One of the strengths of Betfair is the ability for punters to bet against, rather than for, a particular outcome. This option makes betting against a certain player in the Australian Open just as easy as betting for that player. As the tournament progresses, the odds vary, so you can make bets based on whether you believe the odds will change rather than who will win the tournament. If the odds move in your predicted direction you can take an opposing position to lock in a profit.
For the 2010 Australian Open I picked three players for whom I felt the odds were too high. I placed bets on these players, and then, when the odds did drop, I placed bets against them. The net result is I have ‘greened-up’, meaning I will make a positive return regardless of the tournament outcome. Below is a screen shot of my bets.
Taking Hantuchova as an example, if she wins the tournament I would have to pay $3,190 to the punter who took the opposite option to me at 320-1 odds. However, at the same time, I would receive $3,575 from the 400-1 odds transaction. The net result is I would receive $385.04 if Hantuchova wins and $1.04 if she doesn’t.
One way to find odds that have a good chance of dropping is to compare the available odds to those offered by a traditional bookmaker. For example, Sportsbet was offering something like 160-1 odds for Hantuchova when I took up the 400-1 odds on her with Betfair. Likewise, the odds offered by traditional bookmakers were substantially lower for Cibulkova and Dementieva.
The ability to bet against outcomes makes these type of strategies much easier to implement. You no longer have to set up individual bets against every single other outcome to bet against a particular result. This is one of the strengths of using a marketplace like Betfair.