Archive of activity to March 2009

 

Back to Home Page

Back to other previous posts

On this web page

Betfair Unders and Overs
Bet first or Lay first.
Half Time Scores market
Laying the Betfair Under and Over football markets.

 

My websites.

betformulas.co.uk
Formulas and maths of trading

betandlay.co.uk
Football trading

betandlay.co.uk/strategies
Strategies for horse racing and football trading

betandlay.co.uk/bookie
Be A Bookie.
Laying strategies and spreadsheets for Betfair trading

startingstalls.co.uk
A very accurate analysis of U.K.  horse racing draw advantages.

 

March 23rd 2009.   Unders, Overs, and Spread Betting.
I've been away for 2 weeks.
Nowhere exotic, just a farm holiday, and putting a few miles in on my bicycle.
I hope you had a good Cheltenham.
As usual, the bookies excelled on the free bets front during Cheltenham week - unfortunately mainly for new customers only.
No computer for 2 weeks was a bit frustrating, but hopefully I can pick up where I left off with developing a solution to trading Betfair Under and Over football markets with insurance against no goals, or early goals.

I have 2 Excel spreadsheets that I use most of the time, and reckon I can trade just about anything by using these 2 spreadsheets for my Dutching and Hedging.
Be A Bookie can be used to Bet or Lay (Dutch) up to 25 selections for an equal outcome whatever the result.
There is a Bet spreadsheet and a Lay sheet in that package..
I use Hedge 3 Bets for trading odds movements.
That sheet can be used to trade 1, 2, or 3 sets of odds in any market, and can be used to trade across more than one market.

To get around the Under and Over time and goals problem, I have been bolting bits of these 2 spreadsheets together looking for an insurance bet or lay in the Correct Score market to cover early goals or 2 quick goals, either of which can cause big problems when trading Betfair's Under and Over Goals markets.
A Bet or Lay in the Correct Score market didn't provide an adequate insurance solution, so I started to look for an insurance bet solution in Spread Betting.

A problem with an insurance bet or lay in the Betfair Correct Score market is that we are actually trading within what amounts to the same market.
As explained below, the Betfair football Under and Over Goals markets have to be made up of the equivalent odds from the Correct Score market, otherwise the 2 markets could be traded against one another for guaranteed winnings.
If we bet or lay Under or Over 2.5 Goals and use a bet or lay in the Correct Score market for insurance, we are trading parts of the same BASE market - the Correct Scores.
As parts of one market shorten or lengthen, so does the other - both in line with the same time and goals.

A better solution may be to use an unrelated market, or less related market to provide an insurance bet to cover either no goals at all, or an early goal or 2 quick goals.
By using a Spread Bet or Lay (Buy or Sell), we may be able to cover no goals and 1 or 2 goals, and Trade Over 2.5 Goals   ..............  or cover 3 or more goals, and trade Under 2.5 Goals.
I'm no expert at spread betting, but as with Betfair markets, the spread betting odds change in relation to time and goals, so there may be some possibilities here.
I know already that there are odds differences, and the rate at which the odds shorten is different, so there may be some trading possibilities between Betfair and a Spread Betting market.
I have built a very good spread betting spreadsheet which I can bolt onto my existing Excel spreadsheets, so I'll be investigating further.
With a bit of luck, this may lead to the development of other strategies, but a trading strategy for Betfair Under/Over 2.5 Goals is the priority at present.

Good luck with your trading, Howard.

March 5th 2009.   Trading 2.5 and 3.5 Goals.
I've watched and traded quite a few Premiership games over the past week or two, but there have been quite a few games that were 0-0 at half Time.
Although that's been good for my 2.5 Goals strategy, and probably everyone else's, it hasn't been much good from a testing point of view.
Now that I am using a Lay of 0-0 as insurance against no goals being scored, I can exit pretty much unscathed after 25 minutes or so if a goal is scored..

Previously with a bet on 0-0 as insurance rather than a lay, the break even time was about 30 minutes if a goal was scored.
That's a slight improvement, but the problem of a loss if 2 quick goals or early goals are scored still remains.

Apologies if you are already familiar with the following :-
Whilst the score is 0-0, the odds of Under 2.5 Goals must equal the combined odds of all scores with 2 goals or less ie. 0-0, 0-1, 1-0, 1-1, 0-2, and 2-0, otherwise we could trade those scores against the Under and Over market to guaranteed winnings.
If a goal is scored,
the odds of Under 2.5 Goals must still equal the combined odds of all scores with 2 goals or less ie. If the Home team score - - - -  1-0, 1-1, and 2-0.
If the Away team score - - - - - -0-1, 1-1, and 0-2.
After a 2nd goal,
the odds of Under 2.5 Goals must equal the odds of the one remaining score.
If the Home team score again, the Under 2.5 Goals odds will be equal to the odds of 2-0, or near enough.
At 1-1, the Under 2.5 Goals odds would be equal to the odds of 1-1.
Throughout the game, the odds of the current score shorten continuously as time passes.
As goals are scored, the odds change, with the new current score more or less taking over where the previous current score left off.
3 Goals scored by the Home team would see the odds of 0-0, then 1-0, 2-0, and 3-0 taking over from one another and shortening - those being the current scores
Any change in the Under 2.5 Goals odds affects the Over 2.5 Goals odds in order to maintain a book percentage of around 100%.
Whilst the Under odds shorten, the Over odds lengthen, and vice versa.

