A plucky gambler winning streak finally came to and end after Roger
Federer beat previously unbeaten Novak Djokovic in the French Open semi-finals
The anonymous 33-year-old had put together a 26-bet unbroken run
that bookies believe is a world record, turning an initial stake of £8,500 into
£161,000 over less than two months despite
restricting himself to bets that carry only tiny risks.
But having staked £120,000 on Djokovic to beat Federer at odds of
1/3, the man dubbed "Dead Cert Man" by bookies William Hill finally
saw his streak come to an end.
Orginally just backing Djokovic to beat Federer, the man later
returned to the shop to add Rafael Nadal to beat Andy Murray at odds of 1/6,
making it a win double (at odds of 11/20), potentially returning a profit of £66,000
had both Djokovic and Nadal been victorious.
The man, who prior to the bet vowed to make it his last bet
regardless of the outcome, stood to make £210,000 had the bet come off but has
still made £40,000 despite the most recent loss.
"The gambler, who appeared as if from
nowhere on March 27, and placed his first bet of £8400, has staked a total of
£1.8million during the course of his incredible winning run. The great majority
of his bets have been on tennis - most of them involving Djokovic - but he has
also gambled successfully on Boxing, Cage Fighting - and, bizarrely enough,
Curling," said Hill's spokesman Graham Sharpe.
"He has built up a relationship with
staff in the shop over the last nine weeks or so and they say he is in his
thirties, speaks with a French accent, and intends to use his money to go
towards buying a house," added Sharpe.
"He also told them that this would be
his final bet, win or lose. We rather hope he may reconsider as we stand to
lose at least £40,000 even if his last bet is a loser!"
Nadal delivered the required win but Djokovic went down in four
sets to Federer.
Most of his early bets were been straightforward: he landed nearly
£1,500 on a first round treble of Novak Djokovic (at 1/14 on), Rafael Nadal (1/20)
and Roger Federer (1/33) all to win their first-round matches at the Miami
Masters in March, and scooped £6,000 by backing boxer Nathan Cleverly (pictured right) at odds
of 1/16 on to beat a no-hoper who was a late replacement for original opponent
But the streak had not come without its sticky moments; just last week at the French Open Dead Cert Man backed Rafael Nadal against John
Isner, only for the American to take Nadal to five sets at Roland Garros for
the first time in his career.
In-form Maria Sharapova also gave him a scare as she trailed
unheralded Caroline Garcia by a set and 4-1 in the French Open second round before coming back to win.
The punter - who turns up in a tracksuit every day to a
central London branch of the bookmaker - always reinvested his cash, and had suggested
that he could be determined to keep on going until he reached £1 million.