Sunday, October 24, 2021



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Sunday, October 14, 2012

X Factor Voting Bias - Follow Up

It seems producers of The X Factor have read this post and done something about it. The voting has been changed to open before the first act sings. I probably can't take full credit for this but I think it's a positive change. So far the acts singing last and second last have been voted out so maybe it's now had the opposite effect. Only time will tell.

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Monday, September 17, 2012

Season 2011-2012

Partially due to the previous season and mainly due to the Gambling Commission's rules, number of teams was limited to 60 + 1 free team in Sun Dream Team this season. There were no mini league prizes but a huge number of prizes available for finishing in the top 100. Given my previous record I decided this was doable so gave it a shot by myself spending the maximum £250. As well as the season long prizes (which I won none of) there were prizes over 30 weekends for the top 100 in Weekend Dream Team. 3 extra players had to be added to the team and a star man selected for double points. This took a good 2 hours every Friday night for all my teams but I figured it would be worth it in the long run. I seem to remember only winning 1 (£100) in the first 13 weekends and getting slightly worried my "investment" would be a bad one but then I went onto a winning run and finished the season with £900 becoming the equal most winningest manager for the Weekend Dream Team season. 3rd place was the best I got as the top prize (£1000) evaded me but I was pleased to be back at the top of the game in that respect. In the final season of You The Manager in the Mirror, there was a £1000 prize for coming last over the season. With there being 30 transfers over the season, this was tricky. I put £19 into this game 2 for the top and 2 for the bottom. One of the bottom teams was ended up being in the running on the final day of the season. I had thought I had it won by injury time when Man City needed 2 goals to deny me victory. This was of course the most incredible ending to a Premier League season ever. Man City scored 2 goals in injury time against QPR winning them the title and leaving me very excited and then a bit peeved that I had no longer won outright. I was now tied at the top winning £500 which was still a great result. Another profitable and fun season of fantasy football. Note - I had 13 teams in the Euro 2012 Dream Team and did rubbish!

Season 2010-2011 The End

So after many discussions between the syndicate, Dream Team management and £300 per hour lawyers, the final decision was not to proceed any further and accept 2nd place in the mini leagues. Writing this a number of months after means this lacks details but the moral victory was ours in the end. Since this controversy there have been no prizes for mini leagues, presumably due to the obvious domination of syndicates and there being no way around the rule breaking of others. This also meant the end to my participation in the syndicate so I was going it alone again for 2011/12. Working in a team was good experience and hard work but enjoyable. We achieved a decent profit and moral victory despite slight disappointment at the end and would be something i'd do again if the situation was right.

Monday, December 12, 2011

X Factor Voting Bias

I've just done a nice bit of analysis on the X Factor results for 2011 series and it seems the best way to guarantee a path to the next show is to sing just before the phone lines open. They currently open after the last act has finished performing, so it is fresh in the memory for the public voting who may have missed the first half of the show. In fact only 2 acts (Kitty x 2 and Misha) who sung in the 2nd half of a show ended in the bottom 2 in the entire series!

Week 1 (Judges vote) Amelia 1st on, Jonjo, 2 Shoes and James 2nd on
Week 2 (12) Nu Vibe 1st on, Frankie 5th on
Week 3 (11) Sami 3rd on, Kitty 7th on
Week 4 (10) Sophie 3rd on, Misha 5th on
Week 5 (9) Johnny 1st on, Risk 4th on, Kitty 6th on
Week 6 (7) Kitty 1st on, Misha 6th on
Week 7 (6) Craig 1st on, Amelia 3rd on
Week 8 (5) Janet 2nd on, Misha 3rd on
Week 9 (4) Misha 1st on
Week 10 (3) (Voting commenced from the start of the show) Amelia last on

In 5 of the 8 weeks the vote was done that way, the act singing 1st was in the bottom 2 (or 3 as in week 5). To make it fairer phone lines should be open from the start of the programme (as they now do with Eurovision). They did this with the final, but with lines only being open for a short period the person singing last went out (which may have been a coincidence) but it would have been fairer if lines had been open a full day as with other shows.

The trend is not a new one but it is time the voting changed. ITV and Simon Cowell need to look at this to make the voting fairer in the future.

Finally, it was a clever move by producers to make "Cannonball" the winner's song as the original reached number 9 in the charts after being sung well in the auditions by maths teacher John Adams. People will already have bought the original therefore eliminating the threat of the original beating it in the charts.

