//Bookmaker pays out for wrong election bet

Bookmaker pays out for wrong election bet

Scott Morrison and his familyImage copyright

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Sportsbet had predicted that Prime Minister Scott Morrison would lose the election

An Australian betting company has paid out for the wrong result in the country’s elections.

Sportsbet handed out more than A$1m (£540,000) to those who thought that the opposition Labor Party would win, two days before Saturday’s vote.

Polls had widely predicted a Labor win for the first time in six years.

But with most of the votes counted, Prime Minister Scott Morrison, a conservative, is projected to win a shock majority.

The betting company told its followers that it has now also paid out money to those who predicted that Scott Morrison’s Liberal-National would win.

As the results came in, Sportsbet took to social media to share the blunder.

Sportsbet spokesman Richard Hummerston told the Sydney Morning Herald newspaper: “Seventy per cent of the cash staked before the early payout had come for Labor, our punters called the election early.

“We thought we’d simply give them their cash early.”

Bookmakers often pay out early if they are certain of the result. In some cases where they are sure of the result, they pay out to avoid more people putting on bets.

It’s not the first time a bookmaker has paid out early.

Paddy Power, an Irish bookmaker, paid out on a Hillary Clinton win the month before the November 2016 elections.

It said it paid out $1m (£786,290) early to those who bet on Clinton and $4.5m to those who bet on Donald Trump.