Nicky Henderson's Osric has disappointed in novice hurdles so far but may do better now sent handicapping so cannot be ruled out but a better bet looks to be COEUR DE FOU, who gets the vote ahead of Full Of Joy. The last mentioned looks the pick of Jonjo O'Neill's two runners in the race ahead of Munster Pride with Tony McCoy riding him for the first time, although he does need to improve on previous form now in a handicap for the first time and may want the ground to be softer than it is. Tail Of The Bank faces no easy task giving weight away all round following his win in a maiden hurdle at Newcastle last time and of more interest may be Victor Dartnell's Henry King, who ran in the Champion Bumper at last season's festival and has shown some promise over hurdles. Ian Williams has his team in good order and his representative, Acknowledgement, has to be considered off his light weight but a 22lb rise for his win at Bangor last time looks harsh. Henry Daly's Arctic Ben is less exposed than most of these and has to be respected but preference is for Tom George's Coeur De Fou, who has run some decent races in handicaps in his last couple of starts and he has every chance off just a 4lb higher mark than when a close third in a tough race at Doncaster last time.
Tail of The Bank (IRE) 4-1 (10-13) Mid-division, took keen hold, headway 4th, jumped slowly 6th, soon outpaced, switched left and rallied after 3 out, went 2nd next, led flat, stayed on well, won at Newcastle 2m mdn hdl (5) hvy in Feb beating Betterthanlikely (10-11) by 3 1/2l, 16 ran.
Osric (IRE) 14-1 (11-2) Held up towards rear, headway into mid-division 5th, outpaced 3 out, never on terms, 6th of 9, 44l behind Lush Life (11-2) at Ascot 2m nov hdl (3) gs in Feb.
Henry King (IRE) 2-1fav (11-2) Led, headed approaching 2 out, mistake when weakening last, 5th of 8, 16l behind Johnny Mullen (10-9) at Wincanton 2m nh nov hdl (3) hvy in Feb.
Munster Pride (IRE) 14-1 (11-7) Led until 2nd, soon led again, headed 3rd, led after 5th until next, outpaced after 7th, stayed on same pace approaching last, 7th of 12, 8l behind Good For Blue (11-0) at Huntingdon 2m 4f hcp hdl 0-115 (4) sft in Feb.
Arctic Ben (IRE) 9-1 (11-10) Held up, in rear, headway approaching 2 out, kept on into 4th flat, 4th of 16, 11l behind Qaspal (11-5) at Kempton 2m cond hcp hdl 0-1115 (4) gs in Feb.
Zafranagar (IRE) 4-1 (11-2) Mid-division, headway 4 out, ridden to chase leaders next, one pace 2 out, 6th of 13, 14l behind Leith Walk (9-7) at Musselburgh 2m 4f hcp hdl 0-120 (3) gs in Feb.
Rock 'n' Roller (FR) 20-1 (11-1) In touch, driven and effort approaching 2 out, soon ridden and outpaced, 7 lengths 3rd and no impression when hit last, 3rd of 14, 15l behind Mille Chief (11-0) at Huntingdon 2m nh nov hdl (4) sft in Jan.
Coeur de Fou (FR) 10-1 (11-7) Held up mid-division, headway to chase leaders approaching 3 out, kept on from last, 3rd of 18, 2 1/4l behind Stagecoach Pearl (11-5) at Doncaster 2m nov hcp hdl 0-110 (4) gd in Dec.
Full Of Joy (IRE) 14-1 (11-0) Held up, towards rear, headway approaching 3 out, weakened before 2 out, 6th of 15, 26l behind Fahrisee (11-0) at Hereford 2m 1f NH mdn hdl (4) gs in Feb.
Freddie The Third (IRE) 11-2 (10-0) Not fluent in rear, mistake 8th, blundered 11th, tailed off when pulled up before 15th, in a race won by Buck Mulligan (10-8) at Ludlow 3m 1f hcp chs 0-130 (3) sft in Dec, 9 ran.
Acknowledgement 7-2 (10-0) Held up mid-division, led approaching 2 out, clear approaching last, easily, won at Bangor 2m 1f hcp hdl (4) sft in Dec beating Heredias (10-10) by 17l, 13 ran.