NFL: Gladys Knight's national anthem costs betting company dearly
NFL Football - Super Bowl LIII - New England Patriots v Los Angeles Rams - Mercedes-Benz Stadium, Atlanta, Georgia, U.S. - February 3, 2019. Gladys Knight performs the national anthem before the match. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque
ATLANTA (Reuters) - Gladys Knight’s rendition of the national anthem at the Super Bowl on Sunday caused a headache for one sports betting company after the singer extended the end of the song, the length of which had drawn intense wagering interest.
BetOnline.AG had set the length of the song, which ends with the word “brave,” at one minute and 50 seconds and Knight completed singing the word at one minute and 49 seconds.
But after a pause she sang the word again and was clocked at one minute, 53 seconds.
While some companies chose to pay out the over and others the under on the bet, BetOnline.ag said they would pay out both sides, losing an estimated six-figures on the bet, the company said.
Money wagered on the length of the national anthem is by far the largest pre-game proposition bet, far exceeding the coin toss and others combined, the company said.
Reporting by Rory Carroll; Editing by Greg Stutchbury