How To Beat The Bookies This Footy Finals Series

September has arrived and you can take full advantage of the bookies

AFL finals NRL finals footy finals

Footy Finals have arrived with Richmond Tigers vs Hawthorn Hawks at the MCG tonight at 7:20 pm and Melbourne Storm vs South Sydney Rabbitohs on Friday night at AAMI Park at 7:40 pm.

Richmond remains the clear favourite for the AFL premiership ($2.20-$2.40) while the Roosters are current favourites ($3-$3.40) for the NRL premiership in a more open market.

The bookies have come out with a range of promotions for the footy finals, some old and some new. Read on to find out which ones you should be playing in this final series, and which ones you should leave alone.

Key:

A+ selection –
cracking value
A selection –
excellent value (all-time record – 6455 bets @ 21.5% P.O.T.)
B selection –
solid value, worth a bet (all-time record – 4095 bets @ 10.7% P.O.T.)
C selection –
some value, not worth a bet
D selection –
marginal value, not worth a bet
E selection –
long-term losing proposition
F selection –
absolute shocker

AFL

Bet365

AFL Early Payout
Head to Head – Early Payout Lead By 24 Points But Lose. No maximum stated. AFL Finals. No state restrictions listed.
Bet365 have had the same promotion the whole season and that continues in the finals.
 
Early payout offers do not hit often but the fact you’re paid out in full when you do is good consolation.
 
The value gradually increases as the team price increases and then drops off again at the roughies end. Favourites are C-D selections. Teams from $1.90-$2.10 are B selections. Teams $2.10 onwards are A selections. Teams around the $2.60-$2.80 are the peak value and receive most early payouts (11% of matches). Teams from $2.80 onwards are B selections.
 
There is no limit but bet in line with your regular bet size on Bet365 and be wary not to over-bet.
 
Verdict: A-D selection

BetEasy

AFL Finals Predictor
This is a competition where there is a player match up on each game of the finals and you need to predict who will have the most disposals/tackles/goals or whatever the stat is on that match. For each week of the finals, if you tip every winner, you win a share of the Reward Points on offer. This competition is free to enter, and with a decent chance of picking up a prize, why not have a crack? There’s also an overall prize for the most winners. It takes 30 seconds to enter your selections each week with the potential to win something for nothing.
 
Verdict: A selection
$2 Favourites
Price – $2 Price on All Favourites in Week 1 AFL Finals. Max $25. No state restrictions.
BetEasy are continuing with the $2 favourites promotion by offering a $2 price on all favourites in Week 1 of the AFL Finals. The value on each team is:
 
• Richmond Tigers – A selection (almost A+)
• Melbourne Demons – C selection
• Sydney Swans – C selection
• West Coast Eagles – A selection
 
Unlike other BetEasy promotions, there are no state restrictions on this promotion.
 
Verdict: A-C selection

4 Leg Multi
Multi – Bonus Bet 3 out of 4. Max $50. Not available to residents of NSW and SA.

Most of this week’s matches are evenly matched with Richmond the only favourite under $1.60. This evenness in matches reduces the value here and makes it hard to pick up the winner. Taking the favourites is the best value but this multi is not worth a bet.
 
Verdict: D selection

Bluebet

18 Point Refund
Head to Head – Bonus Bet Lose 18 Points or Less. Max $50. Week 1 and 2 AFL Finals. Not available to residents of SA.
At the start of the season, Bluebet had the same promotion as a Money Back promotion, which was an A selection. However, Bluebet have slowly been converting all their promotions to Bonus Bets, and that reduces the value on this promotion to a C selection. Roughies are better bets than Favourites. Short favourites (e.g. Richmond) are D selections. Longer favourites and roughies are C selections. 
 
Verdict: C-D selection

Ladbrokes

AFL Player Pick
Price – Martin and Mitchell 60+ Disposals $3. Max $20. No state restrictions.
Special prices such as this on Ladbrokes are generally decent bets, this is a poor one. Martin and Mitchell are expected to combine for a tad over 60 disposals but this price is under what it should be.
 