As we all know from trading Unders and Overs, as goals are scored, we will be caught out by goals being scored, unless we have been in the market for quite a considerable time.
If you can stay in the market long enough with no goals being scored, it is possible to get out with a small profit or very little damage after one goal.
A first goal just before Half Time for instance won't usually cause the Under 2.5 Goals odds to rise above what they were before the Kick Off.
Therefore, if we can find a way of bringing forward the time of our Break Even odds, (the odds required to exit with no loss), the time required to stay in the market becomes less.

To get around this time problem, I have started to look elsewhere for a solution.
Good luck with your trading, Howard.

Feb 23rd 2009.   Trading Under / Over 2.5 Goals with insurance.
Since the Feb 11th entry, I have had a change of direction.
The Dutching exit strategy that I was using, produced an all red screen far too soon.
By paper trading the odds from past games that I have recorded, I knew that 2 or 3 early goals put my spreadsheet profit or loss into the red.
Although the basic strategy is sound, the Dutching exit strategy proved to be too risky.
I have yet to come up with a suitable exit strategy for that one.
I was lucky that I
didn't get caught out whilst testing with my cash.
I was looking for low scoring games, and luckily, I didn't hit a game with more than 1 goal in the first half.

So, it was back to the drawing board, looking for an insurance bet this time, rather than an exit strategy.
Normally, I would use a bet on the 0-0 score in the Betfair Correct Score market for insurance against a game ending 0-0.
Whilst the score remains 0-0, you have winnings to cover just about any bet you care to place.
Nothing wrong with that.
This time however, I looked at a Lay of 0-0 instead of a Bet.

A problem with a 0-0 Lay is that whilst there is no score, the odds shorten, throughout the whole game.
Therefore in a 0-0 game, we would need to Hedge out (by betting 0-0) at some point, to a loss probably bigger than our Lay stake.
The advantage of a 0-0 Lay, is that after a goal is scored, we have profit from our 0-0 Lay, whereas an insurance Bet on 0-0 causes a loss.
I worked out how to exit to zero loss at just about any time up until about 55 minutes using a 0-0 Lay, and in doing that discovered that a goal after 30 minutes or so, put this exit strategy into profit.
I also discovered that by adjusting my stakes slightly, I could :-

  • Choose to break even at any time, with a profit if a goal is scored after 30 minutes.
  • Choose to make a profit at any time, with a profit if a goal is scored after 30 minutes.
  • Choose to make a loss, at any time, but make a bigger profit if a goal is scored after 30 minutes.

Those 3 options can be done from an initial Lay of 0-0, if you can figure out the staking.
I've been testing this with cash, using small stakes, trading to Break Even initially, but for a specific profit yesterday.
So far, I have only hit one game that had a goal scored, and escaped with a 0.45 loss ..... not much damage there.
Yesterday, I profited in 2 games that were 0-0 at Half Time.
Now that I have discovered how to break even, or even exit to profit using a 0-0 Lay as insurance, this may open up a few possibilities for new strategies.

Whilst I'm racking my brains on that one, I'll continue to trade 2.5 Goals with my 0-0 insurance lay and hope I hit some games with a goal late in the First Half, for a bit of extra profit.
If I can do that, and I am lucky enough not to hit a game with 2 quick goals, I should come out in front in the long term.
Unfortunately, 2 quick goals whilst trading the Betfair 2.5 Goals market will probably wipe out my hard earned small profits in one go, along with everyone else's.  We'll see.
Good luck with your trading, Howard.

Feb 18th 2009.  Six of the best !!
If you enjoy a good laugh, follow the link below and take a look at page 2 of that thread.
A bit of corporal punishment administered at the right time never did anyone any harm .......   at least it didn't when I was alive - whoops !!  - a lad.

I was looking at my hit counters for my web sites the other day, and noticed a link from a forum.
I followed the link and looked at the forum, and found that some chap had copied the text directly from my web sites into his thread.
He hadn't even altered any of the text !!
The strategies described then looked as if he had invented them .... Cheeky sod !!

I e-mailed the web site concerned and asked for the thread to be removed, but even now, after about a week, I have heard nothing from them, and the thread is still there.
I also signed up as a member so that I could post on the thread concerned.
I put up some links, so at least I may get a hit or 2 of free traffic.
Here's the link :-
http://www.soccervista.com/forum/betting-strategy/4007-football-strategies-betfair-trading.html

These people appear to have no respect whatsoever for copyright - either the person who put up the post, or the web site owners.
What does this chap hope to gain from putting up strategies that are not his own ?
He's been a bit naughty there, and deserves " 6 of the best ".
Good luck with your trading, Howard.

Feb 11th 2009.
I have built an excellent strategy with associated Excel spreadsheet around what is described below, January 27th.
This new strategy involves Dutching of the Correct Score market, and Hedging of those scores.
I have been testing this new strategy on Betfair.
I started testing with small stakes to check the maths of the spreadsheet, and now I am increasing my stakes.
This Trade Correct Scores strategy produces guaranteed profits at Half Time if no more than one goal has been scored during the First Half of a game.
That is, at a score of 0-0, 1-0, or 0-1 at Half Time, there is a guaranteed profit.

