Friday 30 May 2014

Tense Situation

Most of you will by now have read the court-sider exposé by Carl Bialik on the excellent

If you haven't yet, read it, and understand that when trading in-play, you will only get matched at poor value if the court-siders are active.

One comment in particular deserves to be corrected, and that was from Sporting Data's Steve High who said:
The identity of the person on the other side of his bets didn’t matter. The clearest point I want to make is, he’s a guy who wants his bet to be matched.
This is not true, or at least disingenuous. The other guy wanted (past tense) to bet on a player at a certain price, but his bet is only matched if it is no longer a good value bet, i.e when the other guy no longer wants his bet matched.

It’s a bit like negotiating to buy a car for a certain price, and then seeing it get rear-ended while the negotiation are ongoing. You might still want to buy the car, but you are unlikely to want to pay the pre-accident price. A point has been completed, the game situation has changed, the probability of a win has changed after that point, and thus, so has the value price.

It's also a little sweeping to say the identity of the person on the other side of the bet doesn't matter. Technically it doesn't, but in a zero-sum game, will it matter when those other people wise up and realise they are playing in a rigged casino and walk away? Will it matter when the Gambling Commission rule that in-play trading is unfair, and ban it?

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