Well I did expect the level of wagering activity to ratchet up this weekend compared to last, but I thought Hope would be contributing to at least some of that increase.
That's not the case though. Hope has reviewed the market offerings and decided to return to slumber for at least another week; Shadow has looked at the same market and taken out its metaphorical knife and fork, rediscovering its Round 3-style appetite for the punt.
While Hope has passed on all eight contests, Shadow has plunged on the home team in seven, rating only Port Adelaide as home team no-hopers for the weekend. Here's the detail:
So, for the first time this season - possibly ever - Investors find themselves with an interest in the outcome of games across four consecutive days. Shadow's wagers across these four days traverse the landscape from a why-bother bet on Fremantle at $1.03 facing Richmond to a why-the-heck bet on Carlton at $4.60 taking on the Cats.
In between there are four more bets at should-win prices ranging from $1.10 to $1.28, and one more at an probably-won't-win price of $3.75. If you're looking for words to characterise the weekend's portfolio of wagers then, "diverse", "interesting" and "bold" would be among the more positive, while "motley", "perplexing" and "unfathomable" would be among the less favourable and, arguably, more accurate.
With level-stake betting, which is the Heuristic Fund's wagering strategy of record, return and risk correlate directly with market price, so Investors' fortunes are largely in the hands of the high-priced Dees and Blues this weekend. Here are the Ready Reckoner details:
Again this week with the bakers' half-dozen wagers, Investors might find a graphic a helpful way to understand what's required to return a profit.
Some conclusions that I draw from this graphic are that:
- If Melbourne and Carlton win, a profit is assured
- If neither Melbourne nor Carlton win, a profit is impossible
- If Melbourne doesn't win on Saturday, a profit requires at least one win on Sunday and on Monday. On Sunday, a Collingwood or a Hawthorn win will be sufficient if Sydney's won on Saturday and the Dogs have lost on Friday, and a Fremantle win will be sufficient if both the Dogs and Sydney have won in their respective clashes.
- If we've no winners at the end of Saturday, only Collingwood, Hawthorn and Carlton wins can save us.
Next a look at our tipsters, which shows that we've an unusually high level of agreement this round.
- The Dogs are unanimous favourites in their contest with the Crows on Friday. Margin predictions range from 17 to 41.5 points.
- Sydney are unanimous favourites taking on the Eagles, and in this game margin predictions range from 22 to 35 points, again foreshadowing a fairly substantial victory margin.
- Melbourne are 8-7 favourites over the Lions in yet another game that sees the margin tipsters on one team, in this base Brisbane, and the non-margin tipsters on the other, the only exception being Consult The Ladder who's also tipping the Lions.
- St Kilda are 14-1 favourites over Port Adelaide, despite Port's home ground advantage, a fact that has been deemed sufficient to warrant tipping Port only be Home Sweet Home. HAMP tips St Kilda to win by just 5 points and LAMP tip them to win by 'just' 23 points, which makes this game HAMP's and LAMP's Game of the Round (to the extent that it makes sense to label a game you're predicting as a four-goal win to the favourites as sufficiently close to justify the GoTR designation).
- Collingwood are unanimous favourites over the Dons, with tipped margins for the Pies ranging from 18 to 28 points.
- Hawthorn are 13-2 favourites over the Roos. Only Easily Impressed I and Short-Term Memory I are on the Roos. Predictions of Hawthorn's victory margin start at 15 points and run as high as 26 points, with BKB's prediction of a 21.5-point victory making this its Game of the Round - again only meaningful if you consider a 3-and-a-half-goal victory as "close".
- Fremantle are unanimous favourites over Richmond. Predicted victory margins run from a low of 23 points to a high of 48.5 points. This game, which is being played at Subi, could get very ugly for the Tigers, and a sporting declaration at three-quarter or even half time by the Dockers, should not be discounted.
- Geelong are 9-6 favourites over the Blues. Three of the five margin tipsters, all of which have selected the Cats to win, have done so by 7 points or fewer. That makes this game Chi's and ELO's Game of the Round. The remaining margin tipsters - LAMP and BKB - predict much more comfortable wins by the Cats of the order of 4.5 goals or so.
The high levels of agreement in this week's tips mean that there'll be little opportunity for significant changes to our tipster rankings by weekend's end. For example, the two leading tipsters - Consult The Ladder and Follow The Streak - differ only on one tip. It's for the Melbourne v Brisbane game, and Follow The Streak's on Melbourne, while Consult The Ladder's on the Lions.
Lastly, let's have a look at HELP's line betting tips for the week.
HELP has again been very conservative this week. No prediction has been made with an associated probability greater than 58%, which means that even the most disastrous round imaginable won't do too much damage to HELP's various probability scores. It also means that a perfect round won't repair much of previous weeks' damage either. Such is the price of timidity, the virtue of which can only be determined with certainty in retrospect.