No doubt you immediately see that you could trade those scores by trading the Under/Over 1.5 goals market, but if you did that, you would not always have guaranteed winnings at those scores at Half Time.
If you were to Bet Under 1.5 Goals before the Kick Off with the intention of Hedging by Laying Under 1.5 Goals at Half Time, or Dutching by Betting Over 1.5 Goals to cover all possible scores at Half Time, there is a very good chance that you would lose all your stake in some games, and some of it in others.

If an early goal was scored, there is a very good chance that the market would expect more goals to be scored.
In such a game, the Under 1.5 Goals Lay odds would lengthen, making Hedging to profit impossible, and the Over 1.5 Goals Bet odds would shorten, making Dutching (Betting) to cover all possible scores to profit also impossible.
A considerable amount of time would need to pass in the game before the market would decide that there would be no further score, and move the odds back in your favour.
Whilst all that time is passing, your money would be at risk, and of course, further goals could be scored whilst you are sweating it out.
If a 2nd goal was scored you would lose all your stake.

This strategy eliminates those problems.

Problems can arise with this strategy if more than one goal is scored in the First Half, but I have developed an exit strategy to get around that problem.
The spreadsheet shows the stakes required to trade out of those situations either to profit, or (hopefully), a small loss.

Besides testing this strategy myself, I have a customer also testing who will let me know of any problems he has with the instructions or implementing this Correct Score strategy on Betfair.
Once we have ironed out any problems, this strategy will be available on my football trading web site.

So far, although I haven't traded many games, I have won every time using this Correct Scores trading strategy.
The dreaded big hit that wipes out all my hard earned gains may of course be just around the corner.
Let's hope not.
Good luck with your trading, Howard.

Jan 27th 2009.  Trading the Betfair Correct Score market.
A big problem of trading on Betfair, is that mistakes are usually very costly.
Hard earned profits built up over several trades can be wiped out with a single market move that goes against us.
If Hedging, (betting high and laying low to guaranteed winnings), one solution to this problem could be to target falling markets for your trades, rather than rising markets.

For the same initial stake, it is cheaper to Bet First, rather than Lay First.
A Bet First trade aims to take advantage of odds that are getting shorter, whilst a Lay First trade aims to take advantage of odds that are getting bigger.
( Note that if you trade to the same liability, gains or losses are equal for both a rising or falling market.
In the examples below, the liabilities are not the same, only the initial 10 stakes are equal ).

To demonstrate, here are some maths of 2 very extreme cases.
Suppose we Bet 10 at odds of 20.
The odds go against us and we have to Lay at odds of 1000.0
To equalize our trade for an equal loss no-matter what the outcome, we must Lay 0.20 at odds of 1000.
A winning Bet 10 x 19 = 190, Less Lay 0.20 x 999 -199.80  = a loss of  -9.80.
A successful Lay, 0.20 less losing Bet of 10 = -9.80.
You cannot lose more than your initial stake of 10.

However if we Lay 10 at odds of 20 and have to Bet at odds of 5, when we equalize our trade, we lose more than our initial stake, in this case, -30 :-
Lay 10 at 20 = 10 x 19 = liability of
-190.  Bet 40 at odds of 5.0 = 4 x 40 = 160 = -30.
If the bet wins, we win 160 but lose
-190 = -30.
If the bet loses we have a successful Lay of 10, less a losing bet of 40 =
-30.

These are extreme cases, but they demonstrate that losses can be limited to a maximum of a single stake if we target a falling market, for a Bet First trade.

So, where will we find a market with odds that will always fall, and never rise ?
The answer is in the Betfair, In Play, football Correct Score market or Half Time Score market..
This is how the odds perform in the Betfair Correct Score market.
During a game, whilst there are no goals, the odds of 0-0, 1-0 and 0-1 drop consistently until about 70 or 75 minutes.
After that time, the market will decide that the outcome could be 0-0, so the 0-0 odds continue to fall, but the odds of 1-0 and 0-1 start to rise.
At Half Time, all 3 of those odds will have almost halved.

If a goal is scored, 2 of those odds are eliminated .......... We have 2 losing bets.
The odds of the score that is now the current score may drop quite dramatically, and will continue to drop so long as no more goals are scored.
To sum up, we can guarantee that all 3 of these odds will drop for around 70 minutes whilst the score remains 0-0.
If a goal is scored, one of those odds may drop significantly, but we will have 2 losing bets.

At a score of 1-0 or 0-1, there are obviously problems of bigger losses than gains there, so what happens if we trade 1-0, 0-1 plus 1-1 (instead of 0-0) ?
Whilst the score remains 0-0, the odds of 1-1 will probably remain quite constant until about Half Time.
Now if a goal is scored,

  • We have only 1 losing bet, and 2 bets still In Play.
  • The odds of one of our remaining 2 bets could drop significantly, possibly both, offering good profits.
  • Whilst the score remains 0-0, we have 2 trades that will show profit, and 1 trade that will almost break even.
  • As this is a Bet First trade, the maximum we can lose after 1 goal is scored, is a single stake or thereabouts, unless the odds of our 2 remaining bets don't shorten for some reason.

