In my time it used to be a dozen or so blokes with transistor radios pressed to their sweaty ears who would relay the news across the terraces. Now "real time" promotion and relegation updates are received via mobiles and hand-held computers.
The final day of the Championship tomorrow will be like this for at least a dozen sets of fans – the classic examples being Stoke City (second) at home to Leicester (21st), and Southampton (22nd) at home to Sheffield United (ninth). In what might be termed "the Motsonian paradox", all four teams need to win. There are at least another five volatile fixtures and, although this fevered context doesn't make betting easy, it can be fun.
My coupon, for a £5 accumulator at Totesport, reads: Ipswich-Hull, draw (13-5); Southampton draw (11-4); Stoke win (4-5); Crystal Palace win (4-9); Wolves win (4-7); Blackpool win (2-1); Sheffield Wednesday win (8-11).
It's Guineas weekend at Newmarket. New Approach is a strong favourite for today's 2,000 Guineas, but needs a pony to accompany him to the start, which sounds ominous. Instead, try Ibn Khaldun, £10 win at 9-2 with sponsors Stan James, with the same terms for Spacious in the 1,000 Guineas tomorrow.
The Tournament Players Championship starts at Sawgrass next Thursday. No odds are available yet, but my picks are Phil Mickelson (£10 win), Adam Scott (£5ew) and Sean O'Hair (£5ew).
Last week's wagers
Two goal-line clearances prevented United drawing at Chelsea while Hoo La Baloo finished third, not first (£20 lost). At the snooker, Maguire and Day went out in the quarter-finals (£20 lost).Reuse content