Sunday, 27 January 2013

Odd Odds - Quite Peculiar Really

Late on Friday night, I happened to notice that the price on Queens Park Rangers to beat Milton Keynes Dons was ~1.7. On the face of it, rather generous I thought. A Premier League side, albeit a struggling one, at home to a League One side 32 places below them, but the market had, what I call a 'loose' look to it. Most big games would see four figures plus to back at say 1.7 and similar to lay at 1.71, but not this one. As many of you will have seen, the price then drifted out to above evens, and if what I read on the Betfair Forum is to be believed, (a big if), quite a substantial amount was being layed. I stayed away from this game, as I do most Cup games, but this was a very strange market. The argument that QPR weren't bothered about the FA Cup is less credible when you think that QPR made the effort to beat West Bromwich Albion in the Third Round, equalising with virtually the last kick of the first match, and scoring late (75 minutes) in the replay. Yes, Harry Redknapp made nine changes, but there was still a team out there in blue and white hoops that should have been able to win quite comfortably, but as everyone reading this probably knows, QPR went 0-4 down before pulling two back in the final ten minutes.

The Ladbrokes takeover of BETDAQ has been covered elsewhere, but the most interesting aspect for me is whether or not the new LADDAQ will become a serious competitor to Betfair, and serious enough to make the latter change some of their more egregious charges.

The email I received from BETDAQ suggests an expansion of the events they will cover, which one hopes might mean offering more markets in-play rather than adding ridiculous sub-markets to events they already cover:

Whilst ensuring that the integrity of the exchange is fully protected, we believe that combining the strengths of Ladbrokes with the expertise of BETDAQ will have a hugely positive impact on the betting experience for our customers.
On completion, Ladbrokes will work with BETDAQ to further enhance the competitiveness of the exchange, focusing initially on growing liquidity and event coverage, as well as expanding the range and depth of markets covered.

While I have no numbers to back up my feeling, it does seems like liquidity on Betfair is falling. I noticed last night that one of my PC reduction churning bets on the NBA (Portland Trail Blazers -1.5 v Los Angeles Clippers) alone comprised a large percentage of the total market.

The screenshot was taken pre-game, but the liquidity in-play is almost non-existent on the handicap markets, not helped when they offer three on the same game, plus two Totals markets one point apart!

Perhaps Betfair won't miss players such as myself who will walk (for obvious reasons) as soon as a viable alternative exists, but other players might miss us, and that viable option is only going to look all the more tempting to them too.

With no EPL action, the FTL tipsters were a little quieter than usual this weekend. With the Premier League in action next Tuesday and Wendesday, I shall probably delay the update until those results are in.

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