I have an excellent spreadsheet suitable for trading 3 sets of odds at the same time.
This is the spreadsheet I use most often, my Hedge 3 Bets Excel spreadsheet.
If a 2nd goal is scored, taking the score to 2-0 or 0-2 before we have placed our Lays to exit the market, we lose 3 stakes.
That is the worst that can happen.
I will be investigating this Correct Score market strategy further in the next few weeks, and will keep you posted on this one.
I have already started putting my money where my spreadsheet is using
my Hedge 3 Bets Excel spreadsheet.
Good luck with your trading, Howard.

 
Jan 18th 2009.   Odds movement of Half Time Scores market.
I built a spreadsheet for trading 0-0 in the Betfair Half Time Scores market with 0-0 in the Correct Score market.
This is the basic Hedge strategy for trading 0-0 using the Correct Score and Half Time Scores markets combined  :-
  • Before the Kick Off, bet 0-0 in the Correct Score market.
  • After some time has passed in the game, Lay 0-0 in the Half Time Score market.
  • At Half Time, if the score is still 0-0, Lay 0-0 in the Correct Score market.

If there is a goal in the first half, we have a successful Lay less a losing Bet = Profit.
End of trade ..... no market available for 0-0 in the Correct Score market at Half Time.

If the score is still 0-0 at Half Time, we aim to break even.
We have Bet 0-0 High (before the Kick Off) and Layed 0-0 Low in the Correct Score market (at Half Time).
Profit from that trade covers our Lay liabilities from our Lay of 0-0 in the Half Time Score market.

To make this strategy work I needed to estimate what the odds of 0-0 in the Correct Score market would be at half Time.
I tried to do that mathematically, but found that a simple list of odds taken from several matches showing the 0-0 odds before the kick off and at Half Time gave an excellent indication of what to expect the 0-0 odds to be at Half Time in Betfair's Correct Score market.

0-0 Odds Kick Off Half Time
Correct Score Market Bet odds LAY odds
Stoke Fulham 9.8 3.35
Liverpool Everton 10 3.7
Man C Wigan 11 4.3
Man C PSG 11.5 3.65
Berlin Galatas 11.5 3.9
Man C Everton 11.5 4
Liverpool Stoke 12.5 4
Middles NT 12.5 4.5
Spurs Man U 13 4.6
Mk Dons Colchester 15.5 5
Arsenal Bolton 17 6

You can see from the table above that there is a definite relationship between the 0-0 odds before the Kick Off and the 0-0 odds at Half Time in the Correct Score market.
Although this is only a small sample, only one other match that I looked at fell outside the general trend shown there, Blythe Spartans v Blackburn Bet Odds 17.5, Lay odds 5.5.

Using Correct Score market estimated odds for 0-0, I can calculate (before the Kick Off), the stakes required to break even if I need to Lay 0-0 at half Time in the Correct Score market.
Stake correctly, and I should have enough Correct Score market profit to cover any liabilities of my Lay of 0-0 in the Half Time Score market, if the score is still 0-0 at Half Time.

To make this strategy work, I need to wait for the 0-0 Lay odds in the Half Time Scores market to drop.

The odds in the Half Time Scores market are very consistent in my opinion.
In the few matches in which I have watched the odds movements on Betfair, the odds of the current score in this market drop by about half a point every 10 minutes.
So, if the odds of 0-0 in Betfair's Half Time Scores market are 3.0 before the kick off, we can expect those odds to be about 2.5 after 10 minutes play, and 2.0 at 20 minutes, and close to 1.5 at 30 minutes.

For example, in the Derby v Notts Forest game Jan 23rd, the Half Time Score market Lay odds for 0-0 before the Kick Off were 2.98.
After after 9 minutes play the 0-0 Lay
odds were  2.42 and at 10 minutes 2.32.
A goal was scored at 36 minutes taking the score to 1-0.

Using minimum stakes :-
Before the Kick Off, Bet 0-0 in the Correct Score market 2 at odds of 11.5.
Before the Kick Off, Lay 0-0 in the Half Time Scores market 2.50 at odds of 2.4 (after 10 minutes play).
Profit at 36 minutes = Successful Lay 2.5, less losing Bet 2 = Plus 0.50.
Commission on 2.50 successful lay at 5% = 0.13, (since these are 2 separate markets).
Net profit = 0.50 less 0.13 = 0.37.
The risk was that I had a 2 bet at risk for 10 minutes play, to make 0.37.

We can compare that profit with the profit we would have made if we had traded the 0-0 odds in the Half Time Scores market, by Betting 0-0 before the kick off, and Laying 0-0 in the same market after 10 minutes play.
Using my Hedge To A Profit Target spreadsheet, we can input the Bet odds before the Kick off, the Lay odds at 10 minutes, and the profit of 0.39 (before commission) required to achieve a net profit of 0.37.

Bet odds Lay odds Profit target 0.39
2.98 2.40    
       
Bet stake Lay stake win lose
1.61 2.00 0.39 0.39

Now, we can see that if we traded the odds only in the Half Time Scores market, we would have to risk only 1.61 for 10 minutes, as opposed to only 2 if we trade across 2 separate markets.

