Sunday 10 September 2023

FIBA 2023

The risk - or opportunity - of betting on meaningless games was again illustrated in the Third Place match at the FINA Basketball World Cup. A couple of days ago, I wrote that:

The USA start as big favourites against Canada in the meaningless Third Place game on Sunday, a game that hasn't been kind to favourites traditionally with the underdogs winning in both 2010 (Lithuania v Serbia) and 2014 (France v Lithuania). In 2019, France and Australia were joint favourites.
Followers will have been happy with the result as this trend continued, with Canada outlasting the United States in overtime to win 127-118 at odds of around 3.40. 

For the Final itself, my earlier comments were interesting:
Germany are favourites to beat Serbia in the Final, a meaningful game that does tend to go to form.
At the time I wrote that post, Germany were indeed the early favourites:
Germany was available at +900 to win the FIBA World Cup prior to its semifinal matchup against the USA. That's how much the team's upset win over the USA and Serbia's upset of Canada flipped this oddsboard upside down. Germany is now trading as the favorite, and the best price you can find is -115 via Caesars.
However, the market soon determined that Serbia should be in that position, and Germany drifted out to around 2.2 meaning that if you took my advice early, you would have been getting very poor value but ended up backing a winner, whereas if you'd waited until closer to tip-off, you'd have been following the "system" but lost. 

For the record, this was Germany's first World Championship and were around 50/1 at the start of the tournament. 

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