Thu, Apr 6, 4:18pm by Staff Writer
When news broke on Tuesday afternoon that a trio of Penrith’s best players would not be pulling the boots on against the Rabbitohs on Friday night, you’d think that the bookies would have to hastily make the adjustments to the market.
Well, you’d be wrong, because many of them had already made the changes, some two hours earlier. The NRL team lists were announced at around 3pm on Tuesday, but the bookies obviously knew something was up.
At the start of the day on Tuesday, the Panthers were around the $1.30 mark. Then, at around 1pm, that quote was changed to $1.65, two hours before the Penrith club had announced the big changes to their side.
Those big changes are that skipper Matt Moylan, Waqa Blake and Peta Hiku will not be playing due to a club-imposed ban, for breaking curfew following last weekend’s loss in Melbourne.
Dylan Edwards, Michael Oldfield and Malakai Watene-Zelezniak have been included in a make-shift Panthers backline, which is also missing Tyrone Peachey through injury.
The suggestion is that the that bookmakers were the aware of the announcement before it was made and made changes to their markets accordingly.
There is no suggestion at this stage that any canny punters had traded on inside information and backed the struggling Rabbitohs for Friday night’s clash at Pepper Stadium. The NRL are waiting to hear if there was any suspicious wagering on the clash.
Of course, gambling is an area which has already caused the league issues this season, with Wests Tigers fullback Tim Simona deregistered for betting on matches last month.
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