Will Mayo Ever Win an All-Ireland? Will Dublin win 3 in a Row?

On a bulletin board yesterday a Mayo man posed the following questions. Calculate the probabilities of:

  • Mayo winning the All Ireland within the next 65 years
  • Dublin getting three in a row

He will be delighted to know that the probability of Mayo winning an All Ireland in the next 65 years is almost 100% that they will, no matter what way the data is sliced.

They have won 3 / 131 so approximately 1 in 44.
They have won 3 / 15 finals they have appeared in so 1 in 5, (.2), and they have now been in 8 in a row without winning one.
They have been in 5 out of the last 15 finals = one in 3 = (.33)

Which led me onto the Dublin question:
As of today the Dubs getting 3 in a row without putting thought into it should be -> 1 in 33.
The 31 counties taking part (Kilkenny doesn’t and the shouldn’t be allowed hurl if they don’t play football) plus London and New York.

However Dublin only play in Leinster and winning that gets them to the quarter-final – so if they win Leinster then that is 1 in 8.
But they are not guaranteed to win Leinster – they have only won 9 out of the last 10 – so 90% chance of getting to the last 8 ->
So 9/10 * 1/8 = 9/80 = 0.1125
But this seems a bit to low to price Dublin to win next year.

From another view Dublin have won four of the last six = 4/6 = 2/3

But I s’pose this last algorithm is lacking any nerves of doing a threepeat – it is 93 years since Dublin did it. Kerry are the only team to have done it in the last 50 years, and they only did it twice in that time, and it has not been done in the last 30 years – only 2 teams in the last 30 years have been in a position to do it and both failed, and this included Kerry getting to 6 finals in a row, winning 4 in 6 and still failing to win 3 in a row.

And now what odds would I want to place a bet in a bookmakers – probably 1 in 4 sounds right – if they can beat any two out of Kerry, Mayo, and the Ulster champions that would win it for them.

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