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Sunday, July 17, 2011

Softball 2011

9th July saw the 5th Annual Softball tournament with work and a load of other professionals from Huddersfield. It has now been moved from June in an attempt to avoid rain. This didn't work.

We started off well with 3 home runs from the first 3 hits.Then we managed 2 run outs from the same ball. Being an experienced softballer, I am fully aware that I am quite rubbish so instead of going for slog shots, I now know to take advantage of the field. Literally. It is quite easy to hit it so I edge it behind me where there are no fielders and long grass. This worked perfectly. I did it, ran, and instantly fell over. I looked quite silly but still got to 2nd base due to my genius plan. I got 2 not out in this game which we won comfortably.

In our 2nd game it had just begun to rain when it started. The whistle went as it was too wet to continue, but both teams wanting to win continued anyway. It was only a bit of drizzle. Soon after it thundered and got rather heavy, but we hadn't batted yet. So we did. It was close. I clinched the winning run after another tickle into the long grass. So that was it, game over. Then the rain stopped. Typical.

We then had a quiz due to the shortened softball competition. We won the quiz with 44 out of 50 with the nearest to us getting 38. 10 on a team and the odd phone helped but it was just for fun anyway. We also were joint winners at softball so had a tie break question. How many islands make up Fiji? We said 550, the other team said 1. The answer was 322 so we won the shield and £10 M&S voucher each. Well done to Adeel, Cheryl, James, Rhys (James' mate), Anton, Tom, Georgina, Andrew and Darren for being on our winning team.

I then decided to go home on the motorway. I soon found myself heading for Lancashire realising I you can't go East on the M62 from Junction 23. It was a nice sunset over the hills anyway!

March - May 2010-11 Update

The syndicate had two teams with a 40 point lead in the seasonal mini leagues at the end of March but the teams were simply not strong enough and lost ground and ended up 3rd and 5th. That is still another £2000 to the prize pot which totalled £12,500 for the season from an approximate investment of £4250. All this is split between 17 and that should be season over.

Except it isn't. Look out for future updates!

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Jan, Feb Update

In January one of my own December leagues came 2nd in the weekly mini leagues just scuppered by a Torres (Liverpool) goal. The week after, one of my November leagues came third onlyscuppered by a Bradley Johnson (Leeds) goal. The following week I had the best individual team of the week though not picked by myself. Sadly they stopped prizes for that this year. We did win another weekly prize of £2k in early February which is now split between 16 as one member of the syndicate has pulled out. I've also stuck another £5 of teams in.

With regard to the seasonal leagues, we now has 7 in the top 75 and are currently first and third. Fingers crossed it stays like that but there's still three months to go which is a long time in any game.

Saturday, January 08, 2011

Hodgson Leaves Liverpool

Liverpool are on the worst points total since the 1950's have parted company with manager Roy Hodgson. They are on 25 points in 12th place and into the knockout stages of the Europa League. Last year Hodgson led Fulham to the final of the Europa league, 12th in the league (from 7th the year before) and was on 27 points at this time last year. He was awarded manager of the year for this.

The side he inherited went from 2nd to 6th in the previous season clearly on a downward spiral. He is on a par with how he did when he was the best manager in the league and now seen as the worst manager for the job. He has now been replaced by (Liverpool legend) Kenny Dalglish who has not managed in England since 1998. I could compare this to Stan Ternant being out of management for three years before he took the Huddersfield job and never got settled but it seems a little unfair.

A recent study has shown that a manager change brings an extra 2.5 points in the short term but leaves a club worse off in the long term. My point is that if Hodgson had been given time to rebuild the squad then they should start performing him soon to try and keep their places in the team. It is the players that have let the manager down and in my opinion they will still struggle to finish in the top half this season unless the players start trying more.

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2010 Into 2011

2010 was a quiet year. Everything that happened has pretty much been on here. Maybe 2011 will be a year for making things happen rather than letting than letting them happen.

Thanks to Sarah and John for hosting a great New Years party. I drove but did this not spoil the enjoyment of the night and seeing all the old friends and some new ones too.

On Wednesday I went round to see Rosie and Raff and new baby Emma. I sat down and Rosie's dad handed me the baby. She didn't cry, be sick or fall off me so I did ok there for the first time I've held a baby.I'm less scared of them now!