August is one of the better months in terms of punting. Important games are going on as domestic football action heats up and the metro racecourses gear up for what looks to be one of the best spring carnivals in years.
Here is an overview of what to expect during the month.
The Toyota 2018 AFL Premiership competition is entering the final stages of the run home. The Richmond Tigers look as though they have every intention of mounting a strong defense of their 2017 flag. The Tigers start the month with a MCG match with the number eight Geelong Cats, who would like nothing better than a Tiger pelt to cement their chances of staying around for finals. Win that one, and the Tigers may be able to coast home, so long as they guard against complacency and do not fall prey to the lower eight clubs of Gold Coast, Essendon and Western Bulldogs, all of whom will be swinging for the fences in the hopes of being around next year.
The number two West Coast Eagles would like to hold their position going into finals knowing they can lose once in September and remain alive. Their final four games will feature two top eight teams in the Port Adelaide Power and Melbourne, but they can rest up for finals by closing out the season against Brisbane.
The Collingwood Magpies failed to send the proper signal when they misfired in Round 19 with the Tigers, but they also face top eight competition when they visit Port at the Adelaide Oval, but first up is an encounter with the number nine Sydney Swans, who need to win out and can help their cause with a win over Collingwood first up in August.
Number four Port faces a challenge to stay where they are, with crosstown rivals the Crows, followed by the Eagles in Perth, the Magpies in Melbourne and finally Essendon, which has shown that they can slay giants when firing in top form.
The Telstra 2018 NRL Premiership competition bears an eerie resemblance to the AFL in that the 2017 premiers, Melbourne, are at the head of the pack and looking strong moving into August. The Storm has reeled off five consecutive wins by stifling opponents, their 282 points surrendered second only by one point to Sydney. Melbourne is second in points four as well, with 456 to South Sydney’s 457. To say this is a tight competition is an understatement of major magnitude.
The Storm and South Sydney are tied on 30 points moving into August, with Sydney and St. George Illawarra hot on their heels with 28 each.
Those who have sufficiently recovered from their FIFA World Cup hangovers have until August 10 to get ready for the 27th season of Premier league play.
Manchester City and Manchester United were the form teams last season. City was dominant to the nth degree, losing only twice all season, wearing out nets with 106 goals for while surrendering only 27, tops in the competition in both categories.
Back to Australia for the moment, the 2018 – 2019 Australian Thoroughbred racing season gets underway at the outset of the month, with the Group 2 Missile Stakes at Randwick the first Group race of the new season.
Racing punting will be in full swing by the time the first Group 1 of the season, the former Warwick Stakes, now the Winx Stakes, will give the racing community and the public its first chance to see Winx resume as she races in her namesake race on her way to a try for a fourth consecutive record-breaking Cox Plate attempt in October.
Back overseas, the NFL will be staging trial games during August and there will be betting markets, but any punters who waste their time on those pre-season games might be interested in the prime beachfront real estate we have on offer at Eagle Farm.
If you insist of betting on gridiron, the top U.S. college teams will start playing games that matter in August as they try to get to the end of the season and become eligible for selection to play in the 2018 College Football Playoff National Championship.
Save your money and bet on Major League Baseball, as tight division races will mean that every pitch and every at-bat will take on added significance as teams vie for an opportunity to show that their time was well spent over the course of the 162 regular season games they played.
Much nearer the end of the month than the beginning, the last Grand Slam event of the professional tennis circuit, the U.S. Open, will get underway. There will be opportunities to see if Serena Williams can break through, as well as Roger Federer on the men’s side. Both players lost at Wimbledon, Serena in the final and Federer in the semifinal.
In professional golf, the US PGA Championship will be the final chance of the season for players to win a Major. Dustin Johnson seems to have had a fire lit under him after he was dismissed after two rounds at Carnoustie during The Open. He rebounded by winning the last tournament of July with a dominant performance in the Canadian Open.
He is the $9 top line for the PGA Championship, but he was in The Open as well, so plan your punts carefully, as any of the players in the field is capable of stringing together four good rounds and defying any bookmaker’s odds. Jason Day is being given a $21 chance and most eyes will be on Tiger Woods, who has shown glimpses of his past prowess, as he tries to end his major championship drought that extends back to his win in the 2008 US Open.
In summation, we have touched on only a few codes and if you cannot find a punt in August, well, you just are not trying.