Saturday, 28 April 2012

Small windfall

Things haven't really gone to plan this week, but I'm not too worried as it hasn't cost me too much. As mentioned before, I backed Selby to win the snooker champs but he crashed out in the first round. It was a pretty bad performance from him but it was evident he wasn't fully fit and hadn't had enough practice in the build up to the tournament. £25 loss for that one. I decided not to bet again because it seems a bit of a minefield at the moment, with many top seeds suffering shock losses, not to mention the brilliant Stephen Hendry tearing up the snooker scene like it's 1995. I'll just take a back seat and enjoy the snooker from now.

On the football side of things it was a very poor performance from Newcastle today, but it wasn't a complete surprise as Martinez is performing wonders at Wigan at the moment, as usual just pulling it out at the last minute. All is not lost though as Arsenal could only muster a draw today and the other two play tomorrow afternoon. In other news though, I have finally received the payout from the 'Best of the Rest' bet that I made at the beginning of the season. City cruised through and it was never even in doubt, making me a cool £300.02. It is just a shame that this was the last year that we will get a good price on City.

That's all from me guys, not much else to report on. Paddy Power's enhanced specials have slowed slightly but I did manage to get on one more this week to make about a tenner. Bet365 are doing another of their £50 in-play free bets for the big game on Monday which I will be getting on to make another £30 guaranteed. Other than that though I am not looking forward to Monday (as a United fan), can't help but feel City have the momentum. Good luck everyone and enjoy your weekends.

Monday, 23 April 2012

Paddy 'ell

The last week has featured nothing from me except carefully observing the exploits of Newcastle, whilst regularly checking the Paddy Power Twitter page for more enhanced bets. We shall start with the former. This weekend was a dream in terms of results for my top 4 Newcastle bet, and I am starting to think that they may actually finish in the top 4 (kind of, anyway). They have hard fixtures to come however, starting with an away match against a rejuvenated Wigan side, before a HUGE match away to Chelsea followed by the simple matter of Man City at the 'Sports Direct Arena'. With teams like this (others include Spurs, Arsenal, Liverpool) it has always been my greatest concern when they travel away from home to the 'smaller' sides, as they often tend to take their foot off the gas, or even not have the ability to grind out an ugly 1-0. Newcastle's recent very impressive victory over Swansea eliminated this concern for me temporarily, but with no prior results to compare against (for their form this season has been a shock for us all), it is difficult to gauge at what point Newcastle will stop 'doing it'. In spite of this however, I have chosen merely to claim my stake back and leave a £200 green on Newcastle to finish in the top 4, and will sit it out for a bit longer. I have a couple of reasons for doing this; one of them is Tottenham and the other is Chelsea. What I mean by this is that neither of these teams particularly inspire me at the moment and Newcastle look like the only team who really want that top four spot. Chelsea are obviously extremely busy right now with the second leg coming up against Barca, and the F.A. Cup final against Liverpool and, despite what Di Matteo says, they are obviously more focused on silverware this season than reaching the Champions League again. The big game vs Newcastle takes place the Wednesday before their cup final against Liverpool, and I see no reason why Newcastle cannot get something from it. On the other side we have Spurs who have suffered an awful run of form recently. They have a straightforward home game before two away games to relegation-threatened opposition and, having not won away since 27th December, I don't really fancy them to take six points from those. Up the Geordies.

This week has also seen the birth of Paddy Power's ludicrous enhanced odds offer on selected outcomes. If you haven't seen this already, they basically massively enhance some odds (i.e. United to beat Everton to evens) to their Twitter and Facebook followers for a limited time only, normally it lasts about 10-15 minutes. Maximum stake is unfortunately £20 but it is still better than nothing. But laying each outcome on Betfair I have been able to take a guaranteed £8-£13 profit each time and this has amounted to over £60 throughout this week, so a tidy little sum and definitely something to look out for. The annoying thing is though that you don't know when they are going to enhance the odds, meaning you have to be lucky and catch them, but regularly checking Twitter (which I do anyway) solves this problem. Had I left each enhanced bet as a bet I would be down £60 for the week, so it is a no-brainer to lay it! I'm not quite sure how long they will be doing this for, but so far they must have made a packet, so they may continue it for some time!

Lastly, it is that time of year again which I look forward to: The Snooker World Championship. I'm not really sure who is going to take it this time, Judd Trump is the favourite by some distance but, although I do hope he does really well because I like him a lot, the price on him (5.5) is unjustified really. World number 1 Mark Selby is at odds of 11, mainly because of an injury before the start of the competition but it cannot be bothering him too much as he hasn't pulled out, and I have backed him at 11 for £25 in the hope he will cruise through round one and allow me to just take a free bet on him. Ronnie played today having opened at around 11 and is now down to 7s after comfortably taking the lead against Peter Ebdon, so hopefully Selby will follow suit. Mainly though I am just looking forward to watching the spectacle, there are many talented players this year all in with a shout.

Good luck everyone.

