Crazy sports wagers are nothing new in this industry, but what makes the headlines is when a bettor incredibly cashes in on a long shot bet that he had no business playing with in the first place.
That’s exactly the case when a Betfair bettor placed odds on Ernie Els to win the 2012 Open Championship after Adam Scott birdied the 14th hole, extending an already insurmountable four-shot lead with four holes remaining. Odds on the Australian even sank to 1/100.
As for Ernie Els? 469/1.
Either this bettor had the gift of foresight or he just had $70 to spare because he decided then and there to drop that amount on Els to win, despite knowing that it would take a catastrophic collapse from Scott for that bet to cash.
Then Scott bogeyed the 15th. Then he bogeyed the 16th. Then he hit ANOTHER bogey on 17th. All of a sudden, that supposedly insurmountable lead had vanished, one incredulous hole at a time. Heading into 18th, Scott needed a par just to force a play-off against Els and from there, the ridiculous turned into downright insanity.
Another bogey on 18th slid Scott into second place, gift-wrapping the Claret Jug to the shocked South African.
With Els winning, the bettor had in his hands a slip that was worth $32,830.
We’ve seen some pretty crazy wagers in our time and while there’s been a few that have cashed at really long odds, we’ve never seen a reversal of fortune happen this quick, this sudden, and this drastic. It only took one hour for Els to be a 469/1 moon shot to winning his first major in God-knows-how-long.
And here’s the craziest part: the man had nothing to do with it.
Seriously, you can’t make this stuff up.