It’s worth noting Ladbrokes have a number of regular special price promotions such as “Odds Boosts”, “Footy Freaks” and multis that are never worth a bet, so I’ve haven’t bothered analysing them.
 
Verdict: E selection

Palmerbet

3/4 Time Bonus Bet
Head to Head – Bonus Bet Lead At 3/4 Time But Lose. Max $100. AFL Finals. Not available to residents of SA and WA.
Palmerbet have run this promotion the past couple of years for the start and end of the AFL season. It’s pretty much the worst of the promotions you’ll see on the Head to Head market and adds little value on top of the regular market.
 
Verdict: D-E selection

Pointsbet

9 Points or Less You Win
Head to Head – Paid As Winner When Lose By 9 Points or Less. Max $250. AFL Finals. Not available to residents of NSW, SA and WA.
This is a new promotion from Pointsbet released for the finals. Your team will lose by 9 points or less around 10% of the time, so you wouldn’t expect many promotional payouts, but the fact you get paid out in full when it does happen is great. 
 
This promotion is longer the price, the better the bet. Favourites are C selections. Even-money matches (or similar) are B selections. Roughies are A selections. The maximum is $250 but unless you have a history of betting over $100 on Pointsbet, I would play no greater than $100.
 
Verdict: A-C selection

Riewoldt 3+ Goals
Price – Riewoldt 3+ Goals $2. Max $50. Not available to residents of NSW, SA and WA.

Pointsbet used to provide consistently good special prices but that has dried up recently with limited opportunities on this type of promotion. This is another example. This is not a good price on Riewoldt to kick 3+ goals. You can get the same price on Bet365 should you wish.
 
Verdict: E selection

Dangerwoodlett
Price – Dangerfield, Selwood and Ablett 25+ Disposals Each $3.50. Max $50. Not available to residents of NSW, SA and WA.

This is a slightly better price than what it should be but the value is nowhere near enough to make it worth a bet. If you like the bet, you’d be better off backing each player individually at one of the various bookies that offer the 25+ Disposals market. Shop around if you do. You’d be surprised how much each bookie varies in this market for the same bet!
 
Verdict: D selection

Sportsbet

Double Your Winnings
Head to Head – Double Winnings in Bonus Bets. Max Winnings $50. Week 1 AFL Finals. Not available to residents of SA and WA.

Sportsbet have returned this promotion for Week 1 of the AFL Finals and it’s a welcome return. This promotion is longer the price, better the bet. All teams this week are A selections except Richmond, who are a B selection.
 
The promotion is a maximum of $50 profit (not $50 outlay), so the outlay to maximise the raw dollar profit available on the promotion is:
 
Outlay = $50/(Price – 1)
 
Round that amount to the nearest $5 and that should be your outlay.
 
Verdict: A-B selection

TAB

Lead At Any Break
Head to Head – Bonus Bet Lead at Any Break But Lose. Max $50. AFL Finals. Not available to residents of SA and WA.
It’s been a little while since we’ve seen this promotion but this time it returns as a Bonus Bet and not as a Money Back promotion. This occurs in around 15% of matches where you back the roughie. The value is longer the price, the better the value, but 15% is not enough given we just receive Bonus Bet as the consolation. If you were looking for another bet on top of the A and B selections described, then this would be the promotion to play.
 
Verdict: C selection

Tabtouch

First To Reach 70 Points
Head to Head – Money First To Reach 70 Points But Lose. Max $50. Week 1 AFL Finals. Not available to residents of NSW, VIC and SA.
This is a new promotion from Tabtouch (which took a long time to analyse!).
 
Over 90% of teams that reach 70 points first win the match, which unfortunately makes this a poor promotion. Roughies are better bets than favourites but this promotion is not worth a bet.
 
Verdict: D selection

Ubet

Lead By 15 Points
Head to Head – Money Back Lead By 15 Points But Lose. Max $50. AFL Finals. Not available to residents of NSW.
We’ve seen this promotion earlier in the season on Ubet and the same advice applies. There’s a narrow peak range where teams are worth a bet. Teams up to $2.50 are C-D selections. Teams around the $2.50-$2.80 range are B selections. Teams greater than $2.80 are C selections.
 
