Thursday, 25 February 2010

French govt still making up data to block Betfair

Yesterday, the French Senate decided to adopt the bill aiming to "open market competition for gambling online." But sadly, their citizens will still be ripped off by limited competition, high margins and poor options.

Read the translated article from sospronostics.com

Sports betting, live betting, poker and betting on horse racing was approved (no detail whether fixed-odds racing was given the nod).

Exchange and spread betting remain prohibited, "because of the risk of money laundering and ease of addiction worse than this may cause."

There is nothing like dealing with an authority which makes up its own data, and then buries its head in the sand when proven otherwise. Every online transaction can be traced to IP addresses, bank accounts, counterparties etc - exactly how does that compare with cash transactions in PMU outlets and land casinos. Just look at the record of Australian casinos for a history of money laundering, and without a doubt that happens in every other casino in the world which allows cash..

Betfair will challenge this in Brussels at the ECJ, they will win the case, and the French government will stick their nose up at it, pfaff around and take years to rectify it, unless the EU gains the power to impose sanctions against them to comply. Don't hold your breath....

Monday, 22 February 2010

Monday news

Haven't got the motivation for a long post, so here are some brief items about what's going on in the world....

Much of my traffic comes from other bloggers - do you fancy getting a free makeover for your blog? Most of us don't have the design skills to do it, but this guy does, and he has some brilliant culinary tips as well - ZestyCook

Mark Davies, MD and one of the originals at Betfair, has a laugh about how bookie CEOs just don't get it and keep on giving Betfair free publicity at every opportunity.

The Tasmanian government have reacted to Betfair Aus's idle threats about moving interstate (or was it rumours of other govts luring them) by offering more tax breaks to sustain employment in the Apple Isle.

Leading Australian jockey Danny Nikolic could be deep in the brown stuff if the latest stewards investigation into suspicious betting activities on Betfair uncovers any concrete evidence. I'm a big fan of Nikolic, there is no Australian jockey I'd rather be on one of my horses if it was leading the race, but it is high time that a scandal in Australian racing uncovered and punished the perpetrators. No idea if Danny is involved or not, but for the good of the industry, it needs to show that it can identify crooked activity (which happened long before the arrival of Betfair, it's not a new thing) and prosecute a case against it.

The scandals in Chinese football continue as two clubs face relegation for match-fixing. This comes after recent news of players gaining national caps via bribing selectors.

Canny Irish trainer Gordon Elliot landed a 20/1 into 2/1 plunge at Punchestown last week by perfectly working around the 90 days rule. If the horse had run any sooner than the 91 days since its last start, the stewards would have called connections in to explain the sudden improvement in performance.

The UK went EastEnders crazy last week with bookies reaping the benefits of the 25yr anniversary live episode. Kudos to Bodog I believe for being the initiator of the market, which every other firm seemed to follow like sheep.

Leading Australian bookmaker Con Kafataris will be sadly missed in the Sydney betting ring, but don't cry for him not being able to make it pay anymore, he's loaded as the main shareholder of Centrebet.

Ladbrokes are following Victor Chandler into South Africa via a partnership deal with an African casino group.

and I'm getting quite frustrated with the Olympics after backing/tipping two biathletes only to have them win gold in a different event....

Sunday, 21 February 2010

laying the field at the Winter Olympics


Two great events tonight for Laying the Field on Betfair - the mass start events in Biathlon. Unlike the other disciplines of biathlon, all the racers go at once, so the pressure is on from the start, and there is no early leader who can blow the field away as weather conditions change. Missed shots at crucial stages (20 shots overall, in four batches of five targets - two sets in the prone position, and two standing, can produce huge variations in the Betfair market.

So place a series of offers to lay them all at odds-on, I'll let you choose your own price, but remember this, the lower you go, the less likely you are to get two selections matched. If you get two matched below 2.0 for level stakes, you will be all green - two for small profit, the rest for the jackpot. If you get three matched at less than 3.0, it's the same scenario. Make sure you select the 'Keep Bets' option because all the volatility will happen in-play.

Last night's Cross-Country 2x15km Pursuit would have been great for it, three guys matched short - 1.01 for the winner, 1.24 for the guy who came third, and 1.4 for one who never even got into the first three.

Friday, 19 February 2010

yet another gambling firm takes up football sponsorship

Another Asian bookie heads to the UK market, following the lead of SBOBet and 188Bet.

Nearly 50% of Premier League sponsored by gaming

In the biggest shirt sponsorship deal in the club’s 128 year history, premiership football club Burnley FC has announced a multi-million pound two-year deal with Asian online gaming operator Fun88, becoming the UK's eighth top flight football team to carry the name of an online gaming operator.

Under the agreement, Fun88 will have their logo emblazoned on the club's home and away shirts beginning next season. The initial two-year deal, the first time the football club has attracted international interest, represents the biggest shirt sponsorship deal in the Clarets' history.


Currently this firm is very Asian-focused but is intent on gaining a presence in Europe from next football season by all reports.

Wednesday, 17 February 2010

impossible task?

