Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Soccer it's not made for trading...

In the last post I wrote:

"Today I will not trade anymore tennis. I am just taking the value of Bayern Munich. They are at almost 4 to win the Champions League (not far away from the beginning... they lost just 0:1 at Madrid!). Beside they are at 2.60 to go in the final...". 

Todays game (0:4 for Real Madrid) was the last proof that's a waste of money and time to bet on soccer. At least for me... I think I could lay Switzerland to win the world cup in Brazil and they would go for the trophy (perhaps I should try it :-)). In general I guess that's a lot more difficult to make money with soccer than with tennis. You can also see this fact at the blog of Cassini. The most of the "so called experts" have terrible ROI's.

I got away with a blue eye. I definitely staked too high (especially with a result bet I made), but I stopped the biggest loss at the right time. Soccer is not made for trading, it's (mostly) just straight betting.

Instead of backing Bayern Munich I should lay Gabashivili. After the win against Ferrer in Barcelona and some decent performances on clay, he was overrated at the market. I have to wipe my mouth and go ahead tomorrow afternoon.

Today I made a final decicion... no more soccer bets. Perhaps I will do the one or the other for fun (5 Euro or so), but nothing more. The full concentration will be on tennis for now on.

Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Too much action...

Today I recognized another reason for struggling. In the beginning of a week / tournament there is so much action. We see 40 games and more during a day. It's difficult to decide which matchups could be the good ones. Beside it's dangerous because you have no information how motivated the player is in his first round game. For example Russian players often are not that drilled in the beginning of smaller tournaments. Perhaps they make easier money with betting on their opponent. :-)  No joking, we know the stories of Kafelnikov and Co.

The risk of hopping around with no real plan it's quiet big at the start of the week. Beside the matches I am watching, I have always open the scoreboard of the other ones. It's okay to know the results, but I should not become influenced. If I decided BEFORE the match not to trade, I am not allowed to enter the market. It doesn't matter how the score is!

Today I layed Machado against Tursunov after he was 4:0 up. In the end the unmotivated and not good moving Russian lost 0:6, 0:6! I made this trade just because I saw on the scoreboard that a suprise is on his way... I was not prepared for this game. I didn't know anyhing about the home guy and had no clue that Tursunov is such an unmotivated mug on clay. I guess he made a bet on Machado :-). More or less the same story happened at the Stosur vs. Baczinsky game.

Beside I had some good ideas, but didn't make the profit I should. Kohlschreiber (H2H 0:4 vs. Istomin was a clear lay) and Oprandi (after the first set) were overpriced after her 2nd place at Marrakesh. Unfortunately I didn't trade enough smooth with the greens. At the women's match I was a bit too cautious and made too early "all green". I don't want to complain, I think the match was quiet even. After Zahlavova went up one break I hedged. There was a later opportunity to reeenter again (for a small amount). Hedging on a low level (around 1.20) and go in again for no risk at higher level could be a good strategy (especially at WTA). At the Kohlschreiber game I was too confident after the second set that the home player will bring home the bacon. Actually the value was not on him, so my 80% profit on him was quiet stupid. Like I wrote above, the H2H was 0:4 and now 0:5... with this facts and a quiet even game it doesn't make much sense to go with a 1.40 favourite. I made a bet and not a trade and with this behaviour you will not make profit in the long term. Like Sultan says, you have to trade the market and not betting the players.

Today I made seven trades and I am only happy with one. It was not perfect (the Oprandi trade), but not so much to say against. Beside I arranged three average trades. Not really good ones, but you can do it. Unfortunately I made three bad ones as well. One time I entered at the 3th set against a favourite. Nothing really bad, but the entry was too early. Beside I am really not happy with the above mentioned trades of Stusor and Tursunov.

Some easy learnings of today: Better preperation of the day (I mentioned it some posts ago, but it's still not enough) and just trading games which I considered as good matchups the day before. Beside this matches have to be watched since the beginning (no parallel trading, no scoreboard trading).

Today I will not trade anymore tennis. I am just taking the value of Bayern Munich. They are at almost 4 to win the Champions League (not far away from the beginning... they lost just 0:1 at Madrid!). Beside they are at 2.60 to go in the final...

Sunday, 27 April 2014

Tennis is a mental game...

Sometimes trading is quiet easy, because there are patterns which repeat. At soccer it's about the frequent comebacks of Bayern Munich. If they are down (take for example the Champions League game against Manchester United), they are almost ever capable to react. I bet that they will do it next Tuesday again. As a Real Madrid supporter I am quiet worried, Ronaldo and Co. missed too much chances last Wednesday. At tennis it's even more obvious. It's a mental game...

