Monday, 5 December 2011

End of November Update

Well I kind of forgot it was the end of November, despite the fact I do have an advert calendar. So I'll have to cheat a little and count the 4th of December as the last day in November. Not that it makes much difference to the overall picture. It has been a very poor year with my betting exploits and the month of November was another losing month to the tune of £136.34. My system haven't been doing that badly, my own ill-discipline once again seems to be the undoing of me with silly mistakes like trying to trade horse racing when I know I can't or trading on football matches with poor liquidity.

I'm sure I've said it a few times but I feel like I need time away, to go back to the drawing board if you like (I do not own a drawing board). But you get the idea, maybe some time away to have a recap on what I've been doing both wrongly and rightly. I'll continue with my obvious "good" or sounds methods of betting like my horse racing systems (between them netted me around £1,500 this year) and I'll carry on with my £10 challenge which seems to be more or less standing still (but they do say that's the first step in gambling, breaking even). I'll continue with my weekly update but won't have too much to say I don't think. I shall re asses and look at new betting options for the remainder of the year as well as scrutinising closely my existing methods. By my end of year update I should have a fully picture of what I'm doing. In the mean time I'm doing some volunteering work at present, nobody seemingly wants to give me a paid job so boasting my CV working for free was a recommended route for myself.

Monday, 28 November 2011


Cliche it may be but sometimes it's true that certain events really do put your current life into perspective. The very sad news I awoke to on Sunday morning about Gary Speed did just that. Such a tragic loss at a relative young age. Has odd as it may sound deaths among football personaltities always seem to hit me hardest, always difficult in these times to find the words to sum up how you feel but there's been some wonderful tributes I've read that sum it up better than I ever could. My condoleses go out to his family and friends.

On what seems something of an irrevelant sidenote, my betting adventures led me to a loss of £86.89 this week. A few errors along the way and no horse racing systems winners took care of that. Still a few days of Novemeber remaining, has been a relative quite month but looks like it may end in a loss.

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Time Management & Organisation

By no means the most exciting topics in any walk of life by things that are absolutely necessary if you want to succeed. The world of gambling is no different, the best gamblers out there not only have a very good edge but they also have very good organisation and time management. It may seem simple at times but little things like knowing what time games kick-off and what TV channel they are on. Collecting all those little nuggets of information in quick time is vitally important so you can concentrate on your picks. At times it feels like I spend far too much time on the admin side of my gambling, updating records, placing bets and so forth. But these are things that need doing successful if you want to be successful. Unfortunately (or maybe fortunately) for all of us (well for the time being at least) our time on earth is limited, therefore our time is a precious commodity and we must treat it as one.

Procrastination I admit myself is an easy trap to fall in but you must fight against it, for if you get the work done quicker you'll have more time to yourself anyway. It is always best to task quickly and efficiently than dwindle your way through it slowly.

Anyway enough of my ironic ramblings about procrastination and onto this week's round-up. Well it was an interesting week, plenty of bets and action and managed to turn a profit of £30.11, which I've got to be pleased with. The end of November is approaching quickly now, been a bit of slow month in truth but hopefully I'll end it with a profit.

Monday, 14 November 2011

Being Lazy Doesn't Pay

As it turns out I missed a winner on Sunday because I was being a little lazy. Thought I had plenty time to wake up around noon get my usually bacon butty and place any bets whilst watching the Grand Prix build-up. Turns out that proved a minor slip-up by myself, as I said I went onto miss a winner, the saving grace I suppose was that it wasn't a massive priced winner, that really would have made me angry with myself. Note to self Horse Racing starts earlier since the clocks changed, understandably due to the swift darkness that descends mid-afternoon during winter. Think it gets to something ridiculous like horse racing at 11am as the winter dawns on. Although I should really check what time meeting start the day before, organisation or not being sloppy and lazy must rank just behind discipline and staking plans on the gambling must do list.

This week was quite slowl on the betting front considering there wasn't much football action. Ended up playing a few games of poker this week, did rather well in fact. I get bored with poker easily at times, it is a fascinating game and I believe I could be very good at it if I tried. But playing for small stakes is very different to playing for big stakes, I've set aside £5 for my poker balance and I usually just play cheap SNGs and see how far I get. It looks a lot more glamorous when you see major events on TV, although it must be noted they only show the most interesting or exciting hands on TV whilst cutting out the uneventful hands which make up 90% of the game of poker. It also takes a lot of time up, you cna play trubo games but I feel that becomes more of a lottery at times. Playing the normal slow types of SNGs can take anything from an hour upwards. Playing multi-tables is the way a lot of people go, but I tried that before and it didn't go so well.

Anyway this is my weekly round-up and I managed a loss of £2.75 this week. I did stupidly try to get back into horse racing trading this week, which flopped again predictably. I really should stay away and stick to football. My last 3 months of Betfair P/L show why I should concentrate my efforts on football bets and trading.

My Last 3 Months P/L - Betfair

Monday, 7 November 2011


Managed to come away from this week with a small profit of £6.96. My £10 challenge still going strong although I don't post all my bets on Betfair in there. Doesn't make sense to post every single trade and in-play bets as I place them because there's just to many and sometimes I change my position in matches.

My weekly Betfair P/L

Just been getting into the routine of Premier League at weekends and the Champions League/Europa League midweek. Whilst I'm not turning over huge amounts I think I'm doing a decent job in these football markets. Internationals some competitive, some friendlies to follow this week.

Monday, 31 October 2011

End of October Update

Realise it's been quite a while since my last post, no particular reason for that just never got round to last week's usual update. That means I've got two weeks of good news to bring plus the monthly round-up. Week#42 that was the week ending 23rd October saw me achieve a profit of £97.33, whilst the week just passed saw me go even better with a profit of £144.57.

Thanks to these good two weeks it means that I ended October showing a £233.82 profit for the month, which i'm pleased with considering the down-scaling that has happened. My concerntration was solely on trying to turn these three remaining months of the year into profitable ones and thankfully that's one down and two to go. I know my cumulative profit for the year doesn't look good but I take some solace from the fact that I now appear to be moving in the right direction. My £10 challenge is going along slowly if unspectacular, think it goes someway to showing how difficult it is to turn a profit by seeking value bets. I'm pleased with the fact that for a large part of this month I've managed to regain good discipline in betting. I'm proud to say my few remaining horse racing systems have come back into play and turned a decent profit for October.

Still finding it really difficult to find any sort of work at present, so I'm currently having far too much time thinking about gambling. I really do prefer having some away time from it and having some sort of normal job would surely do that. Still I manage to find quite a lot of time for reading and watching films.

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Week #41

The year is seemingly fast approaching as the 41st week of my betting year came to an end on Sunday. This week was a loss of £111.07, which is squarely because of my horse racing system that hasn't had the best starts to October. My £10 challenge is still going fairly well and i'm upto £12.63 after just over a month of the challenge, may not seem like rapid process but a 20% bank increase each month would see me with a balance of over £75k this time five years on. Know I'm getting a little ahead of myself there but it is true you don't need to start with massive amounts to progress. Learning to have good discipline and a patient approach is much more useful than starting with big betting bank in my view. If your methods are working your bank will continue to grow regardless of whether it's £2 a month or £200 a month.

Monday, 10 October 2011

Raindrops keeping fallin' on my head

Well not exactly true, I'm more of an indoor creature. But if I was stood outside raindrops would indeed be fallin' on my head because the weather has been depressingly rainy for what seems like ages now (four or five days I think). Well we did have a mini heatwave for like two days, very barmy for October it was.

Anyway onto more gambling matters. This week I recorded a profit of £102.99, although that owes more to incompetence than to skill I might add. For a simple mistake in backing a similar named horse at the same price in a different race at the same track resulted in an unexpected winner which turned my week from an average one into a brilliant one. It's weird how sometimes mistakes or foolish behaviour can result in a positive outcome. This is a large part of the reason why discipline in gambling can be so difficult at times. You can get rewarded for making bad bets or bad trades, therefore only natural it would seem that you would continue with similar behaviour when in fact it was reckless or simply wrong all along. Like I've probably mentioned lots of times before absolutely anyone could be a successful gambler for a day, a week, a month or maybe at a stretch a year. But only the true disciplined gambler with an edge will end up in profit. Whilst in this case it was obviously a simple mistake on my part, I've no intention of continuing this behaviour in the future. But in some situations it's not entirely clearly and that's why reading up on staking plans and finding your edge is vital.

