Over brandy and coffee, an expectant hush fell over the group when Cochran asked me pointedly: "Jack, how do you fancy Walker in this bout?"
"Why," I replied, "I fancy him just fine, C.B."
"Would you fancy him for a bet of, oh, let's say, �10,000?"
I pretended to be confused about converting pounds into dollars. Cochran offered to make the wager in dollars—$150,000 against my $50,000.
"No," I said, and Cochran's face showed his disappointment. "As I said, C.B., I really do fancy Walker's chances. Now, you're paying me $110,000 for this fight, right?"
Taking a deep breath, I really shook them up.
"I'll bet you the whole $110,000 at 3 to 1. If we lose, you don't owe us a dime. If we win, you owe us $440,000."
Cochran looked around the room and, getting a brief nod here and there, he turned to me and grinned.
"It's a bet, old boy."
"Shake," I said, and we did.