And thus the footy year ends. Well, not really: we still have the finals. But the tipping competitions are over.
The final week brought no big surprises, except maybe for Adelaide beating West Coast (but that seemed somewhat likely given the results of the last few weeks). The lack of surprises brought a good number of hits (seven for money, six for ladder) but not good financial results (low odds on most matches).
The numbers for this week:
So, the big question: can you make money with these strategies? The answer seems to be “yes” for the “home” strategy (that is, tipping always the home team), but let’s look at a graph first:
The graph shows the cumulative net result of each strategy over the year. “Ladder” did very well in the first seven weeks, then went straight downhill; remarkably, that’s exactly the opposite of what I’d expect. The reason for this might be that, after a few weeks, the teams at the top of the ladder starting being the favourites and paying less. This would explain the series of coincidences between “ladder” and “money” in the final weeks.
“Money”, on the other hand, went straight down and remained there. It did stabilise after a while, but never really recovered. Very strange, to be honest.
“Random” was very random. Except for a big jump upwards in rounds 6 to 9, the rest looks like Brownian motion to me, with a slight tendency downwards.
Finally, “home” is pretty much stable most of the time, with a few jumps (rounds 4, 17, 18 and 21) providing all of the net gain. It looks to me like it only made money because of a few unpredictable results here and there, but it could easily have gone the other way.
One important point, which I noticed during the year, is that you can tip with two different goals in mind, and your strategy will need to be different depending on your goal. If you are part of a tipping competition, you need to tip on every match and the only interesting data point is the number of results you get right. For this, the “money” strategy can be useful, and in fact it may be enough to get you to win in small competitions (in your office or school, for example), but not in the large, public ones (the winner of the Channel 10 competition finished with 127 points; “money” would have finished around position #700).
If, however, you are looking to make money, you don’t need to tip on every match (and, in fact, you probably shouldn’t): part of the strategy must be to select which results to tip and which to ignore. None of these strategies are useful for that, although I believe it is possible to develop an automated method that can reliably make money. This is something to think about over summer…