Grand Nationals are like London buses. You wait ages for one then two come along at the same time. Fans of long distance handicap chases were originally deprived of the Welsh Grand National but it was finally run last Saturday after originally been abandoned on the day after Boxing Day. Now it’s the turn of Catterick and their version which is a 30 furlongs slog called the North Yorkshire Grand National. It seems every self-respecting region of Britain now has its own National all named after the original run at Aintree in the spring. Its debatable any of today’s runners is good enough to run in the National that matters most but SUN CLOUD won the Catterick marathon in 2014 and can be backed at 10/3 with William Hill to win it again but I don’t think any of the leading contenders for the big one will be worried.
After the dust has settled on the first legs in the semi-finals of the EFL (League) Cup the odds for Bristol City still stick out like a sore thumb. They are in the last four with Premier League superpowers but Manchester City, Chelsea and Arsenal have bigger fish to fry. If those top tier clubs try their hardest they beat Bristol City 95 times out of a hundred but if their desire and motivation dips BRISTOL CITY would have a one in 5 chance of causing an upset. That has to happen in the second match at home to City and the final against one of the London clubs but 50/1 with Betfred to win the trophy still seems big. They look like Championship promotion candidates and have the talent, desire and organisation to defy the odds and win the EFL Cup.
Rugby union was tried in the United States but it went down like a damp squib. However, US sports are a huge hit when matches are played in the UK. Where the NFL ventured first the NBA follows suit because Philadelphia are playing Boston at top level basketball at London’s O2 Arena tonight. Boston have won both meetings this season but this is a neutral fixture which could go either way. Players will be out of their comfort zone on an unfamiliar court. There is no logic or specialist knowledge of the sport behind this bet but going UNDER 208 POINTS at 10/11 with Paddy Power is the bet because they miss more than usual due to the venue.