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

What does it take to succeed?

I'm guessing this is probably quite a common question among a lot of people. I can't provide a definite answer, I think it's all down to your own interpretation on things but I'm going to share my own. Firstly an element of luck I believe can be found somewhere in a lot of people's success. I'm not just on about celebrities who may have got a lucky break in whatever career they pursue I'm on about normal, working people who may say they haven't succeed in life, but working and providing for your family in my opinion is one of the simplest but best forms of success. As a person who's been fascinated and intrigued by probability it may not come as surprised that I believe in an element of luck in everyday life. I always like to use the hypothetical idea of parallel universes when discussing the idea of luck or "fate". Imagine there's 99 other parallel universes where you where born at the exact same day, at the exact same time, in the exact same place, born into the exact same family. I myself I'm twenty two years old now, in that space of time the other 99 of me in the parallel universes could be doing an array of different things. God-forbidden a proportion of them may actually have a job or may have moved to more exotic pastures. Indeed in these parallel universes maybe one is already a successfully, professional gambler meanwhile an other proportion of myself don't even gamble at all or maybe are just occasional recreational gamblers. You could stretch the parallel universe idea out further, let's say there's fifty million parallel universes. In at least one of them I'll already have died or been murdered, in another I'll have committed a murder, in an other I'll be professional footballer in the Premier League.

To get to my point my parallel universe story wasn't about the idea of parallel universe but more about the fact that various things can happen in a person's life to change the course of their life. That's where my point about luck comes in, something could have happened (something that the person may not even realise) that turns out to have a strong effect on a person's life. Whilst an element of luck can help I don't think a simple stroke of luck alone can make someone succeed (unless you count someone winning the lottery or getting a huge court settlement as a success).

What fundamentally underpins the success of any individual in my opinion is simply their determination and focus in a given area of expertise. I do take the fact that a person's early environments their genetics would maybe given certain people an adventure in differing. But when a person is focusing on something realistically achievable but which will stretch their talents to the limits then they will only succeed if they've got the dedication and commitment required to put in the work or whatever it needs to succeed in that field.

Whilst writing this I'm obviously to some degree thinking about me striving to become a professional gambler and in the short-term to find a part-time job. I'm obviously finding it very difficult at present, but I do firmly believe these are realistic targets for myself. May sound arrogant but I firmly believe I'm considerably above average in terms of intelligence, although I admit to being somewhat lazy and often having the coasting along effect especially when it came to my education. Maybe it's just kicked in recently but I'm now sure of it, I require a lot more commitment to the cause as the say. I'm not exactly a Carlos Tevez style rebel but I do find myself sometimes doing just enough to get by. I don't want to remembered as the guy who could have been great but settled for averageness (may have made this word up).

This is my end of weekly update believe it or not, I know it's been a little hi-jacked with my ramblings (which are of great important of course). This week was a small loss of £16.43, not going to get too wound up over that one. I'm happy enough to move on and conquer the beast of the gambling world with my new found motivation. Finally though a little reflection of my daily Betfair cumulative P/L since the end of July. It did start of as a little challenge at time but it's mostly turned into a simple record of my Betfair behavior. Below is a graph outlining these results, it is the exact sort of shape you would expect to see from an inexperienced mug gambler without a proper staking plan. Which make it all the more scary that it is my figures that have plotted this graph. Largely the blame was badly traded horse racing markets (I've given them up since).

Betfair cumulative P/L

Friday, 30 September 2011

End of September Update

Realise my last update was a bit poor and lacking in substance. Hopefully I make up for that in this end of month update. September has been something of a low-key month with me turning to the back to basics start with £10 challenge. I'm pretty happy with how that's going to be honest, it's not going to fast process but hopefully it will help me keep that all important discipline as I continue to strive for ultimate gambling perfection. My final figures for September was a loss of £781.24, yes my horse racing systems haven't been doing great but the main culprit of this loss is my own ill-discipline on Betfair.

Although I'm hoping that I've finally turned the corner. Awful saying I know , but it does seem appropriate for my situation. I am to some extent still frustrated with my lack of discipline in my betting adventures because I know (and I have figures to back it up ) that I can be a profitable gambler if only I kept my focus, my discipline and my staking plans in order. I've heard the phrase anyone can make a mistake but only a fool repeats the same mistake (or something along those lines). In which case I'm a pretty big fool by now.

September Profit/loss

Doesn't make for nice viewing that Betfair P/L but I've only myself to blame. I'm now treating my £10 challenge as if that's my only betting funds outside my horse racing system bets (which I shall continue). I could have easily started with a £100 in my Betfair account or £500. But the amount is to some extent irrelevant, if I can't master the skills needed the money will eventually be lost regardless of the size of the starting bank. Now back to my usual Friday night ritual of sorting out my Fantasy Premier League game. Most people my age are probably out drinking somewhere whereas I'm in internal conflict over who should be fantasy team captain for this weekend. But I wouldn't have it any other way. Usually weekly update to follow on Sunday (or more than likely sometime at the beginning of next week).

Tuesday, 27 September 2011

A winning week

Little bit late as usual, promise I will make a Sunday update one of these days. Anyway not too much to report in all honesty this week, my betting action is very much low key these days with only small amounts being wagered. I ended the week in profit to the tune of £21.09. Remember you can keep in touch with all of my bets in my £10 challenge (the link is in the sidebar).

Tuesday, 20 September 2011

These Updates are Painful

I'm finding it rather painful to continue to post updates on my failings. Bit like that ol' school detention punishment of having to write lines:

I will not look up rude words in the dictionary.
I will not look up rude words in the dictionary.

Whilst at the present with me it's more like:

I shall not be an ill-disciplined useless twonk when it comes to betting.
I shall not be an ill-disciplined useless twonk when it comes to betting.

and so forth. Realise I just actually typed that out twice when I could have copied and pasted. Well the damage this week was done on Monday where my venture into horse racing trading took a turn for the worse, I forgot the golden rule of never go in-play when your pre-race trading and the result was a predictable mess. Such an easy trap to get into though. My horse racing systems decided to have a off week also, meaning my loss this week was a not to clever £237.43. Which takes my cumulative loss for the first time over the £4,000 mark. Well I can't say I'm not breaking records this year, it's just the wrong sort of records.

One bright thing to come out of this week is my £10 challenge. May seem a bit silly but I do find the enjoyment in slow building a bank up from a small amount. If you can try and imprint the discipline at low levels hopefully that will stay with you if you can get your bank to rise. As I mentioned last week I'm seriously thinking about scraping all my other betting adventures for good and concentrating fully on this challenge. Although I'm happy to stay with my horse racing system for the time being, the ones I still follow are in decent enough profit for the year.

Wednesday, 14 September 2011

Week #36

Here's my now fashionably late end of week update in which I announce things as if they've only just happened when in fact they are distant memories from several days ago. Sometimes I just feel like kicking myself in the head (not that I'm flexible enough) because I feel I work so hard to get things back on track and moving in the right direction and then one little moment of ill-discipline can wreck a full week's, month's, year's work. I sometimes find myself putting down bets or trades where the logical part of my brain is shouting, 'what the hell are you doing, you shouldn't be doing this' then there's another side of my brain which I like to call the dark side (nothing to do with Star Wars) which is saying 'This is a genius idea, look at the money you could win here'. Think somewhere along the line I've got to try and control this internal battle, the betting world is unforgiving as it is without me fighting with myself all the time. As you may have gathered already this week didn't end to well with me knocking up a loss of £215.90. I also had a bad day on Monday as well which will probably mean next (this) week will be a loss also.

