A football match between Swansea and Stoke took on greater significance than normal at a Church Crookham pub on Monday night, as regulars showed their support for the landlord in his bid to net more than £11,000 on an ambitious bet.
The aptly-named Bobby Betts, landlord at The Wyvern pub in Aldershot Road, put a fiver on the outcome of all 10 of the weekend’s Premier League fixtures and was stunned as each one came in, leaving him only a Swansea win against Stoke on Monday away from winning £11,631.
With the Swans home favourites, the pub was packed with wellwishers cheering the Welsh side on all the way through the 90 minutes.
The father of two, who put the bet on at Betfred in Fleet, admitted he was feeling the tension ahead of the televised fixture, but escaped having to fulfil his promise of a free drink for the whole pub if the bet had come in.
However, he, along with the rest of the pub, were left gutted as Stoke pulled off an away win against the odds to leave his accumulator bet worthless.
But Bobby still had something to smile about as he revealed after the final whistle that he had covered himself by staking some of his potential winnings on a Swansea loss and draw after taking some sound advice. It meant he still came away with £1,800 in winnings - some 360 times his original stake.
And the landlord, who was bombarded with calls and texts after the final whistle and even given a round of applause by those at the bar, insisted he had still enjoyed the night.
“I’ve had a fantastic night; the pub’s been busy, it’s been exciting, although £9,000-odd quid would have been a lot better,” he said.
Asked if the disappointment had put him off betting in the future, he admitted the stress had made him doubt whether gambling was worth it as he endured a sleepless night on Sunday. However he said he 'probably will' be having a flutter again.