Saturday, 16 June 2012

Comebacks, Understandings And The NBA Finals Heat Up

Until yesterday, England had come from behind to win in 90 minutes in major tournaments just once, and never after first throwing away a lead. In Euro 2004, England went behind versus Croatia after 5 minutes, before bouncing back to win 4-2. In World Cups, there was an a.e.t. win in 1966 by that same score that some people may remember, and another a.e.t. win in 1990, when Cameroon were beaten in the quarter-finals 3-2, but wins after trailing are rare indeed for England.

England To Qualify from Group D are now 1.33 / 1.34, but the lay of Ukraine at 3.65 offers a better deal, unless you want to include the possibility of England and France both losing, and England going through on goal difference / scored!

I see someone on the Betfair forum admitted to having 60k Euros on Germany to qualify at 1.02, thinking that their 6 points from two games guaranteed that outcome. But of course, with two other teams on three points (Denmark and Portugal), and not playing each other in the final game, there could be three teams on 6 points, and Germany eliminated, but not too likely. Germany is trading at 1.05.

Interesting to see that the 2-2 draw between Spain and Croatia (Group C on Monday) has traded as low as 5.0. Almost identical to Group C of Euro 2004, Italy again face the prospect of a win in their third match not being enough, if the two teams they have already played draw 2-2 or higher. 2004 saw Sweden and Denmark conveniently draw 2-2 (a penalty for Sweden and an 89' equaliser), and the market seems to suspect the same could happen again. It looked to be more a case of the score happening to reach 2-2 at which point both teams, knowing the situation, effectively stopped trying, rather than a pre-match agreement to play for a 2-2, and the Over 2.5 at 1.74 would be a safer bet.

With the Oklahoma City Thunder losing a home play-off game at last, the Miami Heat can take advantage of the H-H-A-A-A-H-H format used in the final to win out. As I suggested in the Finals preview at Betting Expert, the Thunder were too short at 1.72, and Miami are now favoured to win at ~1.94. I actually expect the Thunder to win a game in Miami, and go back to Oklahoma City trailing 2-3 to set up an exciting Game 6 and possibly Game 7.

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