TOP 3 MOST SHOCKING MOMENTS

#1 Glory foiled by new VAR rules

Runaway premiers Sydney FC stormed into the A-League grand final via a 3-0 thrashing of Perth Glory in Saturday’s semi, but not without a little help from the Video Assistant Referee. Controversially introduced late in the regular season, the VAR – a world first in football – overturned two disallowed Sydney FC goals to see the title favourites take a three-goal lead and effectively wrap the match up by halftime. Melbourne Victory clinched the other grand final spot thanks to a Beshart Berisha strike in the 70th minute, which got them home 1-0 over Brisbane Roar.

Check out the VAR controversy HERE.

 

#2 Pearce goes from hero to villain

Mitchell Pearce overcame a long-running field goal hoodoo to boot Sydney Roosters to a golden point win over St George Illawarra on Anzac Day, and just five days later he looked certain to repeat the does with a 76th-minute one-pointer against the Warriors in Auckland that broke a 12-all deadlock. But the Tricolours halfback was sensationally ruled offside during a late Warriors attacking raid, allowing opposite number Shaun Johnson to step up and bury a clutch penalty goal from out wide with one minute remaining, which snatched a one-point win for the hosts.

Watch the wild Mt Smart finish HERE.

 

#3 Joshua KO’s Klitschko in classic

It was the most anticipated heavyweight boxing bout in a decade, and the Anthony Joshua-Wladimir Klitschko blockbuster delivered in spades. In front of a 90,000-strong Wembley crowd, British boxer Joshua recovered from the first knockdown of his career to knock out Ukranian legend Klitschko in the 11th round with a ferocious uppercut. Heavyweight boxing has enjoyed a resurgence since the controversial Tyson Fury ended Klitschko’s 11-year reign in 2015, and Joshua’s triumph – which saw him add the WBA belt to his IBF and IBO titles – with a punch already being described as one of the greatest in boxing history has given the sport another shot in the arm.

Relive the epic fight and the rapturous worldwide reaction HERE.

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BIG BETS – WINNERS & LOSERS

Lanciato lands punter big win at Hawkesbury.

Palmerbet Big Bets – 29/04/2017

Race Horse Bet Results
Caulfield Race 3 No 11. Mr Sneaky $2,000 @ $3.00 WON
Caulfield Race 6 No 8. Wise Hero $1,500 @ $4.20 WON
Hawkesbury Race 5 No 8. Lanciato $3,000 @ $6.10 WON
Hawkesbury Race 3 No 10. I Am a Cool Kid $1,250 @ $5.00 SCRATCHED
Hawkesbury Race 4 No 8. Grunderzeit $600 @ $9.00 LOST

MONDAY RACING TIP SHEET

The Early Crows Racing Top Tips – 1/5/2017

GRAFTON

Race

Tip

GRAFTON Race 1

ARLINGTON HEIGHTS

GRAFTON Race 2

SOLAR STORM

GRAFTON Race 7

LICITRA

 

DUBBO

Race

Tip

DUBBO Race 1

A MAGIC ZARIZ

DUBBO Race 4

NOT FOR EXPORT

DUBBO Race 7

BANKSIA

 

IPSWICH

Race

Tip

IPSWICH Race 1

I THINK NOT

IPSWICH Race 5

LAKOTA SIOUX

IPSWICH Race 6

LORD MARMADUKE

 

MORNINGTON

Race

Tip

MORNINGTON Race 2

MIAMORAE

MORNINGTON Race 5

SNITZEL MUSIC

MORNINGTON Race 6

BISEAU

 

ENGLISH PREMIER LEAGUE – WEEK 35

Southampton vs Hull City
12am (AEST), Sunday, 30th April @ St. Mary’s Stadium, Southampton

Possible Lineups:
Southampton
Fraser Forster (gk), Ryan Bertrand, Maya Yoshida, Jack Stephens, Cedric Soares, James Ward-Prowse, Sofiane Boufal, Steven Davis, Dusan Tadic, Oriol Romeu, Manolo Gabbiadini

Hull City
Eldin Jakupovic (gk), Andrea Ranocchia, Andrew Robertson, Harry Maguire, Ahmed Elmohamady, Alfred N'Diaye, Evandro, Samuel Clucas, Lazar Markovic, Kamil Grosicki, Oumar Niasse

History: There have been only 13 matches played between these sides and Southampton have been dominant, winning 8 games to 2. When they met earlier this season though Hull flipped the script to win 2-1 at home after conceding in the 6th minute.

