Kiwis largely the underdogs with bookmakers

IAN ANDERSON IN GLASGOW
Last updated 02:35 23/07/2014

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Shot put and sevens are New Zealand's best bets for gold in Glasgow - according to the bookmakers.

The Kiwis aren't highly rated by the oddsmakers to win many events at the 20th Commonwealth Games, with just two current markets which see New Zealand competitors favoured.

It would be three, but it appears the total dominance of Valerie Adams over the rest of the women's shot put field among Commonwealth countries has discouraged the betting agencies from setting a market on what would have been the shortest-priced favourite at the event.

However, fellow Kiwi Tom Walsh has opened as favourite to win the men's title. The Timaru builder, who recently finished third in the IAAF Diamond League meet in Glasgow against a world-class field, is paying $1.62 to win gold with a UK-based bookmaker, making him a clear favourite over Canada's Justin Rodhe at $6, while Walsh's younger team-mate Jacko Gill is fifth-favourite at $11.

The New Zealand sevens team which has won the Commonwealth Games title for the past four Games is tipped to make it five on the trot in Glasgow.

The NZ TAB has Gordon Tietjens' side heading the market at $1.80, with South Africa next best at $3, England at $5 and the rest in double figures, including Australia ($12), Wales ($20), Kenya ($35) and Samoa ($35).

Should NZ fail to win gold, the TAB has them paying $3.75 to collect silver, $4.75 for bronze and $8 to miss out on the podium.

Kiwi teams that have Australia as their main rivals are on the second line of betting in the netball and men's and women's hockey.

The Silver Ferns have won the past two Commonwealth Games titles but the TAB has Australia favoured to stop that run in Glasgow. Our trans-Tasman rivals are paying $1.40 to win gold, with NZ at $2.80 while third favourites England are at a whopping $15, Jamaica $35 and The Rest $150.

The Black Sticks will also have to upset their more-favoured neighbours to win gold, according to the TAB.

The NZ women's hockey side are at $3.25 to triumph, with Australia the favourites at $1.55 while England are next-best at $7.50. In the men's competition, Australia are firmer favourites at $1.35, with England ($4.20) expected to meet them in the final and the Black Sticks paying $5.50 to collect the ultimate prize.

Lauren Boyle is rightly regarded as New Zealand's best chance of success in the pool in Scotland, but the overseas books don't all have her as favourite in her specialist 400m and 800m freestyle events.

They're split between her and Welsh swimmer Jazmin Carlin as the gold medalist in each event - one has Boyle as a $2 favourite in the 800m, another has her at $2.20 and Carlin at $1.73. In the 400m, Boyle is a $2.25 underdog to Carlin at $1.90.

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Boyle will also contest the women's 200m freestyle on opening day on Thursday, but Australia's Emma McKeon is the favourite to triumph in that race at $1.73, with Boyle a longshot on the sixth line of betting at $19.   

In the triathlon, Andrea Hewitt and Kate McIlroy are on the third line of betting at the TAB for the women's event, offering $12, while Joelle King is third favourite in the women's squash singles competition behind Malaysia's Nicol David ($1.33) and England's Laura Massaro ($4.50).

King and Martin Knight are second favourites in the squash mixed doubles event, the NZ women's lawn bowls pair of Val Smith and Jo Edwards are $5.50 third favourites behind Scotland and Australia while Nick Willis is an $8 shot in the 1500m with UK books.

- Stuff

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