By this stage, we should have a selection system and we should also be able to calculate its strike rate.

However, the acid test of any selection system is its profitability.

So, how do we calculate whether a selection system is likely to be profitable or not in the long term?

To calculate whether or not a laying selection system is profitable in the long term, we need two pieces of information: The first is the selection system’s strike rate and the second is the average odds of the losing bets.

Let us assume that the laying system’s strike rate is 80%.

This means that, on average, out of every 100 selections, 80 will lose and 20 will win.

In order for the system to break even, the profit on the 80 winning bets must equal the loss on the 20 losing bets.

Now, if each selection is layed using a fixed stake of £1, the gross profit on the 80 winning bets will be £80.

However, if the bets are placed on a betting exchange, 5% commission will be paid, on each winning bet, to the exchange. The commission paid on the 80 winning bets will be 80 x 5/100 = 4. Therefore, £4 will be paid in commission on the 80 winning bets to the betting exchange. This will leave a net profit of £80 - £4 = £76.

In order to break even, the loss on the 20 losing bets must equal £76.

Therefore, the average loss per bet must be equal to 76/20 = £3.80.

For an average of £3.80 to be lost per bet using stakes of £1, the average odds of the 20 losing bets must be 3.8/1 (fractional odds) or 3.8 + 1 = 4.8 (decimal odds).

If the average odds of the losing bets of a laying system with a strike rate of 80% is equal to 3.8/1 (fractional odds) or 4.8 (decimal odds), then the system will break even because the losses and profits will be equal.

If the average odds of the losing bets of the laying system is greater than 3.8/1 (fractional odds) or 4.8 (decimal odds), then the system will be unprofitable because the losses will exceed the winnings.

If the average odds of the losing bets of the laying system is less than 3.8/1 (fractional odds) or 4.8 (decimal odds), then the system will be profitable because the winnings will exceed the losses.

The above assumes that we are using a fixed stakes staking plan. If we are using any other staking plan, then the above will not be true.

Using the above method, if we know the strike rate of a laying system and the average odds of the losing bets, we can determine whether or not the system is likely to be profitable, long-term.

To calculate whether or not a backing selection system is profitable, again we need the system’s strike rate and the average odds of the winning bets.

Let us assume that the backing system’s strike rate is 20%. This means that out of every 100 selections, 80 will lose and 20 will win.

In order for the system to break even, the profit on the 20 winning bets must equal the losses on the 80 losing bets.

Now, if each selection is backed using a fixed stake of £1, the losses on the 80 losing bets will be £80.

To break even therefore, the profit on the 20 winning bets must be £80.

This means that, on average, 80/20 (= £4.00) per bet must be won.

For this to occur, the average odds of the winning bets must be 4/1 (fractional odds) or 5.0 (decimal odds).

However, if the bets are placed on a betting exchange, 5% commission will be levied, on each winning bet, by the exchange. Therefore, we must increase the average odds of the winning bets by 5% to allow for the commission payments.

An effective way of performing this is to multiply by 1.05.

Therefore, the average odds of the winning bets must be 4/1 x 1.05 ( = 4.2/1) (fractional odds) or 5.2 (decimal odds).

If the average odds of the winning bets of a backing system with a strike rate of 20% are equal to 4.2/1 (fractional odds) or 5.2 (decimal odds), then the system will break even because the losses and profits will be equal.

If the average odds of the winning bets of the backing system is greater than 4.2/1 (fractional odds) or 5.2 (decimal odds), then the system will be profitable because the profits will exceed the losses.

If the average odds of the winning bets of the backing system is less than 4.2/1 (fractional odds) or 5.2 (decimal odds), then the system will be unprofitable because the losses will exceed the winnings.

Using the above method, if the strike rate of a backing system and the average odds of the winning bets are known, we can determine whether or not the system is likely to be profitable in the long-term.