Form: Southampton were on a three games unbeaten streak (2W-1D) but have now lost their past two games, albeit to quality opponents in Chelsea and Manchester City. They remain 9th on 40 points with 6 clubs behind them ready to overtake them on the table if they slip up. Hull broke a two game losing streak with a 2-0 win over Watford on the weekend. They have gone 3W-2D in their last 5 games which has kept them out of the relegation zone. They remain 17th on 33 points, only 2 points clear of 18th placed Swansea.

Stats: The Saints have picked up 22 points at home this season going 2W-1D-2L in their past 5 games at St. Mary’s Stadium. Hull have only picked up 5 points in away games this season, beating Swansea in week 2 and drawing with Manchester United and Burnley away.

Final Thoughts: Hull have shown passion in their games recently as they try to avoid relegation and it has come just at the right time. However as they have shown all season they struggle away from home. Southampton have been soundly beaten by top teams in recent matches and despite having to play mid-week they should get the 3 points here.

Crow’s Tip: Southampton to Win @ $1.62

 

Stoke City vs West Ham
12am (AEST), Sunday, 30th April @ bet365 Stadium, Stoke

Possible Lineups:
Stoke City
Jack Butland (gk), Glen Johnson, Ryan Shawcross, Erik Pieters, Bruno Martins Indi, Xherdan Shaqiri, Joe Allen, Geoff Cameron, Marko Arnautovic, Peter Crouch, Saido Berahino

West Ham
Adrian (gk), Arthur Masuaku, Jose Fonte, James Collins, Winston Reid, Sam Byram, Cheikhou Kouyate, Manuel Lanzini, Andre Ayew, Edimilson Fernandes, Andy Carroll

History: Four of the past 5 meetings between these sides have ended as draws including this season’s match in London where it finished 1-1. Stoke holds a slight wins advantage in the fixture with 23 to 20 in 57 games, with Stoke winning 2-1 when they met in the corresponding game last season.

Form: Stoke broke a 4 game losing run with a win over Hull and would have been confident going into their last match against Swansea. The trip to Wales wasn’t a happy one though, going down 0-2 to the relegation threatened Swans. They remain in 11th on 39 points, only 1 point outside the top 10. West Ham have put their 5 game losing run behind them and are now unbeaten in their last 3 games. Despite consecutive draws with Everton and Sunderland they have dropped to 14th and wouldn’t be too confident of Premier League safety just yet with only a 7 point gap over Swansea.

Stats: Stoke have a 7W-5D-5L record at home this season, defeating Hull 3-1 in their last match at bet365 stadium and going 3W-2L in their last 5 games at home. West Ham have been serviceable away from home with a 4W-4D-9L record but they haven’t won on the road in 5 consecutive away games, going 2D-3L in that period.

Final Thoughts: West Ham look to be slowly getting out of their form slump and there are a lot of positives to take out of their nil-all draw with Everton. Stoke are still very much in their slump and they were poor last time out against Swansea. It is a hard game to pick a winner from and both sides will need a little bit of luck to go their way to get a win.

Crow’s Tip: Draw @ $3.40

 

Sunderland vs AFC Bournemouth
12am (AEST), Sunday, 30th April @ Stadium of Light, Sunderland

Possible Lineups:
Sunderland
Jordan Pickford (gk), Lamine Kone, John O’Shea, Javier Manquillo, Jason Denayer, Didier Ndong, Lee Cattermole, Wahbi Khazri, Darron Gibson, Jermain Defoe, Victor Anichebe

AFC Bournemouth
Artur Boruc (gk), Adam Smith, Simon Francis, Steve Cook, Charlie Daniels, Ryan Fraser, Lewis Cook, Marc Pugh, Harry Arter, Joshua King, Benik Afobe

History: These sides have shared the spoils in the 3 times they have met with both teams winning once. When they met earlier this season Sunderland picked up a rare away win.

Form: Losing to Middlesbrough mid-week all but read Sunderland their last rites. Winless in 9 games (2D-7L) they are anchored at the bottom of the table. Currently 12 points clear of safety and if they lose this match they are officially relegated to the Championship. Bournemouth broke a 4 game winless run and ended a 2 game losing streak with their 4-0 win over Middlesbrough. The win moved them up to 13th on the table, only a win away from the top 10 but still with an eye over their shoulder.

Stats: Sunderland have played their best at home this season, picking up 14 points with a 3W-5D-9L record. They have drawn 2 of their past 3 home games with West Ham and Burnley, losing to Manchester United in their other recent game at the Stadium of Light. Bournemouth are winless in their past 7 away games with 3 draws and 4 losses within that period. This season they have a 2W-5D-10L record on the road.

