Monday, 29 December 2014

Test - S.Africa v W.Indies - Port Elizabeth - Boxing Day

Waiting .. for lotsa stuff, so, gonna fill the void, with some thghts/ramblings.

To set the scene, this is the 2nd test .. test 1 at Centurion, ended in 3.3 days, with West Indies collapsing(with, it might be said, poor preparation/board troubles), like the proverbial cheap suit.

This test, saw S.Africa start a v warm 1.26 fav, and batting first,the money kept coming.

This was derailed a bit, when it rained buckets, on Day 2 and only 6 overs were played.

This rain, has proved v hard to predict - many weather websites have been wrong - some, v v wrong, and the radars have also been useless.

S.African ex-captains have tweeted no play, for hours, only to see play an hr later (tweets interestingly get withdrawn - to save face), and radio/tv commentators, promise good weather, when it doesn't come.

Blame is hard to place - Port Elizabeth is known as the Windy City - and this very wind, makes it almost impossible to forecast, when/if rain will hit, and for how long.

Often, its been a v fine drizzle, .. thou on Day 2 - it was 3 hrs of solid stuff, and the ground must be congratulated for absorbing so much .. we all know of grounds, which wouldn't have coped.

Anyway, enough of the pre-amble.

On Day 4 .. West Indies fell from 230-2, to 275-9, in 14 overs .. and are now 142 runs behind in the 1st inngs, with 1 stick left.

In theory, 98 overs can be played on the last day .. but, current forecasts are indicating rain will maybe only allow 40-75 overs.

Each day, I have driven to the ground - my commute is 80 miles, and find the drive v instructive, weather wise.

I have traded the game pretty well .. I always thought, the rain would bring an early SA declaration,
and won shed loads on various runs mkts - when they declared on 417, when 525 was traded odds-on.

If they had declared under 400, I would have won, a colossal sum.

I have a decent match odds book, which is now weighted towards the draw. This bias is just a factor of time/overs to be bowled .. I like Amla as an aggressive declaration setter, and have v little faith in West Indies batting out 50 overs.

I am posting a snapshot, of one of my books, (I may have others, similar or not), to just add validation .. to me, its pointless blogs saying they won/lost etc, without back-up.

If the overnight rain/early rain is less than on previous days, I will manoevre. In my mind, with 75 overs play, S.Africa will win v easily.

I am v aware, there is a lack of media focus/verification and any morsel of information, is heavily traded. Day 5, could be a very volatile day.I will probably tweet, v infrequently .. and with pictures, which people can interprete for themselves.

If u get misled, by feed, I am genuinely sorry .. but, cannot hold your hands.

(when I posted this on my server, Draw was 1.20 .. 5 hrs later .. 1.12)

Well, what a mess I made if this.

Car drive to ground, was in v good weather, and looking at everything, decided SA were a fair bet at 7.0.

In hindsight, just didn't know, the amount of rain that had fallen during the early hrs, and it appears the ground is saturated.

Nice enough at the ground, with no rain/drizzle for 2 hrs, but, still waiting on pitch inspections, and it's noon.

Very slim chance of a result now, and have turned £9k green, into a small red.

Not my finest hr - but, did little wrong.

Sunday, 28 December 2014

Quality Street

Life is fucked up.

I am sitting in a wet grandstand, watching it rain. It's day 4 of a test match, that has already lost a days play, and it's pretty grim. Ground drainage in South Africa is v good .. Much better than some of the fancy grounds in England, I like to pound upon .. But, the amount of rain, gonna mean a pretty long delay.

And the forecast for Day 5 .. The last day, ain't looking good.

Anyway .. On my drive to the ground (thru solid rain for an Hr) .. I listened to a real gem.

Via a referral from the "Thinking Poker" podcast, which incidentally, has got me hooked on the music of Palmyra .. I have just listened to my first podcast, of "This American Life".

It's episode 541 .. And as luck would have it, it's titled "Regrets"

If here is one thing u do today, download this, and listen to it.

I will try put a link in .. But, the blogger app on the ipad, is pretty basic. (Or .. More likely really, I don't know which button to press, to find the link).

Anyway, the episode is about Regrets .. And makes a very fair point, that, the line is the song, "My way", made initially famous by Frank Sinatra, 'Regrets, I've had a few' .. Is just quality, but, it's killed, by the next line .. 'But then again, too few to mention'.

Everyone has regrets, tons and tons of them .. And it's only really when u hear about other people's lives, that u understand, how lucky, u actually are.

If u don't like podcasts, there is a transcript of the show .. Plse read.

Ok, am gonna post this .. It probably won't look right, but, will fix it later.

Wednesday, 24 December 2014

Its Christmas .. Bah .. Humbug

And so, its almost Christmas .. with everything, that's supposed to mean, but rarely does.

Maybe its old age creeping on, but, am getting increasingly less tolerant, of people who are either clearly idiots, or have lent their brains, to others less fortunate.

In previous yrs, I would probably have shrugged it off .. but, am finding that option, is becoming rarer and rarer.

It all started, when I tried to log-in to the local cell phone website, to check my data levels.

The website lets u nest multiple numbers, under 1 'super-user' number .. but, unfortunately, if u don't use the super-user number for 180 days, the log-in is disabled, and .. u cant register the nested numbers, as they have been previously associated in the database  ..  thus, ensues, a long twitter/call centre battle, which, is still on-going.

I can understand problems .. and am tolerant etc, especially in Africa .. but, having had 4 chats with call-centre personell, its a bit tiring.

To try and relax, I have been playing poker (golf, is less an option, as my clubs are in a different place, and its a bit hot, anyway).

