European rugby’s premier trophy is the Heineken Cup – rugby’s equivalent of football’s Champions League and it is competed for every year by teams from Europe’s leading rugby-playing Nations.
With all four British Isles nations heavily involved, UK and Irish early betting tends to be heavy for every match way in advance so that’s why we’ll take a very early look at the 2012 chances, based on the Pool draw.
European betting fans always get excited about the Heineken Cup tournament which, despite its reasonably short history, has produced some highlights which have upset the applecart resulting in some very unusual odds, bets and predictions, as well as top quality rugby.
Pools for 2012 Rugby Heineken Cup games are: Pool 1: Munster, Northampton, Scarlets, Castres. Pool 2: Cardiff, London Irish, Edinburgh, Racing Metro. Pool 3: Leinster, Bath, Glasgow, Montpellier. Pool 4: Leicester, Clermont, Ulster, Aroni. Pool 5: Biarritz, Ospreys, Saracens, Benetton Treviso. Pool 6: Toulouse, Harlequins, Gloucester, Connacht.
As one would expect, online Rugby Heineken Cup 2012 betting is very popular with numerous online bookmakers producing good tips, free bets, predictors, and specialized internet bets in to increase punter action on each of their sites.
U.K based online bookmakers will be offering various odds, free bets, and predictions on the fixtures schedule often in the form of promotions or marketing offers - so each time a bet is made with a certain U.K online bookmaker, there’s always the chance of a tangible prize such as tickets or merchandise too.
So what exactly is a good Rugby Heineken Cup 2012 bet for the next tournament?
Well Irish team Leinster were worthy winners in 2011 and but they’re not favourites to retain the trophy this time around, so betting on them might bring some interesting odds.
They have been scheduled to play Bath, Glasgow and tournament new boys Montpellier in Pool 3.
French cracks, Toulouse are general bookmakers’ favourites to win the 2012 final at Twickenham and their fixtures have thrown up some highlights with Ireland’s Connacht and English pair Gloucester and Harlequins in Pool 6 so they should top the standings easily.
English side Leicester could be a good outside bet to reach the final at least depending on how early match results go. The Tigers fixtures see them clash with France’s Clermont, Ulster, a recent quarter-finalist, and Aroni Rugby of Italy in Pool 4.
Northampton, beaten by Leinster in the 2011 final, are not quite as favoured to go as far in next year’s tournament after being given a tough draw against two-time winners Munster of Ireland, as well as Scarlets and Castres in Pool 1.
One of the highlights of the 2012 Heineken Cup could be provided by England’s Aviva Premiership champions Saracens who have managed to avoid any previous Heineken Cup winners in Pool 5. They face Biarritz, Ospreys and Italy’s Benetton Treviso in the opening round of matches to determine which sides will be at the top of standings for the knock-out phase.
Finally, if you’re feeling lucky, the Cardiff Blues are rank outsiders to reach to final but the Welsh outfit takes on London Irish, Edinburgh of Scotland and money-bags French side Racing Metro in Pool 2 so could be worth a cheeky punt.
All of these early group stage games will produce fairly steady betting action with odds, predictors, and tips etc changing rapidly before each match, particularly those involving British teams.
So don’t hesitate to take advantage, too, if you see any free bet offers (or even free bets plural!)
Betting early or a year ahead on big competitions can get you some very good odds so try to enjoy your internet betting this year before looking forward to even more great betting action next year!