Final Thoughts: The most recent games these sides have played is a great form guide going into this with both sides playing Middlesbrough, Sunderland lost 0-1 while Bournemouth won 4-0. The Cherries will take the role of the bad guy in this and put the final nail in the coffin for Sunderland by winning and relegating the Black Cats.

Crow’s Tip: AFC Bournemouth to Win @ $2.38

 

West Bromwich Albion vs Leicester City
12am (AEST), Sunday, 30th April @ The Hawthorns, West Bromwich

Possible Lineups:
West Bromwich Albion
Ben Foster (gk), Jonny Evans, Craig Dawson, Gareth McAuley, Nacer Chadli, Matthew Phillips, Jake Livermore, Chris Brunt, Darren Fletcher, Claudio Yacob, Hal Robson-Kanu

Leicester City
Kasper Schmeichel (gk), Danny Simpson, Robert Huth, Christian Fuchs, Yohan Benalouane, Wilfried Ndidi, Danny Drinkwater, Marc Albrighton, Riyad Mahrez, Shinji Okazaki, Jamie Vardy

History: West Bromwich have won more games in this fixture with 36 to Leicester’s 22 from 72 previous matches. In their match earlier this season West Brom won away 2-1 with all 3 goals coming in the 2nd half.

Form: Currently on a 4 game winless run West Brom have lost their past 3 games, losing consecutive games 0-1 to Southampton and Liverpool. They remain in 8th on 44 points which is the highest position they can finish. Leicester are also on a winless run going 1D-2L in their past 3 games against Arsenal, Crystal Palace and Everton. Currently 15th on 37 points they won’t feel safe yet being only 6 points ahead of the relegation zone.

Stats: This will be the 3rd straight home game for West Brom who have gone 2W-3L in their past 5 at The Hawthorns. Despite their recent run of bad home form they have the 10th best home record in the League going 9W-2D-6L. This will be the 4th straight away game for Leicester which explains their current winless run. The Foxes have only picked up 7 points away from home this season with 1 win and 4 draws.

Final Thoughts: Both sides will be looking to turn their fortunes around here and breakthrough for a win. The 3 points is more valuable for Leicester who will want to ensure Premier League safety but they will need to improve their away form. It looks to be a game where the points will be shared.

Crow’s Tip: Draw @ $3.25

 

Crystal Palace vs Burnley
2:30am (AEST), Sunday, 30th April @ Selhurst Park, London

Possible Lineups:
Crystal Palace
Wayne Hennessey (gk), Martin Kelly, Mamadou Sakho, Joel Ward, Patrick van Aanholt, Luka Milivojevic, Jason Puncheon, Andros Townsend, Yohan Cabaye, Wilfried Zaha, Christian Benteke

Burnley
Tom Heaton (gk), Stephen Ward, Matthew Lowton, Michael Keane, James Tarkowski, Robbie Brady, George Boyd, Steven Defour, Jeff Hendrick, Andre Gray, Ashley Barnes

History: The last 2 meetings between these sides have been 5 goal thrillers with each team getting a 3-2 win. Earlier this season Burnley came away with the victory, the match looking like ending 2-2 until Ashley Barnes scored a 94th minute winner. In their 29 meetings Burnley holds a slight 11-7 wins advantage.

Form: Palace’s 3 game unbeaten run (2W-1D) ended mid-week with a 0-1 loss to Tottenham. That was only their 2nd loss in 9 games where they won 6 times. Their recent run of good form has seen them move up to 12th on the table and open up a 7 point gap on the relegation zone. Burnley’s 0-2 loss to Manchester United was their 2nd straight defeat and they are now winless in their past 3 games. They have been on a terrible run recently, going 1W-3D-7L in their past 11 games. Relegation is still a possibility being 16th and only 5 points ahead of the relegation zone.

Stats: Selhurst Park hasn’t been a happy home ground for Palace this season, with the 17 points they have picked up at home less than the 21 points they have picked up away. Burnley have the worst away record in the League and are still yet to win away from home with only 4 draws on the road this season.

Final Thoughts: Crystal Palace will be disappointed with their home record this season but have a perfect chance to improve it here against a slumping Burnley who are terrible on the road. Another loss for Burnley will add more pressure, especially if the teams below them pick up points, but they will find Palace a hard team to get a result from.