This strategy of trading 0-0 in Betfair's Half Time Scores market and Correct Score market has not proved worthwhile.
It's back to the drawing board once again.

Good luck with your trading, Howard

Jan 11th 2009.   Trading the Half Time Scores in Betfair football markets.
This will be a Hedge strategy.
I have only looked at the odds of a couple of games so far in relation to the Betfair Half Time Scores market, but there are certainly opportunities to trade this market with the Correct Score market.
We should be able to Bet the higher odds of the Correct Score market and Lay the lower odds of the Half Time Score market to Hedge to profit.

If we can then trade out to profit at Half time, we could have a strategy to bet on.
This is a basic Hedge strategy for trading 0-0 :-

  • Before the Kick Off, bet 0-0 in the Correct Score market.
  • After some time has passed in the game, Lay 0-0 in the Half Time Score market.
  • At Half Time, Lay 0-0 in the Correct Score market.

If a goal is scored during the First Half, we will have a losing bet but a successful Lay.
We will have Bet high and Layed low to Hedge to profit, so no need to trade at Half Time.
If there are no goals in the First Half, we will have Lay liabilities, but we should be able to cover those and Hedge to break even by Laying the 0-0 score in the Correct Score market, to complete our Hedge of our original Bet on 0-0.

Problems will be :-

  • The main problem will be a goal scored whilst we are waiting for the 0-0 odds to drop in the Half Time Score market, before we have placed our Lay.
    If that happens, we have a small losing bet on 0-0 in the Correct Score market.  End of trade.
  • As we are trading across 2 markets, we could have commission to pay in 2 markets.
  • In order to place our Lay at something close to the correct amount, we will need to estimate the 0-0 odds at Half Time in the Correct Score market.
  • Note that it is impossible to place both the 0-0 bet in the Correct Score market and the Lay in the Half Time market before the Kick Off, and trade to profit at Half Time if there are no goals.
    To make this work, we must wait for time to pass in the game in order to obtain lower Lay odds for our Lay in the Half Time Score market.

As with all football markets, odds movements are dependant on 2 factors - Time and Goals.
Whilst there are no goals, we can easily make this strategy work.
I definitely feel a spreadsheet coming on.
Good luck with your trading, Howard

 
11th Jan 2009.  Laying the Betfair Under and Over football markets.
Through December 2008 and early January 2009 I looked at developing a strategy for Dutching these markets.
I originally looked at trading the Betfair Under and Over 2.5 Goals, but later traded Under and Over 1.5 Goals.
Below are some of the notes building up to the building of the Excel spreadsheet for this trading strategy.

After a very promising start for this strategy, a problem was a goal scored late in the 2nd half, of a game with 2 teams who didn't appear to have the fire power to hit the net.
In an attempt to solve that problem, I looked at waiting until Half Time for games that were still 0-0 to get shorter Lay odds, and stepping in to trade only 1-0 , 0-1 and Over 1.5 Goals during the 2nd half, but that still proved to be very risky if the first goal was scored late in the game.

An answer to that could be finding 2 teams that are likely to score goals, but there are no guarantees there, especially if the game is still goalless at Half Time.

The acid test of any Betfair trading strategy is to put your spreadsheet where your mouth is.
I traded 2 games and managed to hit a single late goal in both games, the 2nd one being at 84 minutes, which gave me virtually no chance to exit the market properly.
It's back to the drawing board for this Under and Over 2.5 Goals strategy.
It may be best to stick to Hedging the odds movements by betting high and laying low   ...... boring and not without similar risks.
Good luck with your trading, Howard

9th Jan 2009.   Unders and Overs 2.5 Goals strategy  ......... fine tuning.
I sorted something out to greatly reduce losses on games in which the first goal is scored well into the 2nd half.
These games could result in a loss.
A benefit of solving this problem is that the break even odds will now be much bigger, and profits should be bigger.
All sounds too good to be true.
I will be putting my money where my spreadsheet is t
his weekend, trading this Under / Over 2.5 Goals strategy using my Betfair account, for small stakes.
Good luck with your trading, Howard
6th Jan 2009.    Unders and Overs with insurance.
It sometimes pays to think the opposite of what we would normally do, so instead of betting on 0-0 in the Correct Score market of a Betfair Football Match to insure against a game ending 0-0, maybe can we Lay to achieve the same insurance.
Example.
An equivalent market for the Under 2.5 Goals market, are these scores in the Correct Score market :-
0-0, 0-1, 0-2, 1-0, 1-1, and 2-0.
If we Lay all those scores it is the same as Laying Under 2.5 goals.
If we Lay all those scores except 0-0, we have 5 successful lays whilst the score remains 0-0.
Whilst the score remains 0-0, we win the total of our Lays.

If a goal is scored :-
If we can Lay both Under 2.5 Goals and Over 2.5 Goals to more than a 100% book, we can make a guaranteed profit.
We could do that by laying one of them, waiting for some time to pass in the game, and then laying the other.
Alternatively, we could Hedge by trading one of them by betting high and laying low.
In both cases, profits would be small in relation to the length of time we would need to risk our money in the market whilst waiting for the odds to change.

