Thursday, 22 January 2009

Still here

The last entry was entitled it's been a while, this time has been even longer! I guess I completely underestimated how hard it can be to keep these things upto date at times! I am hoping to post something quick up now, so apologies if the structure isn't great (I am just typing straight from the head before I get some sleep), but I am hoping to have a productive weekend.

Just a quick warning, there is a frustrated rant upcoming!

Truth be told however, it has been a pretty hectic two weeks and I have not really used Betfair much. Following Philadelphia beating New York, and Arizona getting a home playoff game, I spent all of the early part of last week trying to get myself a ticket over to Arizona. After all, hosting the NFC Championship could be a once in a lifetime event for a team who had not had a home playoff game for 62 years!

However, despite having everything lined up, it sadly fell through. The extra temporary seating that Arizona put in for the game was only sold over the phone, and despite being on hold to America for most of Tuesday evening, I missed out by around ten minutes. The Cards had deactivated the usual ticket exchange website and whilst some other ticket exchange websites were offering a money back guarantee if the ticket did not work, was I really willing to travel halfway across the world, spending a four figure sum, and then be stuck watching the game in some bar? Ultimately, I decided against it, and watched the game from the comfort of my living room!

And what a game, as the Cardinals somehow held on for victory despite losing a 24 - 6 HT lead! Now, following Arizona, I have seen some major collapses over the years and as the Eagles came back from 24 - 6 down to lead 25 - 24, I ended up with approximately £130 on Phily and -£20 on Arizona.

Now, on that final drive, I was too absorbed to be checking Betfair, but believe that the Cards' price shot up above 3 at one point, which would have allowed me a £80 profit. Instead, I ended up losing £20 by not trading out. Looking back on it, I definitely did allow my heart to rule my head, but at the time, I was so convinced that Arizona could not win (Being a Cardinals fan does that to you!), that I believed by trading out, I would be throwing away £50.

Even now, I think that was probably the best decision, but that boldness is something that is otherwise lacking in my trading. Over the past 12 months, I have identified plenty of massively under priced in play faves, only to trade out for a fraction of the possible profit. However, I tend to place too small stakes given my track record in this area. I should not have placed £30 on Philadelphia when Arizona were 1.07. I should have placed £30 on Arizona not winning at 1.07. That would have led to over £400 on Philadelphia, and whilst I would have probably ended up trading out at an average of 1.3, which again would be too soon, I still would have had over £300 on Philadelphia, which I would have at least partly equalised.

Risk taking has been, and always will be, my biggest issue on Betfair, and I really need to question this area.

All in all, in the past twelve days, I have only traded in nine events, and even in these nine events, I have only traded small amounts for a very short period of time.

I traded all bar the San Diego @ Pittsburgh NFL playoffs. I had all my green on Tennessee and Carolina in the Divisional Championships Week, made £2 on Philadelphia @ New York, and £4.11 on the Baltimore @ Pittsburgh game.

In the football, I have made £2 on the Hull v Arsenal game, £1.99 on West Ham v Fulham, £1.90 on Liverpool v Everton (A game I only traded for 15 minutes, for a reason I will talk about below) and a whole 7p on the Tottenham v Portsmouth game, where I was just caught out by a goal.

For the month, I am now £2.02 up!

As I mentioned when I started the blog, whilst I did very well in 2008, I suffered significantly from cutting bets short and generally avoiding risk, but hoped to be more adventurous in 2009.

However, I have ended up trading less as I have been so annoyed at how risk averse I have been in 2009, and I am not sure why. I need to let bets run, I need to trust my instincts and strategies (I have enough data to show they work in the main!), but I seem to just cut them short as soon as I can lock in a profit. Heck, I have even been wary of laying then backing at high priced drifts pre play incase Betfair crashes which is frankly ridiculous. I have outlined my football strategy previously, and I should have been very profitable on Liverpool v Everton and Tottenham v Portsmouth, but I have been too cautious. I know that has its advantages, but I am being disproportionately cautious and this is really damaging my prospects.

If anyone has any tips on letting bets run, I'd be grateful to hear from them!
I am certainly going to try this weekend to be more aggresive and logical. I set myself targets (Say 10 ticks), but will lay half my stake off at 2 and then the other half off at 5, get annoyed at myself and reduce the stake size but end up laying off even earlier. Logically, it just seems to be an in built fear of getting into a loss situation (I have previously explained my initial in built thoughts regarding gambling having seen the damage it can do) but it now seems a temporary vicious circle which I cannot escape from.

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