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SPORTS BETTING INDEX was founded in 2000 to help punters with all aspects of internet betting as the phenomenon of online gambling took off.
Whilst the site has changed and developed over time the core beliefs remain the same: being independent, honest and open.
Newsletter 8

This weekend we see the London Marathon take place and it gives me a good opportunity to talk about niche betting despite the fact that those tight bookmakers are only offering ¼ odds three places with 30,000 runners! Joking aside it really is a great chance to clean up as compilers are “forced” to price up something they often know very little about, where opnions can differ highly and also where some books simply copy others.

Over the years I have done rather well betting in marathons where very few are priced up each year, in 2007 Catherine Ndereba was an each way steal in the World Championships and I inspired a gamble that saw her backed down from 9/1 to 7/2 and win comfortably. In 2009 in the New York City Marathon I tipped Meb Keflezighi at 100/1 who went on to win and in last years London rendition Mary Keitany was tipped up early at 9/1.

After some solid research this year in the mens race I decided it was probably between six athletes and priced up a tissue which was as follows – I have added the comments as well

Patrik Makau – World Record holder who finished 3rd last year having fallen – would have gone closer if not for that fall – a worthy favourite 3/1

Wilson Kipsang - the dark horse - has run four marathons – was 3rd in the first and then has won the last three lowering the course record on each occasion, no course experience but hasn't stopped him in the past, and he was only four seconds off the World Record in Frankfurt 3/1

Emmanuel Mutai – last years Champion but last month he suffered from a bout of typhoid and surely that has to affect his chances 7/2

Abel Kirui – double World Champion but his record in the big money races is not so great – has been 5th and DNF in London in two attempts 5/1

Tsegaye Kebede – past Champion whose record reads 2nd, 1st, 5th – an each way chance and may well split the Kenyans who are running for Olympic selection 12/1

Martin Lel – the veteran who was 2nd last year almost recapturing the form of his three victories – I just have a feeling he maybe past it now 14/1

When the prices came out I duly backed Kipsang e/w at 7/1 and 8/1 as according to my tissue that was where the best value lay, I also had a smaller investment on Kebede at a value 20/1 e/w.

In the Womens race I did exactly the same process although this time I could only see four in with a real chance of victory:

Mary Keitany – last years champion and a huge talent but she showed her inexperience in New York in the Fall and maybe vulnerable 2/1

Florence Kiplagat – cross country and half marathon world champion, sole marathon resulted in a win in Berlin last year beating Radcliffe and Mikitenko – fast time but debatable what she achieved and ran didn't run great in half marathon in January 5/1

Lucy Kabuu – unexposed runner – lost a few years due to injury and having family but returned in 2011 winning the Delhi half marathon and Great North run in fast times. Her marathon debut came in Dubai in January where she became the eighth fastest ever and 3rd fastest debutant in finishing 2nd 11/2

Edna Kiplagat – won New York (beating debutant Keitany) and Los Angeles in 2010 and the World Championship last year. Was third in London lasting year knocking five minutes off her PB – but maybe vulnerable in a fast race 6/1
Very little value overall but unexposed Kabuu worth a bet at 8/1 e/w

I hope the above gives an idea of what you can do – of course the race is yet to be run but I feel I have got the value! Most people bet on horse racing, football, tennis and golf but in my opinion it is getting harder and harder to get the edge to win. My main betting centres around golf but as it has become more mainstream I have found it harder and harder to generate a profit apart from the smaller tours where it is possible to gain greater knowledge than the bookmakers. If you do bet on a main sport – try and specialise – our football tipster Football Betting Index purely does Scottish football and then 90% of the bets are in the lower three leagues. Even in tennis maybe you could just specialise on clay or indoor tournaments. The Olympics is not that far away and already books like Unibet have a huge array of markets available – pick a few sports and get studying!

 
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