Wales and Querrey bring market to life


I was all set this evening to pen a half-year report on the market to date and to look forward to what will be a key couple of months. I’ve long had doubts about Jamie Vardy and Anthony Joshua’s ability to last the distance at the head of the betting and was to suggest adding Andy Murray to the portfolio (standard).

Then, as I was watching the build up to Wales v Belgium in the Euros, a friend messaged to say simply, ‘Djok?’. The news was that the big serving world number 41 Sam Querrey was about to go two sets to love up against Novak Djokovic, leaving Murray as slight Wimbledon favourite on Betfair.

I was a bit disappointed to have missed advising Murray at 16/1 pre-tournament as he has not just Wimbledon but potentially the Olympics, Davis Cup and US Open to showcase his talents. So with Murray at 10/1 at this point for SPOTY it was time to strike, as advised on the spotybet Twitter account (now best priced 7/1).

No-one has consistently polled more than Muzz in recent years and although there could be some voter fatigue after he won it last year and in 2013, it’s easy to imagine post-Brexit vote Scotland wanting any excuse to get behind their man again.

The good thing about SPOTY markets is that big prices can hang around for weeks. But, in certain circumstances like these, quick reactions are needed to secure the best prices (they lasted around for an hour or two this evening). The bad thing about SPOTY markets is that once prices have gone they can be quite sticky in coming back out again (even when they should). So timing can be key.

Djokovic and Querrey will be back out tomorrow to finish off the match with Nole needing to win three sets in a row. We’ll keep an eye on that one but, whatever the result in that particular match, anyone availing of anything around 8/1 or better on Murray probably has a fair coupon.

The evening drama continued with a magnificent Wales dumping Belgium out of the Euros and their talisman Gareth Bale leapfrogging Murray to go to the head of the market. The Champions League winner simply had to be selected during the match at 7/1 and 8/1 (with the 6/1 still available with Bet 365 a good price).

This is a fairytale and even a semi-final loss on Wednesday to Ronaldo’s Portugal could still be enough to see Bale shortlisted and then attract a load of Welsh support on SPOTY night. England’s semi-final losses in 1990 and 1996 are still remembered with a strange fondness to this day – Gazza of course being the 1990 SPOTY winner.

As ever, there’s plenty that can still happen this year – not least the Olympics – as well as in the remainder of the current Euros and Wimbledon. But Murray and Bale are just the type of sporting giants that need to be onside at this stage.

Advised earlier this evening at prices available at the time:

* 1.5pts each way Andy Murray 10/1 generally available

* 2pts win Gareth Bale 8/1 Coral and Paddy Power, 7/1 generally available

plus 2pt lay of Wales v Belgium at 1.50 on Betfair

* 2pts win Gareth Bale 7/1 and 6/1 generally available


6 thoughts on “Wales and Querrey bring market to life”

  1. Hi Paul

    Looking at the current SPOTY odds, I think Lewis Hamilton is a decent each way value bet at 66/1 with Coral.

    If he wins the F1 title it will be his fourth title overall (putting him behind only Schumacher & Fangio) and third in a row. Both impressive achievements, and surely this would guarantee him a place on the end of year shortlist.

    I find it hard to see Hamilton winning SPOTY in 2016, but history suggests that a British F1 champion has a good shot of finishing in the top three. Here are the SPOTY placings of every British F1 champion since 1973.

    1973 – Jackie Stewart (1st)
    1976 – James Hunt (2nd)
    1992 – Nigel Mansell (1st)
    1996 – Damon Hill (1st)
    2008 – Lewis Hamilton (2nd)
    2009 – Jenson Button (2nd)
    2014 – Lewis Hamilton (1st)
    2015 – Lewis Hamilton (5th)

    1. Hi James

      That certainly looks like an attractive price – one that you’d have been amazed at in previous years for Lewis.

      I think he’d definitely make the shortlist if he won the championship but it is that 2015 5th place finish that worries me a little. I just get the feeling that F1 is not quite the force it was and there may be three or four more popular candidates in December.

      But at 66/1 to win – 13/1 to place – why not have a pop and see what happens!

      1. Hi Paul

        Hamilton backers will be hoping that the title is won in the final race of the season, on Nov 27th (three weeks ahead of the SPOTY ceremony). This would echo the 2008 season, which saw Hamilton win the title, gain >150,000 votes and come 2nd in SPOTY, (in a competitive Olympic year).

        Last year’s 5th place for Hamilton may, in part, be down to the lack of drama in the 2015 F1 season.

        One thing which could hurt Hamilton is the lack of F1 coverage on the BBC. It may be worth working out how many SPOTY winners had their success shown live on the BBC.

        On a separate point, I have noticed that each of the SPOTY winners in recent Olympic years also went on to become a Knight/Dame a few days later!

        2000 Redgrave, 2004 Holmes, 2008 Hoy, 2012 Wiggins.

        Also, each British athlete who has won four or more gold medals (post war) has gone on to be knighted (Ainsley, Hoy, Pinsent, Redgrave & Wiggins).

        If Farah can win a double gold this summer, I think he is likely to become Sir Mo, and I don’t think we should rule him out of the SPOTY race.

  2. Particularly enjoying the knights and dames angle here James – great spot. Guess it’s just a matter of predicting the New Year’s honours list then..

    Muzz must be nailed on at some point, and this year might be as good a time as any.

    Froome? if one Tour and a time trial was good enough for Wiggo why not three Tours and a TT for Froome? A strong argument there, although I guess a Knighthood often has a pioneering element to it rewarding first time or rare achievements. Plus Wiggo was a more decorated Olympian previously.

    Jess? could easily, a la Holmes.

    And for a leftfield dame how about Dujardin? A longshot but you never know..

    Mo is arguably the most intriguing SPOTY contender of recent times. His achievements are phenomenal. Out of all sports, running must be the most competitive of them all. And Mo this year is going for quadruple back to back double golds at the Olympics and Worlds. Assuming he is clean, that would surely have to be one, if not the most impressive set of achievements by a British sportsperson?

    Sir Mo – I think you’re onto something there.

    Maybe some sort of back to lay strategy to protect your stake could be a way to go to there? I remember him going very short (around joint fav with Wiggo) on that delirious Super Saturday evening in 2012. Although off the podium, he polled well over 125k votes. Plenty of doubts remain for me about whether he can win SPOTY even if I think he should have won on merit in 2012.

    As you say, Hamilton was probably hampered by the lack of excitement at the end of last season and, as I’ve mentioned previously, he has polled consistently very well. The TV station trend is an interesting one and it is always striking to me how many of the big events in a year are still somehow on BBC TV. I’m not too sure though if it’s as simple as not being on BBC means less chance or if it’s more that actually the beeb still does a pretty good job (aided by protected rights) of bringing us the most important one-off events and tournaments in any given year. Being on BBC does naturally tend to lead to the highest viewing figures though which must obviously help SPOTY-wise.

    A late Hamilton title win would help him a lot and your 66/1 more than deals with any negatives to his chances.

    Intriguing times ahead..

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