Cats, Saints tipped as 2010 favourites - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Cats, Saints tipped as 2010 favourites

By Guy Hand 28/09/2009 05:21:39 PM Comments (0)

AFL grand finalists Geelong and St Kilda have been posted as equal favourites for the 2010 flag, while there has been heavy early betting support for fallen Hawthorn.

The Cats and Saints have been bracketed as $4.25 favourites by Darwin-based Sportsbet in their first 2010 premiership market following their epic grand final last weekend.

But Hawthorn have been backed from $21 to $11 with bookmakers Centrebet to repeat their 2008 premiership triumph.

The Hawks range from $8 to $11 with most other agencies - the best price available $11.50 on betting exchange Betfair.

Centrebet said they were deluged with bets on Hawthorn after putting them up initially at $21 - with five times as many bets for the Hawks than any other club.

The biggest is a bet of $5000 at $12, which followed other four-figure bets at higher quotes up to the $21.

Centrebet spokesman Neil Evans said they were happy to take on the Hawks, unconvinced they can bounce back from missing the eight in 2009 to winning the following year.

"We knew there'd be an obvious reaction - they were the big underachievers and they would hit back in 2010. But making the eight and playing finals football is a lot different to lifting the cup at the end of it," Evans said.

"Our opinion is Hawthorn are not a scratch on the two big guns, and the Western Bulldogs (currently $6.50) deserve to be in front of them too.

"We had an idea punters would steam into Hawthorn, but we're happy to take them on at a fairly big price."

Evans said there had plenty of interest from professional punters in the early AFL market - most hoping to take early positions and lock in profits by "laying off" as the next 12 months unfold.

"More and more professionals are getting interested a long way out because more than ever, there's so much more to be had by taking a position in the early markets.

"I'm amazed at the level of interest."

Strugglers Melbourne are rank outsiders with all bookmakers - Luxbet offering the longest price of $126 for the Dees to make the unlikely leap from back-to-back wooden spooners to premiers.

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