Crow’s Tip: Crystal Palace to Win @ $1.80

 

Manchester United vs Swansea City
9pm (AEST), Sunday, 30th April @ Old Trafford, Manchester

Possible Lineups:
Manchester United
David de Gea (gk), Matteo Darmian, Antonio Valencia, Eric Bailly, Daley Blind, Michael Carrick, Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Paul Pogba, Ander Herrera, Anthony Martial, Marcus Rashford

Swansea City
Lukasz Fabianski (gk), Federico Fernandez, Stephen Kingsley, Kyle Naughton, Alfie Mawson, Leon Britton, Ki Sung-yueng, Gylfi Sigurdsson, Tom Carroll, Jordan Ayew, Fernando Llorente

History: Manchester United have won the past 2 games against Swansea which broke a run of 3 consecutive wins for the Swans in the fixture. In the 16 times these sides have met United have 9 wins to Swansea’s 5.

Form: A nil-all draw in the Manchester derby has extended United’s unbeaten League run to 24 matches with 13 wins and 11 draws in that period. The remain 5th on the table with 64 points, 1 point behind their city rivals and 2 points behind 3rd placed Liverpool who both Manchester teams have a game in-hand over. Swansea broke a 6 game winless streak and run of 3 consecutive losses when they defeated Stoke last weekend. It was a crucial win as 17th placed Hull also won, but the Swans remain 18th and in the relegation zone, two points from safety.

Stats: United are ranked the 8th best home side in the League but have only lost once at Old Trafford with a 7W-9D-1L home record. During their current 24 games unbeaten run they have played at home 13 times for 5 wins and 8 draws. Swansea have picked up 10 points away from home this season with 3 wins and a draw and they are currently on a 6 games losing streak on the road.

Final Thoughts: Despite being outplayed and down 10 men late, United showed a lot of grit to draw nil-all with City. Their current unbeaten run is a credit to them team especially with their Europa League commitments. Swansea will be dreading the trip to Old Trafford and they have the added pressure of needing points for Premier League safety, but it looks like they will come away from Manchester empty handed.

Crow’s Tip: Manchester United To Win To Nil @ $2.09

 

Everton vs Chelsea
11:05pm (AEST), Sunday, 30th April @ Goodison Park, Liverpool

Possible Lineups:
Everton
Maarten Stekelenburg (gk), Leighton Baines, Phil Jagielka, Ashley Williams, Mason Holgate, Kevin Mirallas, Tom Davies, Morgan Schneiderlin, Ross Barkley, Idrissa Gueye, Romelu Lukaku

Chelsea
Thibaut Courtois (gk), Cesar Azpilicueta, Gary Cahill, David Luiz, Marcos Alonso, Victor Moses, Eden Hazard, Nemanja Matic, N'Golo Kante, Pedro, Diego Costa

History: Chelsea had a big 5-0 win against Everton at Stamford Bridge earlier this season. That broke a run of 3 games where Everton were unbeaten in the fixture with 2 wins and a draw. In their 164 meetings Chelsea have won 10 more games 62-52 with 50 draws being played out.

Form: Everton extended their unbeaten run to 4 games with their nil-all draw with West Ham (2W-2D). They currently sit 7th on the table and their draw with the Hammers has hurt their European chances. On 58 points they are 6 points from the top 4 and have played 2 more games. Chelsea bounced back from their League loss to United to record consecutive 4-2 wins against Tottenham in the FA Cup Semi-final and Southampton in the League. They remain top of the League with a 4 point lead over Tottenham.

Stats: The Toffees are the 3rd best home team in the League losing only once with a 12W-4D-1L record. They have currently won 8 consecutive League games at homes scoring a huge 29 gaols in that run while only conceding 9 times. Chelsea are the best away team in the League with an 11W-3D-3L record. Their recent loss to United broke an unbeaten away run of 6 games going 4W-2D in that period.

Final Thoughts: Everton will be looking to bounce back from their humiliation to Chelsea earlier in the season. Chelsea know they must keep winning on their quest to win the League as Tottenham are hot on their heels. Everton will provide a tough trip given their recent home form but Chelsea should do enough to get the 3 points.

Crow’s Tip: Chelsea to Win @ $2

 

Middlesbrough vs Manchester City
11:05pm (AEST), Sunday, 30th April @ Riverside Stadium, Middlesbrough

Possible Lineups:
Middlesbrough
Brad Guzan (gk), Fabio, Antonio Barragan, Ben Gibson, Calum Chambers, George Friend, Stewart Downing, Adam Clayton, Marten De Roon, Adama Traore, Alvaro Negredo

Manchester City
Willy Caballero (gk), Aleksander Kolarov, Vincent Kompany, Fabian Delph, Kevin De Bruyne, Raheem Sterling, Fernandinho, Jesus Navas, Leroy Sane, Yaya Toure, Gabriel Jesus

History: Manchester City holds a slight wins advantage in this fixture with 43 wins to Middlesbrough’s 40 in 104 matches played. They have met twice this season in both the League and FA Cup, City winning their Cup clash 2-0 while Middlesbrough held City to a 1-1 draw in the League.

