Compiling your own book of prices or "Tissue" is, in my opinion, an absolute must for the vast majority of professional punters. While the basic science of odds compiling is straightforward enough, there is no fundamental guide on how to do this perfectly (various have been written but all are flawed in one way or another) as the art of compiling prices is unique to the individual who gains value as a result. Logically speaking, if there was one tried and trusted method, then everyone would come
Tissue prices are an evaluation of the theoretical chances of particular outcome in a sporting event ~ the term is specifically used for horse racing but the concept is valid for all sports, and indeed non sporting markets. A matrix is used to define all the variables involved in the event and the contestants are scored in each category on a scale according to their strengths and weaknesses. The compiler will tally the scores through each column, converting the raw scores for each contestant into a percentage. This percentage is then converted into fractional or decimal price which becomes the compiler’s “tissue” or book on the event. Here is a rough example where the runners are rated 1-5 based on five categories.
Given that 50 scoring points have been awarded, we can easily express these as %ages as follows:
Red Rum 20%
Mill House 20%
Converting these to odds we get the following book:
Arkle ? ? ? ? ? ? Evens
Mill House ? ? ? 4/1
Red Rum ? ? ? 4/1
Foinavon ? ? ? 9/1
It’s immediately obvious how the scoring matrix works and how you can incorporate more variable to come up with a price, but what is also obvious is that simple forms of the matrix are enormously limited. On a scoring system which gives a minimum of 1 and a maximum of 5 for each category we are unable to provide a wide enough range of prices for them to be meaningful. In the above example, the mythical Arkle ticks all the boxes and should surely be long odds on while the no hoper Foinavon has nothing going for him and is surely a massive outsider but the limitations of the system mean that he will always be overrated in the market in the same way that Arkle is underestimated. Clearly, there needs to be a much greater spread of expected scores and it stands to reason that certain categories should be more heavily weighted than others. Finding the perfect matrix is nigh on an impossibility which explains why it is so hard to teach the art of compiling. My advice to newbies on the subject is to get as much practice as possible, compare your tissue to the bookmakers early prices and work out why you have discrepancies and how you can finesse your method while retaining the unique value of it. Good luck!