A better way is to trade in anticipation of a goal being scored.

If we can Lay the score lines shown above without having to include 0-0, and then Lay Over 2.5 Goals after a goal is scored, we could have a winning strategy with built in insurance against a 0-0 score line.
Normally, with one of the Lay odds missing it would be impossible to Lay the rest of the market to profit, but after a goal is scored, the odds of the over and under markets can change dramatically.

So, this is the strategy that I looked at and paper traded for a few games :-

  • In the Correct Score market, Lay 0-1, 0-2, 1-0, 1-1, and 2-0.
    We have Layed Under 2.5 goals, but without 0-0.
    Whilst the score remains 0-0, we clean up with 5 successful lays.
  • If no goals are scored, Lay 0-0 late in the game plus Over 2.5 Goals for an Over Round book.
  • If a goal or goals are scored, Lay Over 2.5 Goals.
    At this point we have Layed an Over Round book using both the Correct Scores of Under 2.5 Goals and the Over 2.5 Goals of the Under / Over 2.5 Goals market.
    We have Layed the total Under / Over 2.5 Goals market, without Laying the 0-0 score.
  • An advantage of this strategy is that if goals are scored early in the game, we may be able to either Lay to guaranteed profit, or sit tight and wait for a 2nd and 3rd goal.
    At any score with Zero or 3 goals or more, all our 5 Lays are successful .............
    We clean up with the total of our Lays.
  • A disadvantage is a low scoring game with the first goal scored in the 2nd half of the game.
    Under those conditions, the market may decide that there will not be more than 2 goals, so the odds of Over 2.5 Goals will not shorten enough for us to Dutch to profit.
    If that is the case, it may be best to take the hit, and trade out to an all red screen.
    There will always be other profitable matches to trade.

Good luck with your trading, Howard

16th Dec 2009.    Equivalent markets, Insurance Bets, and Under / Over 1.5 Goals, and Under / Over 2.5 Goals markets
When we use Betfair football markets, there are always markets that have to have similar odds, otherwise one market could be layed whilst another is bet to Hedge for guaranteed profit.
If 2 equivalent markets had differing odds, those odds would be snapped up by Bots (trading robots), until the odds equalized so that no profit would be available from a Hedge of betting one market, and laying the equivalent odds of the 2nd market.

These are examples of equivalent markets, but there will be plenty of others if you can think of them :-

  • The Betfair Next Goal = No Goal odds will always be very close to the current score of the Correct Score market.
    If you Bet on Next Goal = No Goal, you are betting that there will not be another goal.
    In the Correct Score market, you should be able to bet on the current score and get very similar odds, since you would be betting that the current score will continue to the end of the game.
    For example, whilst the score is 0-0, if you bet that there will be No Goal in the Next Goal market, you are betting that the score will remain at 0-0.
    If you bet the 0-0 score line, you would be betting on exactly the same thing.
    If you Lay Next Goal = No Goal, you are saying there will be another goal, so you could Lay 0-0 or whatever the current score is for the same odds, or very close, since by laying 0-0, you would be betting that the score would not remain at 0-0.
    Whilst the game stands at any other score, such as 1-0, 2-0, 3-1, etc., you would be betting that the score would remain the same, with no further goals.
    If you lay the current score, you are saying that there will be another goal.
    So bet in one market and lay in the other, and you cover all eventualities - goal or no goal.
  • In the Betfair Under / Over 1.5 goals market, at a score of 0-0, the equivalent market is the combined correct scores of 0-0, 1-0, plus 0-1.
    After a goal is scored, the Under 1.5 Goals market must then equal the current score of 1-0, or 0-1.
    At this point, we have 3 markets that must have very similar odds ------ Next Goal = No Goal, the current score in the Correct Score market, and the Under 1.5 goals market.
    If any one of those markets gets out of step with the others, there is a Hedging opportunity.

The 0-0 score line is used in some strategies as an insurance bet to cover games where no goals are scored.
If we Lay the Draw in the Match Odds market and intend to Bet the draw after a goal is scored to Hedge to guaranteed profit, we can use the 0-0 score line in the Correct Score market to cover our initial Lay.
Suppose the 0-0 bet odds are 11.0.
We can bet 2 (win 20) and Lay the Draw in the Match Odds market for 20 worth of liabilities.
Whilst there are no goals, we win 20 form our bet on 0-0, but we have liabilities of 20 on our lay.
Our only cost is commission on our winning 2 bet.  Other than that, we break even.

Once a goal is scored, we have a losing 2 bet on 0-0, but we may be able to Hedge to profit by betting the Draw in the Match Odds market, and make enough profit to cover our 2 loss and show a profit on the trade as a whole.
This is a well known insurance bet method.
This strategy can also be employed to insure against a 0-0 game if Dutching all 3 outcomes of the Match Odds market.

Problems arise if the outsider of the 2 teams scores first, or if the first goal is scored very early in the game, or if 2 quick goals take the score to 1-1.
Under those circumstances, the odds of the Draw would probably not lengthen sufficiently for a successful Hedge.
I have developed a Dutching strategy to deal with these scenarios, which is especially effective if the outsider of the 2 teams scores first.

