Back to back Challenge Cup Semi Finals on terrestrial TV on Sunday afternoon as Rugby League rakes over Bolton.
1st up sees St Helens take on form side Catalans.
The bookies make the league leaders 1/4 favourites to win this and they are very hard to oppose, given they’ve only lost twice all season.
But the Dragons have had a tremendous run of results to make the top 8 after a nightmare start to the season.
Last week’s loss at Wigan was the French sides 1st defeat since mid June, and they had to play the whole 2nd half with 12 men. They seemed to have cured their travel sickness with recent wins at Leeds and Wakefield and a creditable draw at Warrington.
You have to think Saints with the likes of Barba and Roby in their ranks will get the job done, but I think Catalans can stay inside the 12 point handicap. You can back the Dragons at even money getting a 12 point start and that could be where the value lies. A Saints win by around 6-10 points is about where I see this ending up.
If you fancy an upset you can get 4/1 for the Dragons if you shop around but always worth taking slightly lesser odds to reach the final in case of golden point.
Barba is 8/1 to score the 1st try but 14/1 looks decent value for Tommy Makinson.
As for the man of the match, Barba is an unsurprising favourite at 4/: with last week’s hero Richards at 7/1, but Roby is the best player in the Saints side for me and he looks the value at 9/1.
As for the Dragons you have to look to Drinkwater at 12/1. Catalans improved run of results has coincided with his signing from Leigh.
Second game sees Warrington take on Leeds, the Rhinos will be glad of the chance to put League form to one side after another poor season which has seen them drop into the middle 8. Recent form for both has been inconsistent, but we can ignore Leeds humiliation at Salford last week as both eyes were on this.
The Wolves are 2/5 favourites to win and whilst a look at the league table would make them bankers you can never write off Leeds. They are the side for the big occasion as their run of recent Grand Final wins shows.
We can only go on form though and Leeds have only won 1 of their last 9 in Super League, and that was against Widnes.
The last side from outside the top 4 to beat Warrington was Hull back in March and with Daryl Clark inspiring them I think they can win this too but it could be close.
Leeds get an 8 point start on the handicap and this looks about right to me in what could be a low scoring game, I think the Wolves could get home by around 6-10 points.
You can get 5/2 for Leeds if you want to follow the big game form though.
Better value could be had in backing a penalty to be the 1st scoring play, I’d expect both sides to take this option in what could be a tight affair.
Charnley looks a good value 9/1 favourite for the 1st try, Hall at 12/1 looks the alternative.
As for the man of the match, Clark has been back to his best this year and looks the man to follow at 14/1, Kevin Brown is the 10/1 favourite with Ratchford 12/1.
As for the Rhinos, Myler is 12/1 but I’d prefer Parcell at 14/1. This game could hinge on his battle with Clark.
Should be a great afternoon of our great game, as always please gamble responsibly.