Monthly Archives: March 2014

Premier League Value Bets – Week 32

Premier League Value Bets – Week 32

Premier League Value Bets - Week 33

So close to landing all 3 bets on Tuesday’s mid-week games but Arsenal slipped up conceding late on. The two value bets on Wednesday failed to deliver but the Liverpool Sunderland match nearly ended 2-2 at the death and I was at least pleased to have identified value correctly. It wasn’t the drubbing many predicted and 1.18 was far too short.

It’s all well and good being on the right side of value but you still need the winners to come and they will eventually. It’s the time of the season where you do normally see some freak result. With fixtures come thick and fast, tiredness setting in and differing motivations strange things seem to happen.

Norwich surprised me last week and I’d be grateful if they could turn in another performance today at Swansea. West Ham and Newcastle are both capable of winning away against Sunderland and Southampton respectively and these 3 matches are where I think this week’s profit and loss could be decided.

Man Utd are too short at 1.5 against Villa and have lost 6 times already at Old Trafford this season. They’ll still win this match more times than they lose so not holding out too much hope for this one. united are still without Van Persie but the re-introduction of Ashley Young to the team has given them a greater impetus going forward,

This weekend’s tip of the day was a toss up between Stoke and Man City. Stoke have an excellent home record and have only lost one of their last eight fixtures. Hull’s new strike force of Long and jelavic is a threat however and I feel City who beat Arsenal 6-3 at the Etihad back in November relish this match up.


Bet of the WeekendMan City to beat Arsenal at 2.16 with Matchbook




Premier League Value Bets – Week 31

Premier League Value Bets – Week 31

Premier League Value Bets Week 32

Week 31’s value selections produced 17.00 units profit which came from 5 wining bets. Chelsea, Everton, Man Utd and Spurs all managed to justify their favourite tags but it was outsiders Stoke that ultimately decided the bottom line. It didn’t look good when Benteke gave Villa an early lead but Stoke ended up comfortable winners.

there are 3 matches tonight including the Manchester derby and then 2 tomorrow. Pelligrini has been quoted a saying there is only one team in Manchester which should fire up united. They are still without Van Persie and a decent midfield and odds of 2.2 on City recording a third consecutive win at Old Trafford look good.

United have been severely lacking in pace in recent month and the recall of Ashley Young will improve them but I still think they’ll fall short in this one. they have after all already lost 5 matches at Old Trafford this season.

I fancy both Arsenal and Everton to gain 3 points this evening and the odds look decent when you consider that Liverpool are just 1.18 to beat Sunderland which is a ridiculous price in my opinion.

Liverpool are in majestic form but they’re far from invincible and if Sunderland can keep 11 men on the pitch, a somewhat novelty for them, then i think they could nick a point at Anfield. Odds of 9.0 have to be worth a punt, even if it’s to form the entry point to a trade.

West Ham v Hull is a difficult one to call but I’m liking the Long/Jelevic partnership and at the current odds I think the value is with the Tigers at 3.4.


BET OF MID-WEEK – Man City to beat United at 2.2 with Paddy Power.

Premier League Value Bets – Week 31

Premier League Value Bets – Week 31

Premier League Value Bets - Week 31

I can feel the season drawing to a close now and whilst these value selections are still in profit I have to admit that I’m a little disappointed with the results to date.

The ROI has slipped to just 2.61% and whilst showing a return pricing up every premier league game is no easy task, I expected much better than this especially since the last season I tried this I finished up with a much better return.

There’s still plenty of games to go however and it is often in matches near the end of the season where you see some big priced winners. Why not have a go at estimating the percentage chances on the prem this weekend and seeing if you can do better. Link to the value finder template is here.

Chelsea look a decent price in the eraly kick off tomorrow considering their home record of 13 wins from 15 (2 drawa) and I don’t feel that Arsenal have got enough up front to break down the water tight Chelsea defence.

I seem to be missing all the big priced winners lately and I don’t hold too much hope for Cardiff against the in form Liverpool or Fulham who play Man City in the fortress that is the Etihad but at 9.5 and 21.0 the value is always going to be on those teams long term. I had City winning this 8 times out of 10 but the market thinks they win even more than this which is too much for me regardless of Saturday’s result.

