Caution is Advised As New Ratings for Bitcoin Sportsbooks are Released

As the World Cup knock-out round continues, gamblers are advised to be careful when it comes to choosing sportsbooks that use bitcoins. The anonymity that makes bitcoin so attractive to sports bettors also carries a risk; sportsbooks can easily vanish overnight and take its deposits with them. Peeps Place, the gold standard when it comes to rating bitcoin sportsbooks, says this is a dangerous point of time for sports bettors.

“The World Cup is the most popular time for hit and run books. After that it’s the Super Bowl. I’m not saying that the new kids on the block are necessarily bad books,” says the poster Peeps Place at Bitcointalk.org. “The odds say that some will be out of business shortly after the World Cup walking off with funds. This is not the time to test out new books.”

Anonibet, the oldest and most reputable of bitcoin books, keeps improving its game and maintains its A rating. Anonibet is now adding more betting options for Americans, including competitive lines for baseball and the WNBA. They recently became a Gold Member of the Bitcoin Foundation, a further sign that Anonibet is focusing on the long-term when it comes to the sportsbook business. Anonibet is celebrating the World Cup by offering a 22 bitcoin contest for its customers.

NitrogenSports remains the sole B rated book. Like Anonibet, Nitrogen is running a huge bitcoin contest for the World Cup, giving away 20 bitcoins over the duration of the tournament.

Casinobitco.in remains at C+ but may soon be joining Nitrogen Sports in the B category. A solid book since opening business in June 2013, the Panama-based Casinobitco.com offers competitive prices with a focus on American sports.

Complete ratings from Peeps Place:

“A” rated books
Anonibet A (in business since 2011)

“B”rated books
NitrogenSports B+ (2012)

“C” rated books
Casinobitcoin C+ (2013)
Cloudbet C+ (2013)
SBObitcoin C+ (2013)
DirectBet C (2013)
Betcoinsports C (2013)
Jetwin C- (2013)
BetOWI C- (2014)
Bitbm C- (2013)

“D” rated books
Coindraft D+ (2014)
Roadbet D+ (2012)
BetVIP D+ (2014)
Bitcoinlivebets D- (2013)

“F” rated books
BetCas F
Bitcoinsport F
Coinbet F
Sportbet.im F
StakeBTC

Reed Takes Three Shot Lead Into Final Round at Quicken Loans National

Patrick Reed had some struggles on Saturday, but rebounded late and took a three stroke lead heading into the final round of the Quicken Loans National at Congressional Country Club . On a day when only 31 players were not above par after Sunday, an even-par 71 Saturday gave Reed a three-shot lead at 6-under-par 207.

Reed goes into Sunday as +205 to win the tournament. His nearest competitor, Australian Marc Leishman, is +805. Reed had this to say in his press conference after Saturday’s round.

REED: That was one of those days that we were able to grind it out. It played tough. It seemed to get firmer and faster as the day went on, and you know, it was just a lot of adjusting you had to do during the round. You know, we handled it pretty well and luckily we have the lead going into tomorrow.

QUESTION: Three-for-three I think with a 54-hole lead or co-lead. What do you attribute your Sunday success to so far?
REED: Just staying patient. You can’t get ahead of yourself. If you think about having the lead or if you think about what you’re going to do coming down 18, you’re going to lose focus on the rest of the holes. I’m just going to go on the same mind-set I had all week and basically always; one shot at a time.

QUESTION: Without your record in front of me, I have an excellent chance of muffing this question up. But you seem to have — Greensboro was great and Hope, but it seems like there’s been some massive dips between wins. Obviously you had some, you know, a baby on the way. I don’t know what kind of distraction that was on the course, but could you talk about your striving to reach kind of a more consistent level of play and more of your great weeks?
REED: After we played Doral, I was more focused on making sure Justine was all right and making sure the baby was fine. You know, family comes first, so I was more focusing on that. So when I was on the golf course, I wasn’t 110 percent focused on what I was doing.

