Sunday, 23 November 2014

X-factor shite update

Mixed results last evening. My little 40/1 EW poke - OTY - were sent home. My main selection, Lauren, is now double-figures following a good performance (IMO) but a stitch-up in the running order. She was scheduled first, thus singing during the overlap with SCD. Clearly the producers don't want her to progress much further.. 

However Fleur, who I have backed at 14/1 to win the event and at 5/2 to be "Top Over", is now 6/4 jolly to win the competition. This is the first change in market leader since the live stages began with 16 runners. There are now six acts remaining. I've just played again with a bet on Ben Haenow:

1.5pts Ben Haenow to win x-factor @ 9/2 Betfred

Ben is also in the "Overs" category with Fleur so has a chance of derailing both my Fleur bets mentioned above. This extends the x-factor portfolio to 8.5 points. A Fleur win would return 18.5 points for a nice ten point profit. If the Italian boy Andrea wins I've done it in. I said at the start I wanted to oppose him so there is no way I am covering on him now. Que sera, sera.

Sent from my iPad 

Monday, 17 November 2014

Murray 2014

Fair play to Murray for turning out at short notice yesterday to entertain the crowd at the O2.

My Murray 2014 portfolio (assembled on Christmas Day 2013), finally came to a conclusion when he was dismissed from ATP London by Federer 6-0 6-1 in the group stages. Thus limiting his winning tournaments to three in 2014. I won't labour the point but how much better the portfolio result would have been had he won one tournament fewer! In the three finals he reached, Ferrer served for the championship in one and in the other two Robredo had five match points in each of them!  Anyway I hope you managed to profit from the bets which provided plenty of interest throughout the year and finished with 22 points profit. Details here.

I wish AM all the best in 2015. His world ranking has improved from a low of 12 in September to number six today. With injuries starting perhaps to be a problem for Nadal and Federer he has the potential to reach the latter stages of major tournaments next year.

Davis Cup final

One of the reasons for taking on short-priced favourite Switzerland way back in January was the fact that they are basically a two-man team and should either Roger or Stan be injured - and thus unable to play - Switzerland's chance of winning (any) tie would reduce significantly.

Following an epic semi-final between the Swiss pair on Saturday at the O2, Roger was of course forced to withdraw from Sunday's ATP London final and concede the tournament to Djoko. Add to this the alleged animosity between the Davis Cup team mates - following court side comments allegedly made by Mrs Federer during play - and we can deduce that all is not well in the Swiss camp.

At the time of writing it seems that both Swiss players will travel to Lille as planned for the Davis Cup final. However my remaining ante-post selection France (9/2) - best priced 13/8 on Saturday - has narrowed in the betting to 11/10. Encouraging signs at least....

                                                                                                 Still good mates?

Sunday, 16 November 2014

Dessie Hughes

It was exactly four years ago - during this Punchestown weekend -  that I had the great privilege of meeting Dessie Hughes. This was a group visit to his stables organised by Frances Crowley. With great pride and enthusiasm he showed us around his yard and introduced us to the likes of Black Apalachi and Brave Inca (retired).

Someone was kind enough to take this picture of Dessie and me during the visit:

Saturday, 8 November 2014

Flat season wrap 2014

Disappointing to draw a blank on the last day of the flat season. A much reduced service this year of course with a fraction of the bets blogged during each of the last two seasons. Pleased to say though that profits for the season were in excess of 38% thanks to winners @ 28/1, 14/1, 12/1 and 11/1. Full details here:

2014 flat season

Unlikely to be any further horse racing bets this year. In fact there may not be much activity at all. I have the ATP London bets running from this Sunday and then this will be followed by (underdogs) France in the Davis Cup final (EW 9/2). Even if everything goes pear-shaped until the end of the year I think we should finish close to 20% profit overall.

Hopefully readers have shown a profit again this year by following some (or all) of my selections.

Friday, 7 November 2014

Final day of the 2014 turf season

Very sad that another season is nearly over as (at least) the last three seasons have proved very profitable. One race is of particular interest to me tomorrow is the 16-runner 7f sprint. Being totally paranoid I am always concerned that my selections will be picked by Pricewise, thus reducing in price making it more difficult for me to secure any value. An added problem is that the few bookmakers that do lay me some bets will only lay me very small bets the night before racing. Therefore I've had what I can on the following:

13:50D 2pts win Modern Tutor @ 16/1 William Hill BOG
13:50D 1pt win Doc Hay @ 20/1 Coral BOG

Looks like there will be at least one non-runner hence the win only approach. We will know shortly after 20:00 tonight whether my paranoia is justified as this is when the Pricewise selections are made public. 

Three points staked.

If I have any further bets I will publish by 10:30 tomorrow.

Sent from my iPad 

ATP London

Have had a bit of a break from betting since the Breeders' Mile. Disappointed with the way Obviously went out like a light, particularly as the race was panning out exactly as I thought it might as they came into the straight.

Sunday sees the start of the final ATP tournament of the year and Djoko is an odds-on chance to win it, being in terrific form. I'm taking a chance against him with the surprise US Open finalists at decent prices. Cilic's form took a big drop immediately after his first GS win. Something that is not uncommon (see for example Wawrinka's form during 2014 following his first GS win). The Croat did bounce back by winning Moscow but without the need to beat a top ten player. If his serve is working well he has a chance of beating anyone, particularly in the three-set format. He faces Berdych and Wawrinka as well as the favourite in Group A.

Nishikori is in Group B and faces Murray, Federer and Raonic. He has a 4-1 H2H against the latter, only going down to the Canadian on the fast courts of Wimbledon. His record against Federer is respectable: 2-2. Murray could give him most trouble as the Scot leads 3:0. But how much will Andy have left having played six tournaments in as many weeks to get here?

I have had the following bets:

1pt EW Marin Cilic to win ATP London @ 20/1 Coral (1/3 odds 1,2) 
1pt Marin Cilic to win Group A @ 8/1 Coral 

1.5pts EW Kei Nishikori to win ATP London @ 18/1 Spreadex fixed odds (1/3 odds 1,2)
2pts Kei Nishikori to win Group B @ 11/2 Spreadex fixed odds

Total eight points staked.

I may have a bet at Doncaster tomorrow. If I do it will be blogged before 10:30am.