Your Best Bet
By @SkyBet. Last Updated: February 8, 2013 11:03am
Fight night: Carl Frampton goes toe-to-toe with Kiko Martinez, live on Sky Sports 1 this Saturday
In the latest edition of Your Best Bet, Sky Bet's tipsters pinpoint the value to be had on this weekend's rugby league, rugby union, football and boxing.
Jordan Fiddes flexes his rugby knowledge by providing a cross-code double involving Friday Night's Super League game between Wigan and Warrington plus Sunday's main event in the Six Nations as England travel to Ireland.
Additionally, Jamie Casey chips in with a tip on Saturday's early Premier League kick-off as Newcastle visit Tottenham, live on Sky Sports 1 HD, before offering his boxing knowledge ahead of Carl Frampton's challenge in Belfast later that day.
England head to Ireland this weekend in what is likely to be their toughest away fixture of this year's Six Nations. Although England have won the last two games between the two sides, they have lost four of their last five visits to Dublin.
With that in mind, I don't expect England to play with as much freedom and flair as they did last weekend against Scotland, making the game a much tighter affair in prospect. With Owen Farrell back on form with the boot, I'm going for the 'First Scoring Play' being an England penalty at 11/8.
This is a good opening bet for two reasons; firstly, Farrell scored 20 points against Ireland in last year's Six Nations, which is the joint-third highest total scored by an England player against Ireland. Secondly, last week against Wales, Ireland committed 15 infringements including two sin-bins, which was the highest by any team in the competition last week. So I expect penalties and, if they're anywhere in the opposition's half, Farrell is likely to convert.
I'm switching codes for the second tip in this weekend's rugby calendar as Warrington travel to the DW Stadium to face Wigan Warriors. This is a clash between the top two sides in the competition last year, Wigan winning the League Leaders Shield and Warrington winning the Challenge Cup.
In last year's meetings between the two sides, the Wolves ran out victors on both occasions, including a 22-20 win at Friday's venue. Warrington winger Joel Monaghan scored in both fixtures against the Warriors last term and he is 17/2 to score first on Friday night and 8/11 anytime, but you might prefer to consider an each way bet on the former. He scored the third try at the DW last year and the fourth try at Warrington's Halliwell Jones stadium. He also scored the first try in Wigan in 2011 so if you bet each way, you'll still get a quarter of the odds if he scores the second, third or fourth try.
Punters haven't been too keen on Tottenham at odds-on ahead of this one, with Newcastle's 15/4 price proving a much more popular bet with Sky Bet customers. Whilst I see the value in Newcastle's price, I don't think they'll win at White Hart Lane, but I reckon their attack will cause the hosts a few problems.
Newcastle's spirits are on the up after seemingly overcoming a turbulent few months, and Alan Pardew looks to have done good business with French clubs once again in the January transfer window. I can see them scoring, perhaps first, but Spurs, unbeaten in their last nine league games, should have enough to pull through this test.
With Jermain Defoe injured, the striking onus could be saddled on Emmanuel Adebayor, who is available having exited the African Cup of Nations with Togo. Despite appearing to have lost interest at times this term, the former Arsenal striker tends to be on top of his game when he's heavily relied upon, and Spurs are short of out-and-out forwards.
He bagged in this fixture last season, so Adebayor to score anytime in a Tottenham win is a good price at 7/4. However, Andre Villas-Boas may opt for an improvised front pairing of Clint Dempsey and Gareth Bale in an advanced role. Thus, in case Adebayor is not in the starting eleven, cast your eyes towards our correct score group betting market, where Spurs to win either 3-0, 3-1 or 3-2 looks a fine triple chance at 9/2.
Belfast's Odyssey Arena plays host to another big night for Carl Frampton (1/5) on Saturday, with the unbeaten home favourite making a bid for Kiko Martinez's (10/3) European Super-Bantamweight title. Frampton has turned heads in this division following four wins in 2012, in each of which he displayed a unique ability to adapt his style to exploit his opponent's weaknesses, but in Martinez he faces an experienced hard-hitter.
Martinez likes to advance with big, dangerous hooks, so Frampton will need to display an improvement on his dubious defence if he's to avoid getting hurt, but the Belfast boy's foot speed should come in handy as he finds his range. Against Steve Molitor last time out, Frampton forced the Canadian onto the ropes before unleashing a string of combos, much like Martinez was forced out of his comfort zone and into the corner by Rendall Munroe in his first loss, and Frampton will aim to do likewise.
Martinez, who has plenty of heart having never been stopped in his pro career, needs to stay on the front foot if he's to win the fight, but he has slow feet in comparison to Frampton and I reckon the younger Irishman will be a little too smart for him on the night.
Martinez, primarily a pressure fighter with a big punch, hits very hard so the Spaniard to win by way of knock-out at 11/2 is worth a small stake if you're after an outside bet, but with the Belfast crowd wholly behind Frampton, expect the fight to go the distance unanimously in his favour.
Combine all three best bets on a fourfold slip for over 55/1 with Sky Bet. New customers can claim a free £10 bet when they open up an account, plus a £5 free bet every week for the rest of the football season.
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