Labouchere (aka Labby)

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Labouchere is a progressive money management system that allows you to make a profit even if you win less than 50% of your sports bets. If you are completely new to Labby, a good place to get started is here.

To see how it works, let’s look at some examples.

Let’s assume that you have a total bankroll of $10,000, which makes your first betting block $2,500. If you’re new to establishing betting blocks, see Bankroll Management.

Since Labouchere is a progressive betting system, you increase the size of the wagers after a loss. A good starting bet is 2% of your betting block. Thus, if your betting block is $2,500, your first wager is $50 ($2,500 x 0.02). If using flat bets, I would recommend betting 5% of your betting block.

Since we use the outside two numbers for wagers, each unit is $25. The first Labouchere line looks like this:

      Line 1: 25-25-25-25 (Win)

You win game 1, so you cross off the two outside numbers (see Line 2 below). The wager for Game 2 remains at $50 (the sum of the two outside numbers).


      Line 2: x-25-25-x (Loss)

You lose Game 2, so you add $50 to the end of Line 2. The wager for Game 3 is now $75 (the sum of the two outside numbers).


      Line 3: x-25-25-x-50 (Win)

You win Game 3, so you cross off the two outside numbers. There is only 1 number left so you start over for Line 4. Final Labouchere line is x-x-25-x-x. The wager for Game 4 is $50 (the sum of the two outside numbers).
      Line 4: 25-25-25-25 (Loss)

You lose Game 4, so you add $50 to the end of Line 4. The wager for Game 5 is now $75 (the sum of the two outside numbers).
      Line 5: 25-25-25-25-50 (Loss)

You lose Game 5, so you add $75 to the end of Line 5. The wager for Game 6 is now $100 (the sum of the two outside numbers).
      Line 6: 25-25-25-25-50-75 (Win)

You win Game 6, so you cross off the two outside numbers. The wager for Game 7 is $75 (the sum of the two outside numbers).
      Line 7: x-25-25-25-50-x (Loss)

You lose Game 7, so you add $75 to the end of Line 7. The wager for Game 8 is now $100 (the sum of the two outside numbers).
      Line 8: x-25-25-25-50-x-75 (Loss)

You lose Game 8, so you add $100 to the end of Line 8. The wager for Game 9 is now $125 (the sum of the two outside numbers).
      Labouchere Line 9: x-25-25-25-50-x-75-100 (Win)

You win Game 9, so you cross off the two outside numbers. The wager for Game 10 is $100 (the sum of the two outside numbers).
      Line 10: x-x-25-25-50-x-75-x (Win)

You win Game 10, so you cross off the two outside numbers. The wager for Game 11 is $75 (the sum of the two outside numbers).
      Line 11: x-x-x-25-50-x-x-x (Win)

You win Game 11, so you cross off the two outside numbers. There are no numbers left so you start over for Line 12. The wager for Game 12 is $50 (the sum of the two outside numbers).
      Line 12: 25-25-25-25 (Loss)

You lose Game 12, so you add $50 to the end of Line 12. The wager for Game 13 is now $75 (the sum of the two outside numbers).
      Line 13: 25-25-25-25-50 (Loss)

You lose Game 13, so you add $75 to the end of Line 13. The wager for Game 14 is now $100 (the sum of the two outside numbers).
      Line 14: 25-25-25-25-50-75 (Win)

You win Game 14, so you cross off the two outside numbers. The wager for Game 15 is $75 (the sum of the two outside numbers).
      Line 15: x-25-25-25-50-x (Loss)

You lose Game 15, so you add $75 to the end of Line 15. The wager for Game 16 is now $100 (the sum of the two outside numbers).
      Line 16: x-25-25-25-50-x-75 (Loss)

You lose Game 16, so you add $100 to the end of Line 16. The wager for Game 17 is now $125 (the sum of the two outside numbers).
      Line 17: x-25-25-25-50-x-75-100 (Win)

You win Game 17, so you cross off the two outside numbers. The wager for Game 18 is $100 (the sum of the two outside numbers).
      Line 18: x-x-25-25-50-x-75-x (Win)

You win Game 18, so you cross off the two outside numbers. The wager for Game 19 is $75 (the sum of the two outside numbers).
      Line 19: x-x-x-25-50-x-x-x (Loss)

You lose Game 19, so you add $75 to the end of Line 19. The wager for Game 20 is now $100 (the sum of the two outside numbers).
      Line 20: x-x-x-25-50-x-x-x-75 (Win)

You win Game 20, so you cross off the two outside numbers. There is only 1 number left. Final line is x-x-x-x-50-x-x-x-x. If there was a line 21, you would start over at 25-25-25-25.

