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It may be the second day of the Ayr Gold Cup Meeting, where I have done quite well following Richard Fahey in recent seasons, but my main sporting focus today is not on the start of the Rugby World Cup but the opening day of the Solheim Cup, the women's equivalent of the Ryder Cup. USA are odds-on despite fielding 11 of the 12 players who lost heavily two years ago but I am more interested in the Leading Points Scorer markets and I've backed Morgan Pressel at 8/1 for USA who was 4-4 in her last Solheim Cup in Europe. If you thought that the Ryder Cup was becoming less feisty and more of a love-fest, that can't be said to be the same for the women who are desperate to beat each other and makes for terrific viewing. Hard to forget Mallon and Robbins asking Storenstam to re-take her bunker shot after she holed out arguing that she played out of turn after letting her play first! Hard to imagine that happening in the Ryder Cup. Another advantage is watching Mel Reid and Senorita Munoz of course. Delightful.
I favour Rugby Union marginally over Rugby League but neither are sports I follow particularly. As far as the Union side of the game of the game is concerned, there has to be something inherantly wrong with a sport when the crowd go wild for kicking a ball off the pitch. Still, as this thing is going on for 45 days (the football World Cup only lasts a month!) I thought I should have a minor interest and I've backed Ireland at 10/1. From what I have seen in the Six Nations in the last two years I just favour them over England when push comes to shove and although they lost to the English in their prep run, I thought they looked like a team just getting there and would improve beyond their main European rivals. I'd be interested in Ireland if any bookmaker was to form a market on which European team would go furthest so I should also look to back them to make the final. A NZ-Ireland final seems more likely than 13/2 to me.