Form: Middlesbrough finally broke through for a win after going 16 games without tasting victory. Their 1-0 win over bottom placed Sunderland gave them a glimmer of hope for Premier League safety but they are still 6 points behind Hull with 4 games left in the season. City extended their unbeaten run to 3 games in the League with a nil-all draw in the Manchester Derby. They remain 4th on the table but only 1 point behind third placed Liverpool with a game in-hand.

Stats: Ranked the 2nd worst home team in the League, Middlesbrough have a 4W-5D-8L record at Riverside Stadium. Surprisingly they have only conceded 19 goals in 17 home games but their issue has been scoring, which they have only done 14 times at home. Conversely, City are the 2nd best away team in the League with an 11W-1D-5L record. In their past 5 away games they have gone 3W-1D-1L, the loss was to League leaders Chelsea 1-2.

Final Thoughts: Middlesbrough are desperate for points but a travelling City provides an extremely hard task. The Boro will take confidence in the fact they held City to a 1-1 draw earlier this season and that they can be defensively sound. Being knocked out of the FA Cup last weekend was a big blow to City and with only the League to focus on now they will put all their efforts into finishing as high as they can. They should to too classy here and put on a clinic.

Crow’s Tip: Manchester City -1 @ $1.80

 

Tottenham Hotspur vs Arsenal
1:30am (AEST), Monday, 1st May @ White Hart Lane, London

Possible Lineups:
Tottenham Hotspur
Hugo Lloris (gk), Jan Vertonghen, Ben Davies, Toby Alderweireld, Kyle Walker, Eric Dier, Dele Alli, Christian Eriksen, Mousa Dembele, Heung-Min Son, Harry Kane

Arsenal
Petr Cech (gk), Hector Bellerin, Nacho Monreal, Gabriel, Laurent Koscielny, Granit Xhaka, Mesut Ozil, Aaron Ramsey, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Alexis Sanchez, Olivier Giroud

History: These sides have drawn the past 3 times they have met. Earlier this season the match ended 1-1 with Kevin Winmer scoring an own goal to give Arsenal the lead before Harry Kane levelled from the spot. In 166 meetings Arsenal have won 68 times to Tottenham’s 51 victories with 47 matches ending as a draw.

Form: Tottenham bounced back from their FA Cup Semi-final loss to Chelsea to beat giant killers Crystal Palace 1-0 mid-week. It was their 8th consecutive League win and has kept them in touch with League leaders Chelsea. The gap to Chelsea was as much as 10 points but their continued wins along with Chelsea’s slipups has seen them close the gap to 4 points. Arsenal are on a 3 game winning run with 2 wins in the League and an FA Cup Semi-final victory over Manchester City. Their mid-week 1-0 League win over Leicester has kept them in touch with the top 4, currently 6th and 6 points behind 3rd placed Liverpool with 2 games in-hand.

Stats: White Hart Lane has been a fortress for Tottenham this season. They have not lost in 17 games at home this season securing 15 wins and 2 draws which has them ranked as the best home team in the League. Arsenal have picked up 24 points on the road this season with a 7W-3D-6L away record. Their recent 2-1 win away to Middlesbrough broke a run of four consecutive away losses.

Final Thoughts: There is a lot to play for in this London derby. Tottenham’s title hopes have increased over the past month and they must keep winning to keep pressure on Chelsea. Arsenal holds European aspirations and a top 4 finish will give them a Champions League spot. It will be a tight match but Tottenham look to have the better form and should continue their unbeaten home record.

Crow’s Tip: Tottenham Hotspur to Win @ $1.83

 

Watford vs Liverpool
5am (AEST), Tuesday, 2nd May @ Vicarage Road, Watford

Possible Lineups:
Watford
Heurelho Gomes (gk), Miguel Britos, Jose Holebas, Daryl Janmaat, Sebastian Prodl, Etienne Capoue, Abdoulaye Doucoure, Tom Cleverley, Nordin Amrabat, M'Baye Niang, Troy Deeney

Liverpool
Simon Mignolet (gk), Nathaniel Clyne, Ragnar Klavan, Joel Matip, James Milner, Emre Can, Lucas, Philippe Coutinho, Georginio Wijnaldum, Roberto Firmino, Divock Origi

History: Liverpool completely smashed Watford at Anfield earlier this season with a huge 6-1 win. It was the 16th time the Reds have beaten the Hornets in 21 games, Watford managing only 4 wins in the fixture.

