By Darren Hall, www.bet72.com
As the process of risk free matched betting is all about “Just Good Maths” then it doesn’t have to be all about football.
Let’s take Tennis. Ah Wimbledon and the Great British Summer. Strawberries and Cream, Raincoats and Umbrellas, Barbeques and Food Poisoning all make it the great institution that it is. However there is one more combination to be extra wary of, especially if you are the thinking of indulging in some different sports for your matched betting, namely Terms and Conditions.
Yes our favourite double act needs even more attention than ever as you move from sport to sport and there are a number of potential hazards than you must be fully aware of.
Now it goes without saying that before you place any bet you should read (and read again) the terms and conditions for the site you are using and the offer you are planning to use. However you should not forget to extend this reading to the “Rules of Game”, for the sport you have selected to place you bets on. As sometimes, in the eyes of the bookmaker and betting exchange, these can be very different.
Take Tennis for example, a wonderful sport and when the big tournaments come around such as Wimbledon it can be matched bettors dream. A constant stream matches, covered by every bookmaker on the planet with good liquidity on the betting exchanges, what more could we wish for.
However the Tennis markets are awash with different rules between bookmakers and betting exchanges that could mean you having one bet standing and one bet voided in the event of a player retirement for example.
Consider these different scenarios that different bookmakers / exchanges use to determine whether a bet stands or not in the event of a retirement and you will see what we mean.
• In the event of a match starting but not being completed, the player progressing to the next round will be deemed the winner.
• In the event of a match starting but not being completed, all match bets will be void.
• In the event of a match being awarded to a player before the full number of sets have been played, match bets will stand on the player officially going through to the next round, provided at least one set has been played.
• In the event of a match being awarded to a player before the full number of sets have been played, match bets will stand on the player officially going through to the next round, provided at least two sets have been played.
Equally some rules will change from event to event depending where it is and what surface it is on.
For example looking at Outright Winner market before the recent French Open tournament where Rafael Nadal was a short odds-on pre event favourite. Betfair clearly stated in their rules…
“***THIS MARKET WILL BE VOID IF RAFAEL NADAL IS A NON RUNNER***
If any other competitor does not participate, then bets will stand. “
However looking at the Outright Wimbledon market (at the time of writing), then this rule is in place but this time for Roger Federer. Different tournament, different surface, difference favourite so different rules.
All sites will have their own rules sections; usually found under their own General Terms and Conditions areas. Or in the case of Betfair, under a Rules tab, to the right of the market selected.
So always set aside some time to read through these and be sure that you are happy with what you see and that you are matching like for like between the bookmaker and the betting exchange.
Similarly there are a number of areas that are always worthy of a “double check” before you hit that submit button on a bet to lock-in you risk free profit and again these do vary across the sporting spectrum.
So here are some of a few more of our FCP’s (Frequently Cursed Problems) that people have encountered over the years, especially when moving outside of their usual betting market areas.
• Are you backing and laying THE SAME outcome? Sounds ridiculously obvious but we have heard of people being tripped up by things ranging from football teams playing each other in the league and cup a few days apart and then backing / laying different games. To differences concerning extra or overtime rules between bookmakers and betting exchanges. This is especially true in US markets such as Ice Hockey, NFL and Basketball. Equally do double check the selection, plenty of people have backed Overs and layed Unders where the odds are the same or layed the wrong horse with a similar looking name to the one they backed. Honestly it does happen.
• Beware the Arb. Follow the old adage that if it looks too good to be true then it generally is. Whilst you may come across genuine instances of a selection with higher odds to back than to lay, an arbitrage bet. Any “significant” difference could be down to a “Palpable Error” where the bookmaker has published the odds incorrectly or made some other kind of accidental error. Be aware that the bookmaker will have a clause in their terms to state that these will be voided the bet or at best corrected to the real odds and in either case you are likely to lose out.
• Odds will change and often very quickly in certain markets so our advice is always back first, then lay. The bookmaker will be offering a fixed odds price for a selection whilst the betting exchange is operating on a pool of money at certain prices waiting to be matched. You can always see how much money is available at any price on the exchange but you never know when a bookmaker may cut his price. So get the back bet on first then you know the odds you need to match up against on the exchange and you can place your lay bet accordingly.
• Keep your eye on the time. Often the best match up in odds can occur just before the start of a match / event but always leave yourself time to back and lay. Some events will not go “In-Play” on the betting exchange so you will not even have an option once the event starts and then your risk free bet will turn into a straight forward punt. Also confirm exactly what time you are looking at. Certain sites may show overseas events in local time rather than GMT for example.
• Always have a plan B. Yes websites can go offline, yes Internet Service Providers can go down, yes your dog can chew the through the cable to your internet router and yes PC’s do crash and fail. In each case you could be left high and dry without a method of laying your bet off to make it all risk free. Having alternatives for all the above are very important if you don’t want to be at the sharp end of a high tech failure. Having phone numbers for bookmakers / exchanges close to hand, a secondary internet connection even on a pay as you go basis and fast access to another PC a short notice, will all help you complete what you have started if disaster ever strikes.
Stepping outside your normal betting zone can leave you open to a number of potential pitfalls and possible expensive mistakes. However, as with most things in life, exercise a little common sense, take your time and read, read, read the rules and conditions and there is no reason why, you cannot use any sport, not only football, for your risk free matched betting.