Firedave trading Betfair with Bet Angel

Documenting my experiences with Bet Angel using BetFair. This will be used to record my progress as I take trading on full time.

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Jun 24, 2010

Wimbledon Excitement

I'm exhausted just watching, and to be honest I thought Mahut had the better chances of winning today. It was a well played match and fitting that the All England club presented the players and umpire with a momento for the occasion. I think the match will be talked about for a long time to come. One thing I've noticed a lot more this tournament is that the organisers may want to consider where they have placed their microphones. A few times I have been looking around the room trying to locate the person panting, and muttering "That was close!" I finally tracked the culprits down...those pesky ball-boys!

I thought there was nothing wrong with Murray's bow by the way. He played well too...

Jun 23, 2010

Crunch Time

So, did they buckle or rise to the challenge? Will they be playing the 4-4-2 and will Gerrard be stuck on the left wing. Will Fabio insist on playing an out of form player above the leagues top goal-scorer for England. All the questions and more have been answered today, and although I can say I was not alone in thinking that the manager hasn't proved us wrong, the result is what matters at the end of the day.

Today is my girlfriends birthday, and we watched the match on the big screen in Newcastle.  The comments on the way in were along the lines of "Is that it?" and "You call that HD? More like HB!" which made me chuckle. Since it was a little difficult to make out the time on the screen this had been pre-empted by putting the screen next to the clock!  The atmosphere was very healthy and with the crowds packing in made for a great win to the last 16.  As things stand at the time of writing, we will be facing the Germans in the knock-out stage.  I think the team will be much more relaxed now they have made it through the group stages and it will be good to see where they can get to. No pressure England!

Just a quick look at Wimbledon, (I know, another tournament on at the same time as the World Cup!) bad light has stopped play when the score (in games) is 59-59! That is an obscene score! Bad light and fresh legs tomorrow could see more unbelievable scores being achieved!

Jun 22, 2010

Wimbledon - Day 2

Another cracking day at the all England club (ironically a year where no English men are in the draw).  Nadal looked on song and Murray made me hover over the mouse in the first set and then breezed through the next without breaking into a sweat.  He even looked to be enjoying his tennis again...did I speak to soon.  Well I don't think so, he was tested in the first set and this was a guy that wasn't that good. I can't help but see weaknesses still. Granted he has got more physically strong and he has some awesome shots that he can call on to use when he needs them but there is something I can't put my finger on...It made for good viewing though, and I was happy to watch someone playing the game well which I can only imagine will be a million miles away from what I'll be feeling watching the England game tomorrow.

On that note, nothing less than a win En- ger- land!

Jun 21, 2010


What a start!  I was late back from work in the morning and my mate texted to check what side I was on the Federer match. At this point I'm thinking back to Nadal's exit at Queens...Surely "The Feds" can't be nearing being knocked out, AND why am I late to my computer?!

It wasn't that Federer was playing badly he was just against an in-form opponent. By the fifth set he had managed to tire Falla and was comfortable. By 2-0 in the fifth set you couldn't even get 1.01 on Federer.  The early backers would have been sweating a bit on this one.

Richard: What are Murray's chances? Well I'm thinking he's not going to do too well this year I'm afraid. I could be wrong, and really want to be. He looked out of sorts at Queens which he's normally pretty solid at. He's losing a lot of ATP points as he hasn't hit the form he had last year.  Having said that, if/when England get knocked out the country will be looking to him to perform (which is actually the way Murray prefers it).  It would be foolish to look past Nadal and now Federer getting through a tough opener to take the glory.

I'll be very interested in any other the comments! :)

Jun 18, 2010

Super Soccer

What a day of soccer, uh football, so far! Germany will have to hold their tongue on England's current form if they're dropping points in their group, and missing a penalty...who would do that?!

With all the real focus being on Group C we wanted to see how the US would play against Slovenia to see what we could glisten from the performance. Well it turns out that we might have a match on when England faces Slovenia. When the USA pushed in the second half they started to get better chances and their 2-2 draw is probably fair. Slovenia's first half goals were very impressive though and I do feel a little sorry they couldn't hold onto the win.

England can take the fight to everyone else in the group tonight with a comfortable win against Algeria. Moyes has predicted a Rooney hat-trick and since he got the goal scorer and final score correct in the USA match I am feeling confident too!

