Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 21 October 2014

The Punter: Bets that are out of this world

Tottenham Hotspur manager Harry Redknapp

The figure one will be an understandably prominent feature of the New Year which is about to dawn.

Spurs habitually win something in a year that ends in numero uno and so their fans and manager Harry Rednapp will be more than optimistic of silverware coming to White Hart Lane in 2011, especially in view of how the team is performing.

But it is one date in particular that will have the superstitious among us looking for something out of the ordinary to happen.

And that, of course, is 11/11/11.

There’s little point in seeking odds on the world to end because, if it does, would you be around to collect?

But there will still be those looking for a punt (500-1) on it happening — there always is!

Paddy Power have wasted little time in getting off the starting blocks in creating some sort of market centred around this singular date.

Believe it or not, the 100-1 about extraterrestrial life being confirmed is not as bizarre as at first seems, although for it to be announced on that specific day is asking a lot and it must also be done by the President of the United States.

On second thoughts, 100-1 does look skinny, although there is a better chance of that than an alien ET being announced any time next year at a paltry 20-1.

However, scientists are becoming more and more convinced that Mars houses some form of life after meteorites thought to be from the planet were discovered to contain microbial fossils — which, as you’re doubtless aware, points to the existence of life.

If it is confirmed, then that surely has to constitute extraterrestrial beings?

Still on spacial matters, it is 250-1 for the earth to be hit by asteroid 2005 YU55 which is one and a half million miles away and supposedly heading towards us.

But even if it does come our way, it is not expected for another 100 years, so no need to worry about a celestial bump in our lifetime.

A bug emerging to bring down the world’s computer systems is quoted at 500-1 to be ratified by Microsoft and Apple — but that, too, is highly unlikely.

Paddy Power betting: Events to happen on 11/11/11.

Singles only: Extraterrestrial life to be confirmed :100-1.

Asteroid 2005 YU55 to hit Earth: 250-1.

Millennium style bug to crash the world's computer systems: 500-1.

World to end: 500-1.

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