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Showing posts from January, 2010

France starts to water down its proposed gambling bill

This was always going to happen - maybe not this particular change, but like any negotiations, you start with a ridiculous offer, then gradually become more realistic.

Betting operators in France will no longer have to close down all French accounts from the time the law is voted until the licences are awarded, but they will have to transfer them all to the .fr site once approved and operating in France. A pain in the arse maybe, but not the end of the world, after all, that's what Betfair did with accounts in Australia & NZ when they got the Tasmanian licence.

Operators in France escape player account shut downs

And to counter their position, they've decided to increase penalties on firms not seeking French licences. Yeah, can really see that one working....

weekend tennis previews

Here's an article I wrote for betting.betfair Australia, previewing the Friday-Sunday schedule at the Australian Open, so it was written before the second men's semi.

Exclusive expert Australian Open preview

Still haven't decided what I'll do with my Federer position, let it ride or hedge it. Took 4 at Boyles, Murray now available at 2.5, should probably take my stake back as I do think Muzza can beat him. The other time they met in a Slam final, I stuck with Murray and did my dough...

automated bookmaking - soon there will be no-one left!

At the International Gaming Exhibition in London this week, I've been looking closely at some of the modern bookmaking systems. Companies such as BetRadar supply real-time odds feeds from over 250 bookmakers spread around the world, and then you can generate your own odds from that. Set your margins, choose the bookies you want to follow, post the prices, turn on the monitoring which tracks market changes from as few or as many bookies as you like, and you're done. Very few bookies do not take this service, although most just use it to keep an eye on the opposition in real-time, and use it to track mistakes (alerts pop up when a match start time is different to other firms) and potential arbitrage/sure bet opportunities. Dozens of smaller firms - the ones listed on odds comparison sites but you never see any of their marketing etc - do all this with virtually nobody at the controls. Other companies like Entraction and Odds Matrix can offer you a 'bookie in a box' produ…

Aus Open tennis update

Just eight players left now in each event, so I thought it's a nice time to give an update.

Men

Federer - the obvious favourite, and in awesome form. He just toyed with Hewitt and hasn't lost a set since R1. Best asset is he knows what to do at this end of a tournament.

Davydenko - wobbled against Verdasco, led 2-0 and then had a mini-break in the fourth set breaker, before winning in five sets, having given his backers at 1.05 many grey hairs. Has beaten Federer in their last two clashes, after being 0-12 before November. But how will he go over the best of five sets, and with much more at stake?

Djokovic - a bit wayward against Chiudinelli, but otherwise solid. Record is 2-4 v Tsonga, winning their first clash (AO final 08) and Miami last year. He hit a bit of a flat spot in between, the effects of an overloaded schedule and changing racquet brand - I think he is back close to his peak now.

Tsonga - only scraped through against Almagro, almost throwing away a 2-0 lead. His task h…

more Betfair float speculation

The Times again having a guess.

Betfair stock market punt

Betfair, the online gaming exchange, has selected two investment banks to advise it on a £1.5 billion stock-market flotation.

The financial columns have been speculating on this for years now. If they keep persevering with the speculation, one day it might actually happen!

William Hill withdraw from Spain

William Hill's plans to take over the world are taking a hit - now they are pulling out of Spain, just a year after giving up on Italy. I doubt they'll be bothering with applying for a French licence then.

For all that time and money invested, they are selling their share in the joint venture for the grand sum of one euro.

That's two heavy losses in Europe from two - even Celtic aren't that bad when they travel!

Does British racing need a Barry Hearn figure?

They could do worse - at least he can connect with the bloke drinking bitter or an alcopop, as opposed drinking Pimm's or Veuve Clicquot in the private boxes. Here's a response to my Racing for Change discussion from WhatTheBookiesSay.com

Dial 999 for Hearn

Horse racing is currently run by tweed wearing, yar yar spitting, self important members of the upper classes who offer a limp handshake to anyone that’s not called Henrietta or Tarquin and are totally out of touch when it comes to dealing with people called Janet of John, and from what I’ve seen I fear that whilst they may have the best interests of horse racing in mind, Racing for Change, may well fall into the Tarquin category and fail to connect with the likes of Johnny.

The racing hierarchy and those that like to be associated with it put too much emphasis on its history and that’s its main problem (along with the fact that they’re stuck in their ways and lack the creativity to bring the sport up to date). The sport of ki…

Centrebet ready to be bought out?

Could Con Kafataris and family, majority owners of Centrebet, be ready to sell up and get out of the bookmaking business? This report seems to think so:

Centrebet keen to join forces

BOOKMAKER Centrebet has confirmed it is looking to buy a competitor or be taken over after its surging share price drew a speeding ticket from the stock exchange.

The ASX yesterday asked Centrebet to explain a 21 per cent increase in its share price -- from $1.32 at close of trade last Wednesday to a high of $1.60 during trade yesterday.

...

Several potential buyers are reported to be circling Centrebet, with controlling shareholders the Kafataris family said to be willing to sell their 60 per cent stake if the price is right.