Form: Despite having over 65% possession in their last game Watford were unable to find the back of the next and eventually lost 0-2 to a 10 man Hull side. Their form has been patchy of late going 3W-2D in their last 5 games but they remain 10th on the table with 40 points. Liverpool were on a 7 game unbeaten run but were beaten at Anfield by current giant killers Crystal Palace. While the Reds remain in 3rd on 66 points, they are only 1 point ahead of Man City and 2 points ahead of Man United who both have a game in-hand.

Stats: Watford have picked up 28 points at home this season with an 8W-4D-5L record and have currently won their past 3 games at Vicarage Road. Liverpool have 29 points on the road this season with an 8W-5D-4L record. They are undefeated in their past 3 away games with 2 wins and a draw.

Final Thoughts: Both sides will be disappointed with their losses last time out. Liverpool have a lot to play for still with their seasons success to be determined on whether they qualify for Europe not. They must pick up points in their remaining 4 games to reach their target and they should pick up all 3 points here.

Crow’s Tip: Liverpool -1 @ $2.40

A-LEAGUE PREVIEW -FINALS WEEK 2

Sydney FC v Perth Glory

7.50pm (AEST), Saturday, April 29 @ Allianz Stadium

Teams:

SYDNEY FC – 1.Andrew REDMAYNE (gk), 4.Alex WILKINSON, 5.Jordy BUIJS, 6.Joshua BRILLANTE, 7.Michael ZULLO, 8.Milos DIMITRIJEVIC, 9.BOBÔ, 10.Milos NINKOVIC, 11.Bernie IBINI, 12.Aaron CALVER, 13.Brandon O’NEILL, 14.Alex BROSQUE (c), 17.David CARNEY, 18.Matt SIMON, 19.George BLACKWOOD, 20.Danny VUKOVIC (gk), 21.Filip HOLOSKO, 23.Rhyan GRANT

GLORY – 3.Marc WARREN, 5.Rhys WILLIAMS, 6.Dino DJULBIC, 7.Joel CHIANESE, 8.Rostyn GRIFFITHS (c), 9.Andy KEOGH, 10.Nebo MARINKOVIC, 11.Richard GARCIA, 13.Nick FEELY (gk), 14.Chris HAROLD, 15.Brandon WILSON, 16.Joe MILLS, 17.Diego CASTRO, 18.Mitch OXBORROW, 19.Josh RISDON, 22.Adam TAGGART, 26.Lucian GOIAN, 33.Liam REDDY (gk)

History: Sydney have won 17 games to Perth’s 8, with 8 drawn. Sydney won all three games this season by 3-goal margins. This is the teams’ first finals meeting.

Form: Sydney FC finished top of the table by 17 points, putting together an unprecedented 20W-6D-1L record; they won 6 and drew 1 of their last 7 regular-season games. Perth Glory finished fifth with a 10W-9D-8L record, before bundling Melbourne City out in the first week of the finals 2-0 at AAMI Park.

Stats: Sydney have won 6 and drawn 1 of their last 8 against Perth. The Glory have won 2 of their last 4 away games against Sydney. Just 1 of the teams’ last 11 meetings has produced less than 3 goals. Sydney have won 10 and drawn 3 of their 13 home games this season, and are currently on a 6-match home winning streak that has seen them outscore their opposition 12-1. The Glory went 2W-6D-5L on the road during the regular season, but last week’s finals win ended a 3-match winless streak away from Perth.

Final Thoughts: Sydney’s record-shattering campaign seems destined to finished in grand final triumph, but an in-form Perth team with nothing to lose could have the premiers a little nervous. The Glory were super-impressive last week in eliminating Melbourne City, while they only scored two goals less than Sydney in the regular season. The big difference between the sides in defensively, with Sydney conceding only 12 goals and the Glory leaking a whopping 53. Sydney have been ruthless on their home patch and should have the chops to put away the erratic Glory comfortably.