Jun 17, 2010

Fantastic Football

There were goals aplenty today.  Argentina still looking a promising force and potential champions and picking up a match ball to take home when Gonzalo Higuain scored Argentina's first hat trick at a World Cup in 12 years.  Messi was at the heart of things but it was Higuain tapping them away.

France were looking pretty battered by another promising team, Mexico. The other match of the day saw an unlucky Nigeria being beaten by Greece.  Going down to 10 men did the damage as they were leading but had the chance to take home the spoils and didn't take it. Another keeping incident stole Greece's win. The more goalkeeping errors makes Green slightly less green...lets see what we can do tomorrow!

Is anyone trading the football, it seems a bit bouncy this tournament?

Jun 16, 2010

Forlan Hero?

Or Foe...
After seeing a not bad Spanish side lose to Switzerland things were hotting up. South Africa were facing Uruguay and the talk was all about Suarez.  Suarez didn't look as great as Forlan to me who is playing well. You just want the host nation to do well, but they lost out tonight to an in form Forlan, a sending off and a 90+5 goal!  South Africa see themselves at the bottom of their group now with just 1 point playing 2.

Jun 15, 2010


We've all heard them but I didn't get sent one from BetFair! I feel like I have donated enough their way to be entitled to one.

Go on then, leave your comments as to whether they should be banned or not. The answer is no by the way, but the broadcaster could easily give an option to not have crowd noise.


Jun 14, 2010

And The Winner Is...

Thank you to all those who kindly left a comment on Delivering Happiness and were entered into a draw to win an advance reading copy of the book.

I can announce today that my lovely assistant drew out of the hat....George Palmer.  If you could email me your address I will stick the book in the post to you.  I hope you enjoy the read, and feel free to leave a review on here or on your own blog!

Many thanks to everyone, and I hope I have more goodies to give away in the future.

Jun 11, 2010

Nadal's Watch

Don't forget to leave a comment on Delivering Happiness posting if you want a chance of winning an advance copy of the book. I'll keep on reminding each day until the 14th as I know the posting has slipped down the page now.

So what is all the fuss about? How much would you spend on a watch? At first glance I thought he was just wearing a casio. It turns out that he has a custom built watch costing in excess of $500,000!

Designed especially for Nadal by high-end Swiss watchmaker Richard Mille, the Tourbillon Watch RM 027 sports the lofty price tag mentioned above, as well as a number of other one-of-a-kind features:
RM 027 is said to be the lightest mechanical watch to be ever made. Its movement base plate is made from Titanium and Lital alloy, a high lithium content alloy containing aluminum, copper, magnesium and zirconium with a density of 2.55. The alloy mixture also includes Lithium which is considered as one of the lightest elements is expected to provide strength without added weight. The watch is considered one of the world's lightest mechanical tourbillon wristwatches with a movement weight of just a mere 3.83 grams. Pinoytutorial
All I can say is that he did win the French Open wearing it.  He is now out of queens but with 3 sets and first games on grass he still looks in great form. A bit of a shock that he is out...I was definitely on the wrong side of the market! I'd be happy with a far cheaper Breitling if anyone would like to donate one my way!

Having just announced that Roddick was in blistering form, it came as quite a shock as I watched his price of 1.03 drift out and out to 1.25. At this point I was looking to change my position and wrestled back my loss.  Was Roddick really about to be beaten by Sela?  For anyone who trades tennis at all, they could've, should've made a killing. Watching Roddick's game completely fall apart was just amazing for the trader - plenty of opportunities to make money. I managed to turn my loss into my best profit on the week.  What shocked me most about the game was the fact that Roddick never really tried anything different. He was content to keep hitting the ball in and wait for mistakes, which were just not coming. Yes, he did lose. In 2 sets.

Nadal is on court - already have a nice bit of profit...but the rain is coming. Nearly forgot to mention the best joke of the day. When play was suspended the commentator said he was going in to get an anti-Istomin!

Don't forget to leave a comment on Delivering Happiness posting if you want a chance of winning an advance copy of the book. Rollup, rollup! Only 3 of you have entered to win so far.

Don't forget to leave a comment on Delivering Happiness posting if you want a chance of winning an advance copy of the book.