I was doing rather well in a tournament, with blinds getting quite steep, when the 'new' tournament director, came over, and said this was the last hand, before the table was being broken. Thats fine .. especially as the next hand, I was the big blind.

I picked up a hand, which was marginal, and, as the table was being broken, decided to fold.

Waiting for the table to be broken, the director got a phone call, and said, the table must play on.

I was v unhappy with this .. and vented .. to no avail, and literally threw my toys (in this case, chips), everwhere, when I lost a third of my stack on the next hand, and then they broke the table.

Venting even more, u were expected to move mountains of chips, without the use of table racks .. the staff are really fucking useless .. and I once again vented, letting everyone know, what I felt.

Fuck xmas.

Monday, 1 December 2014

Ups and Downs

Well, after saying potential buyers of world markets should be committed, its me who has done my absolutes.

Whether its various Govts generating growth, or reductions in interest rates, the end result has all been largely the same .. continued rises in various indexes, and more (repeated), margin calls on short positions.

The Dax has gone from 9000, to 9900, .. which is more than unpleasant, and, its been a pretty miserable end to the yr.

Added to this misery, is the relentless expense of building a new house .. which has become a runaway train .. with completion dates, now moved out a month, due to rain, which has restricted building before the key December holidays.

Maybe we can see the project finished by April .. but, will need the weather to help us.

Sport has been ok, but, exceptionally tiring, as games seemed to be scheduled further and further apart, geographically, and its just one plane after another.

Tiring doesn't even come close ..

Golf went on a serious decline, with 100 a more likely candidate than 90, thou, I did manage to shoot a v respectable 93 last week, in v windy conditions. This felt like shooting a 90 .. but, clearly doesn't count.

Monday, 17 November 2014

Little grey cells

Sometimes. the key to winning, is putting all the clues together.

Last night, in the 3rd game of a triple header, it rained, on and off, lightly at first, for about 90 mins.

Much as at Paarl, earlier in the week, it was apparent, the umpires wanted to play, if at all possible, and a cut-off time of 9.18pm, was established, from a scheduled start of 6pm.

Many times, just as play seemed about to start, the rain came back, to scupper the plans. The Completed match Market (CMM), went from 1.25 or so, during the 1st innings (someone had an idea, rain was coming), to flipping, at least 5 times.

As the 1st innings had been completed, just 5 overs needed to be found, from about 7.40 pm, but, the rain was persistent.

As it approached 8.45 pm, it seemed everyone had had enough .. the tired ground staff, had moved away, the scoreboard showed msgs giving details of the next game, and asked everyone to have a safe journey home - before the scoreboard, turned the lights off.

We then saw, the cameraman, start to pack away .. and yet the people in the ground still got told nothing - and even the CMM .. had 1.07 No game available.

If ever there was a time, to empty your account .. 25 mins before cut-off, rain falling, puddles everywhere .. this was it.


Some pics from the night  ...  weather trading can be brutal.

Friday, 31 October 2014

Month-end round up

Gonna be a busy few weeks ahead, with the Ram Slam tourny on, so will try and tie up, a few loose ends.

Been playing golf, sometimes 3 times a week .. and scores have become regular 93/94/93 .. which normally includes 2-3 lost balls (out of bounds). The driving is an issue - especially early on in the round,when I am not warm - but, there is hope.

Have hit some phenomenal shots (just not enough of them) .. with the highlight, being a v tricky, and long, 452 yard par 4 (stroke 2), albeit downhill. It needs a v straight and long drive, and then a v long second. In previous hits, have never been within 100 yards of the flag, but, one day, I hit a great drive, and a 3 wood, to 2 metres !!

Hopefully the elusive 90 will come next month .. will definitely try.

The stocks markets behaved in the first half of the month, but, although I closed my shorts at a good time, I reopened them, at a bad time, and gave a lot back. The kids recovered all their losses, and are now showing profits of 700 and 200 respectively .. shows what can be done, if u just trade to 1-2% of your bank.

(I forgot to add, WorldStock markets are at all-time highs, or as near as dammit, following the opening of the various candy stores, by 'people in charge')

Anyone who goes long (buys), is, IMHO, certifiable .. at least on a 1 yr basis .. but, as we all know, the market can stay 'wrong' for a long time.

Monday, 13 October 2014

A few good calls

 2 weeks ago, I mentioned in my Blog ..

I am negative of the financial markets, and think the AliBaba IPO, may have marked a top, in the US and UK exchanges. I am aggressively short ..

Well,  we have had some ups, but, many more downs, in the last 2 weeks, and this is working out, real good.

Unfortunately .. or maybe fortunately .. the kids, have turned, respective profits of 700 and 80, into losses of 2000 and 450 .. but, I am happy they are learning.


I played some Poker last night, for the first time in about 8 mths. It was a cash game, 50c/$1, with a high rake, so, it was more relaxing than anything else, but, ran like Bolt, for about an Hr, and finished winning, $400, having cleaned everyone out. No real great hands, just didnt lose many. Towards the end, small stacks, were putting it in, fairly light :

Seat 1 .. UTG , all, in, for $20
Seat 2, calls for $20
Seat 3, calls for $20 (a fish, I had beaten, relentlessly, last 4 hands - for maybe $80)

I look down, at 4♦, 5♠  .. so call.

Seat 5, also calls .. Big pot ..

Flop comes,  A♥, 4♥, 5♣ ..

Its checked to me, and I bet $45, into a pot, of $100. Seat 1 is All-in, and just Seat 3, calls.

Turn, is 9♠ .. I bet $75, and he calls again.

