Tuesday, 23 June 2015

Misc Systems Season Review 2014/15

The 3rd set of systems to review this Summer is the Misc Systems. As the name suggests, these systems are a bunch of misfits and were cobbled together at the start of the second season of the service to see if I could improve up on the returns on the other systems at the time, the Est Systems and the 3 New Systems (31-33). To recap, the systems are made up of:

6-32 – any bet that appears on system 6 and 32
21-31 – any bet that appears on system 21 and 31
6-21-31 – any bet that appears on system 6,21 and 31

The rationale for the 3 systems above was quite simple. It was another method to try to filter the bets on the higher turnover systems. Ideally, we would reduce the turnover, increase the ROI and we would have another system that could be followed.

The final 3 systems were a little bit different. These systems were based on a method known as a ‘Similar Game Method’ and simply involved building rules looking for particular types of bets. For example, backing the teams in 21st-24th place in League One every season when they play away from home is a profitable strategy. There are a whole host of rules I have built which are based on historical results which are profitable. When the bets were thrown up using these rules, the bets were then cross referred with either system 21, system 6-21 or system 31 and this created 3 new systems.

TOX – SGM bets which appeared on system 21
STOY – SGM bets which appeared on system 6-21
STOZ – SGM bets which appeared on system 31

If anyone looks closely, there will be the odd bet that appears on TOX for example that isn’t on system 21. It will be a bet where system 21 had it as value but the bet was dropped due to an odds restriction. Hence, it isn’t on 21 but is on TOX.

Again, the purpose of these 3 systems was to provide another slightly different method to cross refer the bets but of course, the correlation to systems 21,6-21 and 31 was basically 100%.

Over the first 3 seasons these 6 Misc systems were live, the results were:

As you can see above, 5 of the 6 Misc systems were actually very profitable over the first 3 seasons and although the results weren’t as impressive as some of my other systems, they were still very good. I took some additional comfort from the methods used to create these systems and for example, for one of the SGM systems to lose, they needed the underlying rules to lose as well as the system it was cross referred with losing. Hence, it sort of felt like these systems were a little protected from a downturn, more so than some other systems. Likewise, for systems 21-31 or 6-21-31 to lose badly, it needed two or three algorithms to perform badly. Given I had never had a losing algorithm over a season, surely I couldn’t hit 2 or 3 algorithms losing at once?

It’s always nice setting the scene, showing the thought that went into things and then boom, a season like last season comes along and the results for the 6 systems were:

I’ll start with the positives first. Systems 21-31 and 6-21-31 didn’t have a losing season even though systems 21 and 31 had a nightmare season. This shows the strength of cross referring systems and although these systems didn’t perform as well as the individual systems did during the good seasons, during a downturn, the cross referral of the systems has helped reduce losses. Therefore, the rationale for cross referring the systems was correct and therefore, in a season of few positives, anyone following these 2 systems did OK.

Ignoring that positive (says it all that just better than break-even over a season for a system in a positive!), we have the performance of the other 4 systems. I’ll deal with system 6-32 first.

A loss of 12.4pts isn’t a disaster but being honest, the system wasn’t doing that great coming into the season. Over 4 seasons now, the system has generated a profit of 8.3pts at an ROI of 0.9%. That’s nothing and put it down as one of the worst performing systems since inception of the service. This service will now be retired and we won’t see 6-32 in future. It isn’t any better than system 6 or system 32, so no point having it!

Right, the 3 SGM systems.

I’ll start with STOY. A loss of 13.3pts at an ROI of -3.7%. A poor season but given the previous results, it isn’t a disaster. The overall returns for the 4 seasons now stand at 68.4pts at an ROI of 5.6%. Hence, the system lost about 16% of the profits it had made previously which although disappointing, isn’t a disaster.

Unfortunately, the other two systems were a complete and utter disaster. TOX lost 28.7pts at an ROI of -7.2% and STOZ lost 41.8pts at an ROI of  -7.9%.

TOX is cross referred with system 21 and we know system 21 lost 1.5% last season, so the SGM system rules made things much worse. The same is true for STOZ as we know that system 31 lost 2.6% and therefore, the SGM rules have had a nightmare.

I don’t have time at this moment in time to run through all the rules and check the individual P&Ls but I think it’s probably not too surprising. We already know last season wasn’t like the previous 4 seasons in terms of the results for my ratings and given my ratings are based on historical results, it all points to last season’s results being a little bit different from previous seasons. Of course, one issue with using a SGM approach is that if something changes and the historical results aren’t an indicator of future results, then an SGM approach will really suffer. Probably more so than my ratings as my ratings are much smarter than just applying basic rules based on historical trends and results.

Being honest, I had never really thought about this until I spent time looking at the SGM results but in a way, I quite like the fact these systems have bombed massively last season now. Yes, it’s cost me a small fortune (I followed STOY) but it sort of helps me understand why my ratings struggled so badly last season. It’s impossible for me to exactly pinpoint where it went wrong last season (we know it wasn’t the underlying results as the number of Aways/Wins/Draws was in tolerance) but clearly, something happened last season that hasn’t happened previously.

I guess the question for all of us and what we want to know is will next season follow last season and we’ll lose again or will it revert back to the long-term trend?

I’m not really ripping into the systems here as although they created massive losses and performed miserably, I sort of understand why. Systems and ratings are only as good as the data they are based on and if something material changes in the data, the systems and ratings will fall into a hole.

I will obviously rebuild the SGM rules which will hopefully help the performance of these systems in future but I now have my own reservations with these systems now. If we can’t be confident that the past will help predict the future, then the first systems that will fail are the SGM systems I suspect. After last season, I would be worried about following these systems blindly in future although if we see last season as a blip, then there are no worries.

This review is fairly short but anyone who wants to play around with the performance by league etc. can do so in the spreadsheet I provided.

Here’s the updated results for all 6 systems after 4 live seasons of results:

Summer actions – System 6-32 is now retired. I will rebuild the SGM rules for the 3 SGM systems but apart from this, I think it’s a case of waiting to see what happens next season. I wouldn’t touch 21-31 or 6-21-31. I think both these systems are now two of the strongest systems I have as they have never had a losing season even though last season was a disaster! If they can get through last season without a loss, I suspect they can get through any season without a loss! 

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