Something happened to one of the guys I Mentor on Saturday that I want to share with you.
The trade(s) were on the Newcastle Utd v Wolves match in the Championship. So quite a strong market.
There were bets placed prior to kick off.
In Match Odds and also cover bets in the Correct Score market.
After the 1st goal to Wolves further bets were placed in the Match odds and correct score markets. Finally at half time a couple of other bets were placed in the same markets.
At 4.06pm. Just after Half Time the market was suspended and then closed. The bets were settled. No explanation.
So my Man the turns his attention to other markets and forgets the Newcastle match as the markets is settled. It’s over in terms of trading.
At 16:40 he notices that his balance was down and investigated why. To his shock and dismay he discovered that the Newcastle market had reopened and his bets had re appeared. There was no liquidity in the market and no way to exit these open positions. He was unable to trade out of his position and he ended up with a loss of almost £500.
If the match had not had closed when it did, he would have ended up at worst with a scratch position as the strategy he uses ensures this.
Betfair altered this account at 16:19, but did not notify him. He claims they could have easily have done this as he had already had a conversation about this it on Twitter.
After complaining to Betfair about this he received this email.
Thanks for getting in touch.
Please accept our sincere apologies for the issues you experienced with the Newcastle game today. As you are aware, we settled the Newcastle markets prematurely as 1-0 during the second half. You can see this in your account statement where the 1-0 bet has been paid out as a winner initially.
Once the error was realised we unsettled all markets and they were eventually restored for trading. I appreciate your frustration in this matter as by the time the markets were active again you would have lost the best chance to trade your positions. It’s an unfortunate situation and we apologise for any inconvenience caused by this. Please be aware that if you place a bet with the intention of subsequently placing a separate bet to reduce the liability incurred by the initial bet, there can never be a guarantee that the Services will be available at the point you wish to place the subsequent bet (this is the case regardless of whether or not the unavailability of the Services is due to a matter beyond our reasonable control). Although we will offer this facility whenever possible, we aren’t liable to refund losses if there are technical issues which prevent this. As a goodwill gesture I have added a £25 free bet to your account, please be aware this is purely a gesture to you as a customer not an admission of any guilt regarding the issues today.
Let me know if there’s anything else I can help with. Or maybe our FAQs will come in handy?
Betfair Customer Service Manager
So a Free £25 bet and a no admission of guilt caveat, even though the admission of guilt is glaringly obvious! Oh, plus a handy hint to read the FAQ’s!
Whenever I read the words “inconvenience and “unfortunate” in this context (he just lost £500 quid!!!!!) it really pisses me off.
In a previous Twitter message Betfair said this:
“Unfortunately our live service provider auto settled the game early, we have had to re track the markets and bets as such and settled accordingly. Apologies for this”
Tap Tap Boom eh?
After further complaining and a threat to take this to IBAS the response was this:
“Thanks for getting in touch.
We’re very sorry to hear about your dissatisfaction with the matter.
The market would appear as closed however this is with the complete intention of having it reopened as my colleague explained we would still settle according to the result however to opportunity for further trading and cashout would not be a possible as a result of circumstances beyond our control.
Despite this you would notice your bet has been settled according to the result however subsequent may not be a possibility as a result of the occourance. Unfortunately our position on the matter has not changed and whilst we can understand the inconvenience this may have caused, we will still be able to provide with the same free bet amount however would not be able to provide much more I’m afraid.
Let me know if there’s anything else I can help with. Or maybe our FAQs will come in handy? “
My question to Betfair is this. Do you understand how a Betting Exchange works? You change the interpretation of your Ts & C’s to suit YOU. This is a clear error on your behalf. Even though you hide behind a “3rd party service provider”, how is it possible for customer to be close to £500 out of pocket due to something that he has no control over. If you are saying that that’s the way it goes – “sorry for any inconvenience” how can anyone trade with any sort of confidence? Do you accept that when TRADING you open up positions with much larger liabilities than if straight betting (as on the Sportsbook). We do this with a view to locking in profit or Loss. It’s the fundamental part of TRADING.
I am totally disgusted by both the condescending attitude of the Consumer service “managers” that replied to my friend, also the total lack of understanding of their own business model and how THEIR customers use it.
So here are the facts, You make up you own mind.