River, is 2♠, making a board of .. A♥, 4♥, 5♣, 9♠, 2♠ .. anyone with a 3, has a straight, but figure I am good, and bet, $40, to put the fish all-in.

My 2 pair was good .. Happy days.


Am reading an excellent book, on Professional Blackjack .. its a must-read, if into Blackjack/Casinos/etc.

Thursday, 9 October 2014

90 in reach

I played my normal Tuesday four-ball, on a windy day, and wasnt thinking a 90 was remotely possible,as the wind will normally take care of a ball or 2.

Starting on Hole 1, I managed a 5(on a par 4), which wasnt great,as its quite an easy Par 4, but, as I can be a slow starter, was happy.

Hole 2, another uphill par 4, I drove well, hit a good 5 iron and 2 putted for a solid Par.

Hole3, a down hill par 4, I drove into the wind, (short), but hit another glorious 5 iron to 4 metres, and made another solid Par ..

On the 4th hole, the mental side took over.

The 4th hole, is easy, but, has a tree, about 150 metres from the tee, on the right. U can put the ball anywhere-else, and u will be fine .. and most days, if I go right, I am over the tree .. but, thinking about my 90,and intothe wind, I knocked it right behind, and had to chip out sideways ..

Thinking about receovering, I shanked my 3rd, and finished with a lousy 7 .. which put me on the back foot again.

The next 3 holes, my mind wasnt focussed, and shanked 2 more balls .. which, is never good, but, played some good golf after that.

Highlight of the day was the 18th. Normally, its a good drive, a solid 5 iron,and then a 3 wood to the green (which I have landed on twice).

Today, I killed the drive, and hit a lifetime best 5 iron,an absolute mile, leaving me a 9 iron to the pin. I landed this, 1 metre past, and it just rolled off, for an easy chip/putt par.

Good golf .. a 93 .. and the 90 should soon be in reach.

Phil Ivey - Court Judgement

In a judgement that surprised me, the Judge John Mitting found in favour of the casino :

In his ruling, the judge said that the case turned on whether there was cheating: "If Mr Ivey cheated, he is not entitled to recover his winnings. If he did not, he is."

What Mr Ivey and Ms Sun did was to persuade the croupier to turn some of the cards in the dealing shoe to permit them to know that they were or were very likely to be sevens, eights or nines, and in circumstances where she did not realise she had done so - and, if she had, would have immediately stopped play.

The fact that Mr Ivey was genuinely convinced that he did not cheat and that the practice commanded considerable support from others was not determinative of the question of whether it amounted to cheating.

Mr Ivey had gained himself an advantage and did so by using a croupier as his innocent agent or tool.

It was not simply taking advantage of error on her part or an anomaly practised by the casino for which he was not responsible.

He was doing it in circumstances where he knew that she and her superiors did not know the consequences of what she had done at his instigation.

He concluded: "This is, in my view, cheating for the purpose of civil law."

This will be an expensive time for Mr Ivey. He has to pay all his costs, which probably run to £200k, and (maybe) all or a good portion of Crockfords costs.

There is also doubt now, whether he can get high level sponsorships (should he need them),as, his value as a top-class poker player/representative, may, arguably, be tainted.

I am not sure,the UK Gambling Commission would look to sue him as a cheat .. so, the case will probably just lie on the books - but, apart from the money, it now issues a whole can of worms, as to what 'contract' a pro-gambler enters in-to, when he manufactures an edge.

The case seemed to revolve around the way, Mr Ivey entered the contract to play :

"The club argues the use of edge-sorting is not a legitimate strategy.

Genting Casinos UK, which owns Crockfords, says Mr Ivey's conduct defeated the premise of the game, meaning there was no gaming contract"

In British law, the statutes are written differently to those in the US .. and it will be interesting to see what happens, to a similar case, being brought by a US casino (The Borgata).

The full detail of the judgement has yet to be released, but, it may mean, pro-gambers in the UK, now have a judicial precedent to beat, if they resort to law.

It appears My Ivey bet small, when his edge was low, as the cards were being set-up (and his edge was low), but by betting big, when he had a v big edge, that amounted to cheating.

Casinos, now have another edge to beat customers.. and I for one, would be reluctant to give them a shot at my money. 

Other edge-sorters, or Advantage Players,may now be comprimised, due to the sheer public nature of the case.

Some interesting reading :

Saturday, 4 October 2014

The Ivey 'Edge Sorting' case

This has finally reached the High Court ..

I think he gets the money .. but, we should see in a week or so ..

Some more detail, about what edge sorting, actually was ..

The quest for 90

Sorry if this bores u, but, I am getting closer.

Having shot 97/97, the last 2 times, on a good day, with little wind, 90 is now within my reach, on a suitable course.

The problem is, my local course, has the normal 4, par 3's, but, at least 2 of them are super tricky, where its just as easy to score 7, as 3 or 4.

On Friday, I rocked up, on a gorgeous day (I cant help taking pics) ..

Anyway, I started with a fair run, as the 1st 8 holes, don't include a par 3, and I was bang on target, for a 87 or so .. miracle golf for me.

The 1st Par 3, is a 120 yarder .. which in 8 attempts, I have previously lost 12 balls. This time, I nailed it !! a 8 iron, 3 yards from the flag .. (left putt short) .. but made par, and I really fancied my chances.

The next par 3, is a 155 yarder, with OOB, short, left, and right. I put the first ball, Out of Bounds, short, and the second, OOB left .. head down.

Played the next, par 4 fine, but, next hole is a 165 yard par 3, with OOB, everywhere. Lost 2 more balls, and my card was in pieces.

Finished with a 94, .. what might have been etc .. but, definitely got something to work on.