I'm very close to just withdrawing all my money (well what's left remaining) from my various accounts and just starting from scratch with just my Betfair account with a very small amount. I've already started a challenge under a similar ethos called How Far Can A Tenner Stretch? I'm hoping this will help me focus my mind and stop me from being so ill-disciplined. I continue to read various trading and betting books especially those versed in the psychological aspect of trading. Problem is not in what I know, think I've read a lot about the subject it's just about trying to put the methods and ideas mentioned in the books into practice. At the moment I'm a poor outright bettor and a shocking trader. I've become increasingly interested in the trading aspect of betting but for the life of me I can't seem to do it. Maybe more study in finding an "edge" is probably needed but even if I did have a significant edge I feel my lack of discipline would end up screwing it up anyway. General feeling is one of my frustration.

One good thing to come from this week was the amount of sports action to watch, last weekend there was very little sports on TV. Week just gone we had the usual football, cricket (India still not won a game) as well the tennis and not forgetting Formula One. Oh yeah and the Rugby World Cup as well, so it was definitely enjoyably week from a sports fans point of view.

Monday, 5 September 2011

The Return of the Loss

Gone a while without occurring a weekly lost but the week just gone saw the return of it unfortunately. I take full responsibility for the loss, having a lot of money locked in my bet365 caused me to lose my discipline and made me bet amounts I shouldn't have been under my current betting plan of small stakes and steady as I go. Stupid sucker that I am was trying to reach the rollover requirement so that I could withdraw my existing funds plus the extra £50 bonus I received for reaching the rollover amount. I fell straight for the sly workings of such bonuses, they set high rollover requirement so the account holder bets more frequently to secure in the bonus. In the meantime they can't withdraw any of the funds won so the temptation to continue and maybe even up stakes exist. The sensible plan for me to do what have been to simply back something on Bet365 at the minimum odds required for the offer at 1.50 and then lay at let's say 1.52 or so on Betfair. Meaning a small regardless of outcomes, but in the process securing part of the rollover requirement and ultimately the bonus. The loss for the week was £258.21.

Been a very quiet week and weekend in truth, not much sport going on other than the US Open tennis, don't bet on tennis at all (because I'm bad at it) but do enjoy just watching. The international football scene doesn't really interest me too much these days England looked decent on Friday but I don't know whether it was just Bulgaria being really poor. More of the Euro2012 qualifiers to follow this midweek also.

Thursday, 1 September 2011

End of August Update

So the eighth month of the year has been and gone which signals we have reached the three quarter mark in the year. With the end of August we see summer turn into autumn, although the word summer is perhaps being generous given the lack of warm weather this summer. Don't know if it's just me getting old but wearing a jumper around the house and needing an extra blanket in bed to keep me warm in August is not the usual. Like how the news always have to report it in some hyperbolic way though, it always the coldest summer in thirteen years, never the 25th warmest out of the last sixty years or something. Like we are going to see a real-life recreation of The Day After Tomorrow at any minute. A little warm weather would be nice now and again though.

Enough of my general rambling the final figures for the month say I made a profit of £376.51. Given the current circumstances I'm delighted with that result. The cumulative profit is teetering around the third of a £10,000, thought that might make it sound better but in reality it's just the same as saying around £3,333. My trading adventures on Betfair have been profitable if not exactly fun, since the beginning of the month I'm up around £200 which means that profit this month has been quite evenly split between my trading and my horse racing systems.

One final thing, the football transfer deadline day. A very weird phenomenon indeed, one where football fans spend the day glued to the TV watching Sky Sports News in hope that their club will sign a quality signing or keep one of their current stars. It's more hilarious and entertaining than informative at times. Lots of hearsay, Harry Redknapp hunting and reporters outside of training ground complexes mobbed by opportunistic kids who make ingenious gestures in the background whilst phoning their mates to say 'look I'm on Sky Sports News right now'. Well at least it keeps them from rioting I suppose.

Anyway I'm peckish and the kitchen is out of bounds whilst being refurbished, so I'm off out for a sausage roll. Bring on September!

Monday, 29 August 2011

Mauling by the Mancs

Amazing stuff from the Premier League this weekend with Man City smashing five at Tottenham and then Man United smashing eight past Arsenal (I'll resist any 8-2 jokes here). Do feel for Arsene Wenger though, done a brilliant job at Arsenal yet is always apparently under-fire. He had about a zillion players out but it was still no excuse for a simply shocking performance. For me it's a two team race for the title Chelsea have been far from convincing so far this season. I think the two Manchester sides look the strongest both in terms of first eleven and squad depth.

Back to the betting front and another successful week with me netting a £72.94 profit, came with a few hitches the week but managed to pull it around towards the end of the week to record my third back to back profit week (shock horror).

The end of August is nigh meaning my end of month update is on the horizon. Shall post a more detailed update of my events then.

Monday, 22 August 2011

Week #33

Glad to report another profitable week, this time a £211.78 one which is pleasing. Although not at all easy felt at times I was fighting the markets with some of my trades and if anything got a bit lucky to get out of certain situations as healthy as I did.

The good thing is that I did manage to come through it and record a profit though. Although I'm under no false pretenses and I know I made mistakes throughout the week and just hope I can learn from them. Part of the problem is that sometimes you can benefit from bad behavior whereas you may seem to have lost out when practicing some good trading behaviour.

It's quite an equal balance between my horse racing systems and my trading now which I'm finding quite good. Whilst I'm still an unemployed bum I get the chance to watch all the test match action. England have simply blown India away in this series, and managed to complete the 4-0 whitewash today. The sight on England cricketers celebrating is becoming a familiar scene nowadays. Well done to them.

Tuesday, 16 August 2011

Step In The Right Direction

Aware I'm a little late with this end of week update but glad to bring forth tales of good news. That's right this week I made a profit, not exactly crack open the champagne time but nonetheless a positive week with me heading in the right direction for a change. £29.92 in the right direction to be exact, not exactly mind-boggling I know but it's certainly an improvement on my recent performances. Which has seen me rack up 7 losing weeks out of the last 9 resulting in two big losing months of June & July.

Enjoyed watching the cricket and seeing England become the new number one, not a fan of backing the teams I support but you wouldn't have gone much wrong backing this England team over the past two years or so. They did me proud with my outright Ashes bet over the winter and I've backed them a few times against India in this series. I watched the market casually for this test match and it seemed strangely stuck around the 1.20 mark for a while, even with India needing to bat for two full days England where still available to back on the beginning of day four at 1.12, which was a stonking price in my opinion with India already 2 down and looking totally demoralized after England posted a mammoth score with Cook falling just short of a treble hundred (shame really).

Meanwhile the new Premier League season got underway and I largely took a backseat and just watched on with interest. I was however rather miffed that the Premier League Fantasy Football site, which I do take a bit too seriously, was down Friday afternoon and Saturday morning meaning I began the season without a team, meaning I'm playing catch up with everyone else in my league now. From the betting front I made a couple of good trades in my view laying both Chelsea & Man United at what looked skinny odds on Saturday night before laying both off for nice profit the Sunday morning. There was particularly a nice drift on Chelsea with them going from 1.75 all the way out to evens and beyond (although I traded out for a nice profit at 1.90).

I've also made a very good start to the new week, so all things going well I should have further good news to announce this week. Elsewhere I'm still jobless but at least my gambling seems to have taken a turn for the better.

Sunday, 7 August 2011

Week #31

Feel a little more positive at the end of this week despite still ending the week at a loss. However the loss was only £15.46 for the week, which is a bit like noticing your half finished packet of softmints has been stolen along with your car, in the grand scheme of things it matters little.

My own trading and other betfair exploits where profitable it was my horse racing system that flopped once again. I'm now down to just two left remaining after dropping another after a horror week this week.

Feel my mindset has been a lot better this week. Only been playing with small amounts and now I know my gambling is a pure part-time hobby now. Been looking especially at pre-game football trading i.e. trying to lock in a profit on certain market before a ball is kicked. Did that with today's Community Shield match and hope to try and do it with the Premiership this season. Don't know whether I'll be doing normal bets this season, didn't go to well last season even if it wasn't that bad. Think I may stick to my pre-game trading method for the time being.