Sunday, 15 April 2012

Mini Sabbatical

Hello everyone, it has been over a month since I last posted and this is mainly due to a lack of motivation. There are some other factors in there, such as going home for Easter/ having a lot of work on, but mainly I have just not been very interested in trading in recent weeks. I'm not really bothered about this though, I feel as it has been good to take a break after quite a busy year, and I sometimes forget that this has been the first season where I have been trading properly too. I jumped into it quite quickly and intensely and I have been putting all my efforts into improving myself and taking a profit, something which I have done reasonably well up to this point, and a brief break to regather my thoughts and reflect has been good for me. Saying this however, I have not been totally cut off from the betting world, I have been having a small tipple here and there. This has mainly been confined to mobile trading, but nothing too serious or strenuous, mainly just small bets to satisfy my betting urges. Although there have been times where using my phone has had its limitations, either I have been distracted and not been able to complete a trade or my signal/connnection goes and I'm stuck mid-trade, I have been able to turn a small profit over the last couple of weeks. The main income has been the HT 0-0 lays from and has provided me with a slow but steady income over the last few weeks. I am very impressed with his service, and although he had a small blip over the past couple of months he appears to be well back on track. As for my own trading methods, I have not really been doing much on the correct score dutches, or on the 2.5 goal trades, but I think I will keep them in my portfolio but use them sparingly from now on. My main profit has come from my 'Other' category, which mainly involves trading things which I feel are good opportunities in-play (as well as the HT 0-0 lays) and my profit there is now £68.66. Over on the laying technique, I feel my changes since the poor start have really made an impact, and I am now back in profit and starting to get to grips with it. I shall explain it further once I can conclude if it is profitable or not, but I do have high hopes for it.

In addition to having the odd bet I have also been studying the markets as usual, and have taken on board a couple of pointers. Firstly, many people like to watch the games they trade, and others don't, presumably because they want to focus on the statistics and not react to how the match is going. I have mixed feelings on this, I do like to watch the match as quite often you can see trends and opportunities, but on the other hand I have recently found myself too easily influenced by how the match is going. This has particularly been the case when watching the first 10 minutes of the match, as frequently teams are all fired up and the crowd is spurring them on, before they settle down into the match and take it a bit slower. It is very easy to get sucked into this, to back the team on the front foot or the overs markets, before the game slows down and you wish you'd kept your money locked away. So recently I have been allowing myself to only react to the match IF the stats match up with what is happening. So if Wolves began well at Old Trafford for instance, I wouldn't jump in and lay United as the stats suggests Wolves will eventually flounder.

Secondly, I have been gathering info and planning my attack for next season. This year I have proved to myself that I can effectively work with a small or large bank and make small and steady profits, however when I was doing this for bigger profits it was taking a lot of my time up and it wasn't really sustainable in the long term. The majority of trading tends to occur on the weekends as that is when the most fixtures are, yet at university the weekend is when I travel about the country to see the girlfriend/friends/family, meaning that opportunities are limited. In addition to this I will be going into my third year at uni, meaning that I have a dissertation to contend with as well. I'm sure I will still find time for the odd bit of trading, but in-play trading is not going to be my main method next year. Instead, as I have mentioned a few times before, I will be looking towards the long term markets and hoping to build up to a big pay out in May (2013). I will set myself a large enough bank so I can trade markets such as the outright Premier League, to finish in the top 4, etc. This season has been a brilliant example to me of the money which can be made and I fully believe I can take advantage of this next year. Some of the odds produced throughout the year are astounding when you consider how long there is to go in each of the markets. The top 4 market in the EPL has been extremely volatile this year, especially with Arsenal showing a strange pattern of form and the likes of Newcastle staking a claim too. A particularly interesting one was the Bundesliga. Now I am not claiming to be a fountain of knowledge when it comes to German football, and if I was going to bet on it I would do a lot of research first, but after 9 games 7 Bayern wins, 1 draw and a loss, 25 goals for and 1 against, saw them 5 points clear and as low as 1.2 for the title. 1.2?! After 9 games? This isn't Spain. Their form naturally deteriorated and now Dortmund are 8 points clear and unbackable on Betfair. Lesson learned, and that is what I will look to do next year. I will document it as I go along and report to you what I have done and why I have done it. This will allow me to hopefully make a decent amount without having to be glued to my laptop.

Lastly on the football front, I got on Newcastle at 11.5 last week to finish in the top 4 for £25 after being surprised (as many have been) at their form this season. I don't mind admitting I considered them for relegation at the start of the season after they lost the likes of Barton and Nolan, but I was horrendously wrong (luckily I didn't put my money where my mouth is) and now have developed quite a soft spot for the fantastic effort both the team and Pardew have done. They are now down to 5.8 and I could lay right now, but with a home game next for them, an away for Spurs and Chelsea playing Barca-Arsenal-Barca, I think I'll stick in there for another week and see how it goes. I also layed Spurs at 1.22 because I had some green on them already and thought that there was still quite a while to go in a contest so tight, and was (somewhat flukily) rewarded by a Canaries win at White Hart Lane, and traded out at 1.7.

I was at Aintree yesterday for a brilliant day of racing. The National was a superb race, I personally had Cappa Bleu (4th) and West End Rocker (Fell) but enjoyed the spectacle all the same. I made a small bit from the place there but the rest of the day was superb, as I had 3 winners and 3 places in the other 6 races. I didn't bet much as I don't know much about racing but I was pleased to get a few winners, and love the rush from watching it live. I would love to go to Ascot or Cheltenham one day. Anyway enough jibbering, good luck with your trades this week people, stay green.