Trading Horses -Past and Present

I have had a few requests to put some detail around the topic, and as I am currently in the middle of a power cut, and have a back-up light/laptop battery, I will.

I need to preface this, to say, I dont actually trade horses any more, either remotely or on-course, but, still know enough,(I think), to have a decent go.

The current situation :

Trading rooms do exist on many racecourses in the country - but, they are not called such. Normally, a pro-trader will have secured a Box, for the whole season,paying .. £300-£1000 per raceday, depending on size/meetng etc. Some tracks have allowed many boxes, others, just 1 or maybe 2, in return for 'sponsorship'.

This Box normally has v good internet fitted, and tables are brought in, so, traders have decent workplaces. (You pay the internet bills etc)

Normally, there would be 4-8 people to a box, but, sometimes, it can be more, and recently, it can be less, as supply has outstripped demand.

What typically happens, is that the Box has 4 regulars, who share lots of boxes. Each trader, goes to the course, armed with 1 or maybe 2 laptops, a portableTV screen, various connection cables, and ancilliary splitters, to share the TV signal/internet.

This sounds extreme, but, u get used to it.

The cost, for the day, would be £100-£200, which normally includes entry to the course.

For this, u get the live TV picture. Its anywhere between 1 sec and 3 secs ahead of home users .. so, maybe its worth it. (The laptop u bring to the course, normally has your prefered one-click betting software on it) - so, maybe the 1 sec advantage, is worth the money .. a lot depends on your style of trading.

The problem is, by going to the course, u are just working 7 races a day, where as , if u stayed at home, u might work 40 - and the days of laying fallers etc, are largely in the past.

Video feeds on the internet are getting better and better, especially as internet capability improves. Hopefully, video will be available within a few yrs, which is only slightly behind live, and its an equal playing field, which may help improve the 'in-play' liquidity, which seems to have been dropping.

Because Box leasing has become important to a racecourse from a monetary standpoint, traders who have not paid a daily fee, are not allowed to work from the stands, and security will normally give 'freeloaders' grief .. not always, a lot depends on the track.

Phone callers are still permitted, and, often u will see people with ladders, at the furlong, or even 2 furlong pole, as, its a great place to get a side on view, no-one else has, and call it back to someone .. maybe auto-traded.

Some tracks police this activity, some dont .. they can argue it affects their public liability etc, to have people wandering down the course, miles from the grandstand.

Mobile 4g, has meant internet speeds at a lot of course has become v good, and for a while, people tried to 'steal' the pictures, having facetime cameras, pointed at the big screen, and having it sent back to a distribution point. This is illegal .. as u are infringing copyright etc .. but, it may still exist, in some form.

Its all a question of balance, and what u can get away with. The daily costs, together with Prem Charge, has made the proposition marginal, for average traders. Good traders, will still find ways to win .. some v good ways.

Off-course trading Rooms

One of the first, if not the absolute first, was Cardiff, run by John Lovell, who tragically got killed, driving home from the shop.

It had racetech feeds, obtained via a motorised satelite dish, which in the v early days, were not scrambled. These feeds were gold .. the value of sitting in a high-spec shop, watching a picture, that was at most, 1 sec behind live, was just too big of an edge, and almost anyone could make money. The daily charge, of £50 or whatever, was cheap. (some days, I would commute by TAXI, from cardiff to Birmingham, as the late train, went at 7pm or whatever, and a taxi got me 2-4 extra races. As the e-v per race, was probably £500, it was a no brainer.

As on-course rooms became more widely known/used, the edges left, for the people off-site, became less, and people who found they could win, were now, failing. Some people still prefer to work off-course, but, certainly, the off-site exchanges are diminishing (especially as Betfair no longer encourage them - they used to give comm rakebacks (I think)) and the racetech feeds, are largely gone, but, its still possible someone has the encryption codes .....

The Past

Year 1, was thought to be the Wolverhampton Hotel, but, I was trading via hand-helds, at least 6 mths before that (from memory - its a long time ago).

In those days, 2g was often the best signal u could get a course - so, phone traders often called back to someone at home, who would execute the instructions.

Being one of the first, if not, the absolute first people to work on track, with mobile devices, was obviously, pretty lucrative. There are many stories .. but, they are in my book (not published - yet). If I get a chance, I will maybe start a storytime thread.

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

No golf .. getting cabin Fever

My weekly golf on Tues got a total turnout of 1 person, including me,

That's a low number, considering it can go as high as 40, but, maybe the rain/wind/lightning put them off --  Pussies !!

The course needs the rain, so, as the forecast is much better for Friday, expecting a bumper turnout.

I have posted 2 consecutive 94's, which includes 3 lost balls on both cards .. mainly on the par 3's,which are really tricky, and have a high percentage likelihood to lose your ball, if u don't find the green.

Playing twice a week, definitely helps your game, and overall mental state, and I really missed not playing.

I attach pics of game on the course .. (from a previous day, when it was nicer)

Filled the time, with yet more T20 fodder, which, I am finding a child like puzzle to solve. Its inconceivable to me, how anyone can actually lose on these games .. they are so predictable, and yet the market, at many times, gets it so wrong.

I continue to blast away on Twitter, which, people seem to like, as I get many comments/useful info. That all helps, but, the main reason I do it, is to keep me focused, and its working.

I have started some spread betting financial accounts for the nippers .. After 1 mth :

Me -- + £1100

Number 1 son (14) ..  + £765

Number 2 son (11) ..  -£45

They place trades on my accounts, via their phones, and take profits, when they feel like it. I am giving some general advice, and oddly, hope they lose, so they understand more .. but, the financial's have also been fairly predictable. As I said a few posts back, I am normally looking to short .. and its going my way.