Stoke, Sunderland and Palace are the bets where I’m hoping some decent profit will come. All around the 3-1 mark, I fancy at least one winner there and quite possibly 2 which would give us a nice return from those. Stoke’s away record (1 win from 15) is a big concern but they are a decent side and they must start to win away soon… surely?!

The question of the weekend though is have Man Utd actually turned the corner or was their Champion’s League win against Olympiakos another false dawn. They’re without the man who did all the damage on Wednesday in Van Persie (knee injury) and although West Ham should be tough opposition, I’m expecting a united win.


BET OF THE WEEKEND – Sunderland Draw No Bet at 2.7 with Bet Victor

Lay Bets Analysis

Lay Bets Analysis

Betfair Lay Bets

A long time tennis trader I primarily look to lay low and locking in profits when the odds bounce back but I’ve often wondered how much value the initial lay positions contained. Would I have seen better returns had I let bets run for example is a question all experience traders will have asked at some point.

So I decided to find out by uploading my tennis betting history (from Betfair) to the Betfair Analysis Tool and the results were very interesting. The lays were categorically not value overall to level stakes and actually worse on average than the back bets I had made!

Until recently I hadn’t been using level stakes for trading and judged depending on how confident I was or how big I thought my edge was but even during periods of decent profitability where successful trades were made the original lays still didn’t show a profit. They do say that layers get the worst deal generally because they are always a tick above the real price (unless you are front of the queue in the back position) and perhaps this is part of the reason.

Obviously laying low can reap rewards as we all see short odds bust on the tennis frequently so it got me thinking about when that initial entry point is value and when I’ve just taken advantage of a fluctuation. I feel that getting value in this way will yield better results and I also want to look to automate my betting and trade less on feel which can be very time consuming.

Based on a few tests and observations I’ve concluded that very strong favourites getting off to a good start are likely offer the best lay potential. This may not seem like news to a lot of people as it makes sense. When a favourite gets off to a good start it reaffirms what the market thought would happen. Consequently more people want to make a bet and as liquidity is limited it pushes the price down. Part of the skill though I guess is identifying strong favourites and those that are likely to be over backed by the market.

Obviously we now have the cross matcher on Betfair stopping prices get too out of line but there are still gaps in the tennis markets with liquidity not always amazingly high. Most of the money is also traded on the favourite thus making fewer cross matching opportunities.

Over the next month or so I will be stepping up the trial of laying big favourites at a shorter price and getting a decent amount of data to analyse. Initially it won’t just be those that get off to a good start but who are lower in general for ease of programming. I’ve also seen favourites lose the first set, win the second easily and go too low before losing the third anyway.

If there is indeed there is even an edge to be found then I can look at improving upon this by looking at the data for certain surfaces, tournaments, type of player etc. and refine the edge but this should be a decent starting point for now. As the famous American tennis player Arthur Ashe once said, “Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can.”

Stay tuned for the findings!


Premier League Value Bets – Week 30

Cheltenham – Day 1 Best Bets

Cheltenham 2014

Cheltenham – Day 1 Best Bets


Tuesday 11th March 2014 – Champion Hurdle Day

Life for us fellow humans can be quite mundane, the necessity to eat, sleep and earn some money along the way can be stressful, can at times be laborious and due to the desideratum of this process we live many of our days in a monochrome, monotonous and uninspiring manner. However, I hasten to add my life is not defined like this or will ever be, I just feel the need to encapsulate this time of year as it brings colour, life, anticipation and hope.

What am I eluding to? The Cheltenham Festival of course…the changing of the season from winter to spring is also a fresh awakening that will shake the core of any discerning racing fan.

The selections below are judged on mark, form, ground, trainer form, trends and from my notebook which I keep a log of all performances from key races. Consequently, I focus on the individual horse I’m selecting and not the whole field. It is important to note that each horse has been given a rating by myself and all the angles previously mentioned have been taken into consideration for the whole field and then I discount them one by one until I have 1 or 2 selections remaining.


Skybet Supreme Novices Hurdle (Grade 1) 2m 110y

It’s quite a tradition for this to be one of the biggest cheers of the festival and this has long been one of my favourite festival races; one in which I have been successful in picking the winner.

