Below is Gerry's betting preview for the weekend Sat 20th May 2006.
The views expressed are solely those of the author.
For out and out drama, youve got to love the Championship play-off final. Who could forget Charltons pulsating victory over Sunderland in the classic final of 98? Well sadly, my old man. In fact, if you see a small befuddled pensioner roaming the streets, youll be better off avoiding football trivia altogether, senility is no picnic.
Watford and Leeds meet in this years showpiece, in what is believed to be the most valuable game in world football, the winners pocket something in the region of £35m, and thats quite a respectable little region. Its a tough one to call, but as Leeds failed to win in nine of their last ten league matches, the Hornets look the pick at 8/5. With the reward so great for the victors, theres a possibility that things could get a little bit tasty. Adrian Boothroyd (the Watford manager) was the instigator of a mass brawl when he wound up One Size Fitz Hall in the semi, hell definitely have the Hornets buzzing against his former employers. A sending off is available at 2/1, youll be kicking yourself if you miss it. Watfords Marlon King has been a revelation this season. The Championships top scorer bounced back from an unproductive loan spell at Elland Road to bang in 22 goals this season. Marlon famously served five months at her majestys pleasure, but he regrets mistakes made in the past, he should never have played for Leeds. The regal King is available at 11/2 to bag the opener.
Theres also a play-off final in the Conference, and as my old man used to say before senility kicked in like a rampant mule; Any football is better than no football. Hereford and Halifax meet in the grand finale to the non-league season, and Halifax look a little bit of value; the Shaymen can move mountains at 15/8.
With football matches thin on the ground, our betting needs will have to be serviced in the ring. Amir Khan steps up in class to fight Laszlo Komjathi in Belfast on Saturday night; although fighting my wife would be a real step up for the embryonic future World champion. Amir is finally being tested and i have complete confidence that Khan will take it in his stride. Boltons finest is worth a punt at 5/1 with Stan James to crush The Rock in the third, the big hitters can back Khan to move to 7-0 at 1/50 with Corals.Danny Williams steps in for a troubled Scott Harrison on the same card and you cant blame Frank Warren for throwing Williams an opponent who may or may not have swept roads in Mexico. Williams is scheduled to fight Skelton on 8th July, so a defeat is completely out of the question for Warren, backing Williams to win is buying money.Eamonn Magee tops the bill against Takaloo and the Irishman should be backed at 11/8 to win by a decision. Takaloo can punch, but as Ricky Hatton discovered, Magees chin is as solid as they come. Takaloo hasnt fought a quality opponent since Wayne Alexander punched him so hard he forgot where he lived, a scenario my old man is more than familiar with.