...

Centrebet has reportedly been eyeing some of the industry's smaller players, while global operator Ladbrokes is said have considered making a bid for Centrebet.

Centrebet shares closed yesterday up 8.57 per cent at $1.54.


Interesting developments. Centrebet can't get a lot bigger…

Australian Open tennis previews

The real betting action of the year starts Down Under on Monday, with the Australian Open in Melbourne. For the best part of a decade I have been writing betting previews for the Grand Slams, and in recent years, they've been published on PuntingAce.

Click here for the men's tournament preview, and here for the women's event.

And if you want to see a history of previous articles and tips - click here.

the Superbowl of biathlon!

That's what they call it at Ruhpolding, it's an amazing venue, with spectators arriving at 9am in subzero temperatures, just to get their prime viewing spots for the evening action. Amazing!



Trading was OK, pinned my hopes too much on the glamour girl, Magdalena Neuner, but once again she bombed out on the standing shoot when she was way ahead. So I ended up chopping out...

Men's event starts at 1720 CET tomorrow, coverage on Eurosport.

welcome to the new bloggers

Time for a bit of admin on the site, I've added a bunch of new blogs so welcome to them all, including:

Stripped1977's Blog
Betfan
No More In Play
A Betting Svendali
Fight The Inner Demons
Betting for a living
Read and Black
The Rev. All Green
WTA Betting
The view from opposite Harrods
Cubone - The Gambling Historian
Bet of the Week
Ibiza Sports Traders
Mets' trading diary
70k Betfair tennis trader
Micks Gamble
Trading Times
Au Coeur Du Trade




Links found on the blogroll to the RHS..... To keep your blog on the 'top 25' displayed normally, keep it active! Those who haven't posted for a while will usually stay on the list, but they just fade off to the end where nobody ever sees them...

I don't link to blogs that are purely tips, affiliate content or selling some dodgy guaranteed winning plan. Have a go, share your thoughts, have a rant about bookmakers/betting exchanges if you feel it's deserved and give us something worth reading other than 'i won/lost today'.

my say on the Racing for Change initiatives

I like to rant about racing issues, so it's about time I had a crack at British racing's Racing For Change.

Here are the points listed as part of the Racing for Change initiatives with my comments inserted:

-Trial of decimal odds at several race meetings over one weekend in spring 2010.
I think this is more to do with the failing education system than racing's problem, but I see their point. But going to 1.5/1 instead of 6/4 is a waste of time. If you're going to change, do it properly and go to proper decimals - the Betfair/Australian bookies way (2.5). One state of Australia went to decimalised fractions (18/10 etc) on its own and it had zero effect. They all ended up going to proper decimal odds in the late 90s.

BUT Australia had a key reason to switch - the totes had taken over and the younger generation were more accustomed to seeing tote odds broadcast on the TV or in the paper. The Tote is almost a non-entity in the UK. I doubt it will make a difference at all - edu…

1.01 beaten in biathlon

Now do you believe me that it's a great trading sport? Until the final round of shooting is finished, they should never be 1.01.

Jonsson looked like she hit the front at the last round of shooting when Tora Berger started missing, but then Jonsson missed some too and Andrea Henkel shot clear to win.

This Mass Start format is great, a mad rush and they're all out on the course together.

rich blokes seek government support to get richer and alienate racing industry even further

Gerry Harvey and John Singleton are very successful Aussie entrepreneurs with a deep interest in horse racing - but this latest story shows their interest in much more about their own pockets than for the good of the industry...

World's richest race pledge

JOHN Singleton and Gerry Harvey want to turn their Magic Millions scamper on the Gold Coast into the world's richest race.

The $2 million Magic Millions Classic will be run over 1200m on Saturday.

Next January, Singleton and Harvey propose an $11 million globe-stopper.

....

Only yearlings sold through the Magic Millions sales are eligible for the Magic Millions Two-Year-Old Classic, so a jump from $2 million to $11 million prizemoney would provide a massive boost to the business.

There's nothing wrong with big prizemoney in races, after all, it gives owners something to dream about. But having ridiculous amounts of money on offer for two-year-olds in the first half of their season, who have only been purchased via a specific ye…

what a great day for biathlon trading

With so many football matches out of action, it's a perfect day to get into a true winter sport - biathlon! It's on Eurosport today, kicking off at 11.45am, but best of all, as it's a sprint race where competitors go out one-by-one (think cycling time trial), you won't miss anything by getting involved a bit later.

Conditions in Oberhof yesterday were windy and foggy for the women's sprint, making shooting rather difficult - which is not a bad thing for traders. Uncertainty evens the field a little, increasing the chance of a big-priced winner, or at the very least, volatility in the winner market.

Norwegian superman Ole Einar Bjorndalen is the favourite as per usual, and he warmed up on Thusday with a win in the realy for Norway. He missed one shot (of 10), you can see the stats from that race here.

Ski times and shooting stats give a good guide to what you might expect in this race. When the guys who ski better than they shoot go too hard trying to establish a lead…