We all dream of placing a huge acca bet on the football or horse racing and watching it come home with our hands covering our eyes in a mix of fear and excitement. Fast cars, holidays in the sun, shares in the local non-league club….this is the stuff of betting dreams.
Unfortunately only the chosen few get to experience such feelings; and it is usually those who have ‘gambled’ in every sense of the word with their selections.
With the international break upon us punters would have been scouring the fixture lists high and low for some value bets, and one shrewdie made the most of the international matches – and a few low key domestic affairs – to win big at the weekend.
The unnamed punter placed a Lucky 15 wager on four huge outsiders, hoping no doubt that one or maybe two of them would land to secure him a profit.
What followed was the stuff of betting dreams….
Sevilla Atletico, Famalicao, Jong AZ & Gibraltar all to win
First up, he or she dipped their toes into the lower leagues on the continent, backing Sevilla Atletico almost sado-masochistically to beat Real Zaragoza in Spain’s second tier at 8/1 – the same Sevilla Atletico that had lost their last ten games in a row, and Zaragoza who had won six in a row. On reflection that 8/1 price was stingy, but Sevilla’s second string scored an unlikely 1-0 win.
That would have been enough to put a smile on the face of most punters on its own, but more was to follow. The newly-minted bettor backed Famalicao to turn over Academico Viseu in the Portuguese second tier – they duly won 1-0, and Jong AZ, fifteenth in Holland’s Jupiler League, to beat second-placed Jong Ajax. They also picked up the unlikeliest of 1-0 victories.
But the best was to come as the final leg of the Lucky 15 was Gibraltar to beat Latvia at a cool 70/1. This is the same Gibraltar side that has never won as a full UEFA member nation, and indeed in 20 combined Euro 2016 and World Cup 2018 qualifiers they lost 20 out of 20 and conceded some 103 goals.
They were heading to one of their very best results as a recognised footballing nation as they held the Latvians to a 0-0 draw after 88 minutes….and then the unbelievable happened.
Liam Walker, who can’t get into the first team at Notts County, struck a free kick that took a massive deflection before lopping into the back of the net. Cue pandemonium: both in the stadium and in the front room of the lucky punter in question.
His or her 50p Lucky 15 wager had just netted them a rather handsome £22,229.50 courtesy of Paddy Power. Now that’s what we call a Super Sunday!
Rock of Ages
We’d like to say that above wager was a moment of genius on the part of the winner, but in truth it has to go down as one of the most fortuitous moments of madness in betting history. Just look at Gibraltar’s past record….
The tiny nation on the southern tip of Spain only became a UEFA member in 2016, and remains the smallest country officially recognised by the organisation in terms of population and geological size.
Prior to their acceptance they played in the 2015 Island Games, where they were held to a 1-1 draw with Ynys Mon (nope us neither) before being thumped 0-4 by footballing powerhouse Guernsey.
In 30 matches as a recognised UEFA and FIFA entity, Gibraltar have scored just nine times and conceded 124….but they kept a clean sheet against Latvia, and for one lucky punter it was enough to see them laughing all the way to the bank.