Well here's a rarity, a profitable week on Betfair

People may think I'm a bit crazy for continuing to blog despite the tough year I've had. I've often found bloggers and "tipsters" who start to see things turn bad and then seem to quite hastily stop posting altogether. For me the blog was always about keeping a journal of my betting activities and hopefully learning from my mistakes and perhaps one day looking back and reminiscing in my old ways.

Back to the real world, and I'm still unemployed at present but every new week offers new opportunities (as cheesy as it sound). I'm still hopeful I'll be able to find an ideal or close to ideal job for me. But as with everything in life it seemingly doesn't come easy. But I do feel in a weirdly positive mood for someone who isn't the sort of person to go around feeling happy.

Sunday, 31 July 2011

End of July Update

Think it's safe to say that July wasn't a good month for me with a loss of £1,289.22 having occurred. Took a step back this week and placed only a few bets during the entire week, which felt very strange I must admit after doing something betting-related for at least some part of each day for the past three years or so.

Sometime to step back and reflect is always healthy I find. On reflection I've pretty much messed up big style and in hindsight I was incredibly naive in some of my staking plans and because of the systems not working out as planned a lost discipline in other areas. Now I find myself in a big hole and at rather big bet loss from betting adventures. It's easy to go back in hindsight and say this went wrong, that went wrong, ect. But the real thing I hopefully take out of this experience is that you do need a proper staking plan and you need to stick to it. Funnily enough I think I keep brilliant records, the majority of the bets I've ever placed are record on a excel sheet somewhere.

Yes my staking plans maybe where to aggressive but it also must be said my bets and systems have performed poorly in general this year. Regardless of staking plan if you don't have an edge you won't make a profit. So far this year I haven't had edge even if you remove all the silly mistakes I've made I still reckon I'd still have a big red figure for the year.

Sort of feels like going back to square one again, my stakes are really low and having played with higher ones during the course of this year. Funnily enough whatever gambling environment it might be I always feel more comfortable with smaller stakes I seem to trade better with smaller stakes and systems I start with small stakes tend to go well. Problem seems to come when a scale up. Don't know if it's a psychological thing or maybe just an unlucky coincidence.

I have considered just packing in my life as a gambler altogether and just admitting defeat. But I still think I have the potential to make this work long-term, it might be a naive belief going off my past record of ill discipline. But hopefully I've turned the corner or at least something as finally clicked. My betting bank is diminished now and I think this is my one last crack at glory if this betting bank I set aside two years back ends up empty I'll finally call it a day.

Oh yeah eventful stuff at the cricket today with the Ian Bell run out/ not run out debate. The Sky Sports crew turned into investigators for the day. Was also a great day's cricket in general a bit of controversy always adds a little entertainment though. Looking forward to the final two days.

Monday, 25 July 2011

It's not getting any better

Things seem to be going from bad to worse at the moment. My discipline has wavered probably as a result of the previous poor weeks and the knowledge that I'm so far behind this year. Got into some real bad situations this week where I was simply over-staking despite me knowing perfectly well what I'm doing is wrong. Sort of my mind telling me to do one thing but hand doing something completely different when it comes to placing bets.

Decided that this week I'm taking a break from it all. At the moment I'm not enjoying gambling at all, plus I need to seriously re-think some of my strategies. Hopefully a week away from it all may help me recover my love for gambling and hopefully means I come back afresh for the start of the new football season.

My next post will be the end of July one, which isn't going to be a pleasant one.

Time to do some soul searching as they say. Got a few thing lined up in terms of job applications to sort out this week also. I don't think that praying on my mind as helped my gambling too much. At the moment I'd love nothing better than to find a decent job on good pay and then gambling can go back to being my part-time hobby as oppose to my full-time worry at present.

Sunday, 17 July 2011

A two week "bumper" update

Realise I didn't post my usual weekly update last week, truth be told not much as happened over the past two weeks in terms of my betting. Very slow going at present with me having dropped a lot of systems. Last week I recorded a loss of £251.69 whilst this week I recorded a profit of £42.17.

My cumulative P/L for the year is at just over the £2,700 mark and I'm roughly £300 down at the mid-point for July. It's true i'm finding my betting a little tiresome at present always makes it worse when your operating at a loss. Whilst once over I'd spend half a day betting or during something betting related, nowadays I spend about half an hour in the morning and that's it. Keep trying my hand at trading but I'm just not very good at it so I don't really do it that much either.

Monday, 4 July 2011

Weekly Summary #26 / Half-year report

Well the week just past was yet another losing one, a £578.60 losing one to be exact. This means my cumulative profit is now at a all-time high for the year at £2,501.36.

The end of this 26th week signals the mid-point through the year and a little time for me to reflect. Below is a graph showing both the weekly p/l figures (red bars) and the cumulative p/l (the blue line) also.

Whilst in someways it doesn't tell me anything I don't already know but it does act has a good visual representation of my performance and can be used to quickly identify trends in my performance. What really stands out on this graph is the two stinking weeks (week 6 & week 23). It also shows ever since week 6 I've found it hard to recover and haven't been in overall profit since the end of week 5. You can see signs of a comeback I commented on this blog, at the end of week 20 things where starting to look brighter but the massive loss in week 23 really set me back once again.

That just about sums up my half-year report, can't really add much more other than I hope to improve on this record for the remainder of the year. As I've mentioned before I've reduced my stakes quite a lot from the beginning of this month, there shouldn't be any big losses to come. Feels a bit like starting again from square one at the moment but I'm taking it little steps at a time for now and hoping to regain confidence in my betting.

Saturday, 2 July 2011

End of June Update

This update is a bit like a massive pile of dirty plates in the sink, you know at some point your going to have to clean them up but it doesn't make the job anymore enjoyable. So here's me dishing the dirt. The full extent of the damage was a loss to the tune of £2,271.20 which is well rather painful to say the least. It even managed to beat my personnel worst of February this year, which was some achievement if I remember how badly February turned out.

To say I've become a bit disillusioned with betting at present may be going a bit far. But I appear to have lost that little bit of enthusiasm for the game at present. I've cut back on my systems and staking now, so it is nigh-on impossible for me to have such a big loss over the course of a month now. In contrast that means I'm not likely to be able to make any big monthly profit figures.

The also brings up the mid-point in the year, with six months down and only six remaining. At the conclusion of this week I shall draw up a graph plotting the 26 weekly P/L figures, should make an interesting visual but won't do anything to hide the fact that my betting adventures have took a serious setback this year. At the moment I've been spending a bit more time trading on Betfair, I'm still alive just from my initial £100 challenge, been down to as low as £5 and £10 on numerous occasions. Back to £5 again recently but I've managed to build it back up to £9 with numerous small trades over the past week or so. When I'm trading like that it's not so much the monetary gain but the fun and challenge of trading, using your skill (or lack of as it may be) to take on other exchange users across the world. There's something sort of magnificent and appealing in that I find. I might be only winning pennies at a time but the experience is the most important thing (or so I'm told). Of course experience alone won't win your anything in the long-term but it should certainly improve your chances of discovering a successful method of trading.

Monday, 27 June 2011

Just What I Needed

After two consecutive losing weeks, one of which was an outright shocker, it is always comforting to know your heading back in the right direction. This week I managed to turn a profit of £497.09 and as a result my cumulative loss for the year dips to below the £2,000 mark.

Also happy this week that one of my long-term bets came in and that was for Mexico to win the CONCACAF Cup, profited quite well from that tournament in the end both through individual matches and with me betting Mexico on the outright. I don't claim to be an expert in football in this area but I managed to watch nearly all the games from the tournament and quickly established views and trends of each team and managed to make it pay with in-play betting mainly. Also glad this week to see my horse racing selections bounce back after a poor recent run. Only have the six systems running now, and on average I guess I have around eight selections per day which is comfortable mangable. Especially since I'm not really upto that much at present. Always keep my eye open for any potential new betting ventures though.

