THE Challenge Cup is the highlight of the domestic action this weekend and two of the quarter-final matches are televised.

Inverness Caley Thistle meet Dunfermline’s conquerors, Falkirk, on Saturday (BBC Alba, 5.15pm kick-off) and the in-form Championship side are 23/20 to defeat the Bairns inside 90 minutes. Falkirk are 12/5 (Betvictor) and a draw 23/10 (Boylesports/Stan James). According to Boylesports, Caley are 6/10 to progress to the semi-finals while Falkirk are 13/10.

On Sunday, the New Saints host Queen of the South (S4C, 2.45pm). TNS are evens (Betvictor), a draw 12/5 and the Doonhamers 11/4 (Betway). The Welsh protagonists are 1/2 to win the tie, Queen of the South 6/4.

The final European spots for next year’s World Cup will be finalised over the next few days as eight countries fight for four places in a two-legged format. Northern Ireland play Switzerland with the first leg taking place at Windsor Park tonight (Thursday, Sky Sports Football, 7.45pm). Norn Iron are 11/4, a draw 21/10 and the Swiss 13/10 (Bet365). Switzerland are 4/11 to qualify for the World Cup, Northern Ireland 11/4.

Denmark entertain Republic of Ireland on Saturday (Sky Sports Football, 7.45pm) and are 3/4 to build up a first leg lead. The Republic are 19/4 (Bet365) and a draw 13/5; the Danes are 4/6 to secure their World Cup place, Ireland 29/20.

Sweden and Italy begin their battle tomorrow (Friday, Sky Sports Football, 7.45pm) a clash the bookies see as being pretty one-sided; Italy are 4/11 to advance to the finals, Sweden 12/5. Indeed, Italy are marginal favourites to emerge victorious in Stockholm. The Italians are 13/10, a draw 11/5 and Sweden 5/2.

The only first leg game not subject to television coverage is the Balkan clash concerning Croatia and Greece (tonight, 7.45pm). The Croats are 4/11, a draw 18/5 and Greece 12/1. Croatia are 1/3 to book their place in Russia, Greece are 12/5.

It is the rugby union autumn international weekend and Scotland’s friendly with Samoa is televised on BBC1 (Saturday, 2.30pm). The Scots are a prohibitive 1/16 to win the game but on the handicap you can back them off -19 at 10/11 (Betfred). Samoa are at a widely available +20 for the same odds.

Coincidentally, Scotland also meet Samoa in the other code; the early morning match live on Premier Sports (Saturday, 7am) is one where the loser is eliminated from the World Cup. Sadly, if the bookmakers' prices are anything to go by, Scotland will be on the next plane home as they are 25/1 to win the game. The handicap mark falls at Samoa -34 where the Pacific Islanders are evens (Betway) and the Scots are 11/10 (Bet365). The tie price is 25/1 (Ladbrokes).