Verdict: B-D selection

Unibet

UniBEST Specials
These are special prices you can find on each match in the promotions section on the Unibet website. The selections on offer can be difficult to calculate the value on, in which case I leave the bet alone. When I can calculate the value, the prices on offer tend to be around about what they should be and generally not worth a bet, although there is an occasional price that offers nice value. The value on each bet is: 
Hawthorn to Win 2nd Quarter and Luke Breust to Kick 3+ Goals $5 – E selection
Richmond 1-39 and Jack Riewoldt 3+ Goals $4 – D selection
Geelong to Win 4th Quarter and Tim Kelly o29.5 Disposals $7 – E selection
Melbourne -3.5 and Clayton Oliver o29.5 Disposals $4.50 – B selection
GWS to Win 2nd Quarter and Stephen Coniglio o29.5 Disposals $6 – A selection
Sydney 1-39 and Jake LLoyd o29.5 Disposals $6.50 – C selection
Collingwood +8.5 and Steele Sidebottom o29.5 Disposals $5 – uncertain
West Coast to Win and Jamie Cripps 3+ Goals $7 – uncertain
 
Verdict: A-E selection

NRL

Bet365

NRL Early Payout
Head to Head – Early Payout Lead By 12 Points But Lose. No maximum stated. NRL Finals. No state restrictions listed.
Similar to the AFL version of this promotion, this promotion has been here since the start of the season and continues for the finals. There’s been more early payouts on this promotion during the season than the AFL version of the promotion. That improves the value but not enough to shift my early season assessment.
 
Verdict: C-D selection

BetEasy

$2 Favourites
Price – $2 Price on Storm and Roosters in Week 1 NRL Finals. Max $25. No state restrictions.
BetEasy are also continuing their $2 price promotion on the NRL but just on two teams. The value on each team is:
 
• Melbourne Storm – C selection
• Sydney Roosters – A selection
 
There are no state restrictions on this promotion.
 
Verdict: A-C selection
First Try Scorer
1st Try Scorer – 2nd Try Scorer Paid As Winner. No maximum stated. No state restrictions stated.
BetEasy have run this promotion the past few weeks and they are offering it again on two matches in Week 1 of the NRL Finals:
 
• Penrith Panthers vs New Zealand Warriors
• Brisbane Broncos vs St George-Illawarra Dragons
 
This is generally a nice promotion but the prices BetEasy have had on this market the past few weeks have been woeful, which of course, makes a significant difference. There is a slight but minor advantage to longer prices, which has me focused at the favourites end. However, with the market issues present here, the best advice is to find the players who have the best prices relative to other bookies. Betting closer to match start time may provide better prices and opportunities.
 
This is another promotion from BetEasy that has no state restrictions listed.
 
Verdict: A selection
4 Leg Multi
Multi – Bonus Bet 3 out of 4. Max $50. Not available to residents of NSW and SA.
This week’s NRL multi is almost identical to the AFL with mostly even matches and just one standout favourite in Brisbane Broncos. It’s not worth a bet.
 
Verdict: D selection

Bluebet

6 Point Refund
Head to Head – Bonus Bet Lose 6 Points or Less. Max $50. Week 1 and 2 AFL Finals. Not available to residents of SA.
Bluebet along with other bookies often combine their AFL promotion releases with a similar but lesser points promotion on the NRL. The NRL versions of the promotions are always slightly worse and this promotion is the same. The same principles as the AFL promotion above apply here except that all selections are just D selections.
 
Verdict: D selection

Ladbrokes

NRL Player Pick
Cameron Smith 10+ Points $4. Max $20. No state restrictions.
This is a decent price for Cameron Smith to score 10+ points. Most of his points come from his kicking game, so we’re relying on a high scoring match here and a few conversions, plus perhaps a couple of penalty goals. It’s worth a bet at $4.
 
Verdict: B selection

Palmerbet

60 Minute Bonus Bet
Head to Head – Bonus Bet Lead at 60 Minutes But Lose. Max $100. Not available to residents of SA and WA.
Similar to the AFL version of this promotion, this is pretty much the worst of the Head to Head promotions you’ll see on the NRL. It’s not worth a bet.
 
