Sports betting: The difference between a hobby and a career

Thursday, 30 November 2017

by Valentin Macovei

Maybe I would become a professional punter tomorrow if value betting was as fun as live betting while watching the match with your friends!

Players are actually looking for fun, for an adrenaline rush, a retreat, or an unforgettable experience when betting and are not necessarily after making profits. If we eliminate that stimulus from the sports betting equation, we instantly interrupt the punter’s interest in this phenomenon, and the activity becomes monotonous and boring. It is for this reason that it is difficult for many to become skilled: after getting the proper knowledge, gaining experience and starting to take the right path, they lose contact with that stimulus, and are tempted to make mistakes. Consequently, I have come to the conclusion that punters are nothing more than people who are addicted to adrenaline, to entertainment or simply to a way out of the everyday routine.

What does value betting mean?

It is well-known that betting agencies retain that winning margin on every betting option, so the punter has a disadvantage from the start when it comes to earning a profit. The only way the punter can counteract this advantage of the house is to find valuable bets.

You have certainly come across the term “Value Betting” if you watch betting forums. Many connoisseurs state that a player who does not bet on value can not achieve long-term profit. Simply put, value betting means betting on a quota that is better than it should be, that is, the chances that the result will actually be higher than the odds indicate.

Due to the fact that, in general, most punters bet on the favorites, betting houses tend to provide somewhat worse odds for the most likely outcome. That’s why professionals mostly bet on outsiders and, implicitly, on odds higher than those who bet on the favorites.

Now, in order to maintain a balance between profitability and safety, professionals only place individual bets, on which they have a fixed stake of the initial bankroll (between 0.5% and 5%) and aim to reach average odds of about 2.00. The logic behind this approach is simple: if you place bets with average odds of 2.00 and you win 51% of the times, you make a profit; and vice versa: you aim for average odds of 2.05 and you need to win 50% of the bets to make some profit.

How can the value be detected? This depends entirely on how the punter analyzes the bets and their experience. Usually, it is a combination of the results of software algorithms and what can be collected and processed by the punter manually.

Being a professional punter: a blessing or a curse?

The way you have to bet in order to be able to earn long-term profit is no longer as fun as betting while watching a good match with your friends in a pub, but it becomes like a job, which in some cases is also inevitably stressful.

When you bet on value, you never depend on the outcome of a single match. You do not even bet on the most likely outcome, but on the most profitable odds. There’s a problem here, especially when friends ask you what you bet on. It is possible that they try to do what you do, especially if I know you are seriously committed to betting.

Inevitably, they will often lose, and because they do not place single bets and do not apply a money management strategy like yours, they will not make any profits at the end of the month. But if they don’t blame you for their losses, more or less discreetly and even if they don’t copy your tips, they will certainly take advantage of every opportunity to remind you of how bad your odds of 2 or 3 are, compared to the odds they picked – which almost never exceed 1.40.

In addition, how can you make them understand the actual mechanism and prove that this is probably the only way to make long-term sports betting profitable? Frankly, most of the time there is no point in trying. As long as you don’t show up in a Ferrari, or show them pictures of you on a yacht and as long as you don’t use a helicopter as a cab, they still won’t believe that what you say is true…

How do professional punters live their everyday lives?

In addition to discussions with connoisseurs or gambling enthusiasts, a professional punter will often interact with other people as well. These people may be family, neighbors, friends and other acquaintances. The problem arises when the punter is asked what he or she does for a living or when various discussions and gossip about him or her arise.

Unfortunately, many people have preconceived notions formed before 1989 and treat punters with some contempt. They associate any form of gambling with the mafia and the illegalities shown in the 1950s Las Vegas movies.

There is, however, another type of preconceived notion, generally embraced by captive or ultra-conservative people who cannot accept the lack of safety or in other words the risk: “How do you live without knowing that your salary is coming at the end of the month? That’s not possible! What do you do if you have a bad month? How do you pay with the bills, what do you eat?” – this is the kind of things people talk about.

Therefore, professional punters have to tell people that they are programmers, or that they “work on the internet” or other things like that; otherwise, they would be very often rejected by society, in an absolutely unjustified manner. The reality is that most professional punters have to live a double life. Their daily routine involves a lot of work, maybe too little fun, and in no way a cool life like in the James Bond movies. So if you are a betting enthusiast, it does not mean that professional betting would be your ideal job!

Author: Editor

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