Been watching a bit of Wimbledon this week, not a huge tennis fan and I don't bet on the sports usually. But I enjoy watching all the Grand Slams. Cheering on Murray (don't see why there's quite a lot of anti-Murray British people for some reason), got the feeling he's turning into the Jimmy White of snooker with always being the nearly man. Just a shame for Murray that there's three outstanding players who are better than him at present. That's not to say he can't do it, but it is a very tough test for him.

Oh yeah one final note, I got my results back from University. A very predictable 2:1 in the end, felt I could probably have got a first if I really pushed myself (was only a few % out overall) but I'm happy enough with that result and hopefully it will be good enough for me to find a suitable job related to my degree.

Wednesday, 22 June 2011

Better Late Than Never

Realise my weekly update is two days overdue. To be frank I've not got an awful lot to be report expect another loss to the tune of £212.24 for week. Which in itself isn't a dramatic loss compared to others this year but after last week's massive loss, even a small loss seems somewhat painful. I feel at the end of this month it may be time to take a step backwards and analysis all my betting and see where it's all going wrong at present. I've considered maybe taking a break completely from betting at some point, I've more or less been betting in some form every day for the past two and half years. Whilst I enjoy it as a hobby it does require certain commitments to continue with it. Just knowing you have to get up a certain time each morning to place bets in itself can become a drag and I would nice not to have to bothered to set my alarm clock every single day for a change.

Whilst my gambling is in a state of unknown so is my future career, I'm awaiting my final results at the end of this week. After that I promised myself to dedicate as much time to searching for jobs and sending in applications in hope of securing a decent graduate entry-level job. Probably not going to be easy because every Tom, Dick & Harry seems to have a degree these days but I believe it's all about marketing and presenting yourself in the right manner. Even if that means stretching the truth a little.

So uncertain times all around a present, I don't really like uncertainty despite dealing in gambling that is inherently uncertain. Getting a good stable job is priority number one at present and my gambling may need to take the backseat at the moment, especially if it continues in the same vein.

On a final more celebratory note, I'd like to say well done to Rory McIlroy for his amazing performance at the US Open. I felt for him and for my wallet after that final round at the Masters but Rory showed he's got character and determination and bounced back from that to totally destroy the field and break all sorts of records. Maybe that's where I went wrong, I should have taken up golf as a toddler.

Monday, 13 June 2011


Here I am again on Monday posting my should be Sunday evening weekly round-up. Truth be told I was watching the quite amazing Canadian GP, that went for ages due to the race having to be stopped and under the safety car for long periods due to the poor weather conditions. Somehow Jenson Button who made six (yes that's right 6) pit stops went onto win the race after being last place with about a third of the race to go. If that wasn't enough there was the uncomfortable amusing site of marshall nearly getting run over by a F1 car as they tried to clearly debris from the track. Formula One has been great so far this season and yesterday's race is one of the best I've seen in a long while.

Anyway I'm distracting myself from the main part of the post and that's my weekly P/L total. I'm quite embarrassed to reveal a mammoth loss of £1,473.96 for the week, bit of a disaster all round. Even my high-staking supposedly high strike-rate systems couldn't find a winner of note. At a £100 a pop on those systems and an unusually high number of selections this week goes someway to explaining the loss. Still got a responsible sized betting bank to work from but if I get another week like this I think my staking plan may need further investigation and probably an alteration. I can take little consolation from the fact that this is not actually my worst week this year, the first week of February still holds that unwanted record. The overall picture means I'm down by a hefty £2,200 on the year, which is the largest it has been so far this year. Worrying times at present but I still have faith in my systems and I shall continue with them for the foreseeable future.

Friday, 10 June 2011

Stop yer whining!

It seems human nature as this inherent art of moaning and whining about things built-in. I read it's suppose to act as a sort of soothing mechanism to boast ones ego and make them feel good about themselves. I'm not staying we should all stop complaining about things and just accept things as they are but I feel a little less moaning would make everyone's life that little bit better.

I'll start in general life, how often do you moan about something? three, four, five times a day probably a lot more. Seems like we can't help but moan and complain about things. One good test is to try and become aware of when your moaning about something and try and stop yourself, see how difficult it is to do just for one day. For moaning often takes place about the most trivial of things, where the feck is the remote control? who moved my favourite pair of shoes? I hate this flippin' weather? I feel you shouldn't get wound up for trivial things, they say it's little things that matter the most but I think that's total rubbish when it comes to complaining. Also try and be aware of other people who moan a lot, do you like this person? do you end up joining with their moaning when with them?

The real-life problem was just food for thought my main issue with the subject comes back to the gambling world. Gamblers are often seen to be cursing their luck at every opportunity. Some examples are: last minute goals, dodgy referee decisions, useless jockey, another second place, I was waiting to be matched then a goal went in, this match looks fixed.

Again this is all about shifting away the responsibility from yourself to try and hide your own insecurities. You picked the bet or put in the trade, you know the teams involved, you know the jockeys on-board, you know the referees. If you have a wide knowledge you really don't have any room for excuses, yes for a short period of time you could be unlucky in regards to certain situations but in the long-run if you've got an edge it shouldn't matter you should turn a profit. There's also something I'll call "selections blindness" this is where you are solely focused on your own selection so often fail to pick up on something happening in favour of your selection. For example a couple of horses may be given bad rides by jockeys but if your selections wins you may not notice it. Likewise the team you backed gets a dubious penalty decision your much more likely to consider it a penalty than if it was against your team. Trying to watch an event without any bias can be difficult at times and you often watch an event from your selections point of view. As a result gamblers can often be seen cursing their luck when something goes against their selections, yet failing to even notice when something "lucky" happens in favour of their selection.

Sunday, 5 June 2011

A winner that feels like a loser

There is the saying that a winner can sometimes feel like a loser. Usually when you've backed a long-shot E/W and it finishes second by a nose. You feel like you've totally lost out because it didn't win but in reality you could have made a decent profit on the place part of your wager.

I mention this because the week's performance is actually a profit to the tune of £100.38, but it feels like a losing week because of the way the week went. I had an absolutely fantastic bank holiday Monday as I outlined in my monthly review post, it was probably my biggest profitable day ever. But the week after that point has gone rather poorly and only a managed a few winners out of numerous selections. Weird how the way thing occur can effect your outlook totally, I can take football as a good example your team scores early and is leading 1-0 until deep into stoppage time where the opposition team equalises. You go home not feeling so good after your team throwing away two points in the last minute. Your team goes down 1-0 early on and then is battered for the entire match but scores a equaliser deep into injury time, you come home feeling pleased that your team managed to rescue a point after a poor performance. The end result is the same but the emotions in the two sets of scenarios are completely different.

Had I finished this week, let's say Monday's fantastic results actually occurred today I'd have posted of my wonderful comeback to secure a profit for the week. As it is I end up a little disappointed that the profit for the week is only at the £100 mark. My actually cumulative loss has now gone back up to over the £700 mark which differs greatly from the end of May figure in the sidebar.

I shall post a mid weekly post on something I call the "moaning & whining culture" which is rife both amongst the gambling world and in your every day life. Should be an interesting read for anyone who is gulity of moaning & whining.

Tuesday, 31 May 2011

End of May Review

May has been a very intriguing month with two weeks of big profit including my biggest weekly profit of the year so far but also two losing months including last week's hefty loss. Like I said a good day on Monday just about summed up the volatile nature of my profit & loss. In danger of sounding like a broken record here but got to always emphasis it's the long-term picture that is important and not the short-term picture. Therefore I always guard these monthly update as a better guide to my performance than focusing too much on day-to-day or even week-to-week performance.

My profit figure for the month of May totalled £1,145.58, which is a pretty good result in my eyes. Especially since I've had three losing months on the bounce. Overall this means my cumulative loss has been dramatically reduced to under the £150 mark now. Always seemed like a bit of a dumb rule to me but it is said the first target in betting or trading, is to try and break-even first. Right now in the current position I would have actually been better off not placing a single bet this year, but it's probably best not to look at it like that. At least now I'm heading in the right direction, next target is simply to try and get back to break-even and then I'll take it from there.