Verdict: D-E selection

Pointsbet

Lead At 5 Minutes You Win
Head to Head – Paid As Winner Lead At 5 Minutes But Lose. Max $250. NRL Finals. Not available to residents of NSW, SA and WA.
This is a new promotion from Pointsbet released for the NRL Finals, which is quite different to most of the other promotions.
 
It’s an Early Payout promotion where if your team is leading at the 5-minute mark, you win. From our perspective, a more relevant description of the promotion is “Paid As Winner Lead at 5 Minutes But Lose”. 
 
Surprisingly, less than 10% of teams lead after 5 minutes and then go onto lose the match. But that’s mainly because most matches are scoreless after 5 minutes. That is the subtle but important part of the wording in this promotion.
 
The stats show a peak for teams playing in even matches. That makes sense because even matches are more likely to have an early score cancelled out later in the match by their even opponents. However, the strongest influence on value is the Early Payout itself, which tends to favour the roughies. 
 
This promotion is worth a bet on the roughies. Teams less than $1.70 are C selections or worse. Teams from $1.70-$2.30 are B selections. Teams from $2.30 onwards are A selections.
 
Verdict: A-E selection

Sportsbet

12 Up You Win
Head to Head – Early Payout Lead By 12 Points But Lose. Max $500. NRL Week 1. Not available to residents of SA and WA.
This is the same promotion as Bet365 and is not worth a bet.
 
Verdict: C-D selection

TAB

Lead At Half-Time
Head to Head – Bonus Bet Lead at Half-Time But Lose. Max $50. Not available to residents of SA and WA.
This does not occur often enough to make it worth a bet and Bonus Bet is a poor consolation. Even if Money Back was the consolation, it would just be a C selection.
 
Verdict: D selection

Tabtouch

First Try Scorer 2 Winners
1st Try Scorer – 2nd Try Scorer Paid as Winner. Max $100 Return. Week 1 NRL Finals. Not available to residents of NSW, SA and VIC.
This is a nice promotion from Tabtouch and unlike BetEasy, the market prices are around about what they should be in comparison to other bookies. There’s a slight advantage to longer selections, but not a large one, which has me playing at the favourites end of the market. The only disappointing aspect of this promotion is that it is a maximum of $100 return, which means the actual maximum bet is around $10. It’s nice value in any case.
 
Verdict: A selection

Ubet

Lead By 8 Points
Head to Head – Money Back Lead By 8 Points But Lose. Max $50. NRL Finals. Not available to residents of NSW.
Similar to the AFL promotion, we’ve also seen this promotion from Ubet earlier in the season. 8 points is 2 points greater than a converted try, which makes all the difference on this promotion. It’s longer the price, the better the bet, but this promotion is not worth a bet.
 
Verdict: D selection

Unibet

UniBEST Specials
See the AFL section for a more detailed explanation of UniBEST Specials. The NRL prices are terrible this week. The value on each bet is:

Melbourne Storm to Win 1st Half and Curtis Scott to Score Try $9 – E selection
South Sydney Rabbitohs +1.5 and Cody Walker to Score Try $10 – E selection
New Zealand Warriors to Win 1st Half and David Fusitu’a to Score Try $6 – E selection
Penrith Panthers 1-12 and Josh Mansour to Score Try $9 – E selection
Cronulla Sharks to Win and Sosaia Feki to Score Try $9 – E selection
Sydney Roosters to Win 1st Half and Blake Ferguson to Score Try $5 – E selection
Brisbane Broncos to Win and Anthony Milford to Score Try $5 – E selection
St George-Illawarra Dragons +10.5 and Gareth Widdop to Score Try $10 – E selection
 
Verdict: E selection
Good luck for the footy finals!
 
Rod
Rod’s High Low membership has been a juggernaut, boasting 18 straight months of profit and $81,500+ overall since launch in 2015.
 
Take the bookies to the cleaners this weekend on a range of bets across your favourite sports and racing codes. It simply will not lose – there is just nothing else like it on the market.