Bankruptcy by Betting

There are now only three matches left in the 2014 FIFA World Cup. In June, just before the start of the World Cup, I transferred 50 USD to bet365 to try my luck on a few bets on the matches and other sports I might find interesting.

It all started very well, and at one point I had a whooping 150 USD in profit. My main sources of income were Formula 1 and horse racing - for some weird reason - and I was the King of Gambling. But everything changed a fateful Sunday, when I decided not to place a Formula 1 bet. The bet, with a massive 41 times return on the stake, was if Sergio Perez would finish 6th or better in Austria. I had selected the bet, set my tiny 5 USD stake, and the mouse cursor was hovering over the “place bet” button. I had looked at the Perez’ stats for the season, his practice times, the form of the team and both the cars so far that weekend and was pretty sure he should be able to manage at least 6th.

But I decided against placing the bet. My decision was based on the fact that I’d lost a few dollars earlier the same day and that I’d already placed another bet on the Formula 1 race. Even though all the bets I place is totally independent of each other - that you win or lose a bet doesn’t increase or decrease the chance of winning or losing a later bet - my stupid brain told me otherwise.

And of course Sergio Perez managed to finish 6th, which had given me a totally sweet 200 USD profit on the 5 USD bet I almost placed. All I had to do was to click a button, but I decided against it. Winning the bet could have been the start of becoming a Billionaire by Betting, but no. It was the start of the completely opposite. From there on it’s been a continuous downhill journey. I’ve had a loss every single day, with the definite low being a half time bet I managed to lose 5 seconds after I placed it. I shit you not. Five. Seconds.

I’m now spending the bonus money bet365 gave me for signing up to their site. That way, I’m sort of still in the black, and not yet spending my original 50 USD “investment”. But I’m not looking at a 150 USD profit, like I had the last time I went on a betting spree, which was during the UEFA Euro 2012. Losing that Sergio Perez bet still bloody annoys me, to be honest. If I had just placed that damned bet, everything would have been different. I know that’s not true, but it’s still a thought that rings in my head. And that attitude seems to be a bit of a problem for me.

I’m normally a very rational person and I’m very good at not getting annoyed with things I can’t influence. Since I don’t have a hundreds of thousands of dollars to bride the referees in the World Cup, or perhaps the entire Nigerian team, whatever happens in a World Cup match is very, very hard for me to influence. Still, I get annoyed when I lose a bet. Why didn’t I just place a bet on the other team, then I would have won for sure! That said, I’m pretty sure a lot of gamblers are rather annoyed with the 2014 World Cup, which has been interestingly unpredictable. How many of them placed a bet on Germany annihilating Brazil yesterday? Not many, but the ones who did made a pretty decent profit.

There are only 3 matches left of the 2014 FIFA World Cup and I’ve got 12 USD on two different bets for tonight’s semi final match between The Netherlands and Argentina. If the usual happens, I will lose them both, if I have a little bit of luck, I’ll win one of them to cover some of my losses from the other bet.

When the champion is crowned on the 14th of July, I’m happy it’s over for this time. It’s been stressful and losing money isn’t much fun, even if we’re not talking about big money. But I’ll be back for the UEFA Euro 2016 in France with another 50 USD to burn. In 2016, I think I’ll move away from bet365 to another broker. Their site is based on Flash, and while it’s functional, it’s a CPU hog that I can’t do simple stuff like copy-paste text from. Also, other brokers, like Betfair seems to have marginally better odds for some reason.

But slightly better odds on the same bet means more money!

If you enjoy watching a train wreck happening in slow motion, you can follow my continued journey into the red by viewing my profile.


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