The basics of Sports Trading

The basics of Sports Trading

Trading on sport uses the same concepts as trading on the stock exchange or in real estate.  Buy low and sell high = making profit.  In sports trading, instead of the terms “buy” and “sell” we refer to the terms “back” and “lay”.

To “back” a team means that you are betting on them to win.  It’s the most traditional bet format used at most sports betting agencies around the world.  If you “lay” a team, then it’s the opposite as you are betting on them to lose.  Betfair is the most popular sports betting exchange that allows punters to both back and lay.

So in order to make money, without taking a risk on the actual result, all you need to do is back high and lay low.  It doesn’t matter whether you back or lay first, and it doesn’t matter whether the market is rising or falling.  Much like the stock markets, as long as the price is moving, there’s opportunity to make money.

Let’s take a look at an example:

You back the horse "Puffing Billy" to win in Race 4 at Flemington.  You put a $100 back bet on ten minutes before the start of the race at odds of 6.00.  Your position is:

Puffing Billy wins – You win $500
Puffing Billy loses – You lose $100

Suddenly there’s a late surge of money for your horse and its odds shorten to 4.00.  You can now lay this horse and reduce, or even remove, your liability.  You decide to lay the horse for the full $100.  Your position is now:

Puffing Billy wins – You win $200 (+$500 from the back bet, -$300 from the lay bet)
Puffing Billy loses – You break even  (-$100 from the back bet, +$100 from the lay bet)

When you lay the $100 at 4.00, your liability is $300, and combined with the $500 you made from the back bet, your overall position is +$200 if the horse wins.  So you’re in a strong position and effectively “freerolling” Puffing Billy to win.  But what if it doesn’t win?  You don’t lose anything, but you don’t win anything either.  Wouldn’t it be nice to lock in a profit regardless of the result?

With this position, you can achieve what is referred to as a “green book” (or hedging) and that is when you guarantee a win regardless of which horse wins.  To do this, we could’ve laid for $150 instead of $100.  Here’s how that changes the numbers:

Puffing Billy wins – You win $50 (+$500 from the back bet, -$450 from the lay bet)
Puffing Billy loses – You win $50 (-$100 from the back bet, +$150 from the lay bet)

Now we win $50 regardless of the result!  That’s the ideal position to be in, and should be a goal of any trader to achieve a green book.  Remember that this can be achieved on any sport – horse racing, cricket, football, golf, tennis...it doesn’t matter.  It’s the same technique.  You can also do this both pre-game or in-play.

In order to work out how much to lay to lock in a profit you can use software or a calculator such as http://www.oddschecker.com/betting-tools/hedging-calculator.html.

There are many trading strategies that can be employed in order to achieve a green book and we’ll discuss these in more detail in future articles.

TIPS

2020-21 NBA Betting Tips: Saturday 16rth of January

We're well up with our NBA betting tips this season and will look to bring you some more winners from the big Saturday slate. Check them out right here! read more

Big Bash League (BBL10): Sixers vs Scorchers Betting Tips

We are in for an absolute cracking match Saturday night as the ladder-leading Sydney Sixers take on the in-form team of the competition in the Perth Scorchers. Billy Bestford is back on deck to take a look at the game in full and give his betting tips here read more

Horse Racing Tips: Friday, January 15th

Friday night racing takes place at Moonee Valley this week and our racing expert Trent Crebbin has picked out his best bets for tonight's racing! read more

NFL 2020-21: Divisional Round Preview & Betting Tips

What a great week it was in the first round of the NFL playoffs. There were some thrilling results in the first six games and there are another four to look forward to this weekend as the divisional round kicks off on Saturday. We have you covered with a preview and betting tips for all four games here read more

ARTICLES

Best Australian Sports Betting Sites

The best Australian sports betting sites ensure safe and successful online betting for punters. Here's our list of the best betting options in Australia. read more


Performance Ratings & Pricing with Julian Vallance with Sportsbet

Julian Vallance from Sportsbet takes us through some of the key factors which he uses with pricing upcoming horse races such as performance ratings. Check out his video from Sportsbet here. read more


What is Over-Round and How do Sportsbooks Make Money?

Over-Round is an important concept for both punters and sportsbooks. It's how Australian sportsbooks make money! All punters should understand over-round, how to spot it, and how to find better value on the Betfair Exchange. read more


Betfair Commissions and Charges

Ever wondered why you can get such great odds at Betfair in comparison to other online bookmakers? We break down why that is the case and why Betfair isn't just for professional punters here read more


BLOGS

Top 5 Bowlers to Watch in BBL10

The countdown is on until the BBL10 season officially gets underway! We ranked our BBL10 top 5 batsmen to watch earlier in the week, and today we are doing the same for bowlers! Check out our BBL10 top 5 bowlers to watch, courtesy of Mr.Cricket, here. read more


BBL10 Teams: Predicted Starting Lineups

The BBL10 squads are pretty much finalised and the season is not far away! We've taken a look at the squads for each team, and put together our predicted starting lineups taking into consideration availability of Australian national players and the playing schedule of the international recruits. Check out our BBL10 team lineups here! read more


Top 5 Batsmen to Watch in BBL10

The Big Bash League season is just around the corner! In the lead up to BBL10, we will be taking a look at some of the key players who will be hoping to lead their teams to victory! Today, we go through the top five batsmen to watch in BBL10 read more


Top 3 Melbourne Cup Price Push Plays from Palmerbet

The team at Palmerbet take a look at three key chances for the 2020 Melbourne Cup as punters look to take advantage of the Palmerbet Price Push among 10+ other promos available for Palmerbet customers for the "Race That Stops The Nation" on Tuesday. read more


BetDeluxe

WinnersBet