The NRL is a hugely lucrative market now for betting agencies; many competitors fighting to get your betting dollar. The likes of Glenn Munsie from TAB SportsBet regularly providing updates and a minor insight into the NRL betting world.
Each week after the NRL teams are named on Tuesday afternoon, the brains trust of the betting outlets get together to work out the odds for each team in the week ahead. In most cases these agencies get the odds pretty much spot on, if they are a little bit generous in their pricing – you can be sure the punters will pick the bargain and jump on the bandwagon; the prices soon reflecting the amount of interest from punters and the odds shortening accrodingly.
Just like in any other sport where betting is prevalent, serious punters and insiders seek out the late mail. Apart from factoring in the home ground and previous statistics, the serious punters need to know which players will be taking the field and how each team has trained through the week.
While NRL players and officials are obviously not allowed to bet on the outcomes of games, you would be pretty naive to think that players or trainers wouldn’t be giving tips to close contacts when contacted. Willingly or unwillingly, there would be certain information that changes hands – that is critical information to a punter.
To give an example of how the money is always right, look back at the Round 3 NRL match between the Penrith Panthers and the South Sydney Rabbitohs. At the time, both teams were winless – but Souths had showed much better form and while the game was at CUA Stadium it was simply staggering to see the Panthers installed as near even money favourites early in the week.
Many commentators including Warren Smith from FOX Sports were blown away that the Panthers could be such short money favourites. In the end, the mail and money were correct – the Panthers bursting to life and winning well. The team now going on a two game winning streak.
This week, it seems there is another surprising situation – this time involving the Parramatta Eels. Showing extremely patchy form in 2008, the Eels face the hot Gold Coast Titans at Parramatta Stadium. While the Eels hold a good home record and the Titans don’t travel well, you certainly would be a brave man to back the Eels wholeheartedly.
But somehow, the bookies have the Eels at $1.36 to win (head to head) and soon after offering the odds – they took a bet in excess of $40,000 on the Eels with a -8 point handicap. Now theres a serious punter with plenty of confidence. I find it hard to believe that anyone could bet with that kind of confidence without some form of minor inside mail.
We’ll soon know if the money is right again after the Eels and Titans face on Friday night, but at this stage – if you are a tipster or punter, put your money where the big money is and you have the best chance of getting a winner.