# Field Theory by Hadyn Green

7

### So who ya got?

I know that deep down none of you really actually care about sport. Really you're all just heartless result-junkies just waiting for the next score, hoping for some hot tip to run with back to your filthy opium-riddled gambling dens. You sicken me.

But what can I say, I ‘m a pusher: who wants a hot tip?

Offlode is the analytics company that brought us the very interesting study into the relative evenness of various competitions around the world. During the Super 14 they were sending me some very interesting spreadsheets. They were full of predictions for games based on previous performances (I know it's not the greatest measure).

But the thing about their lodeings is that they get better over time. So by the end of that particular competition they were able to do some very fine grained predictions. Perfect stuff to pop down to the TAB with. In fact I was I doing very well in the office sweeps until I started going out for a drink instead of sending in my picks.

For the Tri-Nations Offlode have been adding TAB odds into their calculations as a proxy for the intuition of rugby fans (there are problems with this as I'm sure you can see). And so last week Offlode predicted the All Blacks to win with a 58 percent chance or rather to score 58 percent of the points, which is how their system works. As it was the 22-16 score line meant the All Blacks scored 57.8 percent of the points.

This week isn't looking so good. Offlode has the All Blacks with a 35 percent chance of winning and they agree with the TAB's odds of a 6-point Springbok victory.

Provided South Africa aren't paying somewhere between \$1.48 and \$1.58, then our confidence interval for the margin is above 6. This would suggest that taking South Africa at the line (-6.5) isn't a bad bet. Importantly, [the data] shows that if South Africa are favourites with the Bookies, our model also has them as favourites (although there isn't any meaningful overlay). Worst case scenario from a South African perspective is when their odds are around the 1.50 mark, but even then they are expected to win.

Bugger, eh?

### 7 responses to this post

• But what can I say, I 'm a pusher:

or entertainment reporter.

raglan • Since Mar 2007 • 1881 posts Report Reply

• So what was the score - 28-19 or something (I was busy with Tour de France instead)? That means the All Blacks got 40% of the points compared to the prediction of 35% - that's not a bad prediction at all.

Wellington • Since Sep 2008 • 54 posts Report Reply

• The Unnatural Pause

Following Sacha's suggestion I thought I'd better come and post about the Rugby. It's my thinking that mid second half we were looking pretty good until Pow stopped everything so he could arrange and rearrange the line. Momentum was slaughtered for what looked like an AB photo shoot. Satisfied the line had that look, he made the pass (not the best pass he's ever made). Possession was lost, a bit of this and that and Boks scored.

End of game.

Offlode had seen it all before the lads had so much as laced up their boots.

Te Ika-a-Māui • Since Mar 2008 • 2281 posts Report Reply

• Yeah Piri, what the fuck man? You used to be cool.

Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2090 posts Report Reply

• Yeah Piri, what the fuck man?

Yeah, while that was a fairly shoddy piece of work, I don't think you can blame the whole thing on him.

Welly • Since Jul 2008 • 1275 posts Report Reply

• Well, not the whole thing, just the loss of momentum, the poor pass and then the recovery and subsequent pass to McCaw. But yeah...Otherwise I felt pretty optimistic by our performance I was expecting much much worse, that second half comeback showed potential. What's Offlode saying about the next match?

Te Ika-a-Māui • Since Mar 2008 • 2281 posts Report Reply

• What's Offlode saying about the next match?

I imagine I'll find out on Friday

Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 2090 posts Report Reply

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