Sports betting

Bet365 suffers historically bad Saturday as World Cup punters bounce back 

Stoke-headquartered firm lost eight figures over Saturday’s three games

After a record opening week of the World Cup, bookmakers gave some of their profits back over the weekend as the tournament’s big guns began to fire.

Bet365 said Saturday was “one of the worst days in our history”, with the Stoke-headquartered firm losing eight figures over the three games.

Toni Kroos’ last minute goal to help Germany beat Sweden saw millions of pounds change hands from bookmaker to punter, with William Hill swinging from £2.5m win to a £1.3m loss.

It was a similar story at Kindred too. The company’s Gill said: “Kroos’s 95th minute winner broke all hearts at Kindred, both as a Swedish company and as a layer as the third favourite winning of the day, for the second time in three days after Friday.”

Gill added: “Three games over the weekend ran us 7 figures – Belgium, England and Mexico all dispatching opponents as expected, with relief hard to find as the punters definitely ran away with the weekend!”

The England game was a mixed bag for operators – Ladbrokes were helped by the late Panama goal which destroyed lots of correct score bets, while Betfred said it cost them heavily on the BTTS market.

Harry Kane’s hat-trick also caused some pain and could prove a headache for layers going forward with major liability on a Kane Golden Boot at 16/1.

As for the other sports, Ladbrokes’ reported a profitable day at Ascot, as “favourites were pipped left right and centre which obviously favoured us,” while on the rugby front “South Africa were well backed given England’s form over the last few weeks, so another victory for us there!”

Betfred reported a small losing weekend thanks to patriotic punters who enjoyed England wins in football, rugby union, rugby league, cricket and Formula 1.

Betdaq MD Shane McLoughlin added: “It was a bumper weekend of sporting and betting action, with Saturday’s top events seeing a total of £3.75m matched on the Queen Alexandra Stakes at Royal Ascot and another £2.25m on Germany’s last-gasp victory against Sweden.

“During the World Cup we’ve seen the highest volumes traded on the tightest games, so it was no surprise that England’s hammering of Panama didn’t make it into a top three of weekend games that was rounded out by Poland-Colombia (£1.7m) and Japan-Senegal (£1.5m).”

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