As readers of this site are often aware, sportsbooks can sometimes get the odds all wrong. In fact, it’s part of the art of sports betting to pinpoint where the bookies have been gone too short or too generous, then capitalising on that mistake. Of course, hindsight is a wonderful thing, and we can always look back and say the bookies messed up if, for example, Kubrat Pulev thumps Anthony Joshua around the ring in mid-December.
But what we are getting at here is odds-setting where the price really does not seem to reflect the chances of the event occurring. Below we are going to look at four examples of the bookies’ pricing for 2021 events where we believe the odds are truly off.
Roger Federer at 5/1 for the Australian Open
Several firms have placed Roger Federer as the second-favourite for the Australian Open. Let’s rephrase that: Several firms have placed 39-year-old Roger Federer, a man who hasn’t hit a tennis ball in almost a year, as the second-favourite for the Australian Open. Yes, we know he is the GOAT, but even Federer shouldn’t be placed ahead of Rafael Nadal, nor Dominic Thiem or Daniil Medvedev, given his injury woes over the past 12 months. To be honest, the odds are a bit messy for 2021’s opening Grand Slam, and you can find the Swiss as big as 13/1 (we still won’t take it), but there are at least ten players that we believe should be ahead of Federer in the pecking order. If he wins in Melbourne after a year out, it’ll be the greatest shock in sporting history.
Tyson Fury as overwhelming favourite against Deontay Wilder
Again, we aren’t saying that Fury shouldn’t be favourite if and when the final bout of the trilogy takes place, but anyone taking the 1/4 odds offered needs their head examined. In fact, we would be quite tempted to take the 12/5 for a Wilder victory found online at MansionBet. Yes, Wilder was well beaten by Fury in Nevada last February. But the American is no mug, and he has the wherewithal to adapt his tactics for a third tilt at Fury. Once this fight is confirmed, the money will start pouring in and the odds could – and should – tighten.
Spain at 8/1 to Win Euro 2021
The odds for what was formerly Euro 2020 are a little bit skewed for several reasons. England (11/2) get the nod as second-favourites because the semis and final will be at Wembley, making it almost a home tournament for the 3 Lions. Belgium (5/1) have been installed as favourites because they have an easy group and have generally been excellent in 2020. The odds are a little weird for teams like Germany, France and Portugal because they are in the same “Group of Death”. But what really sticks out is Spain, coming in at 8/1. Have a look back at the 6-0 demolition of Germany in the Nations League in November, and then ask yourself why the bookmakers would put both these teams at 8/1. Spain boasts incredible young talent and enough experience to do the business next summer.
Bryson DeChambeau at 8/1 to win the Masters
Bryson DeChambeau is a fine player, and the US Open Champion’s game is a lot more than the huge-driving tactics you’ll see talked about in the sports media. However, his focus on power sacrifices accuracy, and Augusta National punishes inaccuracy. You only have to look at his scorecard last month – 18 dropped shots – to see why that is the case. DeChambeau could win a Green Jacket one day, but he will have to work on his short game, bunker play and putting – all prerequisites for a Masters title. That takes time, and the 27-year-old Californian has it on his side. But 8/1 is a ridiculous price for a man who finished behind 63-year-old Bernhard Langer last month.