Sunday 20 November 2022

Slam final day

Well, there's going to be a story one way or the other. Half the time, we get a new major champion from the players I had ranked #1 and #3 in my list at the start of the year, or we get someone rolling back the years for a first major since forever. Or Nathan Aspinall wins it. That'd be the most meh thing, but he's played well enough the last six months to be in contention and given earlier in the year there were fears that he'd either be sidelined for some time or possibly never play again, I can't be too upset. Especially given he's a Stockport lad.

In terms of punts, Humphries (again, why didn't I recommend it as a main play, hopefully you at least read the blurb and made your decision) might be undervalued a touch at 8/13. Looking year long, he looks up towards 70% - although if I cut down to just the last six months and eliminate some of the time where Nathan wasn't playing as well, it comes down to a mere two in three shot. Still favoured, but not by quite so much. It's another one where I'm not going to officially call the shot - after all, it is a game where Luke would get into easily the biggest game of his life (I keep forgetting he's played in a UK Open final), so that little bit of added pressure and/or post-beating MvG slump might cost a point or two in percentage chances.

Smith against Barney is equally really close to a play. I've got it at around 75/25 in favour of Michael whichever timeframe you look at with a decent sample size. 4/9 is the generally available price, and that's fairly close to being worth a play. That said, in terms of really short (i.e. this tournament) sample, RvB looks to be outplaying his seasonal statistics, and there is again the question of whether Smith recognising this is another really great chance to break the major hoodoo could see him snatch a double here or there and give Raymond the leg or two which makes this not a great bet. Again, another situation where I won't make the official play, but won't discourage you if you don't.

If we were to get to a Smith/Humphries final, it's going to be too close to call. Over the longest match distance you can possibly have (a world final), Humphries is favoured but by not even 1%. 50.43% is what you'd get. I'd fully expect to see 10/11 and no value, at worst evens one way and 4/5 the other if someone knocks it out of the park and/or struggles in the semi final. If Humphries was to play Barney I'd see it as 76/24 Humphries, if Smith was to play Aspinall I'd see it as 70/30 Smith - if either of those scenarios played out, I'd probably say you're getting a decent price, albeit with the caveats on Smith/Humphries mentioned in the semi final matchups. Finally, if Aspinall was to play Barney I'd be looking at around 8/11 as a fair line on Nathan. He's got the edge, but it's not by a great deal.

Expect new FRH rankings later this evening, or possibly tomorrow morning before the football, then a big Players Championship analysis dump some time in the week.

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