Andy Murray’s stunning Wimbledon triumph may have hit bookmakers for £15 million, but there were few signs of profit warnings from the UK’s biggest listed layers today.
William Hill and Ladbrokes both saw their shares rise today despite a thumping yesterday after the 77-year wait for a British champion was ended. Ladbrokes shares gained 1.8p at 206.3p and William Hill were 4p better 461.8p. Only Paddy Power, which paid out £2 million after offering to return all losing bets in the event of a Murray win, saw its shares dip.
Ladbrokes said the triumph had cost bookmakers £15 million although a Hills spokesman said the company had taken a “small six-figure loss”.
Despite patriotic punters cashing in, gambling firms had reaped heavy profits in the first week of Wimbledon, through the shock early exits of Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer — which helped clear Murray’s half of the draw.
Hills landed a huge pay-off after one European punter risked £100,000 for a profit of just £1000 on Federer to beat Sergiy Stakhovsky. The seven-time winner lost in four sets. A spokesman said: “Until yesterday, we were having our best-ever Wimbledon. Serena Williams losing was also huge for us because everybody assumed she was unbeatable. As it is, we’ve got a small six-figure loss.”