Wexford's hard drive beats computer
Does the computer which produces the fixtures for the Allianz Leagues cast an eye on the odds before delivering the match sequences?
There's some suspicion that indeed might be the case, certainly in 1B hurling, where, for the second successive year, the favourites were paired in the final round. It ran to plan last season when Clare and Limerick, having won their first four games, met in a promotion clash which produced a Banner win.
Galway (4/5) and Limerick (6/4), who topped the betting before the start this year, are scheduled to meet in the last round on March 26. It was regarded as the likely promotion decider, only for scissor-wielding Wexford (5/1) to come along and shred the script, beating Limerick and Galway in the first two rounds.
Now Wexford are 1/100 to top the group, with Galway on 16/1 and Limerick 25/1. That's based on the belief that Davy Fitzgerald's men will render the other pair helpless by beating Kerry, Offaly and Laois in the last three rounds.
Mind you, Fitzgerald will be very wary. Wexford lost to Offaly in last year's league and had only a point to spare over Laois so there's still work to be done.
Interestingly, both Galway (5/1 joint second favourites with Waterford behind Tipperary 11/8 and Limerick 14/1) are ahead of Wexford (16/1) to win the league outright. Not that Wexford will care. Promotion would be more than a decent return for this year.