16:20 Diamond Jubilee Stakes
The end of a fascinating week of racing and the highlight of Ascot Saturday is a Group 1 over six furlongs and it has attracted a brilliant looking field with a first prize of over £340k. It is also a wide open betting heat with three runners vying for favouritism.
Frankie Dettori has has a wonderful week and he won this last year on the Wesley Ward trained Undrafted. This year he rides for Charlie Hills and he has a great chance with Magic Memory. Last time out he stayed on really strongly to win a Group 2 at York and prior to that he won a Group 3 at Newmarket in good to soft conditions.
Henry Candy runs Twilight Sun and he has the brilliant Ryan Moore on board. He was well beaten last time out by Magic Memory when never really in the race and prior to that he was second in the Sipco British Champion Stakes. He is a Group 1 winner with plenty of pedigree and if he runs up to his full potential then he is sure to be involved at the finish.
The Tin Man is the third of the trio of favourites and another with a great chance. Tom Queally rides for James Fanshawe and he won a Listed race last time out on very taking fashion. That form puts him some way below the other two mentioned but he has plenty of scope for improvement and I am confident he is capable of putting up a good fight and will run the others close.
Portugal v Austria
Both of these teams had extremely disappointing results in their first matches and will be hoping to make amends today and put themselves one step away from qualification for the knock out stages. Portugal were held to a 1-1 draw with Iceland and Austria went down 2-0 to Hungary after having a man sent off.
Although Portugal missed a few chances I was not impressed with them at all, and given the way the Austrians sailed through qualification, I think they have enough to be able to get the win today at a nice price. They will have to play a whole lot better than they did against the Hungarians, but they do have a lot more about them than that, and I expect them to show it here today.
Belgium v Rep of Ireland
Belgium were extremely poor against Italy in their first match and lost 2-0 whilst Ireland drew 1-1 with Sweden. With Italy having already qualified from this group it is wide open for second spot and I expect to see both teams all out for the win here as that would pretty much ensure a passage through to the next round.
Belgium have a collection of outstanding players which the manager appears unable to work into a cohesive unit. In Eden Hazard and Kevin De Bruyne they have two of the best attacking players in the tournament and can cause teams all sorts of the problems. Even playing poorly they should have too much for this limited Ireland side and I expect them to win by a couple of goals.
16:20 Ascot - Magic Memory 2 points @ 7/2 (Most firms)
Portugal v Austria - Austria win - 1 point @ 41/10 (Marathon Bet)
Belgium v Rep of Ireland - Belgium minus one - 2 points @ 21/10 (Paddy Power)