Two international competitions close today, with Spain and USA battling it out in the FIBA U19 World Championship for Women in Thailand while Serbia and France vie for the FIBA U18 European Championship Men title.
The oddsmakers over at Sporting Bet have definitely taken a conservative tack across the board. Fittingly for this intensely competitive tournament, neither team is seen as a clear favorite, with Serbia at 17/20 odds to win outright and France at 9/10. Team Serbia is giving France a measly 0.5 points in the handicap bet.
Perhaps the best bet of ‘em all, given the France U18s’ propensity for running up the score early and blowing leads late, might be the “Half-Time Handicap.” Even here, though, Sporting Bet isn’t hedging any bets (so to speak), with both teams getting 17/20 odds to be leading at halftime; odds on a tie score at halftime are a relatively conservative 10/1 as well.
Finally, the over/under is a real poser as well. The immediate thought is just to blindly go the under, figuring in the pressure and, again, those last collapses by Team France. On the other hand, Sporting Bet’s over/under here is a low-low 133.5, while Serbia and France have proven to be two of the tournament’s higher-scoring teams in each averaging around 72 points per game – an expected final score by the averages of 73-72, then. Go figure.
Meanwhile, the Bet on Bet lines reckon the Women’s U19 final to be a different story altogether. Though no specific lines are offered as yet, the outright odds tell the story. Here’s the table:
FIBA U19 World Championship
USA to win: 2/13
Spain to win: 15/4
Indeed, it seems that for Spain to pull off two victories over a team that has lost a total of three at this level in this decade would be a major sporting achievement – a miracle, one might say.
But especially for a team that had little experience playing as a unit, Team Spain has been the talk of the U19s, and why not? These ladies are 8-0 and the game against the Americans showed a scoring machine capable of keeping up with literally the best in the world. In hindsight, it seems that the only team capable of winning this championship game other than the USA is Spain.
No wonder there’s no pointspread here…
Additionally, BetonBet.com and SportingBet.com are both offering a number of lines on the classification games in the FIBA U18 European Championship Men as well. Click on the links at right for more information on these. Good luck, everyone!