Labouchere vs. Flat Bets

The two tables below compare the results of the Labouchere System to Flat Bets.

Note that while Flat Bets shows a loss of -4.5%, the Labouchere System shows a profit of +5.5%. This demonstrates the power of the Labouchere System.

Table 1: Labouchere System:

Line #
Odds
Wager
To Win
Result
Bankroll
Profit

Starting Bankroll:

$2,500
1
-110 $ 50.00 $ 45.45 $45.45 $ 2,545 1.8%
2
-110 $ 50.00 $ 45.45 -$50.00 $ 2,495 -0.2%
3
-110 $ 75.00 $ 68.18 $68.18 $ 2,564 2.5%
4
-110 $ 50.00 $ 45.45 -$50.00 $ 2,514 0.5%
5
-110 $ 75.00 $ 68.18 -$75.00 $ 2,439 -2.5%
6
-110 $ 100.00 $ 90.91 $90.91 $ 2,530 1.2%
7
-110 $ 75.00 $ 68.18 -$75.00 $ 2,455 -1.8%
8
-110 $ 100.00 $ 90.91 -$100.00 $ 2,355 -5.8%
9
-110 $ 125.00 $ 113.64 $113.64 $ 2,468 -1.3%
10
-110 $ 100.00 $ 90.91 $90.91 $ 2,559 2.4%
11
-110 $ 75.00 $ 68.18 $68.18 $ 2,627 5.1%
12
-110 $ 50.00 $ 45.45 -$50.00 $ 2,577 3.1%
13
-110 $ 75.00 $ 68.18 -$75.00 $ 2,502 0.1%
14
-110 $ 100.00 $ 90.91 $90.91 $ 2,593 3.7%
15
-110 $ 75.00 $ 68.18 -$75.00 $ 2,518 0.7%
16
-110 $ 100.00 $ 90.91 -$100.00 $ 2,418 -3.3%
17
-110 $ 125.00 $ 113.64 $113.64 $ 2,532 1.3%
18
-110 $ 100.00 $ 90.91 $90.91 $ 2,623 4.9%
19
-110 $ 75.00 $ 68.18 -$75.00 $ 2,548 1.9%
20
-110 $ 100.00 $ 90.91 $90.91 $ 2,639 5.5%

Total Profit:

$138.64

Table 2: Flat Bets:

Line #
Odds
Wager
To Win
Result
Bankroll
Profit

Starting Bankroll:

$2,500
1
-110 $ 125.00 $ 113.64 $113.64 $2,614 4.5%
2
-110 $ 125.00 $ 113.64 -$125.00 $2,489 -0.5%
3
-110 $ 125.00 $ 113.64 $113.64 $2,602 4.1%
4
-110 $ 125.00 $ 113.64 -$125.00 $2,477 -0.9%
5
-110 $ 125.00 $ 113.64 -$125.00 $2,352 -5.9%
6
-110 $ 125.00 $ 113.64 $113.64 $2,466 -1.4%
7
-110 $ 125.00 $ 113.64 -$125.00 $2,341 -6.4%
8
-110 $ 125.00 $ 113.64 -$125.00 $2,216 -11.4%
9
-110 $ 125.00 $ 113.64 $113.64 $2,330 -6.8%
10
-110 $ 125.00 $ 113.64 $113.64 $2,443 -2.3%
11
-110 $ 125.00 $ 113.64 $113.64 $2,557 2.3%
12
-110 $ 125.00 $ 113.64 -$125.00 $2,432 -2.7%
13
-110 $ 125.00 $ 113.64 -$125.00 $2,307 -7.7%
14
-110 $ 100.00 $ 113.64 $113.64 $2,420 -3.2%
15
-110 $ 125.00 $ 113.64 -$125.00 $2,295 -8.2%
16
-110 $ 125.00 $ 113.64 -$125.00 $2,170 -13.2%
17
-110 $ 125.00 $ 113.64 $113.64 $2,284 -8.6%
18
-110 $ 125.00 $ 113.64 $113.64 $2,398 -4.1%
19
-110 $ 125.00 $ 113.64 -$125.00 $2,273 -9.1%
20
-110 $ 125.00 $ 113.64 $113.64 $2,386 -4.5%

Total Profit:

-$113.64

For some closing thoughts on the Labouchere Betting System, click here.

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