Tuesday, 8 March 2011

O'Dwyer Straits - Money For Nothing?

The 'weekend' finished with a nice winner for Football Elite, as Deportivo La Coruna beat Real Sociedad 2-1. When Sociedad pulled it back to a one goal game, I was thinking 'here we go again', and waiting for the 90' penalty, but Deportivo held on.

The ratings are updated, and Everton are rather surprisingly in fourth place right now with Manchester City, Tottenham Hotspur and Liverpool all within six points. In last place, and looking value at 2.06 for relegation, are Blackpool. The Best Football Trader mentions Blackburn Rovers as a candidate for relegation , and they are certainly in the mix with games to come versus Arsenal and the two Manchesters and in fact, every game is against a team with something to play for although Bolton Wanderers (currently the form team in the EPL) might have given up by the time they meet! My bottom six, from the bottom up by rating, are currently Blackpool, West Bromwich Albion, Wigan Athletic, Birmingham City, Blackburn Rovers and Wolverhampton Wanderers.

The form team across all the major leagues right now is Nuremberg, who have exceeded expectations in their last six games. Olympique Lyonnais have managed this in their last five, and Hannover '96 in their last four. On the flip-side, Hoffenheim, Chievo Verona and Palermo have all underperformed in four consecutive matches.

John O'Dwyer is trying to get back on his feet over at Betfair Profit & Loss but he seems to be all over the place. On February 18th, he wrote

"I am back on Betfair now and have £450 in my account, so I'll continue with the updates as previous, and see if I can build it into something more manageable."
Fair enough. It is certainly possible to build a large bank from a small deposit, but on March 4th, he wrote
"I've not had a bet for around a week, so it would be pointless providing a screen-shot of any profit or loss. I withdrew a lot of it a week ago to pay for a few bills. I have now however got £200 in my account".
So the statement that he had "£450 in my account" is very misleading. While technically, the balance may have shown £450, if that money is earmarked for debts or living expenses, it shouldn't be in a betting account. If there is one golden rule for gambling, it must be "Don't bet with money that you can't afford to lose". Anyway, so even £200 is enough to build on, so long as you have an edge and time. You're not going to turn it into six figures in a week, but over a longer period, this is certainly achievable. But now, we find out that John isn't "looking to build it into something more manageable", he is looking to "do this full-time" - by which I presume means he is expecting to make an income from trading. You can trade full-time on a bank of any size - you just won't make a very good income for a while. As I have said before, your betting bank should be money you don't need, and left alone and allowed to build. If you need the money for other things, it's not going to happen.

I guess everyone with a betting account is an optimist to some degree, but a healthy dose of realism with that optimism is necessary. When we first learn about betting and probabilities, if it's at a young age, most of us, if we are honest, probably entertain thoughts of becoming full-time gamblers. I know I did. Somehow the laws of probability wouldn't apply to me. The long losing runs were things that happened to other people, but of course that's nonsense. Go to any casino on any day and see how often 'evens' chances lose consecutively. In the long run, if you are not getting value, then you will lose steadily, and most of us learn that sooner or later. Turning £200 into a large enough bank to generate a living wage is possible, but not in five minutes.

If there is a second golden rule of gambling, it is "Be patient". We have the option of doing nothing, an option that I suspect many people don't take full advantage of, myself included. The temptation for a 'fun' bet, while watching for example the Barcelona v Arsenal game, can be hard to resist, but like the occasional visit to a casino, it's for entertainment, rather than making money. Having said that, when I'm in a casino, I do play the games that offer bets that are closest to value, my favourite being craps, and similarly playing the liquid markets on a game like tonight's mean that I shouldn't go too far wrong. Famous last words.

"So knock me down, tear me up but I will bare it all broken just to fill my cup" - The Decemberists

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