Starting with the important trends for this race one would imagine that the old adage a horse/trainer in form is always a positive no matter what the handicapper believes. Indeed, 15 of the last 17 winners of this race had won on their previous start and it seems a run and a win within forty days of the festivals is also a positive. As always many more trends can be looked at but I always find  it can ‘muddy the water’ and leave you with far more questions than answers.

For my first selection I’ve selected a galloping type who travels well and has illustrated fluidity when jumping over timber. The trainer Kim Bailey has had a season to remember and this race could be landed by one of the most approachable, articulate trainers in the game and who is quite simply a genuinely nice guy. Un Ace will be looking for good ground and judging from the current weather forecast it seems he maybe in luck.

This Voix Du Nord gelding has some quality half brothers with the likes of Tarquin Du Seuil and a horse he will be facing in this race Vaniteux who hails from the Nicky Henderson yard. The key for Un Ace is to have good ground, the pace and injection of pace the horse has shown is an ability to stay and accelerate in the finish and I think this will prove to be a huge advantage at the Cleeve Hill track.

Un Ace showed he had ability when landing a novice hurdle at Doncaster last time out, the performance from that race illustrated how well he travels but more progress will need to be made if he is to land this grade 1 prize; particularly ironing out his jumping. However, I’m willing to put him up here, on good ground at a huge price he is one that could surprise us all.

An each way bet at 51.0 each way with BetVictor is advised


My second selection is a horse I previously mentioned hailing from Nicky Henderson’s yard and who is my previous selections half brother Vaniteux. Judging on this horses profile I believe he could be one of the most progressive in the field. His recent win at Doncaster illustrated the potential he has over timber and also reaffirmed my belief that a galloping track like Doncaster is always a positive when judging how well these novices will take to a track like Cheltenham.

Vaniteux also has a win to his name at Sandown which invariably denotes another positive when looking at the climb/hill to the finish, he also beat Vibralto Valtat on that day who ran a credible 3rd on Saturdayin the Imperial Cup. Therefore, you could say the form has been rubber stamped (to a degree). Vaniteux will be primed and ready by Nicky Henderson who as we know has a terrific record around the Prestbury course and at around 10/1 it really is an each way steal.

Advise an each way bet at 13.0 each way with Bet365


Racing Post Arkle Challenge trophy Chase (Grade 1) 2m

Trifolium is probably my best bet of this year’s festival. It’s quite clear that he has come of age over fences and seems to be relishing his racing this year. His last performance in the Frank Ward Arkle Chase at Leopardstown last time out clearly showed a horse on the upgrade, jumping consistently throughout and a horse that travelled on the bridle with a high cruising speed. Going back in time his run at Cheltenham in 2012 in the supreme on good ground illustrates that he handles the track finishing a very credible 3rd that day.

Some of his recent form particularly his penultimate start was quite clearly due to jockey error in giving him too much to do late on and it seems that the tactic of running him closer to the pace is now tactically the best thing to do. I believe that his jumping will put the others to the ‘sword’ leaving them in his wake as he jumps the second last.

Bryan Cooper after his last performance at Leopardstown mentioned, “Trifolium ran too free in Navan [when beaten by Felix Yonger] and he never had a chance to settle. The last day in Leopardstown the front two went off so far in front it was hard to peg them back. We didn’t want to let Defy Logic to get as far ahead today.”

He added: “He has beaten them all off here and there’s only Champagne Fever left here I guess. He is entitled to go for the Arkle at Cheltenham now.”

Trifolium at 5.5 to win with Bet365
Time for Rupert at 13.0 each way with Paddy Power


Baylis and Harding Handicap Chase (Grade 3) 3m 110y

Writing this before the declarations are official can be quite tricky but my selection appears to be going for this race and that’s Time for Rupert. The first thing to mention is that the handicapper is certainly willing to give him a chance, with his mark not changing from 138 since his last run and a mark which I feel is extremely lenient for a chaser who has been rated as high as 161 and averaging around the 150 mark leaves him with a superb opportunity.

Time for Rupert has a solid record at Cheltenham and ran a blinder when finishing fifth in the 2011 Gold Cup Chase, that quite clearly illustrates the class this 10 year old possessed. However, it is worth questioning whether his ability and desire to run has dwindled somewhat as he gets older? Moreover he is now a ‘little long in the tooth’ but I’m convinced he still enjoys his racing.