I now sell  "Hedge The Draw" and "Dutch All 3 Outcomes" spreadsheet packages, which use these insurance and exit strategies.
Both spreadsheet packages have very similar layouts.

Just recently, I have been looking at the Under / Over 1.5 Goals, and Under / Over 2.5 Goals markets in relation to time passing in the game, goals being scored, and insurance bets.
I don't have a strategy for trading these markets with insurance bets and exit strategies yet, but I'm working on it.

Good luck with your trading, Howard.

10th Dec 2008.    Under and Over, and other markets.
There are only 2 ways of trading - Dutching and Hedging.
If you can come up with another staking method, you are on your way to your first million.

Last week, I thought I was onto something - not a different way of staking, but a way of staking that I hadn't thought of before.

A new way of looking at staking of football matches.
We know that whilst no goals are being scored, some odds shorten whilst others lengthen.
After a goal is scored, those rolls may be reversed, with some odds lengthening, whilst others shorten.
Suppose we take 2 markets - Lay a rising market, and Bet a shortening market with the intention of Hedging to profit by betting the first market at higher odds, and laying the 2nd market at lower odds.
That will be a definite winner whilst there are no goals.

Once a goal is scored, the odds are likely to change dramatically and if we have not exited the market, the odds available may give us an all red screen.
Whilst no goals are being scored, Football Match odds are very predictable, but exactly when goals will be scored is anybody's guess.

So, what if we Hedge 2 markets - one that shows a profit whilst no goals are scored, and one that shows a profit only after a goal is scored.
Suppose that whilst there are no goals, a hedge profit of the first market is bigger that the loss on the 2nd market, BUT, after a goal, a Hedge profit of the 2nd market is bigger than the loss on the first market.
Under such conditions, we could hedge to profit after a period of time whilst there are no goals,
OR we could exit the market to profit after a goal is scored.

I have been watching the odds of Match Odds markets, Correct Score, Under and Over, and Next Goal markets of a few matches during the last 2 or 3 weeks, and have come pretty close to covering these scenarios, but so far, there has been the dreaded big loss on just the occasional game where the odds have not been straightforward.
The difficulty is, making the staking work :-

  • If a strongly fancied team scores first.
  • If the outsider scores first against a strongly fancied team.
  • If either of 2 closely matched teams score first.

So far, it's early days for my theory of trading 2 markets in this way to show a profit whilst the score is 0-0, 1-0 or 0-1, but it can be done under quite a lot of circumstances.
The answer may be to select games depending on the odds available, or where we think there may be no goals scored in the first 10 - 20 minutes.
"Where we think" introduces an element of judgement, and you can bet your life that your judgement will be wrong the first time you put your money where your spreadsheet is.
So far, it's back to the drawing board on this one.

Good luck with your trading, Howard.

3rd Dec 2008         Free bets seminar.
The Oddsmatcher demo for trading Bookies Free Bets on Monday night lasted just over an hour.
As a very experienced Free Bets Tart, there was nothing new for me.

I didn't realize that the Oddsmatcher web page only brings up bookies football odds for a comparison with exchange odds.
I usually target horse races if possible when I'm trading free bets.
I've never seen a strong market move on a football team before the kick off, but I've seen plenty of steamers in horse races.
If you are looking to bet high and lay low to get the best out of your Free Bet trades, you would be well advised to look at markets other than football.
Oddsmatcher allows you to input your own odds, so you could use the calculator for any market.

These are other points that I make clear with my Free Bets trading spreadsheet package :-

  • Always bet first with the bookie.
    Bookie web pages don't refresh very often, so the odds you see, are not always the odds on offer.
    If you can't get the odds you want, keep looking in other races or events.
  • If the free bet stake IS returned with winnings, it's best to trade short prices.
    If the free bet stake is NOT returned with winnings, it's best to trade BIG prices.
    Test drive a few bets on Oddsmatcher to see this in action.
  • You can save commission by trading more than one bookie in the same race.
    If you happen to hit a winner, you will have liabilities on Betfair, with zero commission to pay.

I don't think the Oddsmatcher calculator can be used for offers such as the BetChronicle offer.
BetChronicle offer to double your winnings if you hit a winner whilst trading your deposit.
To trade this offer, you need to trade your deposit, and trade as if you have a free bet at the same time, with the free bet stake NOT returned with winnings.
You may be able to muck about to get your staking right, but it's best to make your whole trade with a single bet and lay.
Also, I have traded other offers where only a percentage of the winnings is awarded if you hit a winner.
Again, this can be traded with just one bet and one lay, using my spreadsheet.

Whenever you are trading on Betfair using an on-screen calculator to show the staking, it is best if a range of odds are displayed, otherwise you have to continually overtype the odds to keep pace with changing odds on Betfair.
My spreadsheets show a range of 16 odds increments, the stakes required, and the profit or loss from your transaction, so once you have input some odds, you rarely need to overtype anything.

Oddsmatcher is a step in the right direction for punters, with improvements in the pipeline.

Good luck with your trading, Howard.

1st Dec 2008      Free bets seminar.     Football under and over research.
Over the weekend, I enrolled for a free webinar covering trading of bookies free bets.
The free demo is tonight 7pm till 8pm with an audio link.
I've signed up for this to see what the opposition has to offer.

