Saturday, 5 April 2008


Does anyone sitting at home actually manage to make money consistently by betting on tennis in-running?

I long ago realised that I was always going to be behind court-siders or people who had access to court-side information, but I have had some success with 'playing the numbers' (backing when the weight-of-money indicates I should, and then laying off) but it is stressful to say the least.

Tonight I am looking at the numbers jumping around as Andy Roddick is playing Nikolay Davydenko and with Davydenko a set up, I decided to jump in with a bet on him at 1.73. As per usual, (or so it seems), the price then immediately moves against me, and my heart rate goes over 100, (or at least it feels like it). About two hours later, ok, more like five minutes later, the price is back down to where I backed at, and then drops still further, to 1.66, at which point I lay-off, leaving zero on Roddick, and all the green on Davydenko.

Why did I lay off at that time? I think it's because the market initially moved against me, so psychologically I say to myself "If I can get out of this even, I'll be happy" and thus when the opportunity to get out with a nice profit presented itself, I took it. Tennis being what it is, had I waited just a few more minutes I could have layed off closer to 1.3, (at which point I went Green-all-Over) and it wasn't that long before the game was over in straight sets and I could have greened up at 1.0x.

Maybe I should play with smaller amounts (I put £900 on and wouldn't have been happy to lose that!), or lay-off part of the bet. Maybe I should have let the bet run, and traded out at a loss only if the market moved against me. In the end, I came away with £47.23, about 5% of my initial investment, but I can't help feeling I should have made more. But a win is a win.

One of the problems with Betfair, when compared with the stock market, is that there is no ability to put a stop-loss bet into the market, for example a bet to lay at 2.0 to close my 1.73 position for a controlled loss, since that would be immediately matched if I didn't want it to be taken (the bet is still in good shape) or would remain unmatched if I DID want it to be (the bet is awful and no one is interested!)

Anyone any thoughts, comments or ideas?

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