Gambler says he was shortchanged $8,000 on PlayNow sports bets
Published Tuesday, November 10, 2015 8:50AM PST Last Updated Monday, November 23, 2015 12:03PM PST
A Langley man is suing the B.C. Lottery Corporation for more than $8,000, claiming that he was shortchanged on a recent PlayNow bet.
On August 1st, Greg Butchart gambled on the Toronto Blue Jays to win the American League East and the New York Yankees to get wildcard berth in the playoffs.
“That was made at the time when we picked up Troy Tulowitzki and David Price for the Blue Jays,” Butchart said.
Over the next three days he put down a total of $275 on that same bet. He estimated that based on the odds it should have paid out more than $12,000. But 10 days after placing the bet and after the Jays had won several games; he got a notice from the B.C. Lottery Corporation telling him the bet was not compliant because it was a correlated bet.
That means the parlay bet was highly connected because the outcome of one game would directly affect the outcome of the other. If the Jays won the AL East, which they did, it would be more likely that the Yankees could secure a wildcard berth, which they did. The bet should not have been allowed.
“It’s really unfortunate and we apologize to our players,” Laura Piva- Babcock of BCLC told CTV News.
B.C.L.C. rules clearly state that if errors are made the bet can be canceled or resettled at different odds.
The Lottery Corporation honored Butchart’s bet -- but at lower odds. He says he could have accepted the mistake if they had canceled the bet the next day but wonders why it took more than a week for them to notify him.
B.C.L.C. also accepted nine other correlated bets that Butchart had placed and took his money on those losing bets. However, the Lottery Corporation told us it would have changed the odds on those too, if he had won.
Simon Fraser University statistician, Richard Lockhart, told CTV News that tweaking bets after games have been played doesn’t look good because players can lose confidence in system.
“We do take action. We deal with the players whenever there is a situation like this,”Piva -Babcock added.
The B.C.L.C. admits that there have been problems with PlayNow sports betting and is reviewing its systems. Babcock says more than 700,000 sports bet were placed in the last year and the sheer volume means things can be overlooked with live events.
BCLC is also reaching out to Paddy Power in Ireland, the company that is contracted to manage sports betting on PlayNow, to address oversight issues.
Butchart has filed a small claims action to recover what he calls, the rest of his winnings.