Crow’s Tip: Sydney FC -1 @ $2.10

 

Melbourne Victory v Brisbane Roar FC

5.00pm (AEST), Sunday, April 30 @ AAMI Park

Teams:

VICTORY – 2.Jason GERIA, 4.Nick ANSELL, 5.Daniel GEORGIEVSKI, 6.Leigh BROXHAM, 7.Marco ROJAS, 8.Besart BERISHA, 10.James TROISI, 11.Mitch AUSTIN, 14.Fahid BEN KHALFALLAH, 15.Alan BARO, 16.Rashid MAHAZI, 17.James DONACHIE, 19.George HOWARD, 20.Lawrence THOMAS (gk), 21.Carl VALERI (c), 22.Stefan NIGRO, 23.Jai INGHAM, 40.Matt ACTON (gk)

ROAR – 3.Luke DEVERE, 5.Corey BROWN, 6.Avram PAPADOPOULOS, 7.Thomas KRISTENSEN, 8.Jacob PEPPER, 9.Jamie MACLAREN, 10.Brett HOLMAN, 11.Tommy OAR, 13.Jade NORTH, 15.ARANA, 17.Matt MCKAY (c), 19.Jack HINGERT, 21.Jamie YOUNG (gk), 22.Thomas BROICH, 26.Nick D’AGOSTINO, 28.Brandon BORRELLO, 29.Joe CALETTI, 43.Tomislav BILIC (gk)

History: The Victory have won 16 games to the Roar’s 13, with 7 drawn, but the Roar have won both finals games between the clubs. The first match this season was drawn, while they’ve each notched a home win against the other since. The Roar eliminated the Victory 2-1 in last season’s playoffs.

Form: The Victory finished second with a 15W-4D-8L record, but they lost 3 of their last 6 regular-season games. The Roar finished third with an 11W-9D-7L record, winning 3 of their last 4 regular-season games before eliminating Wanderers last weekend in a penalty shootout after the scores were locked 1-1.

Stats: The Victory have won 5 and drawn 2 of their last 10 against the Roar. The Roar have just 1 draw to show for their last 4 away games against the Victory. Six of the teams last 11 clashes have produced less than 3 goals. The Victory have scored just 1 goal in their last 4 games. The Victory boast a 10W-1D-3L home record this season, and won 4 of their last 5 at AAMI Park. The Roar have a 4-5-5 record on the road this season, but have lost their last 2 away from Suncorp Stadium.

Final Thoughts: After progressing via a nail-biter against Wanderers, Brisbane welcome back Arana and Matt McKay from injury, but they have suffered a potentially mortal wound with the withdrawal of goalkeeper Michael Theo – though Jamie Young did get the job done in the penalty shootout. The Victory arrested a worrying form slump by getting a draw and a win in the last two rounds, but they don’t take a lot of momentum of momentum into this game – especially after having last weekend off. The duel between ace goal-scorers Jamie McLaren and Besart Berisha will be vital, but the Roar have enough big-game players across the park to snare an upset.

Crow’s Tip: Brisbane Roar +1 @ $2.00

BIG BETS

Early money for several outsiders at Hawkesbury.

Palmerbet Big Bets – 28/04/2017

Race Horse Bet
Caulfield Race 3 No 11. Mr Sneaky $2,000 @ $3.00
Hawkesbury Race 6 No 17. Prompt Promise $500 e/w @ $9.50
Hawkesbury Race 3 No 10. I Am a Cool Kid $1,250 @ $5.00
Hawkesbury Race 4 No 8. Grunderzeit $600 @ $9.00

SATURDAY RACING PREVIEW – HAWKESBURY

Hawkesbury gets their standalone meeting for the year with the Guineas and Gold Cup the highlights on the card.

Currently, the track is a good 4 with the rail in the true position the entire course.

Race: 1– RICHMOND CLUB PROVINCIAL STAYER'S BENCHMARK 84 HANDICAP (2100M)
Date: 22/4
Time: 11:55pm
Location: Hawkesbury

Lookin’ At You has been up for a while now but has string two wins together over his last two starts after getting out over a trip. This is a slight step up in class compared to his last here at the track, but it does look a great grounding. Great Glen brings both English and Victorian form into this and should be perfectly suited third-up over this trip. Love K-Mac on top, and could be tough to beat. My Giuliano is the obvious class runner as a proven Saturday horse, but not entirely sure about him at this distance second-up.

The Early Crows Top Tip: Lookin’ At You

Race: 2– TAB CLARENDON STAKES (1300M)
Date: 22/4
Time: 12:30pm
Location: Hawkesbury

Serena Bay has opened odds-on in the race for the two-year-olds. Not only does she have three wins from five starts, but was only a length away from winning at stakes level last time out after being checked approaching the finish. This should be much easier and is the deserved favourite. Icon of Dubai looks to be the biggest danger having worked home well on debut in a midweek Canterbury race. That suggests he will relish the 1300m, and Snowden runners generally run well early in their campaigns. Alo expecting Tangled to feature and look the winner at some point in the race as the leader.