I have been contributing more to some general gambling forums, and it just stuns me, just how poorly prepared a lot of people are.  There is no school for gamblers, and its a massive market. Its always a dilema, how to point novices in the right direction .. without sounding high-handed etc. Its not easy to start anything, especially something, which u hope to make money at .. and paper trading, has a lot to be said for it - not that, I could ever do it.

Wednesday, 24 September 2014

Millions by the Minute - Episode 2

I do enjoy watching these type of shows, as they drill down to individuals, all trying to compete against each other.

90% of retail (home) traders fail .. but, the ones that make the promised land, have a great lifestyle, so, sure, lots want to try.

Its a bit odd, that people want to try and win in a zero sum game .. but, thats our financial system.

I dont mind the hedge fund type approach, of the guys from Birmingham .. just hope safeguards are in place etc, so that clients funds are protected.

Sports markets, are not yet, quite big enough to offer Sports Hedge funds, on maybe more sports than Soccer. Lets hope, the global markets get steadily bigger, so that other sports can be traded.


Have joined a local golf club, and am now playing regularly twice a week.

This should help my scores, and indeed, I did manage a decent 97 today, which felt better .. as had 2 balls out of bounds on a tricky par 3 .. (ok, not that tricky, its only 160 metres), and 3 other 7's, elsewhere.

I do think, the 90, is in reach.

One of the guys in my four-ball, was 83yrs young, playing off 29, and shot a net 64 !! He was v pleasant to play with, telling me stories of sport in his youth. Back in the day, sponsorship didn't exist, and he favoured baseball over cricket, as Firestone bought them kit.

His brother, also a natural athlete, still holds the Transvaal record, of 5 wickets in 7 balls .. pretty good effort !!

Am looking forward to the Ryder Cup this weekend, and will try to watch all of it .. I haven't had any real bets .. may look to get with some individual matches, but, really, its just a guess.

I am negative of the financial markets, and think the AliBaba IPO, may have marked a top, in the US and UK exchanges. I am aggressively short ..

Gold has retraced to $1230 or so .. and its been a big winner. Am taking some profit, but, still can see it lower.

Sunday, 21 September 2014

Spots in Life/Gambling .. General

Just a ramble .. like my life.

After a few Champions League games, have managed to win on every one .. and its becoming a more definite factor, that I don't open a position till after, maybe 5-7 overs.

The games are only 20 overs each, so, by waiting 15% of the game time, u get to see :

1. The direction the mkt wants to take .. which is super important, if u want to nick a few ticks, or decide if u want to go against the tide.

2. How far behind your feed is : (for me, its about 7 secs) - so, u tailor your mkt participation, accordingly.

3. What twitter thinks !! .. which, sometimes, can be v interesting.

Anyway, am enjoying the fact there are games every day, and its something to do.

(( I saw a tweet by the bowler Robbie Frylink, who conceded 16 runs, in the last over, to maybe lose a game for his side. Its hard to defend in the last over, so, I didnt blame him, and his earlier 3 overs had gone for .. 16 total, so, he had bowled v well till that point. It shows players do really care, and use social media, probably far more than we appreciate))


I am without a house, and presently renting, whilst the builders/knock down/rebuild.

This is after 1 weeks work : I am hoping to see something complete by March 2015 - but, a lot depends on the weather in the interim (delays) etc.


I am driving about 4 hrs a week now, much less than in previous yrs, and am listening to a v interesting Pod cast ..

These are discussions with people who won a lot/were v good at poker, but decided the overall total of what was being experienced, wasn't enough - and moved on.

The author, is Terrence Chan, who goes about life, looking for greener grass .. and has the balls to experience almost anything. I wish him well .. some of his posts, are v interesting.


I am a v bad text er .. I saw this photo, and it made me laugh.

Maybe we will see car lanes with the same .. I still see far too many people texting, whilst driving.


Have a good one ..

Be yourself - everyone else is taken .. Oscar Wilde

Thursday, 18 September 2014

Champions League T20

So, after some qualifiers, the tournament proper started yesterday.

The first game was in Hyderabad .. a ground well known for chasing, and .. eventually, the chasing side KKR, did get there, but not before they touched 14/1 in running.

Traded totals on the game were  high -- GBP 32 m on Betfair ..

I had some bad initial trades .. not knowing KKR were missing 2 key players, but managed to turn it round.

Quite why, even the TV companies, hide the team sheets, till almost play-start time, is open to debate, but, these mkts are deep enough, so u can pick your spots.

CSK as ever, have mountains of money to support them .. am sure a blind strategy, to just back at certain levels, and trade out, would be profitable.


The Scottish independent vote is today, and I have a massive position on No, at 1.37 average (currently 1.21).

I will be stunned, if I don't collect.

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Millions by the Minute

Have just watched this show on Iplayer.

Its ok, but, was interesting from a few standpoints.

Firstly, the traders featured, were declaring expected daily win rates, of maybe $1-2k. I thought this was low, but leave that aside for a moment.

Its does highlight, that most successfull traders, don't often have home run wins, where they win a gazillion. Instead, they tend to repeat, smallish type wins. Obviously, the smaller wins have less risk, and add up.

This is a methodology I tend to repeat in my sports trading. I do have home runs, but, rarely lose .. at least lose a lot .. and, it does add up.

If u get a chance, read the 'Wizard' books, by Jack Schwager


They are interviews from super traders, and their methodologies are worth reading.

It was also apparent traders feel they can now trade from home, on, a not uneven playing field, and if u search youtube, u will find many traders, showing videos of how they trade.

