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Below is today's English language versions of the Betting Editorial:



Olazabal still excited by tournament challenge

Jose Maria Olazabal insists his desire to compete against the world's best is as strong as ever as he prepares to make his latest return from injury at the Canadian Open.

Olazabal can be backed at 300/1 with bet365 to win the tournament, with his competitive appearances severely restricted in recent years by rheumatoid arthritis.
The two-time US Masters champion has been afflicted by the condition for the last 15 years and will have to take medication for the rest of his life.

Olazabal may not have won in Europe for six years, while his last victory in North America came at the 1999 US Masters, but he says he still gets a massive buzz from competing.

The 45-year-old told the Vancouver Sun: "I love the challenge to go out there on golf courses like this... golf courses where you really have to play good golf to compete against good players. I love competing."

Olazabal, who will captain Europe when they defend the Ryder Cup in the US in September 2012, has not played since withdrawing from the BMW PGA Championship with a back injury seven weeks ago.


Strauss looking forward to India challenge

Andrew Strauss is excited by the challenge of taking on India, describing the upcoming series as "as big as the Ashes", and hopes his side can make the most of their home advantage.

England will usurp India as the world's number one Test side if they win by two clear matches, and can be backed at 20/1 with bet365 to win the series 3-1.

"It is a series that doesn't need much building up," Strauss told Sky Sports. "There are a lot of outstanding players on both sides.

"And it is one we are keenly looking forward to, we have a great opportunity to play some really good cricket and hopefully pull off something special over the next five weeks."

The first Test begins at Lord’s on Thursday 21st July.

Rugby League

Lomax called up to England squad

England coach Steve McNamara has named St Helens' Jonny Lomax in his elite training squad ahead of the Four Nations.

The 20-year-old was omitted from the squad for the Exiles game but now has another chance to impress after being called up to the 32-man group which will meet up at Loughborough University on 14th August.

England are 7/1 with bet365 to win the Four Nations while Australia are 4/9.
"Jonny joins the ETS from the Knights squad and has impressed me with the progress he has made this year," said McNamara.

Lomax is one of five new additions, with Hull's Kirk Yeaman, Leeds' Jamie Jones Buchanan and Warrington pair Garreth Carvell and Ryan Atkins also brought in.

They replace Hull KR duo Liam Watts and Peter Fox, Harlequins' Tony Clubb, St Helens' Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook and Leeds' Rob Burrow, who all failed to make the squad.



Sheens hopes worst is over for Wests Tigers

Head coach Tim Sheens hopes the Wests Tigers, who are 16/1 with bet365 to win the Grand Final, have turned the corner this season.

The club ended a three-game losing streak last round by beating the Cowboys 38-18 in Townsville, and have made a return to the top eight.

With seven games to go this season, Sheens hopes the return of several key players means his club can secure a finals place.

He said a combination of bad luck, injuries, and constant transfer speculation had caused the mid-season slump.

Sheens told bigpond.com, “There's a whole myriad of things, injury, obviously some issues within the team with people coming and going and also how we played the football, there's a whole host of things and it's just a mid-season issue.”


Gwilt out for season

Defender Jimmy Gwilt will sit out the rest of the season for St Kilda, who are 20/1 with bet365 to win the Grand Final.

Gwilt has suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament, needing surgery to repair the damage.

St Kilda’s head coach Ross Lyon told 3AW radio, “We've had that confirmed. I spoke to Tim Barbour our doctor. It's definitely an ACL with some sort of lateral meniscus damage.”

Gwilt's knee gave out on him during a heavy off-the-ball shepherd in his club’s 82-61 win over West Coast on 16th July.

It was St Kilda’s sixth win in their past eight games and leaves them in 10th place in the AFL ladder with a total of 30 points. They’re four points behind eighth-place Sydney and Essendon and two points up on the Kangaroos and Bulldogs.


Black aiming to play again next season

Simon Black of the Brisbane Lions, who are 6/1 to beat the Kangaroos this weekend, says he won’t make a decision about playing on next season until later in the year.

Black says he’s still passionate about football, but the 32-year-old’s contract is up at the end of the season.

The 2003 Norm Smith Medalist has won three premierships and played almost 300 AFL games.

His average disposal count has never been higher in this, his 14th, season and his form away from home has even been better than at the Gabba with just over 30 touches on the road and about 23 at home.

Black told afl.com.au, “I'll make a call in the next couple of months. I think I'd like to play on, but I won't make that call definitively until later in the year.

“That's the responsible way of doing it when you're 32. We haven't had much success this year, but I've still really enjoyed my time around the club, the boys, and tried to have an attitude of just enjoying it.”


Baseball American League East

Lee and Reynolds lead Orioles over Red Sox

Fresh from a win over the Red Sox (25/32 – Wednesday lines) in the second game of the three-game set, the Baltimore Orioles (59/50) will try to win their first series in a month as nine-game winner Jake Arrieta takes the ball in the finale at Camden Yards in Baltimore. Andrew Miller of the Red Sox will face the Orioles for the second time in two weeks having beaten Baltimore previously.

Baseball American League Central

Porcello solid in winning ninth

The Detroit Tigers (10/13 – Wednesday lines), in search of a fifth starter, will promote Duane Below from Triple-A to face the Oakland Athletics (6/5) in the finale of a quick two-game series. This a night after Rick Porcello won his ninth game of the season with an efficient six innings of work.

Baseball American League West

Rangers blank Halos to increase lead

Derek Holland will head to the mound in search of his ninth win and the Rangers 13th in a row as the left hander faces Dan Haren of the Los Angeles Angels (50/67 – Wednesday lines) in game two of the three game series at the Angel Stadium in Anaheim. Alexi Ogando was in sparkling form in the first game to become the second 10-game winner for the Rangers (31/25).

Baseball National League East

Phillies double up Cubs to return to winning ways

The Philadelphia Phillies (100/111 – Wednesday lines) became the first team to reach 60 victories this season after they took the second game of their set with the Chicago Cubs (101/100). Vance Worley will be sent to the hill in search of his sixth win of the year before Philadelphia returns for a 10-game home stand.

Baseball National League Central

Pirates win third straight to maintain lead

Eight-game winner Jeff Karstens of the Pittsburgh Pirates (119/100 – Wednesday lines) opposes Johnny Cueto of the Cincinnati Reds (100/129) as the surprising division leaders look for a third straight shutout of Cincinnati and their fourth win overall. Karstens will hope to emulate Charlie Morton and James McDonald who have so far stifled the Reds offense.

Baseball National League West

Woeful Dodgers fall once again

The Los Angeles Dodgers (61/50 –Wednesday lines) will send out 10-game winner Clayton Kershaw to face Tim Lincecum of the Giants (25/33) in a battle of the two best starting pitchers in the division as the Dodgers look to avoid yet another defeat to the San Francisco Giants having lost the first two games in the series.

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