Sunday, 6 February 2011

Goal Famine

I seem to have been all over the place this weekend. With the knowledge that a hit from the PC is coming, my bets have been, if not reckless, a little more free-spirited. I didn't pick a good weekend for the Over / Under experiment in the EPL, with a record breaking Saturday for goals, and Overs everywhere. Today I had Over in the West Ham United v Birmingham City game, and of course it finishes 0-1. When I looked at the Chelsea v Liverpool game on Friday, the Under / Over market was priced at exactly where I had them (1.9 / 2.11), but a little before kick-off this afternoon, and the Under 2.5 had lengthened significantly and was value at 2.08. I was a little hesitant, guilty perhaps of the 'anchoring' effect of yesterday's goal-fest, (a partial reason perhaps, why the odds had drifted so much) but I jumped on the Under and it paid off nicely for a profit on the day. Overall a small loss on the weekend on these bets, but if the Total Charges are over 20% this week, it'll be worth it.

There was an interesting discussion on the Betfair forum concerning someone (the Investor) who had lost £14k on the Newcastle - Arsenal game. The main point of contention was whether or not he should have layed off at 1.01. The individual concerned is one of the more successful on the exchanges, at least as far as one can tell, and my feeling is that he is successful, at least in part, because he DOESN'T lay off at 1.01 unless it is value to do so. A number of, to put it kindly, less experienced, or more bluntly, clueless, posters seem to think that you should always lay off at 1.01. Of course, these same individuals who have no concept of value are people whose banks never build up to the level where one can 'afford' to lose £14k. There's also the issue of how much £14k is to someone. One poster referred to it as a 'mortgage deposit' and for him that may be true, but for someone with a paid-for house, and a million or two in investments, (there were 489,000 UK millionaires in 2007), a loss of £14k is not much more than an irritation. In fact, it is quite likely that a down day for the stock market (not an infrequent occurrence) would result in a loss exceeding that amount, which is one big reason why the number of UK millionaires dropped to 242,000 in 2009! The bottom line though, is that you do not lay off at 1.01 simply because you can. You should do so only if it is value to do so.

At 4-0 to Arsenal, I would say that 1.01 was a value back, but borderline when reduced to 10 men. I wasn't watching this market, so I'm not sure how it moved, but I would imagine 1.01 was available on the back side once Newcastle had scored, and if I had £14k on the line, I'd be looking to close out fast!

No joy for Peter Nordsted's Drawmaster system this week, going 0 for 3, as did my strong draw picks. Two wins from four for Football Elite, with Bologna (2.16) following Hannover (2.6) today. Osasuna and Cagliari were the losing picks.

One strong draw out of three for me, with Auxerre v Lille at 3.3. These continue to be very profitable, and three for three in the Six Nations, with the brilliantly thought out strategy of backing all favourites paying dividends.

And then there's the small matter of the Super Bowl later tonight. The unique Green Bay Packers face the Pittsburgh Steelers in Arlington, Texas. While the Dallas Cowboys arrogantly claim to be America's Team, in my opinion it is the Packers who are more deserving of this name. The Packers are the only non-profit, community-owned franchise in American professional sports major leagues, and while the typical average city population of other NFL franchises is not far short of a million, the city of Green Bay, Wisconsin, has barely 100,000. Between them, the Packers and Steelers have won nine Super Bowls, with Pittsburgh winning a record six titles.

It should be a close game, with Pittsburgh +2.5 at 2.2 looking like the value punt. As one tipster says "Big Ben is really good at two things: avoiding rape charges and winning Super Bowls". There should be plenty of trading opportunities though for those who can sleep in.

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