The match between Ivanovic and Sharapova was the paradise for experienced traders. The bad start of Sharapova was not a suprise. After the easy match against Errani, you could expect that she will not be in a good rhythm. Tradeshark wrote at his blog:

"Ivanovic has won both her finals this season and I expect her to be aggressive. Sharapova has never lost at this event and has won the title for the last 2 seasons. She won’t be giving that record up easily and I am favouring her to take the title for a third time. I think she will have to come from behind though as we are likely to see errors from the line in the early games".

Even if you missed the start, there was an opportunity to enter the market. After Sharapova was down in the second set with 3:6 and 1:3 was a great moment to lay Ivanovic (I did it for 1.22). Masha is mentally so strong. She can rise her game (again) after a bad start or inadequate period in a match. Most of the other players, also Ivanovic, lose totally the confidence when the momentum turns against them (at least against strong opponents).

These are the patterns tennis (and soccer) is about. Today I felt comfortable with my trading. I scratched my surpise pick (Rosol against Dimitrov) at the right time for a small loss, and I arranged a good profit with the comeback of Sharapova. It could be bigger because I hedged it after the second set. I don't regret this action, because "green trades" will help me to strenghten the confidence. Beside Sharapova was at 1.50 no more value. Yes, she is mentally the stronger one (and the momentum was on her side), but Ivanovic is improved in this topic since this year.

Next week take place smaller tournaments at Estoril (ATP, WTA) and Munich (ATP). I will trade as much as possible. Gaining expierence on the ladders it's the most important for the moment. I will keep you informed, probably not on daily rhythm, but for sure once or twice during the week.

Year zero

Sultan, my teacher, wrote some years ago in his blog:

"It's been one year since I started trading but I am re-setting the time. I'm basically saying 'forget about the past year. All that has happened is water under the bridge. Forget the awful losses, the lack of discipline, the lost time. Today marks the start of a new beginning. I will act as if I'm new to trading again. My aim is to recreate the way I traded 12 months ago, when I was ultra-careful and stuck resolutely to my strategy. The baggage of my mistakes over the past year is what is making me impatient, so I need to get rid of it and start afresh, so I don't feel as much weight on my shoulders. There are no losses to chase and no regrets to ruminate over, it's a clean slate. Year Zero starts as of now and I hope that in one year's time, I will look back on February 20th as the day when my successful trading life began".

It's not that bad in my case (especially the discipline is quiet okay!), but I recognized that the financial figures pressure me too much at the moment. When you reach a new year to date low, you are not trading like you should. It's not a typical chasing of losses, but probably I take more trades than I should. Bad variance moved me in the red zone. The ROI year to date is exactly -5.0%.

I decided to stop the financial reporting for the moment (so no more profit&loss statements so far on this blog). More important it's a proper documentation of all the trades (which I already make). I will just make a quality reporting of good, medium and bad trades. Like I wrote some days ago, a won trade can be bad one and a lost bet can be good one. Believe me, after the match I know exactly how good the quality of the trade was...

Today was again a pity. I expected suprises of Giraldo and Torro-Flor. Instead of keeping the value of the Colombian during the match, I hedged for a comeback of Almagro (despite he was not looking great). Torro-Flor I not even traded, because I thought the start price is too high for a lay. I totally "forgot" that even backing a 1.01 odd can be value...Beside I still was sleeping when Rosol started his comeback against Haase. Yes, it sounds like aftertiming now, but it's the truth. Beside I traded Jankovic against my gut feeling after the first set.

Once again I have to take the positive things of another disappointing day. I am capable to spot value. Beside my game reading is getting better. Actually I scratched twice (Gulbis, Muguruza), when my gut feeling told me that they will struggle. And they did...

What improvements I will do?

  • Reduce the financial pressure (no more reporting about the profit&loss)
  • Document the quality of the executed trades
  • Hold the value as good as possible during a match (it takes forever until the market loses the trust in the favourite... despite the underdog plays better)

The third point is really difficult. I can remember that Rafa Nadal was trading some years ago at Wimbledon around 1.50 when he was 0:2 sets down against Rosol. I guess at this point a lot of Rosol backers hedged there profit for bad value. Probably a lot of them even put all their green on Rafa... That's the point, why laying first for 1.02 (when it was less probable that he will win) and then hedging at 1.50 (when it's quiet probable that he can win)?

I mean it's just an example, but it shows my problem. I often trade out for bad value. A bit of hedging it's okay, but it should go more in the direction of a free bet for the "value player".