Gambling is playing a game of probability for money. Although, some play for fun. But, the
main aim is to win. This, however, has birthed problem gambling across the globe. The National center for responsible gambling opined that circa a percent of the adult population experience problem gambling.
More also, recent research was conducted and it was exposed that approximately 6 to 9 percent of young adults worldwide experience problems related to gambling. That being said, the Illinois Institute for addiction recovery identified four phases of gambling addiction that eventually make it a problem. These stages are the winning phase, the losing phase, the desperation phase, and the hopeless phase. Gambling for an individual is not a sudden decision, but a decision triggered by referral.
Richard Owoyemi, CEO and Founder of PeerGaming stated his indifference to gambling at first, just like every other punter today. He noted how he made his first bet in his final semester as an undergraduate when every graduating student wondered what step they would take to build a life after school. Richard stated how he comes up with random business ideas with no passion or action to pursue those ideas. At that time, he met a friend who introduced him to sports betting.
“One of my friends introduced me to sports betting. He wanted me to lend him some money to place a very promising parlay bet that he analyzed and assured me that my money would be returned with profits if I helped…I asked him for his bet account details and when he got the money, I watched him as he played the two booking codes he had scribbled on a piece of paper prior to meeting me, on his online Sportsbook account. Our bets were placed, and then he showed me how to track the bets on a live scores website so that I could follow our games in real-time without having to wait for updates from him.”
As stated earlier, there’s always a winning phase for every punter, which is often the first phase. This phase is triggered by a big win which leads to excitement and a positive view of gambling.
“Our first parlay bet was going well until the fourth pick ruined our bet slip and reduced my chances of getting my money back. I was hooked on our second parlay bet at this point, watching every pick as the game progressed in the hopes of earning my money back. Fortunately, our second bet's games concluded with 6/6 greens. I was thrilled and I pleaded with my friend to show me how to create my own account. We set up my account, and within a few weeks, I had won five times in a row on my personal betting account."
It should be noted that punters in the second phase, which is the losing phase, become more preoccupied with gambling. This is where they start to borrow money, skip work, lie to friends and family and begin to chase their losses.
Richard affirms this saying “If you can stay in this phase without moving on to the next two addiction phases, I applaud your emotional intelligence because you do something I would repeatedly fail at if I had the option to rewrite my life. Because days and weeks evolved into months of persistent losing, it took me nearly three months to return all the money I won during my first month of betting. I was initially cautious about how much money I spent on bets, but growing losses forced me to raise my stakes in order to avoid regretting investing too little when the winning bet I'd been waiting for arrived.”
The third phase which is the desperate phase is where gamblers lose control over their gambling. Here, they feel afraid and guilty about their actions but they can’t stop. Richard explained further “I graduated from university with a decent income and a managerial job at my father's firm while I continued to pour more money than I ever got from betting. My winning expectations grew as my income grew, as did my fear of losing bets. I recall one time when I staked everything I had on a very promising bet slip that I analyzed using many data sources.”
“Because it was what the teams did the most in their last five face-offs, I can promise you that the picks in my bet slip were correct. you should have witnessed how my picks were resolving quickly. It was incredible, and everything was going swimmingly until my final bet, Juventus Vs Roma. I predicted the game would end with at least two goals, so when Mehdi Benatia scored after just 18 minutes, I pulled off my shirt and waved it in the air to celebrate.”
“Everyone who had played my picks began phoning to congratulate me, and those who had not played my picks expressed regret and begged me to remember them when I received my cash reward. Juventus(1) defeated Roma in the first half (0). Unless you were a killjoy, no one could predict what would happen. As a profound feeling of shock and misery descended on me as the second half ended goalless, I ran home out of embarrassment and fear of being confronted about the bet. I was in a desperate phase because of my gambling addiction at the time.”
The hopeless phase of gambling addiction is where punters hit the rock bottom. They don’t care if they live or die. This phase however triggers drugs and alcohol and all sorts of illicit acts.
“In 2017, I was in the throes of hopeless gambling addiction, and the only reason I decided to stop was that I was always broke, and betting sites gave me the creeps when I looked at them. Studying how to trade stocks provided the necessary distraction for me to cease thinking about betting until August 2018, when it dawned on me that peer-to-peer betting could be the ideal solution to the problems that many sports gamblers face today. This belief inspired the creation of X-LEAGUE, a first-of-its-kind gaming platform.” Richard explains.
Richard Owoyemi designed the X-LEAGUE gaming platform as one of the products of PeerGaming. This according to him was birthed by the issues he faced with gambling. He noted that this issue is also faced by a series of those who love to have fun by placing bets. Hence, Sportsbook platforms are faced with low customer retention. He said, “The sum of X-LEAGUE's parts contains a remedy to issues such as isolation betting, excessive losses, unrestrained financial greed, and guilt that I have experienced. I owe a lot to these issues because they were one of the main motivators for me to overcome the myriad of challenges that new entrepreneurs face”.