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Prove us wrong All Whites! – TAB

13November 2013

Prove us wrong All Whites! – TAB

With the chance for New Zealand to reach the World Cup for only the third time on the line, Thursday’s critical away game against mighty Mexico is looming as one of the biggest games in New Zealand Football history. Amid the mounting tension and excitement, the TAB has set the odds for the All Whites to beat Mexico at Stadium Azteca at a lofty $13.

Responding to sure-fire demand to bet on and watch the game on Thursday morning, the TAB has 11 sites open early from 8.00am for the 9.30am kick-off: Albany TAB, Mt Roskill TAB, Victoria St TAB, The Right Track and Alexandra Park TAB in Auckland; Trax Bar, Four Kings and Lower Hutt TAB in Wellington; Merivale TAB in Christchurch; and Frankton TAB in Waikato.

TAB bookie Gary Pearn said that as much as the TAB would love to be proved wrong, the odds are stacked against the All Whites.

“The Mexicans are very skilful and fast. While they have gone for a squad without any overseas-based players – which rules out the likes of Manchester United superstar Javier ‘Chicharito’ Hernandez – the Mexican league is rated 11th strongest in the world and this squad recently beat Finland 4-2.”

Three facts pointing toward a Mexican win are that:

· Mexico are perennial favourites to qualify for the World Cup, having appeared in the tournament 14 times.

· Mexico and the All Whites last met in a friendly in Los Angeles in June 2011, which Mexico won 3-0, and Mexico has a current FIFA ranking of #24 compared to the All Whites’ #79.

· The game is being played at Stadium Azteca in front of around 105,000 passionate Mexican fans – about the equivalent of the entire population of Lower Hutt where the TAB is based.

Despite the odds, the TAB expects plenty of punters to back the All Whites.

“Fans won't worry about all the reasons why the All Whites should lose. The All Whites have bucked the odds when it matters before. In the last World Cup they should have lost to Italy and Paraguay, and they should have lost to Bahrain in qualifying four years ago – but they didn’t,” said Mr Pearn

Three reasons why the All Whites could pull off another massive upset:

· In the lead up to these huge games, Mexico has had four coaches in just six weeks.

· Ricki Herbert’s experience as coach of the All Whites – he's been there and he's done it.

· New Zealand has its European-based stars for the clash – Mexico doesn’t.

“This is a massive moment for New Zealand football. All the statistics point to a Mexican win, but statistics are for normal games. Our heads tell us Mexico; our hearts tell us New Zealand. We hope the punters and the All Whites prove us wrong!” said Mr Pearn.

The TAB contributes a share of betting turnover and profit to each National Sporting Organisation on whose sport it takes bets. In 2012/13, the TAB returned more than $4 million to New Zealand NSOs, including $536,012 to New Zealand Football. New Zealand Football uses the additional funds to align, organise and grow football from grassroots to talent development.


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