QUESTION: What was your practice like?
REED: I was still practicing hard. It’s just this game is, I believe, 50 percent mental as it is 50 percent, you know, physical. So it’s one of those things that you have to be completely into it and you know, I feel like now we’re playing some solid golf and I’m just kind of putting things together. You know, there’s a lot of spurts throughout after we had the baby of me playing well. It’s just, you know, there was just one thing missing. I do three of the four parts really well and just one was kind of lacking. I feel like now we’ve got it all wrapped around and we’re ready to go.

QUESTION: At a quick glance you’re only one of three guys this week to be able to shoot a round that’s not over par. We’ve heard all week that this is a difficult course. What do you think has — especially amongst the leaders today, what do you think has been the toughest part?
REED: Well, if you get in the rough, you’re going to struggle, because this rough is so thick. So you have to hit fairways. But even if you get a good lie in the rough, it’s just minimizing those errors on those risks. You get in the rough, you might have to play 40 feet away from the flag. You just have to, I mean, we don’t like to aim away from flags. So you just have to be disciplined enough to do it. This back nine today, we have had no rain, so it’s getting very firm and very fast. So there’s a lot of iron shots that I hit that I felt, you know, whether it was Thursday, Friday or even earlier in the week that would have stopped that just seemed to bound and just keep going. Those are things I just have to remember for tomorrow.

QUESTION: Given your respect, admiration for Tiger, does it put more pressure on you that this is his tournament and that he’ll be the guy giving you the trophy if you win, or can you put that out of your mind?
REED: I mean, honestly, that’s really the last thing on my mind. You know, the first thing on my mind is go home and see how my little baby girl is doing and then just get ready for tomorrow. If I start getting ahead of myself, then that’s when you’re going to make careless errors and that’s what that lead starts to shrink. I’m going to just focus on having a good night’s sleep, good warm up and that first tee shot.

QUESTION: Curious about what the reaction among your peers was, and maybe the funniest thing anybody said to you about your Doral comments; just kind of generally what you heard from guys out here, not from the public.
REED: Yeah, I mean, I haven’t had anything negative said from the guys out here. They all believe in themselves that they are one of the top players. You have to. You can’t play this game with lack of confidence. So just one of those things that, you know, we’re all trying to strive for the same thing, and some guys get there and that’s all we’re trying to do.

QUESTION: Justin Rose said a few minutes ago that he likes the firm and fast; that he hopes they don’t water down the course tomorrow and that if he had his druthers, it would be the same tomorrow. Your thoughts on that? Would you like the same difficult conditions?
REED: Oh, for sure. You know, the thing is, to be able to adapt to what happens. Whether it plays firm or fast or whether it plays wet and slow, you have to be able to adapt. You’re going to be able to notice when you step on the putting green what they did to the golf course. We’ll evaluate that tomorrow and have a good game plan.

QUESTION: I just asked Marc this, and you’re not in this position, but I was curious what that you had to say. If you were tied for second, would you rather be going into Sunday — would you rather be the last group in the leader or second-to-last group, an under-the-radar-type thing?
REED: You know, it’s always nice to be in the last group going into Sunday. I mean, if I were to choose, I’d definitely be in the last group.

QUESTION: If I’m not mistaken, you’re first in proximity to the hole this week. Can you at the point explain that? Have you made swing changes recently, or what do you think is the key behind being first in that category?
REED: I didn’t even know I was first in that category. I mean, I spent most of the time in the rough. I’m shocked I’m first in that category. I just feel like I’m in a good pattern with my golf swing. I’m confident in what we’re doing and what we’re working on in the swing, and I feel like I’m really staying in the moment and not getting ahead of myself and not moving too fast. I have a tendency of getting too quick, and just quickly pulling a club, and I feel like now we’re just kind of stepping back, taking a couple extra seconds and making sure we have the right decision and pulling the trigger.

QUESTION: Did any of the Top 5 fallout bother you at all, or were you okay with everything?
REED: No, I mean, I’m fine. Doesn’t bother me.

