Sports betting: Draw the value option

BLACKBURN AND Chelsea can fight out a draw (maybe 1-1) in their Premiership match at Ewood Park this evening. Blackburn, 18th in the table after a poor start to the campaign, were arguably unlucky to go down 1- 0 at home to the useful French team Lyons in the first leg of their Uefa Cup tie last Tuesday. They are fancied to contain the Super Cup winners who have also made a slow start to the domestic season. Blackburn's Kevin Davies may be the best bet to score the first goal.

There could be some value for punters in a quartet of the second round, second leg Worthington Cup ties tomorrow and Wednesday in which the away sides enter the game with a 3-0 cushion from the first leg and therefore have little real incentive to perform to their best.

The underdogs Chester look good value to either beat or draw with Sunderland, 3-0 first-leg winners in the second leg of their tie at the Deva stadium tomorrow night. Sunderland, having coasted to victory in the first leg, can afford to lose 2-0 and therefore look very dodgy odds-on favourites. The same remark applies to Leicester, who visit Chesterfield. The Spireites must represent decent value to beat - or at least draw with - Leicester.

On Wednesday, it should be one-way traffic when Crystal Palace try to erase a 3-0 deficit against Bury. Bury will surely be looking simply to survive at Selhurst Park. Out of form Palace, however, are no great value at the odds on offer and a draw might well be the best option. Finally, Reading, using the same criteria, must be a fair bet to beat - or draw with - their guests, Barnsley.

C H L S T

Blackburn 7-4 13-8 7-4 13-8 9-5

Draw 9-4 11-5 9-4 11-5 11-5

Chelsea 5-4 11-8 5-4 11-8 5-4

Chester 9-2 11-2 4-1 5-1 9-2

Draw 12-5 12-5 13-5 5-2 13-5

Sunderland 4-7 1-2 4-7 8-15 8-15

Chesterfield 10-3 3-1 3-1 3-1 7-2

Draw 9-4 9-4 9-4 12-5 12-5

Leicester 8-11 4-5 4-5 4-5 4-6

C. Palace 10-11 10-11 4-5 5-6 Evens

Draw 12-5 9-4 9-4 12-5 2-1

Bury 12-5 5-2 3-1 11-4 5-2

Reading 2-1 2-1 2-1 2-1 2-1

Draw 9-4 9-4 9-4 12-5 9-4

Barnsley 11-10 11-10 11-10 11-10 11-10

C Coral, H William Hill, L Ladbrokes, S Stanley, T Tote

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