Sports betting

Weekend Review: Eldar Eldarov edges the St Leger as horseracing rallies around the mourning nation

Continental football and racing swung in punters’ favour as the UK mourns the loss of Queen Elizabeth II

The weekend’s sporting action went mostly in favour of the punters as the delayed St Leger at Doncaster went the way of Eldar Eldarov (9/2) in what was an emotional weekend for the racing world.

There was a two-minute silence at the world’s oldest Classic race as the UK mourned the loss of Queen Elizabeth II and the death of 13-year-old Irish jockey Jack de Bromhead, who passed away following a fall during a beach race in County Kerry.

The race had been delayed 24 hours following the death of Queen Elizabeth II as a mark of respect, while the UK’s domestic football schedule was postponed in honour of the monarch’s passing.

David Egan, in his first ride in the St Leger, rode Eldar Eldarov to victory in a dramatic meet at Doncaster as the Roger Varian-trained runner held off Haskoy in second.

However, following a stewards’ inquiry, the Frankie Dettori-ridden Haskoy was demoted to fourth after being judged to have impeded fellow runner Giavellotto.

Dettori was handed a five-day ban, while third placed New London was promoted to second and Giavellotto took the final podium place.

Kindred Group’s Ali Gill said: “St Leger went the way of the very impressive Eldar Eldarov, who was very well supported on the day going off at 9/2. However, having held off the 11/8 favourite in New London and the subsequently relegated Haskoy (9/2) left us with a nice margin on the race.”

“In the Irish St Leger over at the Curragh, the favourite faired better as 8/11 Kyprios held off second favourite Hamish to take the win, all told, that ending was just about a draw with the punters.”

With UK football having been postponed, punters turned to the continent to get their fix in what was a mixed bag for the bookies.

There were routine wins in Spain for Real Madrid (1/4), Barcelona (3/10) and Atletico Madrid (4/5).

The Bundesliga has a surprise leading duo in the early stages of the season, with Union Berlin topping the table and Freiburg running them close in second.

De facto leaders and perennial champions Bayern Munich (1/5) were held to a 2-2 draw at home by Stuttgart (11/1) as Union Berlin (19/10) secured a 1-0 victory over FC Köln thanks to a Timo Hübers own goal.

The bookies saw some gains in Italy as Juventus’ (1/2) stuttering start to the season continued as they grabbed a late equaliser against minnows of Serie A Salernitana (6/1) at home.

I Granata took the lead against the Old Lady in the 18th minute thanks to veteran Antonio Candreva sliding the ball into the net. The underdogs doubled their lead from the spot in first-half stoppage time after VAR spotted a handball by Juventus defender Bremer, with Krzysztof Piątek dispatching from the spot.

Bremer made up for his mistake by halving the deficit just after the break. Leonardo Bonucci equalised for Juve in the third minute of stoppage, volleying in a rebound from his saved penalty.

Controversy hit the game when in the 97th minute, Bianconeri newbie Arkadiusz Milik thought he won it for Juve and thus whipped his shirt off in celebration. However, as he had already been booked, Milik was given his marching orders, but it was made worse for the Poland international as his supposed winner was ruled out by VAR and his red card still stood.

This led to a mass brawl at the Juventus Stadium, which then saw Federico Fazio and Juan Cuadrado sent off as a result.

Juventus manager Massimiliano Allegri was also dismissed in a frantic final few minutes.

Gill commented: “With no football in the UK over the weekend, punters looked to the continent. The biggest turnover event of the weekend was Juve’s match with Salernitana, with the Old Lady grabbing a 93rd-minute equaliser to share the spoils in what was a great result for the book.

“However, La Liga was far less kind, with Real Madrid, Barca and Atletico Madrid all scoring four on their way to wins that left big red results in the book.”

The NFL kicked off across the pond as veteran Tom Brady lined up for his 23rd season following a short 40-day retirement. His Tampa Bay Buccaneers won 19-3 against the Dallas Cowboys.

Patrick Mahomes continued his fine form from last season with five touchdown passes in the Kansas City Chiefs’ 44-21 victory over the Arizona Cardinals.

Betfred’s Alan Firkins said: “The NFL made a very welcome return, and the Buffalo Bills were clipped to 9/2 from 6/1 for Super Bowl glory after an authoritative win in Los Angeles against the Rams.

“Meanwhile Patrick Mahomes was busy doing Patrick Mahomes things for the Chiefs with five TD passes in their mauling of Arizona in the desert. Looks like another scintillating season is firmly on the agenda.”

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