I remember when Queens was sponsored by Stella Artois and was red and green. This blue that was introduced last year for sponsors Aegon just doesn't seem quite right!  Having watched the first couple of rounds of tennis on the grass there have been some interesting revelations. Djokovic doesn't look comfortable, he'll keep on winning whilst the games are this easy but he won't win this tournament, and he doesn't look likely to win Wimbledon in his current form. Nadal looks awesome - and as he is now world number 1 he will definitely collect more than his 0 points from last years non-entrance to Wimbledon. He maybe at number 1 for a while!  Roddick looks quite likely to take the spoils at Queens with the form he showed but Nadal could prove too much for him.  Murray isn't looking great to me - as I said yesterday, his knee is a concern.  I would doubt he can keep his title here.

Some interesting price movements on Djokovic's match today, although he was clear favourite, and got an early break the money always wanted to try and drift. I didn't go with any of these drifts as they were ludicrous but it meant I only notched up a small profit on the match overall - if when the price came in to around 1.05 I looked to lay occasionally I would've benefited much more often. This must be due to how uncomfortable he looked on court as he always was going to win this match.

Don't forget to leave a comment on Delivering Happiness posting if you want a chance of winning an advance copy of the book.

Today had some good trading opportunities, especially on the tennis. I went pretty conservative when I saw Murray gripping his heavily strapped knee and got out whilst I was ahead. I needn't have worried as he then went into cruise through the latter parts of the match. I would've been kicking myself if I had just held onto my position whilst watching him struggle. There were definite opportunities for Navarro to take the initiative and he will have given Murray something to think about.

The geegees were pretty good for me today as well, these weren't as often as usual and I completely forgot about a meeting I had to attend this afternoon which somewhat spoilt most of my afternoon. I was pleased with what I managed to get out of the day though.

Jun 7, 2010

Delivering Happiness

Competition to win an advanced reading copy of the book Delivering Happiness: A path to profits, passion and purpose will be at the end of the review...if you would like a chance to win a copy then please read on!

If you have not heard of Delivering Happiness, I suggest you check them out at for a bit of background on the review.  The book can be purchased from amazon here:

This book follows Tony Hsieh's journey in the business world, from badge making from home with a high IQ to his selling of Zappos to Amazon for a figure above a billion dollars. The journey for happiness involved some ups and downs in business startups, the hunt for money, the loss of money, the hunt for the secret to corporate long-term success, and some input from partners and employees along the way. Zappos' leadership eventually decided to emphasise sterling customer service as the key to their own corporate culture.  The idea was to infuse ten larger values (with numerous sub-meanings and applications) into every aspect of every department of the company.

There are plenty of great tips on building culture. Paying new employess $2000 to quit. It also gives some insight to the company training program which encourages employees to constrantly grow and develop.   Make your employees happy and they will be more productive and stay with you.  This isn’t the first book I’ve read where poker is used as an analogy to business and life choices but I was pleased with the way Tony presented this topic.  The way the book reads is that most decisions are made quickly without a level of preparation that might have been expected for such a successful person.  This came across in Zappo's case, smart people with the ability to quickly change direction after recognizing a mistake can be successful without the need for detailed analysis.

In general the book is a very light read. It is destined to be given out to employees for free, and to serve as a sort of corporate diary and the documentation of the corporate methodology. The last few pages are a little more thoughtful, where the author tries to relate his business experience to a philosophical discussion of life, the universe and everything.  The biggest idea to take from the book for me was that whichever sector your business sits in make sure it really goes for it. In the case of customer intimate sector, Zappos upgrade customer’s delivery to overnight for free. Doing this extra is going to make the customer happy and they are going to talk about the service to peers and help the companys bottom line.  I’ve now added a new phrase to my business language “Bet the farm on it!”


Alright, here’s the deal.  I sent away for an advance copy of Zappos CEO’s book Delivering Happiness.  I was lucky enough to be selected as a recipient of an advance copy.  I was unaware that they were sending two copies of the book…one for me and one for a blog reader (you).

I would like anyone interested in winning an advanced reading copy of Delivering Happiness to leave a comment. To qualify you must be signed in and leave a way for me to get back in touch with you.  The comment can be about anything site related, delivering happiness, Zappos, upcoming book releases anything.  Your name needs to be legit and filled out fully.  The comment must be placed on this posting otherwise it will not be included in the draw.  All comments will then be placed in a hat and 1 lucky winner will receive a copy provided by Tony Hsieh himself.  The draw will take place a week from now on the 14th June.