Could a politician attempt a more impossible task than this one?

New EU Commissioner Wants to Settle Online Gambling Mess

The confusion over online gambling in EU member states is set to be ironed out by new Internal Market Commissioner Michel Barnier, a move that will be closely followed by Malta.

France, Italy, Greece, Portugal, Germany, Norway, Poland, Sweden.. the list goes on of countries who want to set their own rules and defy European Union directives, or at least bend them a bit. Forcing these EU members states to comply is like telling banks they have to start responsible and not giving out individual bonuses bigger than the GDP of a third-world country. Or trying to get football players to act as role models and respect referees like rugby players. In a line from the classic Aussie film, The Castle, "Tell him he's dreaming!".

In another note, I notice that Betfair have given up their respect/fear of French authority and now have the betting site in French as well as betting.betfair.com. That was one region they had chosen to respect the law of initially. Perhaps the tide there is turning, or they are now prepared to risk another court case.

Monday, 15 February 2010

ah Daytona, you've done it again!


Brilliant drive Jamie McMurray. Never in front until the last two laps.

Call me a redneck, but I do love the Daytona 500. With results like this, how could you not?

It's not the first time either, that's three years in a row for me, I blogged about it last year as well. Haven't had time to do much trading of late, glad I made the effort tonight :)

Low liquidity events with multiple chances work best for me. The event unravels slowly over a few hours (events of similar style include televised LPGA and Seniors events). Not many punters, and the ones who do get involved will take a reasonable price for small amounts, but still allowing to keep a decent over-round or margin. I laid 26 of the 38 selections and just kept on doing it throughout the race. So if keep your mind on the job, you can keep laying and laying without taking much risk. And speed of the pics here made no difference at all, I watched most of the race off a live stream which was probably 20secs behind.

But unfortunately, this is the only event of the year that has enough interest to bother trading, plus it's a restrictor-plate (speeds are limited as at full speed on such long straights, cars could lift off in bumped when in a straight line) race, meaning every car is in with a chance. On shorter tracks, that doesn't happen and there are less winning chances.

As a backer, this race was virtually impossible. Being able to use a betting exchange like Betfair made all the difference.

Friday, 12 February 2010

bring on the snow!

It mightn't be as exciting as the Summer Olympics for me, but I still get excited any time there's a five-ringed circus going. The downhill, the luge, the biathlon, the short-track speed skating, the bobsleigh, the ski jumping... I love all of it... well, except for the figure skating - that's not sport!

Day 1 starts with men's downhill, women's 7.5km biathlon sprint, men's 1500m short track, men's 5000m speed skating, short hill ski jumping and women's moguls. Do your research and you will take money off the bookies.

Thursday, 4 February 2010

pressure mounting in North America to legalise online gambling

It's been talked about for years, now some states of the US and Canada are really starting to push hard. Will it be that long before the penny finally drops and the North American market really opens up?

New Jersey lawmakers authorises online gambling operated by Atlantic City casinos

Quebec Govt legalises online gambling

Sports betting would save jobs, says MP

It's getting closer. The question from a Federal point-of-view is - is there enough tax money in it for the Obama government, this far out from an election, to risk losing support in a controversial bill, especially from the morally superior, holier-than-thou voters in the south?

Tuesday, 2 February 2010

it's always worth laying 1.01

You'd think bookmakers would know this by now....

The Reserve Bank of Australia was expected by everyone to lift interest rates by 0.25% overnight, making it four increases in a row. Centrebet decided not to offer the market, it was such a 'certainty'.

Rate rise a guaranteed certainty

Centrebet's Neil Evans says it is the first time the agency has not taken bets on an interest rate decision.

"The betting market would have looked horribly lopsided, where the 25 point rise would have been massively odds-on favourite and 50 [basis point rise] the only other possible outcome," he said.

"So we decided it was just a very lopsided and uncompetitive betting market, where the chance of rates staying on hold were effectively close to zero."

"We don't like putting up markets where you've got two massively odds-on options and then of course everything else is effectively a million-to-one.


Not sure how you get two massively odds-on options in a one result market, not sure if that's the journo's fault or the media bloke Centrebet employ not understanding what he's talking about.

And what actually happened was...

Australian Reserve Bank holds interest rates steady

In a surprise announcement, the Australian Reserve Bank has left official interest rates on hold at 3.75%.

Betting agency Centrebet had refused to open a book on the rates decision because it thought the outcome was too certain, the ABC reports.


Golden opportunity to take wads of cash off the money-buyers down the drain....

Monday, 1 February 2010

the dogs are barking that Bwin will buy Centrebet

Just a fortnight ago, I reported on Centrebet touting itself for a sale. Where there's smoke there's fire they say, and word is coming from good sources that the company is about to be swallowed up by the global giant Bwin.

Expect both companies to keep tight-lipped about it until they have to release it to their respective shareholders and stockmarkets.

PartyGaming had been sweet-talking Bwin for sometime about a merger, does this mean they will go back to chasing Ladbrokes again?

Interesting times in the gambling world. You heard it here first.