The smart money
Andy Hamilton’s World Matchplay darts comeback | Fri 22nd Jul
It’s not very often a bookmaker ends up closing the book on an event whilst it’s still running. It’s even less often that they close the book because the favourite is so far ahead and the outsider then comes back to win. However, this is exactly what happened in Blackpool in July when Simon Whitlock incredibly managed to snatch defeat out of the jaws of victory and capitulate in a match in which his odds were just 1/500 to win before betting on him was removed. Andy Hamilton defied odds of up to 66/1 in running when he reeled off nine consecutive legs to take the match and those who backed ‘The Hammer’ were singing along with the crowd at the end of what has been described as the most incredible comeback in the history of the sport.
England 4-0 India in the cricket at 33/1 | Mon 22nd Aug
The England team were slight favourites coming in to this test series which saw the world number one spot go up for grabs. Not even the most patriotic of cricket punters predicted the tourists would implode in such a manner and there was a satisfyingly small spread of business on the whitewash. The Indians, led by a disappointing Tendulkar, were never at the races and the small few clinging onto the 4-0 tickets knew their fate a long way out.
Manchester United 8-2 Arsenal 500/1 | Sun 28th Aug
Unsurprisingly we didn’t take a single bet on this scoreline. The fact that our upper limit on correct scores quoted for this game was 5-0 just shows how much of a hiding was dished out and we can safely say it’s odds-on we won’t see another match like it for a while.
Paddy Doherty wins Celebrity Big Brother at 12/1 | Fri 9th Sep
The eagerly-anticipated return of the daddy of the reality TV shows meant the usual motley crew of has-beens and never-will-bes assembled for a few weeks of madness and the mere presence of reality stalwarts Jedward was enough to whip TV punters into a betting frenzy not seen since Matt Cardle stormed to X Factor victory. The Irish twins were backed off the boards and thanks to some over-zealous punting alongside creative odds-compiling of the highest order we also built up a fair liability on either twin to shave their head at 20/1. Thankfully for our sanity and book the lipstick singers fell at one of the final hurdles thanks to superstar traveller Paddy Doherty who romped to a surprise victory. Upon the announcement he proceeded to jig – which was mimicked long into the night by our TV department who escaped one of the largest reality payouts ever known.
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