Jun 4, 2010

The Results Are In...

Thank you to everyone who took the time to vote. The poll is now closed and the results are in. The question was
Would you be interested in additional charting functions for BetFair?
A few didn't think it would be of use or didn't know but the majority were open to something being provided mainly if it were free. For me to go down the free route, I can and would do this but like my blog give the opportunity for adverts to be displayed. This means that the application would be free to use but also generate some revenue for writing the application. I haven't taken much time over the last couple of months working through the charts as I wanted to get an idea of how popular they would be, and as only a small percentage of my readers have voted I guess that the majority are happy with the functions provided by their choice of trading platform of BetFair website.  I will endeavour to get a first release together over the upcoming few months and provide screenshots of what is on offer for your perusal!

I have been asked to do a book review as well - I am always open to do these if you have a book waiting to be published and would like some extra exposure. This book in particular is called "Delivering Happiness" by Tony Hsieh. He co-founded LinkExchange which he sold to Microsoft for $265 million. He then joined Zappos as an adviser and investor, and eventually became CEO.  I will be doing a review of this book next week and running a small competition to give away an advanced reading copy which he has kindly donated for his upcoming release.  Rules and how-tos will be coming up next week!

Dementieva provided some nice trading opportunities today but the talking point has to be the way the game ended. The first set was a battle and Dementieva had opportunities in the first set to break and get ahead. The set ended being a tie break which she lost and on the way to the change of ends she conceded the match.  There were no obvious signs of injury although the reason given was a pain in her calf.  From a trading perspective, these are things to watch out for, if possible don't have an open position between sets - I find that taking a stance on a particular outcome for a couple of games with a stop loss and then closing out has been working pretty well for me this tournament.  I was pretty lucky since my original assessment was that Dementieva would win this match but after the first 7 games this was becoming increasingly apparent that the match was going to be tough. Even so, to end the way it did must've caught a fair few people out.

Due to the early finish I traded the next match between Jankovic and Stosur.  The form Stosur is in at the moment made her favourite and the ease she took to the first point meant I had my money in early. An easy win in the end 6-1 6-2. This sets up a rather incredible final, two players never to have reached the French Open final Schiavone and Stosur.  Stosur is now favourite to win having been odds of 150-1 prior to the tournament.

Jun 2, 2010

Nadal Odds

I thought this was an interesting image - especially to those who have no idea about the amounts being traded on tennis matches. Nadal is obviously a very talented tennis player and clay court seems to be his preferred surface. This would put the odds in his favour massively - whilst I have been watching this match his price was in the 1.23 when he went 3-0 down in the first set. He rallied though and came back to win the set in the tie break. This image was taken a couple of games into the second set. There is 2.5 million pounds just waiting to be matched on the lay side and half a million on the back.  At this particular point there has been 10.5 million pounds matched so far. This is the most I've seen on a particular sport to date and I am normally wary of joining the back of £40k waiting but here there are instances where there is £400k - £600k that I have joined and been matched with quite comfortably.

Knowing a fair bit about the game of tennis too, I have found there are some sweet moves you can get.  I don't know whether this will work for all matches but I've found the price doesn't move horrendously like horse racing unless a big upset like the favourite dropping a set just happens. Even then it isn't unrecoverable. Scalping through the games seems a lot safer than any pre race trading I've done however the opportunities are far less frequent. I will definitely be getting involved in a few more games. Wimbledon and the world cup round the corner!

Jun 1, 2010


It had to happen, sad news. Hot off the press - Federer loses.  His opponent is somewhat of a giant beater, by knocking Nadal out of the French last year, Robin Soderling looked awesome on court. Federer was unable to get into the points to really cause him much trouble. There was a brief scare when Federer broke Soderlings serve in the 4th set but he immediately broke back and in some style. The peak in the graph is when Federer took the first set but then it was all Soderling and the price just shortened. Normally this is where you would lay the short price looking for Federer to rally, but watching the tennis it just didn't look that likely to come so I didn't put anything on. I just watched in shock and awe as he was just outplayed. Absolutely amazing.  Those who enjoy Murray doing well will be happy to know that Tomas Berdych has just gone through in straight sets which will be of some comfort to know he is in good form!