Cue Card evens for Charlie Hall defence

Cue Card and Paddy Brennan winning last year's Charlie Hall

PICTURE: Martin Lynch ( Cue Card evens for Charlie Hall defence By Keith melrose 4:00PM 24 OCT 2016

CUE CARD, who last year used the bet365 Charlie Hall Chase as a springboard to one of the great comeback seasons, has been installed as an even-money favourite with the sponsors to defend his title in the race on Saturday.

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Colin Tizzard's stable star had been in th doldrums when he came to the race last year, but he beat Dynaste and went on to take the Betfair Chase, King George and Betfred Bowl. He also fell when upsides three out in the Gold Cup.

Also among the 11 entered in the Charlie Hall is Coneygree, who managed what Cue Card could not in winning the Gold Cup in 2015. He remains set for the Betfair Chase as his main target and would reportedly run only if plenty of rain arrived in West Yorkshire, which is not forecast.

Coneygree is the 11-2 second-favourite, with the RSA winner Blaklion at 8-1 and Menorah, the 2014 winner, at 10s.

It is 16-1 bar the four, with Dynaste, Irish Cavalier, Sausalito Sunrise and The Last Samuri all available at that price. Saphir Du Rheu, Virak (both 20s) and Wakanda (33s) complete the field.

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