QUESTION: Your shot on 4, I wonder if you can tell us what club you hit and what your expectations were and, how utterly thrilled you were to see where it wound up.
REED: Yeah, I had that same yardage yesterday. I think it was around 169 flag. We were trying to fly it 159, which would have just carried the bunker just on the green. I was in between a full 9-iron and a soft 8, and out of the rough, normally it comes out slow. And so I was like, all right, you really have to swing hard at the nine, because I knew hitting something out of the rough is going to be coming out a little lower and there’s no chance of holding the green. I aimed just left of the bunker and opened up the face of that 9 and tried to swing as hard as I could and just tried to cut it a little bit to get some height. I honestly didn’t think — I thought there was about a three percent chance I could cover that bunker and I ended up being perfect. It was nice whenever I saw it roll up the hill and I saw it come back down because I thought, all right, we have about five, seven feet for birdie. Didn’t know it was a couple inches, which was nice.

QUESTION: And when you mentioned confidence a minute ago, which everyone has to have out here to survive, who do you consider, outside of yourself — so throw yourself out of this one. Do you have an idol in terms of utter confidence?
REED: Tiger. I mean, every time he walks, every time he speaks or anything he does on the golf course, he looks like he’s confident in himself and he works hard at it.

QUESTION: Have you talked to Tiger at all, had conversations with him? If so, what’s he said to you that’s been memorable?
REED: Honestly I really haven’t had the pleasure of sitting down and talking with Tiger. You know, that time will come. It’s just one of those things that when we are at the golf course, we are all business and we are all trying to work, so we are all trying to focus on with a we’re trying to do.

Anonibet Joins Bitcoin Foundation as Gold Member

Anonibet announced today that they have become a gold member of the Bitcoin Foundation,  an organization founded in September 2012 with the stated mission to “standardize, protect and promote the use of Bitcoin cryptographic money for the benefit of users worldwide.” The organization was modeled on the Linux Foundation and is funded mainly through grants made by for-profit companies that depend on the Bitcoin technology.

Anonibet sent out a press release with this news:

Anonibet, the oldest Bitcoin Sportsbook and Casino , is now a Gold member of the most recognized bitcoin hub, the Bitcoin Foundation. The move is not much of a surprise as Anonibet, which was founded in 2011 has been the standout leader in Bitcoin Sports Betting and Casino.

Since 2011, Anonibet has been a fervent believer and supporter of the Bitcoin, from the times when a Bitcoin was worth a fraction of the dollar, to the point where it was worth a more than a thousand, to now, where we still believe the currency of freedom will stand firm and liberate the way transactions are governed. The reason we have joined the Bitcoin Foundation is because we are grateful for the works that have been done by the Foundation since September 2012. When the foundation was formed, Anonibet had been in existence for 10 months and we are first hand evidence as to how the Foundation has changed the face of Bitcoin as we have been in the industry in the pre Bitcoin Foundation era. We are very much pleased in the way they have advocated and lobbied for the survival of the bitcoin. The Foundation has done a very remarkable job for the whole Bitcoin Industry therefore it is more than deserving for all the support we can give to it and we shall do as much as we can to make this Gold membership be a fitting example to all other Bitcoin Sportsbooks.

In as much as we are perceived to be on top, Anonibet is not stopping when it comes to improving and developing our service and we are working round the clock to provide a product that is subtle and can blend with the shine of the Bitcoin. We recently launched our Live Customer Support Service, and that has seen a major improvement in our customer relations. We are also proud to announce that our long awaited Affiliate Program has been launched few days ago therefore we urge all those with the desire and need to work with us to be ready to join us as we move on with the revolution.

Vegas Runner Leaves Pregame.com

Vegas Runner, aka John Karalis and one of the bigger dirtbags in the pick selling industry, has moved on to greener pastures. Or rather, from one cesspool to another. He announced on Twitter yesterday that he is leaving Pregame.com to go to another pick-selling site.

“Though I’m a shareholder of Pregame and am grateful for so much the past eight years there, I officially sent my letter of resignation,” said Vegas Runner on Twitter.

R.J. Bell, owner of Pregame, is not happy. “His actions violate his written agreement with us. That powerful fact is why I was skeptical of all the talk even when he started acting sketchy. This is a matter the lawyers will sort out,” said Bell.

Bell gave Vegas Runner a platform for eight years, ignoring and dismissing Vegas Runner’s past history of scamming his customers. Now he claims he was victimized as well.

“I defended Vegas Runner from non-stop attacks regarding his honesty. The baggage from his past always follows him – but he convinced me at a personal level that he valued the transparency and customer-focus Pregame.com demands. For him to move in the opposite direction of that now – back to his old ways – makes me feel like no less than a fool,” Bell said.

