will have his team fired up for this game as not only will United want revenge for that defeat at Anfield, they will know a victory would inflict only Liverpool’s second defeat of the season on the Reds and deny their fierce rivals top spot in the Premier League.

It means that this Sunday will not just see the first domestic trophy winner in England crowned, but we could also see a pivotal point in the race for the Premier League title, all of which makes for a fabulous weekend to enjoy a spot of betting on.

Outlined below are a preview and a selection of tips for each of the two big games taking place on Sunday, hopefully with a view towards you landing a few quid at the hands of the bookmakers by making a successful bet or two yourself.

Premier League

Manchester United v Liverpool

When these teams last met at Anfield, it was two deflected goals from sub Xherdan Shaqiri which took Liverpool to a 3-1 victory and was the final nail in the coffin of Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho who was sacked just a few hours following the game.

Since then Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has come in and transformed United’s fortunes and after losing to PSG 2-0 in the Champions League Round of 16, their first defeat under Solskjaer, United bounced back to record a superb 2-0 win over Chelsea at Stamford Bridge in the FA Cup on Monday night.

Old Trafford will be buzzing for the Sunday game and it is a ground where United have enjoyed solid success over Liverpool in recent times and of the two teams, it is United who are in the better form of the two heading into the match.

Liverpool will know that a win or draw will put them back top of the table with ten games left to play but Old Trafford has not been a happy hunting ground for the Reds of late and it is going to take a superhuman effort from Klopp’s men to get anything from the games I feel.

Liverpool’s cause could be helped by injuries to Anthony Martial and Jesse Lingard, although United adopted a modified 4-4-2 system against Chelsea to great effect in midweek and it is likely they will go with a similar formation here. Liverpool will likely stick to their trusted 4-3-3, with Van Dijk returning in defence after missing the Champions League clash with Bayern Munich in the week through suspension.

This should be an exciting game and I think there will be goals at both ends but it is an extremely difficult game to call. Despite that, here’s my tips for the game:

  • Full Time Result – Draw – 5/2
  • Correct Score – Man Utd 1-1 Liverpool – 6/1
  • First Goalscorer – Marcus Rashford (Man Utd) – 11/2

Carabao Cup Final

Chelsea v Manchester City

A couple of weeks ago, Chelsea were humiliated at the Etihad Stadium as Mauricio Sarri’s men were swept aside 6-0 by a rampant Manchester City. Since then, it hasn’t improved much for Chelsea as they were then eliminated from the FA Cup by Manchester United on Monday night.

City in contrast have been in an exceptionally good run of form and performances, which have taken them into an FA Cup quarterfinal away to Swansea, the Round of 16 in the Champions League and to the top of the Premier League and they could wrap up their second trophy of the season this weekend to add to their Community Shield win (also against Chelsea) back in August.

Few Chelsea managers have been under quite so much pressure from pundits and fans alike in the build up to a key a game and it is not far-fetched to suggest that a defeat here could see Sarri out of a job within hours. Indeed, the Italian may well already be likely to get the sack regardless of the outcome on Saturday.

Given Chelsea’s struggled of late, in addition to losing to United and City, they have also been beaten 4-0 away to Bournemouth as well as losing to Arsenal and Tottenham in 2019 so far, it is hard to see how this Chelsea team, which already has an aura of defeatism surrounding it, can raise their game to beat City here.

Their best chance could be for Sarri to adopt an entirely fresh approach for this game, with Jorginho switching from his anchor role allowing Kante to play there and perhaps bringing in fresh width in Hudson-Odoi or Willian instead of Pedro, but it just seems like Sarri is loathe to change his way of playing despite how results are going.

Higuain’s signing hasn’t added anything to the team as yet and if anything, they seem even more ponderous in attack, Giroud links better with Hazard and Willian, yet the Frenchman is only good enough for a place on the bench.

As such, with City flying and having such a great depth in their squad. I can’t see anything other than a convincing win for City here and my tips for the game are outlined below:

  • Full Time Result – Manchester City to win – 11/20
  • Correct Score – Manchester City to win 3-1 – 12/1
  • First Goalscorer – Sergio Aguero (Man City) – 16/5


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