Toulon tipped to topple Saracens off European Rugby Champions Cup perch
Saracens will look to emulate Toulon's feat of three European Champions Cup titles on the spin when the elite European competition gets under way this weekend, and it's no surprise to see the dominant English side at the head of the betting for the 2017 competition, but the aforementioned Toulon will be one of a number of top-class sides looking to topple Mark McCall's side off their perch in what should be a thrilling showpiece event over the coming months.
- Saracens have won the last two European Champions Cup titles
- Toulon won three titles between 2013 and 2015
- Clermont have lost in three of the last five finals
|Friday - 7.45pm||Odds||Won/Lost||Bet|
|European Rugby Champions Cup Ante Post Tips|
|Tips||Toulon to win Best Bet||@ 15 / 2||Paddy Power|
|Semesa Rokoduguni to be top try scorer||@ 16 / 1||Betway|
A 28-17 victory over Clermont Auvergne at Murrayfield last year saw Saracens retain their Champions Cup crown, and having already propelled to the top of the Premiership this season, it's no surprise to see them installed as the 23/10 favourites with Paddy Power, and if they can avoid any major injuries to key personnel then it's hard to not see them bag a hat-trick of wins this season.
However, there will be a strong French challenge yet again this season and last year's beaten finalists Clermont Auvergne are third in the betting at 17/2 with Paddy Power, and having reached three of the last five finals then could be many punter's ideas of an each-way play, but they have come up short in all three of those finals, so with that cloud hanging over them, then it could be wise to avoid them in the win market.
Toulon dominated this event between 2013 and 2015, as they racked up three wins in a row, and at 15/2 with Paddy Power could be the biggest danger to Saracens, and with a plethora of top quality French internationals mixed with some of the finest talents from around the globe they could be a side that go all the way, and with Saracens being fairly skinny, it's worth taking a chance on Toulon recapturing the crown.
Leinster are another three-times winner of the Champions Cup, and are 9/1 with Coral, but they have just come up short in recent seasons against the elite of Europe, and along with Munster (12/1) are a brace of the Pro 14 clubs that may have their work cut out against the best of English and French sides.
Exeter Chiefs completed a memorable journey to the top of English domestic rugby tree last season, as they defeated Wasps in an epic Premiership final, and the West Country outfit will now look to kick on to the European scene, but they are as big as 33/1 shots with Betfred, and it could be the aforementioned Wasps who stand more chance in the Champions Cup, as they have European pedigree, and at 25/1 with Paddy Power could compete impressively, when we reach the knockout stages.
Montpellier have shown glimpses this season, and the side that are currently third in the French Top 14 are interesting at 10/1 with Ladbrokes, while Racing 92 (20/1) and La Rochelle (25/1) are another brace of sides that could ruffle a few feathers during the competition, but may ultimately come up short against some of the more fancied runners in the ante-post market.
*Odds correct as of 22nd May, 14:12. Odds are subject to change.
Away from the outright betting there's some tremendous opportunities in the top tryscorer betting to have a big-priced winner, and one of the eye-catching names is the Saracens star Liam Williams, who will be aiming to build on a fine British & Irish Lions campaign, and at 12/1 with Betfair Sportsbook is battling it out for favouritism with the likes of Nemani Nadolo (16/1) and Chris Ashton (20/1).
However, it's Bath's Semesi Rokoduguni that catches the eye, as he has been one of their finest attacking talents in recent seasons, and Bath should comfortably make it through their group, and at 16/1 with Betway he is worth backing in the top tryscorer market, which is awash with talented attacking threats.
Top Tryscorer Odds:
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