My favourite song about the month of May to conclude the month with:

Monday, 30 May 2011

It's Just Not Cricket

England recorded a remarkable victory today and bowled out Sri Lanka for 82 in less than 25 overs. Quite remarkable considering the situation and conditions. I was actually watching the play-off final between Swansea & Reading, that was an entertaining event in itself. Therefore I missed most of the cricket in live time. A very good summary of the amazing scene is found on the Gambler Falls blog (inclu. Betfair carnage).

I actually thought today was the end of May, but that isn't actually till tomorrow. So I may as well post my weekly results now, not good news I'm afraid. A rather whooping loss of £601.65 for the week. Although I hasten to add I've had a very profitable Bank Holiday Monday and recovered a sizable amount of that. I shall post my monthly review for May tomorrow evening, I know for certain I'll be in profit and after today's good performance it is going to be sizable. Today again showed me that it's all about the long-term and not about the short-term. I had a large amount of bets today because of all the racing and thankfully I managed to find a good number of winners and a few at tasty prices.

My Betfair "trading" challenge seems to be hitting a dead-end once again. I seem to have been in £10-£20 zone for ages now. Although I often tend to deviate from the trading and end going for outright punts. Should try and stop myself and concentrate on solely trading, but I'm still treating it as a little bit of fun on the side. Although I've got a mini-target of trying to get upto £100 by the beginning of the Copa Amercia in July.

Once again my strength is evidently with the football here. The Dutch Europa league play-off was rather remarkable with scores of 5-1 in both legs meaning extra-time and penalties. Managed to benefit in both leagues by backing goals, which you'd perfectly understand why if you watched the game.

Always seems to be so many things going on at once. Watched the Monte Carlo Grand Prix this weekend also, by far and away my favourite F1 race of the year. Formula One has really stepped it up this year and the new tyres plus DRS have made for much more exciting races. Unfortunately the safety car and then the red flag spoilt what could have been a classic three car finish with wearing tyres.

I think that's more than enough excitement for one weekend, time for a lie down.

Thursday, 26 May 2011

Premier League Season Review

Another exciting Premier League season has gone and past meaning the time has come to review my performance.

Up until the middle of October, bet no. 35 I was operating a level stakes staking plan of £25 per selection. By the end of this period I was down by a signifciant amount totalling £236.42 since that point I refocused and adopted a varied staking plan based on the premise that bigger value selections should have a higher stake, with stake levels varying from £10 upto £25 in £5 intervals. Come the end of the season my loss totalled £293.33 which actually means from November through to May I was only operating at a small loss of £56.91 in comparison to the first half of the year which at least shows I have improved even if I couldn't profit from it.

Below is a graph of my cumulative profit for my Premier League bets this season:

As you can see after the very poor start I did start to pick up a little bit with my change in staking plan and approach to my selections. The period from bet 55 to about bet 110 looks a very smooth upward trend and the sort of thing I would be looking for. The later quarter of the year was a bit up and down as the graph shows but I did at least end the season quite strongly.

Here's some stats for my year's performance including breakdown week-by-week:

Overall it could be easy to pack it in and say it's not working but I'm determined to try and make my Premier League betting work. Although in my opinion I think the Premier League is probably one of the hardest football leagues to profit from because news on teams/players is so widely avaiable that you rarely see odds dramatically priced up "wrong" although there's been plenty of times this season where I've been baffled slightly by how teams have been priced up.

To finish here's three little lessons or things I've picked up on throughout the year which hopefully should help improve my betting for next season, although things are always constanstly changing.

1.) Take advantage of short-term over-reaction bias in the market - Classic case of a team that's on a great run and may be performing beyond expectations or who have just won impressively in their last game. Both Bolton & Blackpool had impressive starts to the season but by the end of it the season they ended up whereabouts they where predicted to. Opposing Blackpool & Bolton in the second half of the season would have been very fruitful indeed. Likewise I opposed Liverpool at home to Tottenham after they thrashed Fulham at Craven Cottage. They where massively backed and therefore I believe there was great value to be had backing the opposition regardless of how brilliant they may have been in their last game. Always remember to take the long-term view into account and the underlying quality of each team not just a team's short-term form.

2.) Be wary of certain teams when odds-on - I'm not one for taking odds-on bets but if do I would always be wary of backing any team that you don't consider to be amongst the best six or seven in the league. Backing mid-table sides like the likes of Stoke, Sunderland, Newcastle & Bolton at odds-on never does appeal to me, there was a lot of closely matched teams this season and I don't think any of these deserved to be priced-up odds-on at any point this season.

3.) Don't be afraid to oppose the big boys - Some people may get a bit tentative when opposing the likes of Chelsea, Man United & Arsenal but it would have been rewarded handsomely if done correctly this season. Man United away form was average considering they ended up Champions likewise Arsenal failed to win many a game at home this season when priced well and truely odds-on. Chelsea also had a mid-season dip which could have been taken advantage of. When certain situations arise its always worth opposing the big boys, these situations usually include after or before a big European match or maybe when they've got key players missing.

Well that's it for the season, already can't wait for the new season in August. Got the Champions League final to come on Saturday also got the Copa America in July which I shall be trying to trade on (probably unsuccessfully).

Monday, 23 May 2011

Weekly Summary No. 20

Looks like I've slipped into Monday once again for my weekly update but yesterday saw the climax of the Premier League season and I needed a bit of rest after all of that drama. The "Survival Sunday" lived upto its billing and there was plenty of twist & turns, ups & downs (notice I didn't mention a certain amusement ride here). It was really exiciting but you've got to feel for the fans, players & managers in charge it can go from joy one minute to despiar the next. People saw it can sometimes be punishment watching your own team in a relegation dog ifht yet people pay for the pleasure. I don't agree with the punishment it may not be nice to see your team relegated but even thoose involved all enjoy the thrill and excitement that a last day of a season so often gives. I shall post some concluding thoughts on the Premier League season later in the week which shall include an analysis of my betting record on the league also.

Back to the betting world and my week. Well last week was a poor week and in line with my recent pattern that surely must mean I was due a profit this week. As it happens that's exactly what happened I recorded a healthy profit of £506.51 for the week which more than covers the loss from last week. Still means I'm at a cumulative loss for the year of just under £250 but at least it appears I'm moving in the right direction once again. May seems to have been kind to me so far and with just over a week left hopefully I can end it on a high.

Last week also saw the end of my exams (hooray!), didn't go entirely smoothily but I've done well enough to secure a reasonable final grade for my degree I think. Shall have to wait for the results to be sure. As a result I have a lot more spare time at present so I can begin to analysis my betting a bit more and maybe find a few more systems to add to my horser racing systems armoury.

To conclude here's a picture from a BBC blog entry called Last-day Mayhem at Molineaux which I think perfectly sums up the joy of surviving relegation can bring. As both the Blackburn & Wolves celebrate their teams survival in unison.

Sunday, 15 May 2011

Losing week

After last week's high of a big profit it was probably half expected that I would suffer a losing week this week. It's a reasonable sized loss totalling £340.96 but considering I have a few systems that stake £100 a selection it really isn't that big of a loss in relative terms. Pushes my cumulative loss back out to around £750 for the year, but that's still significantly better than at the start of the month. This week coming sees my final examinations and then maybe I can turn more attention to my gambling and my blog. Although once my exams are over I begin the search for a proper job, which might prove both scary and difficult. I've come to expect the fact that my current betting prospects doesn't lend itself to steady income. The end of year graph for my weekly profit deviations is going to make interesting viewing, maybe I could sell it as a blueprint for a new rollercoaster at the Pleasure Beach or something.

I hate roller coasters and amusements rides, they don't usually agree with my stomach. A bit of a cliche, well a massive one to be fair. But my betting adventures or indeed very much like a rollercoaster my end of year graphical plot will prove that I'm sure. Don't worry I shall try not to mention them again for the fear of bring Ronan Keating into the argument.

Hold on tight!