I have often wondered what 20 hours of a successful sports traders videos would be worth .. probably quite a lot, but, its hard to make people think its worth it  (if they are gonna pay, for the privaledge).

I like the route, Mark Iversen has taken with CricIntel.

By trying to get a different revenue stream, it protects poor trading periods, and maybe brings more people to the market.

I am not sure, the market is big enough .. I hope it is .. and for now, am buying the info packs.

Monday, 1 September 2014

Dont worry, Be Happy

I have been doing a LOT of travelling around Africa, (not just to find an easy Golf Course to shoot 90 on), thou that's part of it ..

In one place, I stayed at a lodge, where some Jehovah's Witnesses stayed .. (if your head drops, I can understand) . but, they told me stories/facts, that they had local meetings, where 80,000 people turned up, and had over 1500 baptisms.

I manged to avoid conversation on the 1st night, but, on the second, they got me, and we had a discussion. I got a free pen.

They are nice people.

For a lot of them .. possessions inhibit you (maybe that's why I got the pen) ..

The next day, I was playing 9 holes of golf, and was talking to my caddie. I like to take a caddie, as he has better eyes than me to find my ball, and I have someone to talk to .. as most people now avoid me.

He has 2 kids, 2 and 6, and they go to school. From where he stays, it costs him $3 return trip, to get to the golf course, and when he works, he gets $10 for 9 holes, or $20 for 18. There are 110 caddies waiting for a bag .. so, they work maybe 4 times a week, (as people are not playing Golf so much). So, his income is maybe $100 a week.

The school fees for the kids, are $25 a term - each.

U can see, its a struggle, and people are living hand to mouth, but, respect the law, and are peaceful people.

(I asked my taxi driver what he pays in school fees .. he replied $300 a term  but, that's for a school 2 hrs drive away, so she boards)

((Some of the top boarding schools in Africa cost $6,500 a term .. some kids .. who might see this, might see how much their parents love them))

Sunday, 1 June 2014

Tennis Court-siding

This account of the life behind Tennis court-siding, is one of the most insightful write-ups, I have ever read, and full credit must go to Carl Bialik.

I have read 75% of the book .. Game, Set, Cash !! and its disappointing .. in that its really just a continual re-hash, of,  they go to events, with cell-phone systems, and press buttons/evade security, and get drunk.

I have never traded Tennis, to any intent, and am bored stiff by the game. U would have to pay me .. lots, to watch that drivel, day in, day out .. but, thats probably just me.

Monday, 26 May 2014

Golf gone backwards ..

Deep sigh.

Been doing a huge amount of travelling, and the golf cubs didnt get to go along.

Just picked up a set, and went for a game, and it was horrible.

This game is evil. Want to break 90 really bad, but, have no facilities to hit balls, and am getting out of shape.

Gonna be a real battle this yr.

Saturday, 8 March 2014

Bit and pieces

A couple of court cases, doing the rounds.

1 was plainly stupid, and the other, is just stupid. U wonder who in charge, allows these cases to get so far ..

The plainly stupid one, was the case of the 22 yr old, Brit - Daniel Dobson, arrested at the Aus open tennis, for relaying data, back to his UK company.

They alleged, he was 'attempting to corrupt a betting outcome' .. Please, who are these idiots .. Anyway, case dropped, before it gets to court .. Hopefully, they get big costs awarded against them.

The second, is the case brought by Star TV, that basically, they own the scores to a game they cover, and ball-by-ball internet coverage, should be unlawful.

How they can own the score, is beyond me .. But, the case gets further along, on March 13.

A decent write-up, is here :


Wednesday, 5 March 2014

Day 5 - 3rd Test - S.Africa v Australia - Newlands

Australia's game to win, but,this pitch is really holding together.

U wonder if the groundsman was reluctant to see the repeat if the game 3 yrs ago, when S.Africa were bowled for a 100, and Aus 47, leaving the game over in 3 days ....

Anyway, 4 down at the start of play, they just lose the night watchman in the morning session .. 122-5 at Lunch .. New ball due soon.

Ab dev and Faff have records for batting long, in this sort of situation .. They might have a chance ..


Tea - S.Africa 201-7 ..hanging on .. But, it's not easy for Australia .. Thou ball is now doing stuff.

Game yo-yo a bit .. With Aus going 4.3 at one point, but, they finally win, as Harris gets 2 in 3 balls, with 4 overs left in the game.

A great test match .. Aus deserved to win the series .. Thou, some of their on-field behaviour, is crass.



Monday, 3 March 2014

Day 4 - 3rd Test - S.Africa v Australia - Newlands

Captain Smith announces his retirement at the end of this Test. Ponting did similar, and lost his last Test. Think this may go, the same way.

He was a v decent captain, .. Far too conservative for my liking, in the early part of his career, but, has got better, in my eyes, over the last 3 yrs.

His run making, was always ugly, but, he got the runs .. Thou, in this series, his firm has been dire .. Averaging 8

Looking forward to 2 sessions of free batting .. Warner can do some real damage ...

Drinks - Aus 125-1 .. Lead by 332

Warner having some fun .. Expect dec, mid-way after lunch.

Aus went on a bit .. But, have no objections, as they scored so fast.

Setting S.Africa 520 or so, they were 4 down at the close, with the ball starting to reverse. Before it reversed, it was fairly easy to play .. But, if it continues int he morning, this should be over, by tea.

Aus 1.25

Draw 5.0


3rd Day - 3rd Test - S.Africa v Australia - Newlands

Clarke declares ..

At drinks, S.Africa 55-2, on a nice day for Ckt.

Think Aus will get steady wkts, draw at sub 2.00, is a lay.