Left unsaid was an apology to his customers for Bell’s stamp of approval on Vegas Runner. Over the years, hundreds of thousands of dollars went from Pregame.com’s customers to Bell’s pockets, thanks to VR. Bell knew all about VR’s sordid past, and had no problems overlooking such schemes as long he profited from them. His claim of victimhood is laughable. The real victims are Pregame.com’s customers.

Rest assured, Pregame.com will survive the loss of Vegas Runner. Broke gamblers with a gift for gab are a dime a dozen. R.J. Bell will find a couple needing food on the table, create an impressive resume for the new handicappers, and turn the rodents loose onto his community. That’s how it works in the Pregame.com world.

Ronaldo Out: Portugal Suffers Yet Another Blow to World Cup Dreams

It wasn’t enough that Portugal got destroyed by Germany in their opening World Cup game. Now they have been dealt another blow after Cristiano Ronaldo limped out of practice with his knee heavily strapped in ice. He is expected to be out for the rest of the World Cup.

There already had been questions over Ronaldo’s fitness before the tournament. A pulled thigh muscle and tendonitis in his knee forced him to miss two warm-up matches last month.

Ronaldo declared himself healthy before Portugal’s opening 4-0 demolition at the hands of Germany but he was largely ineffective. He did, however, play the entire game.

It now looks like Ronaldo has suffered a recurrence of his injuries after receiving treatment during practice in Campinas.

Ronaldo was taken through a series of stretches before having his left knee bandaged with an ice pack and helped off the field 30 minutes before training finished. Ronaldo watched the rest of the session from the sidelines.

Portugal is already without defender Pepe. Pepe is facing a possible three-match ban for aggressively confronting Thomas Muller in the opening game.

Fellow defender Fabio Coentrao has been ruled out for the rest of the World Cup with a thigh injury while there are also injury questions over Hugo Almeida and Rui Patricio.

Portugal face the United States on June 22 in a must win game in Group G. The US defeatd Ghana 2-1; a win over Portugal will guarantee the US advancement out of the Group.

William Hill Sportsbook Refuses to Pay $55 Winning Wager, Citing Match Fixing.

William Hill’s reputation just keeps getting worse. A long time customer recently had his account suspended after he made a 100 Euro bet at -250 odds on a soccer game in Romania. The live wager bet, made at the 70 minute mark with the score 3-2, was on over 5.5 goals.

The bettor explains:

I bet on live market, over 5.5 @ 1.4 100 euro ( at 3-2 , min 70. final score was 4-2). I have placed many bets with William Hill so far. After the game ended, they gave me the winnings, 140 euro. 15 minutes after, they took the winnings back saying the match is investigated. And 2 days later they suspended my account.

William Hill sent the bettor an email, saying “I write to inform you that your William Hill account is currently suspended and your funds temporarily retained following bet(s) which were placed on the Football match between CS Rapid CFR Suceava and Unirea Tarlungeni, as this match is now under investigation by the relevant sporting body due to suspicious play and betting activity. Whilst I appreciate you may feel frustrated with this matter, our actions have been undertaken in strict accordance with the terms and conditions you agreed to upon registration.”

After the bettor followed up days later, he received this email from William Hill:

Unfortunately there is no further update. The matter has been reported to the various authorities concerned however until we hear back from them we will not be in a position to offer any refund of the monies or update your account status.

Regrettably these investigations do take some time and we have no influence as to how quickly they are resolved and in the meantime we are not updated as to progress. Whilst this may be difficult for the customer to deal with and to accept unfortunately there is no way we are able to release funds in such cases until we are informed that any investigation is complete and no suspicious betting was undertaken.

If you have further questions, please do not hesitate to email us. Alternatively, you may contact us through our Live Chat facility and we would be more than happy to discuss any issues or concerns that you have with our products and services.

Match-fixing is very real, and sportsbooks need to be on the lookout and protect themselves from these type of wrong-doers. But suspending all accounts who made wagers on the game, regardless of size of wager, shows an amazing lack of intelligence and judgement from a sportsbook.

Something is very wrong at William Hill, and gamblers should be careful about doing business there.