Sunday, 8 May 2011

Short but sweet

Only got time for a short update tonight, should really be revising now (or cramming as I call it) so I'll get on with it. I'm glad to say it's good news, very good news in fact. After a hefty loss of last week totalling near £700 I could have been forgiven for feeling down-heartened once again. But in line with my performance this year a massive loss is followed by a massive profit. This week I recorded my biggest weekly profit of the year (by quite a margin too) netting a not to shabby total of £804.85 for the week. Almost all my attention is on my horse racing systems and selections now, they performed miracles this week to be fair with plenty of juicy priced winners. Not had much time for trading on Betfair this week with me being in the middle of my exams and all.

So overall absolutely chuffed with this week's performance, my cumulative loss for the year is now below the £400 mark, which is the lowest it's been since the beginning of February. Three weeks left in May to try and reduce the deficit further. Although I shall resist from making any sort of predictions because I just end up looking stupid.

Monday, 2 May 2011

End of April Update

Last week I reported a very profitable week, this week I'm afraid I've got a weekly loss of £685.76 to contend with. Mainly due to the fact that a few of my higher staking systems had losing selections, this can sway the results somewhat.

The monthly result in the meantime came to a disappointing loss of £294.23 for the month of April, although that includes my realisation of some long-term bets that ended up a bit wide of the mark. Third losing month on the bounce is not what I wanted, April was a bit of a mixed bag with one really good week (last week) and one really bad week (this week). Really thought I'd end this month in profit but it wasn't to be. My overall cumulative loss for the year is now close to £1,300, I mentioned dropping a few non-working systems and that I have done. Believe it or not all but one of the systems I currently operate are actually showing a profit. My football bets don't seem to be getting anywhere to be honest, I much prefer to trade on football for some reason.

One bright note this month has actually been the aforementioned football trading, I was quite surprised to see my Betfair P/L for football, I did have one big winner (which was directly before the Rory incident) but still the figure is quite impressive really especially since my bank was very tiny and below the £20 mark for the majority of the month. I'd be quite happy to turn over a £150 profit a month at present to be honest, although that's not likely right now with such a small bank. But I'll continue to build up and learn slowly along the away and hopefully not make any stupid mistakes like the one which spoils this P/L.

Betfair April P/L

Onwards and upwards for the remainder of the year I guess. Got lots of (important) exams going up over the next few weeks, so I don't think I'll have any time for any midweek topical posts I'm afraid. I shall however continue with the weekly updates, I'll try and get back into the habit of Sunday nights rather than Monday mornings also. Should really be revising right now to be honest, I blame the enthralling snooker for my lack of revision thus far.

Wednesday, 27 April 2011

The Punter Vs. The Trader

This is an area that has interested me deeply for as long as I can remember. When I refer to "the punter" I mean a person who simply places outright bets and the profit/loss is determined by the actual outcome of the selections backed. Typically a good punter shall seek value either by pricing up the event in question and backing any selection the holds value or indeed by some sort of systematic function which identifies value over the long-term for you. Over time I've become much better at this and I'm sure this is my preferred type of gambling. I have numerous systems I employ and I also like pricing events up myself to try and find value. My results have been mixed in different areas but over the long-run I've profited greatly from this method.

In contrast "the trader" is someone who trades on the odds being offered and tries to guarantee a profit regardless of the outcome of the given event. I've found this very difficult in the past and continue to do so. For there's lots and lots of different ways to approach trading, I'm led to believe a popular one is "scalping" which is simply profiting from the smallest change (one tick or maybe two) in the odds.

The confusion I seem to come across is the grey area between the punter and the trader, they both obviously involve gambling but I believe they are very different in nature. The punter as an opinion on an outcome and goes with it if he believes it's value whereas an opinion held by a trader on the outcome of an event isn't much use, it's simple a matter of having a knowledge of odd movements whether that be in-play or not. There also comes a time where one might be trading but decides to "let the bet run". I've down this numerous times, and it more often than not often doesn't end successfully. I'm sure some people do balance trading and punting successfully but I've found it very difficult, my nature is very much that of a punter therefore I find it difficult to be a true trader. I've tried to separate the two up by operating my Betfair account as trading only and placing all my other bets with bookmakers. As you can see by my Betfair £100 challenge, it hasn't really been going that well. Trading does appeal to me, it avoids the often psychologically testing up and downs of outright betting. In theory at least trading should ensure a much more steady profits (if you know what your doing). For whatever reason I've never been able to get the hang of it, and my trading usually turns into some sort of pseudo-punting where I go with the mindset to trade but I end up abandoning it and going for an outright punt instead.

I do continue to improve my trading but I've reduced the amounts I trade with significantly, for me at the moment it's just a little bit of a game on the side. My main gambling venture is with my outright bets and if somehow I can improve my trading that would be a bonus.

As the famous saying goes trading can sometimes be a bit like picking pennies up in front of an oncoming steamroller, I unfortunately know this saying to be all too true.

Monday, 25 April 2011

The Chocolate Eggs Are On Me

A very, very good week for me this week. Weekly update a bit later than normal but here it is. My profit this week totalled an impressive £555.68, in the process more than halving my cumulative loss for the year that now stands at just over £500. It also ensures I fly into profit for the month of April with just less than a week remaining. My horse racing bets really picked up this week, my selective system where I stake a £100 a selection had a few winning ones which makes all the difference to the overall profit. Even my Handicap Hurdle system that had been going on rather slowly managed to find an 11/1 winner yesterday. So overall everything is looking a lot brighter than it did after last week. Feel like I've been resurrected from the gambling wilderness (there's my topical simile out of the way).

I should really be revising furiously with my final exams on the horizon. But someone decided to stage the World Championship Snooker at the same time, managed to catch quite a bit of that. No betting interest as of yet but if I do I usually always side with players who have been there and done it before. Amazing how the pressure can tell on certain players which is why you usually see the same sort of players reaching the later stages every year. Football season is coming to a close fast, small profit with my Premier League selections this weekend although I still maintain the belief it's rather difficult to profit from the league with it being so worldwide (I'll probably do a topic on that one day). For the time being though I'm very happy with the week's performance, it is actually the second highest of the year. The highest being the first week of the year, where I arecall myself proclaiming that a near £700 profit a week being just average (I probably look a bit silly if I read that back now). Shall have a mid weekly update sometime later in the week and I shall conclude with a joint weekly/end of month update next Sunday.

Thursday, 21 April 2011

Winning Habits

I'm not usually one for all this positive thinking and following x number of steps and you will fundamentally change sort of stuff. I like being grumpy sometimes and that probably isn't going to change.

However when it comes to betting it is obviously best to have a certain mindset. Humans unlike computers cannot programmed and therefore comes the difficult of learning to apply yourself in a certain way to achieve a positive outcomes. This is what the book I've just finished reading on is about, it's called The Winning Investment Habits of Warrren Buffet and George Soros by Mark Tier. Whilst obviously aimed at budding investors interested in the stock market it can easily be applied to the gambling world just as easily, or at least I read it with that slant and the majority can be directly related to gambling both in an outright bets sense and trading. The book outlines "23 winning investments habits" and throughout the book compares a master investor (winning punters) to losing investors (mug punters). Whilst I'm not going to list all 23 habits I've combined some of the habits together and here's my summary of three winning habits that I found to be the ones which are most important to being a successful punter.

Habit#1 - Preservation of capital and patience, the book states that the cornerstone of a successful investor is capital preservation, this is not to say that the investor won't invest a lot but rather that he'll look to ensure that big losses are avoided. In betting terms that simple means having a sensible staking and not over-betting just for the sake of it. The second part which can be related back to capital preservation is patience. I admit I often struggle with this, if there's a big race meeting or a big football match on television my immediate thought is let's see if I can find a bet for a little interest here. That is a big no no you should stick to your strategy at all costs. Might be difficult sometimes but if your not sure about a bet it's much better to have no bet than regret it later on, sometimes the best bets you ever have are the ones you don't have. (if that makes sense).

Habit#2 - Have a strategy! may sound simple but I do wonder how many people actually have a strategy or system when it comes to placing their bets. I'm a very systematic person in general therefore I find following systems not to difficult. You can be constantly updating and tracking your strategies and systems to see which ones and working and which ones are not. This can be looked at in a wider sense for trading, you need to know all about your entry times and what triggers you to exit a trade or let one ride and so forth.

