2013 WimbledonThere is no such thing as a ‘sure thing’ in sports.  Of course there are contests every week where everyone knows who will win… or at least who is supposed to win.  But the human factor comes into play as always and a championship player may show up for a match not exactly in championship form.

I mean, everyone has a bad day from time to time.  That’s life. It’s also one of the things that keeps wagering on sports an interesting form of entertainment.  If the outcomes were completely predictable it would take a lot of the fun out of sports.

Tennis legend Roger Federer went to Wimbledon recently and drew the 116th ranked player in the world of professional tennis, Sergiy Stakhovsky.  Did anyone pick Stakhovsky to actually beat the great Roger Federer?  Of course not, but he did.  It went 6-7, 7-6, 7-5 & 7.6 and Federer was gone from competition at Wimbledon for 2013.

If you think that Roger Federer was bummed out after the loss, listen to this.  According to Graham Sharpe, the media relations director for the giant sportsbook William Hill in London one of their ‘punters’ (that’s Brit for players) laid a whopping 100,000 Euro wager on Federer to win his opening match at 1/100.

In other words, the guy put up over $130,000 to win 1300 bucks!  Some probably thought that he was nuts…but then, when was the last time that Federer lost in the first round in a match as important as Wimbledon?  Over a decade… at least.

So the punter lost his 100,000 Euros and Roger went home. It’s kind of hard to argue with the logic of the wager.  After all, Roger Federer had made 36 quarterfinals appearances in grand slams in a row before running into Stakhovsky.

It was his first loss to a player ranked outside the top 100 since he lost to Richard Gasquet at Monte Carlo in 2005.

But wait folks, that’s not all.  In what was probably one of the wackiest days in Wimbledon history, seven (yes, that’s 7!) former number one seeds fell by the wayside as the underdogs prevailed time and time again.

Rafael Nadal and Maria Sharpova were two others who lost in the first round at 1-to-100 odds.  Jo-Wilfied Tsonga and Ana Ivanovic were also handed defeats by lesser ranked players.  Ivanovic was listed at -500 at match time but fell to 19 year old Canadian Eugene Bouchard in just 63 minutes.


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