Pro Punters is Bettingmetrics' series of interviews with professional sports punters based in London. We've asked them a set of questions to learn more about their betting performance, so read on to learn how they make informed betting decisions. In case you missed any of the previous interviews, make sure you read them to understand the importance of bankroll management, the niche markets of stats betting and a lot more.
This week, our interview is with a 28 year old Romanian based in London whose passion for eSports and betting allowed him to land a job in a bookmaker operating from London.
What is your opinion about the online sports betting industry?
I think it's a neat thing if you're a sports enthusiast. I have fun watching a variety of sports, mainly eSports and basketball. So not the usual sports. Betting makes you more engaged with the sports. There are a couple of ways to look at it. A thing to do for a living or a thing to do for increasing your pleasure.
How do you look at it?
It started as a pleasure. Then I joined the industry... and now I am an avid eSports punter and gamer. You need to understand and preferably play the sports you are betting on to gain an edge against the house. E.g. I wouldn't bet on cricket, simply because it's a sport I still don't fully understand. One should always recommend to other punters to stick to sports they feel comfortable with. From experience, I learned that discipline plays a role in the profits you can make in this industry.
Can you tell us a bit more about the frequency of your bets and the stakes?
My average stakes are between £50-100 and are always connected to an event. So, whenever there is a league or a match that I have placed bets on, I would either watch it or follow the live commentary in order to minimize any potential risk exposure. However, if I have placed a bet that was advised by a tipster I follow, then I would place it pre-game or early in-play and analyse the results post-game.
You mentioned you are following tipsters alongside your own bets. Are you tracking your overall betting performance somehow?
Yes. You have to quantify your betting somehow. If you are serious about betting, use excel or pen and paper, anything really that will help you understand your patterns. Most importantly, profitable patterns. Few years ago I was placing bets on different sports, and only once I started tracking my bets, I realised that I was losing money on football and tennis, I was making small profit on basketball and most of my profit was coming from eSports.
What other aspects of your approach have improved your betting profits?
When I first started following tipsters, I lost my betting bank twice before realising that they are just giving me tips without any money management information. There are obviously incredible tipping services out there, like Winabobatoo who spends 50% of the time telling you how to structure your betting bank to match your expectations. Managing my bankroll was the thing that elevated my game and improved my betting finances. It's the consistent small profits that lead to quality results at the end of each month. I used to stake 50% of my bank on one game and while it was great in most cases, when you loose you have to re-invest money in your betting bank. For me and my bank size, making £300 a week from 20 bets is preferable over making £300 from one bet, because otherwise I will get used to it and increase my chances of going bust.
What are your thoughts on our service and the tools we provide to analyse betting performance?
I recently started using Bettingmetrics. While I need more time to give you proper feedback, my first impression is that it's awesome and great for anyone like me. The one thing that really caught my eye was the ability to import all my bets from betfair exchange. This allowed me to see one of my strengths, which is that over the past three months I have consistently been improving my ROI on lay bets. Also, I was able to spot one of my weaknesses; betting pre-game is still unprofitable for me.
During our interview build-up, you mentioned smart punting – what did you mean by that?
For me as an experienced level bettor, I have a wide variety of betting selections, yet I stick to particular sport or bet types that I am comfortable with. Some tipsters, apart from telling me what I should bet on, give me reasoning so I would make my own decision. Look at it that way, smart punting is your ability to make an objective betting decision based on the limited amount of information you have for an event. There is always information that you don't know, like whether your DOTA 2 team agreed to play aggressively in their first game of the day or whether Federer had a good breakfast in Wimbledon. You need to know why your winning bets are winning and why your losers are losing. Your profits might be the outcome of two penalties or a goal in extra time and this will impact you long term.
When you are betting on eSports, where are you gathering your research from?
I am a geek so I know my stuff. I follow certain eSports, mainly StarCraft and DOTA 2. I know the players, how they play, the current game patch. Unfortunately, I haven`t played DOTA 2 for half a year but I have more than 3000 hours on it. I have started thinking more about how the game works, team strategy etc. in order to improve my betting.
Would you like to learn more? Read our detailed explanation of the Kelly criterion and its fundamental importance in bankroll management.
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