Habit#3 - Only invest in what you understand, or as I would put it some sort of specialisation is needed. I imagine the most successful punters out there and the ones who specialise in a certain areas. Whether it simple be just one sport like horse racing or tennis, or maybe even just one league or division e.g. English Premier League football or IPL cricket. The phrase jack of all trades master of none comes to mind. By specialising in one area you'll have greater knowledge that will grow and grow over time and you should become an expert in identifying price anomalies and inventing successful trading strategies.

Right that's about it, hope somebody found that at least a little bit useful. If you want to read further I wouldn't put anybody off buying the book, it is a good read and I went through it in less than week (that's rather quick for me in terms of time taken to read a book).I'm not usually a fan of pop music and the boy band stuff but I can just about stand this song and it preaches habit#1.

Sunday, 17 April 2011

Week 15

On intial impressions of the week I thought I'd done okay I recall a few decent priced winners and even my two football bets came in for a change. But after updating my weekly records I come to the conclusion that I incurred a loss of £174.04 this week, which actually means I'm back operating at a loss for the month April (of course not helped by the "incident" last week).

Just proves the worth of keeping records really, had I not kept any I'd probably have left the week feeling like I made a profit when I clearly haven't. Overall my horse racing system seem to be going reasonable, there's only one system that is causing me a little bit of concern at present and I'm considering reducing stakes on that one if it doesn't improve.

Been reading a book all this week on investment, it is aimed at the stock market investor but it provides good advice that can be applied to the world of gambling which is of course remarkably similiar to that of the stock market especially if you look at Betfair. On the subject of Betfair a good profit for the week there in my recovery stage still though. Reading the book as helped me get a little more focused and learnt me a few good mental habits to get into. I'll post up more about the aforementioned book in my midweekly post. But to summarise a losing week I'm not overally concerned. I've learnt to accept losses and move onwards and upwards, something a certain Mr Wenger doesn't seem to be able do.

Tuesday, 12 April 2011

The decline of the high-street bookmaker

I very rarely visit high-street bookmakers but it's very clear to see the decline (or change as the bookmakers might put it) within their shops. I never visited a pre-smoking ban bookmakers but it conjures images of smoke filled rooms with old men betting on horses. Nowadays the set-up is very much different, the main attraction in the bookmakers these days (judging by the queues) seem to be these fixed odds betting terminals (FOBTs) that run all sorts of virtual games often based on traditional casino game. As everyone should know (although I doubt everybody does know) that you can't win at casino games such as roulette even if we we assume the game is run perfectly fair. Over the long-run you can't win at roulette you'd have to re-write the laws of probability for that to happen! The casino has an edge, albeit only a small one it will guarantee the house always wins or in this case the machine always wins. That's why it's such a sad sight to see not particularly wealthy people metaphorically chucking their hard-earned cash down the drain by playing on these machines. I have bear witness to people on these machines, even one of my friends seems to enjoy the unhealthy habit of having a "quick go" on these machines. I can't say for sure that they are fixed but often I find that the win strike rate seems a lot higher when you first go on a machine, maybe as a way of encouraging the gambler to continue? Also rather sneakily the machine doesn't dispense coins you have to instead withdraw a slip if you want to collect any funds thus sometimes encouraging a person to play on rather than go through the fuss of going to the counter to collect a minimal amount.

Familiar sight in your local bookies?

I'll be honest I'm easily annoyed by things but this one is right up there with my biggest annoyances. The high-street bookmakers then have the nerve to offer simply shocking odds on most sports in-shop compared to much better prices available online. There is very little reason to visit a high-street bookmakers unless you can't get online for whatever reason. High-street bookmakers as a result have largely become a graveyard of mug punters and gambling addicts. Some I'm sure only do a football coupon for a "little bit of fun" but again they could get far superior odds online. I find it incredibly sad and depressing to be honest despite being very much part of the technology and internet generation I often prefer things to be material I actually like the idea of going into a shop and placing a bet over and counter and the receiving any winnings back in cash. The virtual world of numbers and figures sometimes detaches from the monetary values you are dealing with, which can in itself cause problems. To compound things I've noticed some of my online bookmaker accounts have become increasingly limited so maybe in the future I'll have to spend more time in high-street bookmakers. The limiting is understandably and quite laughable at the same time to be honest over the course of three years I've probably only won as much as a single one of these FOBTs takes in a week. Try and get more than £20 on a decent-priced selection and they say no although if your a losing punter I'm sure you'll have no problem getting a couple of grand on it if you want. Again business wise I understand this but praying on the vulnerable and weak whilst trying to eliminate the ones that might have an idea of how to turn a profit seems somewhat cowardly. Sooner or later I'm sure bookmakers will just be "virtual casinos" with row after row of FOBTs. If I offer you one piece of advise to anyone regarding gambling it would be to stay away from these machines and anything to do with "virtual games" and "casino" that bookmakers offer. It's hard enough betting on real-life things let alone on something that is mathematically impossible to profit from.

This blog post was inspired by own experiences as well as this article which further delves into the issue (well worth a read):

Monday, 11 April 2011

Bit of an idiot

Sorry this weekly update is late I was toot mad with myself last night so I couldn't bring myself to post. I'm sort of happy to say that this week was another profitable one to the tune of £70.78, but I know it could have been a lot better. Plenty of action this week with the Aintree Grand National meet, my main bets over the three days went well but it was silly sidebets like placepots and lucky15s that I shouldn't really have bothered with that set me back a little. Although that wasn't my biggest mistake of the week, oh no that came last night. I'd just won a massive £100 profit from playing with stakes of around £10 on the Standard/Genk football match (late turn round in my favour), after having a good week trading on football and collecting my profit on the Grand National ante-post my Betfair bank was upto £180. I was about to withdraw half (as my plan at the end of each week was to do) but instead for some reason I got involved with The Maters' golf which happened to be in its final round. No joke about it I backed Rory McIlroy who was the favourite at the time about one minute before his tee shot hit a branch and ended up somewhere "even the members haven't been" to quote the commentators. From then on it just went from bad to worse from around 5/2 favourite to about 20/1 within the space of a couple of shots, clever me decided I'll shove a little extra on the price will surely come in. I really should have got out at this point as it was obvious a major choke was on, but at the next hole a brilliant tee shot but then a quite remarkable series of missed putts that even I might have put in. The drift was on and before I knew it he was at the dreaded 1000 price and I'd done my bank rather foolish betting on something I know little about. Could say it was unlucky with my point of entry but it was silly over-staking after the high of winning a good football bet. I seem to never learn my lesson, I'm best at trading football and indifferent at horse-racing trading and anything else I should just avoid. Meanwhile I'm think fixed odds betting only works for me in horse-racing and not football at present. I'm still feeling slightly angry with myself and it's now a new day.


Seems I can talk a good game but when it comes down to the heat of things I make elementary mistakes more in-line with a mug punter. I deliberately restricted my Betfair account so I couldn't make anymore deposits, I'm now over £800 down for the year on my Betfair account without it I would be much better of it seems. I was around £5k down on my Betfair account last year also. My bookmakers account continue to do well, so well that I'm restricted at a number of them. I don't know what else to say other then I'm a major idiot. What makes all that more concerning is that I've been reading an investor book, more about trading stocks but can easily be applied to Betfair. Two of the main "tips" are to specialise in one area i.e. only stick to what you know and secondly is that you should try and limit the loss to your capital at all times. I'm afraid I just totally disregarded these two things in my late night betting antics last night. The loss for the week on Betfair only reads -£40, but it might as well as read -£4,000. For it feels like £4,000 at present, after I worked so hard building the balance up from around £20 to a remarkable £180, but then straight back down to £3 with my idiotic actions. Think I need time away from trading to chill out, feel like taking time away from betting all together but I know my horse racing bets are good, If I'd been running them alone I'd be in profit this year no doubt. So to conclude a profitable week that feels like a massive losing one.