Sunday, 3 October 2010


Lecce defeated Catania today, so no joy there for the "strong draw" system, but a lay of Barcelona, far too short at 1.19, more than made up for that. Less than a month ago, Barcelona were 1.07 at home to Hercules, and lost. Next home game, they beat a weak Gijon side (rated 19th) by just 1-0, so their home record by no means justified the 1.19 price. 

Other odds-on favourites failing to win this weekend were Stuttgart, Paris St Germain, Manchester United, Liverpool, Internazionale and Osasuna for an overall profit on this system of 2.22 points and a positive ROI in all leagues bar France, where it is down by 1.8%.

Backing the "strong draw" lost .53 points this weekend with 2 winners from 7 selections. Not too much coming up for football with another international weekend ahead, but there's a full slate of midweek Conference games to dabble with. Strong draws here are hitting at 35%, and while there's not the same level of confidence in these as with the top leagues, they appear to offer value.

The Ryder Cup bet is looking good for now, and although the conventional wisdom is that the Americans play better in the singles than with a partner, I'm not looking to lay off the bet.

Thanks to Joep for his recommendation of Matchbook as a possibly better site for trading basketball and baseball. The liquidity on the Padres - Giants game wasn't great, but I'll open an account for the play-offs and the upcoming NBA season.

I do like how sites other than Betfair have more than one market on the screen - the Match Odds, handicap and over / unders for example. Something I would like to see Betfair introduce - there's a lot of white space to fill without the screen looking cluttered.

The Atlanta Braves beat the Philadelphia Phillies earlier today, and the San Diego Padres currently trail the San Francisco Giants 0-2 and if that result stands, there will be no play-off games needed next week. The Giants will win the NL West, and the Braves take the wild-card spot.

The SBP served up another losing College Football platter this weekend going 10-12 overall. His NFL tip of the Colts is still in-play, and tomorrow he's on the New England Patriots (-1) @ Miami Dolphins. Update: Colts lost by 3. Oh dear.

Football Elite had a nice Recommended Bets winner in Mainz '05 at 2.34, while the short-list selections weren't so good with Birmingham City, Hannover and Parma all losing, and just Sochaux (2.18) winning.

Finally, from Victoria's The Age comes this piece on problem gambling being hereditary. I particularly enjoyed the contribution from "The InterChurch Gambling Taskforce" whose spokesman Mark Zirnsak said the results were "a wake-up call around the harm that gambling is causing to children, as well as the gamblers".

No mention of the harm that primitive superstitious beliefs cause each day around the world. "Children [of gamblers] aren't given a choice," he says. As if children of the less educated religious among us are given a choice!

Presumably he expects religious parents not to indoctrinate their children with their religious beliefs too? Nah - didn't think so. Taking children to a place of worship for some brainwashing is to be encouraged, but teaching your kids to understand odds and probability and value is a sin.

Given the choice between my kids spending time on Betfair or in a Catholic Priest run chat room, I know which I would prefer.

The problem, of course, is that the definition of 'gambling' is a loose one. The degenerate gambler betting the mortgage / grocery money at the track or bookies is one thing. The nerdy, value seeking, mathematically inclined trader gambler is quite another.

Finally, to Anonymous who writes

Hi, i remember reading somewhere on your blog about the FTS picks - can you direct me to that particular article? ta
I'm afraid that wasn't this blog. I am familiar with Ian Erskine's system, lay the draw, but am not a big fan of it. Here's an except from his Bankbuilder pdf:
I want to back the draw at 2.0 for £100. I then want to immediately place a Lay of the draw at 1.85 for £105.

The key is the timing and you will need to watch the match coupons first to get the gist of the movement but this all happens very quickly. Once the two bets are matched you will leave a profit of £5 if either team wins and £10.75 if it remains a draw (commission to be deducted).

The only way you can lose is if there happens to be a goal between the back bet being matched and the lay bet being matched but the crash happens so quickly that you would have to be really unlucky to get caught (and you still have the draw in your favour).

This method is very effective and the key is to not get too greedy with the size of your bets or the time between the two bets, trying to nick an extra point either way.
The only way you can lose is by being really unlucky. Er, yes.

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