Bookies set to have to pay out $1 million if Eels take title
By Dean Ritchie
Have got the bookies running scared…the resurgent Parramatta Eels. Picture: Mark Evans Source: The Daily Telegraph
TERRIFIED bookmakers throughout Australia are bracing for a staggering $10 million payout if the surging Parramatta Eels can continue their stirring run and take out this year’s NRL premiership.
The Daily Telegraph can reveal TAB Sportsbet alone would be forced to outlay a whopping $2.5 million with an Eels Grand Final triumph.
“Parramatta would be a catastrophic result for us,” said TAB Sportsbet media liaison manager Matt Jenkins. “They are far and away our worst result if they win the competition.”
Betchoice last night admitted it was facing a $1 million payout for a Parramatta win with CEO Mark Morrissey claiming: “Over the last month in particular, Parramatta has become the punters’ favourite.”
Parramatta have roared in from $101 to $11 in just four weeks, according to TAB Sportsbet.
“Whether we put up markets just to make the Grand Final or to win the Grand Final, the punters keep coming for them,” Morrissey said.
“If Parramatta win the Grand Final, we will pay out $1 million, along with St George Illawarra.”
The TAB also claims it will be forced to pay out $1.5 million if Wests Tigers claim the title.
Coach Tim Sheens’ side was $151 in round 16 but are now into $17 following six consecutive victories.
Centrebet owner Con Kafataris said his organisation would also lose a cool $1 million if Daniel Anderson’s Eels can win their first premiership in 23 years.
“I won’t be cheering for them,” Kafataris said.
Wests Tigers got out to $151 at the same time in 2005 - the season they stormed home to take the premiership.
Parramatta will start favourites for Friday night’s blockbuster against their western Sydney rivals at the SFS when TAB Sportsbet releases its markets this morning.
“Wests Tigers are one of the form sides of the competition,” said Jenkins.
"But Parramatta has strung together five straight wins. We don’t want either side to win the competition, particularly Parramatta.
"Not many teams like Wests Tigers have been $151 and still been around come finals time.
"They were the same price in 2005.
"There is something funny about that. But the Tigers do have three tough games to finish off the season with."
Wests Tigers chief executive Stephen Humphreys said: “We got to $151 in the depths of some poor form but the odds now reflect our good performances.”
Smells like it doesn’t it …