I have an excellent spreadsheet package for trading bookies free bet offers, so it will be interesting to see how this demo compares to what I have on offer.
The maths of trading free bets are simple enough, but offers vary from bookie to bookie, so you need to alter your staking according to the offer.

My spreadsheet package is the one I have used very extensively and covers different types of bookie offers :-

  • Free money such as the Betfair offer.

  • Bet a deposit, free bet stake IS returned with winnings.

  • Bet a deposit, free bet stake is NOT returned with winnings.

  • Bet a deposit, get a percentage free bet, with free bet stake not returned with winnings

  • Bet a deposit, get another free bet on the same selection, with free bet stake not returned with winnings.

Trading free bets is the only mathematical certainty that I know of in the gambling world.
Get your stakes right, and you cannot lose.

The webinar is connected with the Oddsmatcher free on-line calculator.
I've enrolled on tonight's webinar to see if the Oddsmatcher people trade their free bets any differently to everyone else.
I'm always on the lookout for new ideas.

I'll keep you posted.

============================================

I watched the odds of 6 premiership football matches over the week end, concentrating on the Over and Under markets, in relation to the Correct Score market.
Once you collect a few stats and start to analyse them, it's amazing where you get diverted to.
I began to look into the Next Goal market as well, but packed that in once I noticed a very promising looking Hedging and Dutching opportunity elsewhere.
I already had a spreadsheet knocked up for combining Dutching with a Hedge, so I tested the odds on it and things are looking good.
This spreadsheet allows me to Bet or Lay several selections to equal profit, and then Bet Or Lay a single selection to Hedge and equalize the trade as a whole.
For instance, you could Bet all the possible outcomes in one market, and then Lay a single outcome in an equivalent market to hedge to profit.
In football matches of course, all markets are affected by 2 factors - time passing in the game, and goals being scored.
Football odds are very predictable in relation to time, but when goals will be scored is anybody's guess.
Next, I need to look at the liquidity of the markets concerned, and watch the odds of more matches to see how often trades are likely to go into the red.
While I'm doing that, I'll be thinking about an exit strategy for when things go wrong.

Good luck with your trading, Howard.

27th Nov 2008.      Breach of copyright.     Unders and Overs     Check your maths.
Other than reading the Betfair Forum occasionally, I haven't been involved in anything to do with trading for quite a while.
I've been building Holiday Cottage web sites for 2 customers and getting them up and running with traffic.

This past week, I've been looking around for ideas for new trading strategies, and came across 2 blokes who have pinched my ideas for their own web sites ..... Cheek, but quite flattering.

One chap copied exactly, my Hedge 1-1 strategy from my web site into his blog, despite my copyright message on the bottom of all my web pages :-

Copyright 2007 All rights reserved.

To his credit, he does recommend searching on Google for Betfair Strategy or something similar, to find my web site.
I sent him an e-mail with a link, but nothing has come of it so far.
On the other site, I was able to post a comment.
My posting appeared ok, but predictably was removed after a couple of days.
On that same web site, a bloke left a comment stating that he'd bought a spreadsheet from one of my web sites, but received nothing.

I replied to that posting.
As far as I am aware, everyone who buys a spreadsheet from me gets their spreadsheet.
After purchase, the PayPal system should route my customer to a download web page.
My download web pages have a link for downloading the spreadsheet required.

If a customer has difficulties, they usually e-mail me and I send them their spreadsheet and quite often include an additional spreadsheet to compensate for any frustration.

All my spreadsheets contain instructions, but most download web pages also contain additional information.

=====================================================

Trading Unders and Overs in the football markets seems quite popular at present, with the 2.5 Goals market apparently having the best liquidity.
I've been watching a few games this week and recording the odds movements of a few related markets.
We could hedge the odds in the Under 2.5 Goals market by betting before the kick off and laying after a short period of time has passed in the game.
The risk is that an early goal would probably put us in the red, so I am looking at placing insurance bets to ease the pain, or even as an alternative method of trading.
We could also lay Over 2.5 goals and then bet after time has passed.

An alternative to Hedging of course is Dutching.
If we bet both under and over 2.5 goals, we cover all possible outcomes.
We could bet Under before the kick off, wait a short time, and bet Over 2.5 goals as the odds lengthen.
Alternatively, we could Lay Over 2.5 goals, wait, and then Lay Under 2.5 goals.

The profit involved whether we Hedge or Dutch should be roughly the same for the same liabilities.
So, .....  there are 4 possible trades in these markets which I could cover, probably with 2 spreadsheets.

I need to kick a few ideas about, build a spreadsheet of 3, and test them live on Betfair.

=================================================

If ever you come up with a strategy that looks like a real winner, always check your maths.
Then double check your maths.
I've lost count of the times I've found an absolute nailed on certainty of a strategy, and been brought back down to earth by a wrong calculation or having looked at lay odds when I should have been looking at bet odds.
The ultimate test of course, is when you put your money where your spreadsheet is.

Good luck with your trading,
Howard.

Contact me
Copyright H. Hutchinson 2009 All rights reserved
Copying text or any other kind of content from a web site is a criminal offence.