Bookmaker pays early on Abbott victory

Kevin Rudd
Kevin Rudd

Betting agency sportsbet.com.au has declared the election over, paying out A$1.5 million in bets on the Coalition.

"As far as Sportsbet's betting markets are concerned, the Abbotts can start packing up their belongings ahead of their imminent move to Kirribilli House," agency spokesman Haydn Lane said. "The Coalition are now into Black Caviar-like odds to win the election."

The agency priced the Coalition at $1.03 with Labor at $11.50.

Betting markets have been a good predictor of election results.

In 2010, 147 favourites out of 150 in Sportsbet electorate markets went on to win the seat.

But Prime Minister Kevin Rudd said that since the Melbourne Cup began in the 1860s, the race favourite had only won about 35 times.

He said former Liberal leader John Hewson led in the polls in 1993 and was regarded as a shoo-in, but lost the election.

Tony Abbott said of the bookmakers: "More fool them."

Abbott was media adviser to Hewson in 1993.

"I once worked for an opposition that was careering towards the inevitable victory - and it didn't happen. [It's] proof that there is no such thing as an unlosable election and I think this election is very, very tight."

- AAP

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