The Early Crows Top Tip: Serena Bay

Race: 3– TAB HIGHWAY HANDICAP (1100M)
Date: 22/4
Time: 1:05pm
Location: Hawkesbury

A very even Highway with a ton of chances. I Am a Cool Kid has opened favourite after having had only the one start. That was an easy win after leading at Bathurst, but looks a touch vulnerable at the price. Ruthless Agent has had a freshen up since his third in a Highway over a mile back in February. While he has two wins at 1200m, I’m just not convinced about him this short. Moss My Name spent last campaign exclusively in Highways and claimed a win at this distance first-up. It seems to be where he does his best work, and two trials will have him wound up nicely.

The Early Crows Top Tip: Moss My Name

Race: 4– HAWKESBURY XXXX GOLD RUSH (1100M)
Date: 22/4
Time: 1:40pm
Location: Hawkesbury

This is a hot little race! Felines was well beaten in The Galaxy at odds, but this is a massive drop in class from that. She is a black type winner, but doesn’t have the greatest record at the distance. Palazzo Pubblico does have a great record at the 1100m with four wins at the trip including the Listed Alinghi Stakes. She’s had a freshen up and trial since her first-up run, so happy to forgive that big defeat. Grunderzeit is a bit of a Canterbury specialist but does look nicely placed here after two good trials. He has a great record fresh and at the distance and could surprise at odds.

The Early Crows Top Tip: Palazzo Pubblico

Race: 5– BLAKES MARINE BENCHMARK 85 HANDICAP (1300M)
Date: 22/4
Time: 12:15pm
Location: Hawkesbury

Astara has opened the narrow favourite in another field where there are plenty of chances. A lot of the price is because of her New Zealand three-year-old form, which has proved to be the best over longer trips She was impressive in her last trial, so don’t discount. Invinzabeel is a very solid Saturday type who comes into this first-up race after two trials. He doesn’t have the greatest of records fresh, and possibly wants a touch more ground. Liapari is also first-up and is another proven at Saturday level. A mile seems to be his best distance, so maybe wait until next start.

The Early Crows Top Tip: Astara

Race: 6– 2017 GODOLPHIN CROWN (1300M)
Date: 22/4
Time: 2:55pm
Location: Hawkesbury

The classy Artistry has opened favourite after a win and a third this preparation, both at stakes level. She has won right out to a mile so the 1300m shouldn’t be an issue, and third-up she should be spot on. Daysee Doom has had a great carnival and has performed brilliantly against the best girls in Sydney. This probably isn’t her ideal distance, but she is good enough to make an impact after her month off. Sweet Redemption is first-up on the back of three trials and was a stakes winner in her last campaign. She’s yet to win first-up, but you can never discount a Gai front runner.

The Early Crows Top Tip: Artistry

Race: 7– BLACKTOWN WORKERS CLUB HAWKESBURY GUINEAS (1400M)
Date: 22/4
Time: 3:35pm
Location: Hawkesbury

Huge field for the Guineas, but it looks like it could be a race in two. Springt has had an interesting campaign so far, finishing close up behind some classy three-year-old, but was also blown away in the Surround Stakes. She seems to have bounced back from that though and does look primed for the step out to 1400m. The lightly raced Calanda returned very nicely at Canterbury over 1100m and should only improve with more ground. There is the slight query as to how effective he’ll be over this distance, but he looks a very talented runner.

The Early Crows Top Tip: Calanda

Race: 8– LIVAMOL HAWKESBURY GOLD CUP (1600M)
Date: 22/4
Time: 4:15pm
Location: Hawkesbury

Good luck! Spectroscope was the hype horse coming into the Doncaster but was really found out in that company. This is a much easier race, and a repeat of his performance in the Doncaster Prelude is more than enough to win here. Fabrizio was very disappointing first-up and Randwick where he was well beaten as favourite. In hindsight, the 1400m was always going to be a challenge, and that run and his subsequent trial win should have him much fitter. Kellyville Flyer has been outstanding so far this preparation and gets into his home race thrid-up. The mile after two 1400m runs is perfect, and he has won at the track and distance.

The Early Crows Top Tip: Kellyville Flyer

Race: 9– ALL STATE SHOPFITTING BENCHMARK 78 HANDICAP (1500M)
Date: 22/4
Time: 4:50pm
Location: Hawkesbury

Another very tough one to close out the day. Beretta is around the better provincial runners at the moment and showed that with a nice midweek win at Canterbury after a luckless run in the Newcastle Provincial Qualifier. He loves this trip and will be primed for this run. Ziganui brings similar form lines to the race having finished second and third in his last two races. He never really seems to be found by the market outside of Canberra, so you could get a nice price given he has the miles in the legs to run a nice 1500m.

The Early Crows Top Tip: Beretta