At lunch, S.Africa 127/4 .. U would have to say, Aus on top.

S. Africa 370 behind, and the ball starting to reverse.

S.Africa 20

Australia 1.86

Draw 2.4


Tea .. S.Africa 200-6 .. 297 behind ..

Game is going quite slowly .. So, another maybe 10 overs lost to the game, but, if Aus get the last 4, tonite, this should set-up a v hard last day.

S.Africa 17

Australia 1.67

Draw 2.84


S.Africa 287 all out .. Not great, on a pitch that looked pretty fair for batting .. Trail by 210 ..

Aus will no doubt best for .. 50 odd overs, maybe more, score 200 and get S.Africa back in.

Time left in this game now .. Can't see how Aus don't win.

S.Africa 18

Aus 1.55

Draw 3.1


Sunday, 2 March 2014

Day 2 - 3rd Test - S.Africa v Australia - Newlands

Day 2 .. Aus finished at 331-3, with some brave cricket by Michael Clarke.

A little rain expected in the afternoon, but, clear for last 3 days of the match, so, shouldn't affect outcome.

My book is fucked .. Gonna turn the page.

Drinks .. 381-3 .. Still scoring quick, thou Abbott has bowled super. Steyn not in pitch, looks unlikely to play a part in this match.

S.Africa 20

Aus 2.0

Draw 2.18


Lunch - windy as anything, and mountain obscured by cloud .. It's raining on mountain, according to the idiots on the radio.

Aus 434-4 .. I reckon they look for 575 .. And put SA in, after a Tea.

S.Africa 23

Aus 2.06

Draw 2.10


39 overs in, and rain arrives and doesn't budge. 51 overs lost in the day .. 2 were lost on Day 1, so, despite 30 mins early start, day 3/4/5, overs being lost from the game.

Aus 494-7

Steyn may bowl in second inngs ..

The batting line-up for S.Africa does look a bit stronger, with Elgar and Du Plessis .. So, maybe they can hang on for a draw, .. Hard to see them winning.

S.Africa 17

Aus 2.34

Draw 1.90

Book still record losses ...



Saturday, 1 March 2014

Day 1 - 3rd Test - S.Africa v Australia - Cape Town

Some thoughts of a few showers, maybe, on day 1/2 of the test, but fine weather thereafter, so, hard to see a draw.

S.Africa 2.34

Aus 3.2

Draw 3.80


Aus win the toss, and decidet to bat. Warner plays as expansively as ever, and take Aus to 118-1 at Lunch .. SA bowled moderately.

S.Africa 4.3

Aus 2.34

Draw 3.0

Have a shit book .. Going for S.Africa / laying draw ...


SA got Doolan fairly early, but, despite a superb spell of bowling from Morkel, they couldn't get another. Clarke survived a fearsome spell .. And deserves to get a 50 ..

At Tea .. Aus 195-2 ..

S.Africa 6.4

Aus 2.2

Draw 2.58


Prices look about right, especially as Steyn off with a hamstring strain.

My book, looks max loss territory.


Aus 331-3 .. And am looking at largest loss for 10 yrs.


Hard to say anything else ..


Wednesday, 26 February 2014

3rd Test - S.Africa v Australia - Cape Town

So, the 3 match series is 1-1 .. And all eyes look ahead to Cape Town, which looks like being a v well attended game.

3 days before,in glorious weather, they bet :

S.Africa 2.30

Australia 3.25

Draw 3.8

I don't understand the draw price .. The weather right now, is stunning, and average rainfall for this time if yr, is v low.

Forecasts have maybe, some drizzle, on the odd day, followed by days of hot clear weather.

For test 1, the draw was 5.0, and 3.8, looks a v cheap lay, to me.

Watson has recovered enough, to play, and hopefully, Kyle Abbott wil play for S.Africa.

Sunday, 23 February 2014

Day 4 - 2nd Test - S.Africa v Australia - Port Elizabeth

Gorgeous start to day, forecast for Monday improving, and think doom mongers for tomorrow are all wrong.

I am heavily against draw.


Draw dived to 2.40 .. Who are these idiots ?

SA declare .. Setting Aus 445 ..just before lunch .. I expecting 55 overs tomorrow, so, Aus got a sniff.

S.Africa 1.73

Aus 11

Draw 2.94


Lunch. And Aus batting well .. 31-0 .. Mkt rethinks Aus chance of winning this.

S.Africa 2.12

Aus 7.0

Draw 2.56


Drinks .. Aus 99-0 .. SA's 3 bowlers, getting nothing from pitch.

Max with Aus


S.Africa 3.75

Aus 3.75

Draw 2.24 .. Draw stupid short


Aus into 3.25, but lose Warner .. Spinners getting some turn.

Aus 127-1 .. Need 321 more

S.Africa 2.5

Aus 5.5

Draw 2.38


Run rate might slow now .. Good game


Tea .. Aus 141-1 .. Rogers hit one, but, no review by SA.

S.Africa 2.82

Aus 5.2

Draw 2.16


U could argue, all prices are wrong.


After Tea, Steyn gets some real fire, and Aus 6 down.

Aus 166-6 ..

S.Africa 1.19

Aus 140

Draw 6.2


All over .. And it never rained on Day 5 ....








Saturday, 22 February 2014

Day 3 - 2nd Test - S.Africa v Australia - Port Elizabeth

Gorgeous day, and forecast is great for day 4, thou day 5, looks bad.

A little wind, so might get some swing .. Huge 1st session !

At lunch, Aus wobbling at 205-8 .. Needing 20 more, to avoid follow-on, if it's enforced.

Monday weather is key .. Any one got any ideas ?