Firstly look at his performance in his previous run, he jumped boldly and enthusiastically, he was prominent throughout and lacked the stamina/pace to follow through to the finish line but still plugged on for second. I’m willing to give him a squeak at a nice each way price.

Ackertac is also a very interesting runner here, his current mark of 143 is certainly workable and with the ground on his side I’m expecting a big run. Tim Vaughan’s yard is in terrific form and his jockey booking of ‘Dickie’ Johnson looks a clue in itself. This Anshan gelding may be at his upper level of stamina over the three mile trip but he absolutely loves Cheltenham and has a good record at the track.

He ran in the rewardsforracing handicap chase last year at the festival and was catching Rajdhani Express up the hill in the finish losing by a neck over the shorter 2m 4f trip, judging on that performance the three miles may well work to his favour. A dark horse no doubt and at odds of 25/1 I’m sure he’ll run a credible race at an each way price.

Time for Rupert at 13.0 each way with Paddy Power
Ackertac at 21.0 to win with Paddy Power


The Champion Hurdle (Grade 1) 2m 110y

The race of a lifetime is on the cards here, these nine runners bring quality which will be hard to replicate in years to come. The proverbial ‘cigarette paper’ splits the top five in the betting and I’m intrigued to see how the pace will affect the tactics here, Captain Cee Bee is sure to set a thoroughly searching gallop and that’s why I believe My Tent or Yours will have the ‘turn of foot’ to deliver a breathtaking win for his backers.

Form lines/angles point to a horse that needs a strong gallop, a horse who likes to pick them off one by one in the finish. AP McCoy knows what it takes to win the champion hurdle and his ability to cajole and kid this Desert Prince gelding to victory will be essential. Many pundits/writers have come to the conclusion that had The New One jumped the final fence cleaner in the Christmas Hurdle and not lack the momentum generated by that jump he would of won. I, for one, disagree entirely as you must give credit to the winner.

My Tent or Yours illustrated how accurate he jumps and when accelerating and how deadly his turn of foot is. The progression he has shown this season coupled with the superb trainer/jockey combination leads me to my conclusion that he will be hard to beat.

My Tent or Yours at 4.5 to win with Paddy Power


Une Ace at 51.0 each way with BetVictor
Vaniteux  at 13.0 each way with Bet365
Trifolium at 5.5 to win with Bet365
Time for Rupert at 13.0 each way with Paddy Power
Ackertac at 21.0 to win with Paddy Power
My Tent or Yours at 4.5 to win with Paddy Power


Premier League Value Bets – Week 29

Premier League Value Bets – Week 29

Premier League Value Bets – Week 29

Just the 5 premier league games this week due to the FA Cup ties. No surprise to see my estimates result in value on the away sides in most cases. That’s rather worrying in the case of Stoke who have only won once away all season but it’s a big enough price in a match that can go either way. Norwich have struggled this season and they lack a goal scorer.

Man Utd will be keen to get revenge on West Brom for their defeat in the reverse fixture earlier on in the season. It’s where the troubles started for United and Moyes will feel that a win here is crucial. 1.83 is a good price for the more motivated side with more quality and better form.

Cardiff have been nothing short of woeful in the last few weeks and Fulham are right there with them at the bottom of the form table. The Cottagers have shown signs of improvement and have been unlucky in a few matches against the big boys and the value is definitely with them.

Palace v Southampton looks set to be a tight game. The saints aren’t picking up the wins as easily as they did at the beginning of the season but they do tend to perform well against the lesser sides. One goal could settle it and I’d be more comfortable backing Southampton in the draw no bet market.

In the late kick off it’s 2 in form teams that go head to head in Chelsea and Tottenham. Chelsea are a class above Spurs but they don’t always find goals easy to come by. Tottenham usually play an attacking style of football however and there should be enough gaps for the blues to exploit. With 12 wins from 14 (2 draws) at home this season and the record of no losses at the Bridge under Mourinho, 1.62 actually looks pretty decent!

Good luck with all your bets this weekend.


BET OF THE WEEKEND – Man Utd to beat West Brom at 1.87 with BetVictor