Mystery punter close to 'gold cash'

SEAMUS BOYER
Last updated 05:00 11/08/2012

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A mystery Kiwi punter who placed an Olympic multi-bet before the start of the Games will bank more than $130,000 if a "sure thing" comes in tomorrow.

The unknown punter placed $5600 on the outcomes of 10 events at London 2012, with nine correct so far.

They range from Great Britain's Jessica Ennis winning the women's heptathlon, to New Zealand rowers Hamish Bond and Eric Murray gaining gold in the men's pairs.

While the bet had already earned the punter an unknown return, it will be a clean sweep if the much-fancied United States win the women's basketball gold medal against France. The match starts at 8am tomorrow.

TAB sports bookmaker Paul Maoate said the bet was a "box multi" made up of 56 $100 bets, and would earn $134,000 if the US won.

A $10 "multi" on the same selections would return $239.

While odds had not been set for tomorrow's match, the US would be "very, very hot favourites", Mr Maoate said.

"I would be surprised if they were anything much more than $1.01."

They were paying $1.10 when the bet was placed.

The team has won 39 Olympic matches in a row, collecting four consecutive gold medals along the way.

"It's looking pretty good; I think [a win] will go pretty nicely with his or her bacon and eggs."

It was not known who the punter was or where they came from, Mr Maoate said.

Figures for the Olympics were yet to be gathered but there had clearly been a lot of interest.

"Outside of the rowers, Valerie Adams had a huge amount of backing, and I can tell you that she did us a bit of a favour," he said.

"But Mahe Drysdale . . . was very much the backers' friend."

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- The Dominion Post

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