S.Africa 1.77

Aus 17

Draw 2.62


Day kicked on, but spent most of it looking at weather charts for Monday.

At COP day 3, SA are 363-4 .. Net.

Apocalyptic weather forecasts for Monday .. Which may or may not be accurate.

Currently .. Blissful ..

S.Africa 1.57

Aus 18

Draw 3.2




Thursday, 20 February 2014

Day 2 - 2nd Test - S.Africa v Australia - Port Elizabeth

V curious weather systems in this area .. Mild drizzle, 100km away, up the coast, but PE clear, and looks likely to stay that way, for at least most of the day.

S.Africa losing the 2 cheap wkts at the end, certainly affects the game, and with a new ball this morning, under some cloud think the Aussie attack, might get some sticks.

S.Africa 3.3

Australia 3.45

Draw 2.40. ?


I have draw much bigger, and have laid.

Radar has a little rain around, but think wind will blow it away, and next 2 days, look v clear, to make up any lost time, (if there is any).


Ball doing nothing ..S.Africa 240-5 .. Brighter, but looks like only mistakes will take wkts .. Not impossible, and maybe pitch will wear ..

Drinks .. S.Africa 263-5 .. Pretty good start for them .. Bowlers look flat, maybe it's the pitch .. Will be interesting to see Steyn/Morkel/Philander, especially if they have niggles.

S.Africa 3.2

Aus 7.6

Draw 1.77


Lunch .. And a session to S.Africa !!

323-5 .. ABDev 102 n.o., and JP 59 n.o.

S.Africa 2.92

Aus 14

Draw 1.69

Bright enough, so imagine lotsa play today .. Maybe S.A get 475 before the close, and get some overs at Aus.

For now, still looks a road.


Mid-way after lunch, and ABDev goes, for a well compiled 100.

374-6 .. Quite bright, thou some dark clouds from the west.

S.Africa 3.45

Aus 13

Draw 1.56


At tea - S.Africa 413-8 .. JP still there on 118, but, with only Steyn and Morkel, u would expect, maybe another 50 runs.

Some talk about a declaration, but, I can't see it.

Still fairly light, think they will go to natural close of play, or v close.

Game is really lifeless .. Prices not moving much.


After tea, S.Africa quickly 423 all out .. Leaves quite a few overs tonite, in good light.

One key thing, is the final test, is in 4 days after the end of this one .. Maybe, the fast bowlers will be looked after, if no wkts early. S.Africa didn't play a spinner, which looks odd.

At change of innings :

S.Africa 3.7

Aus 8.0

Draw 1.64


Amazing session after Tea .. S.Africa bowled with real menace . . Could have had 6, easy.

Aus 112-4 .. 312 behind ..

S.Africa 2.12

Aus 13

Draw 2.22


Monday forecast, v ropes .. Might lose 45 overs.



Tuesday, 18 February 2014

2nd Test - S.Africa v Australia - Port Elizabeth

Aus lead 1-0, which really doesn't do justice to how far they won by. Maybe one day, we will see bonus points.

Anyway, on to the next game, and Port Elizabeth has a reputation for being low and slow .. Which might negate Johnson.

With a few bits of rain forecast, I have built up a very big position on the draw, averaging 4.0.

This time, I am in profit, before Day 1.

Current prices :

S.Africa 2.96

Aus 2.66

Draw 3.5


Day before, and it's v overcast, with rain about.

Draw moved into 3.00 .. And is flavour of the month.


S.Africa 3.1

Aus 2.88

Draw 2.98


Match day .. Windy as anything last night, but little, if any rain.

Thin cloud for now .. Will be huge toss to win.

Pre toss

S.Africa 3.0

Aus 3.1 ??

Draw 2.8


Aus lost the toss, and Biff decided to bat first, after some drama, deciding what team to pick. Philander was in doubt, but plays, with Elgar and De Cock.

Smith and Amla, go v cheaply, and S.Africa looked in the mire again, albeit, on what seems a v docile pitch.

Faff and Elgar steadied the ship, somewhat slowly, but at Lunch, S.Africa are 64-2.

S.Africa 335

Aus 3.35

Draw 2.50


Floodlights have been on, from ball 1, and it's v cloudy, but, no rain yet, and with the wind so strong, and stuff, maybe quite short lived.

Still, I think it will be v hard work to take 20 wkts on here, and am holding on to most of my draw back.


Tea - S.Africa 145-3 .. Not the best run rate, but, largely intact.

Hard to see where this game might go. Weather forecasts improving a bit, so, might get most of the overs .. Can it be a natural draw ? Sure .. But, if S.Africa score 375+, pressure on Aus, for once.

S.Africa 3.2

Aus 4.2

Draw 2.18

Not doing much, with my pre-game position.


Game finished 7 overs early, due to bad light .. To be caught up in the morning.

S.Africa 214-5 .. If they all out for 300, I think they are in trouble.


Friday, 14 February 2014

Day 4 - S.Africa v Australia - Centurion

More blue sky, which, isn't what S.Africa especially want.


Expecting to see Aus bat quite aggressively this morning, setting up a declaration, either just before, or just after Lunch .. 550 or so, ahead.

S.Africa gonna have to bat long .. Whatever happens.

S.Africa 30

Aus 1.29

Draw 5.1


Pitch maybe, has a few cracks starting :



Clarke surprises, with an early declaration .. Leaving S.Africa to score 482 .. Really surprised me.


Draw blew from 5.2 or so, to 14 ...

Decision largely based, as Clarke was batting, and couldn't lay a bat on ball.

Proved right, as S.Africa 65-3 at lunch. Looks like the game will be over, quite early.