Since the introduction of online betting, it’s hard to think of a match that isn’t available to place a bet on. With games being played around the world pretty much 24/7, the possibilities are virtually endless nowadays. But even though it may be more popular right now than ever before, sports betting certainly isn’t a new phenomenon. In fact, its origins can be found many, many centuries ago. This shouldn’t really come as a surprise at all when we consider that sports in general are as old as the hills, too. And as much as playing or watching sports can be fun, sports betting combines the joy of watching sports in general, which is already entertaining, with the thrill of betting and the chance to win very big amounts of money. It this certainly wasn’t different in the past. The ability to bet on a match one is watching is like an extra layer of excitement, an extra dimension to an already pleasurable activity. That’s why sports and betting go hand in hand, and why it has always been this way.
History of sports betting
Sports have been associated with betting for as long as sports exist. For those who didn’t know, the activity of betting became increasingly popular when the Greeks introduced the world to the olympics. In the ages that followed, the betting industry only continued to grow. Sports betting really came to the attention of the general public when horce racing games were organized in England, specifically designed for punters.
The current sports betting market
Nowadays, you can not only bet on horce racing, but on right about every sport you could possibly think of. The rise of the internet and thus the online sports betting market has further stimulated the growth. The sports betting market has become a billion-dollar business and generates huge profits for bookmakers. It occupies the largest market share in the overall gambling market, accounting for around 40% of the gambling revenue generated across the globe.
Horse race betting
As mentioned above, one of the major causes of the big rise of the betting industry was (and is) Horse Race betting. Betting on other sports has become more and more popular the last few years.
But, horse racing still has a large share in the betting industry and is one of the most popular sports betting types, especially in the United Kingdom. Horse racing is an equestrian performance sport, typically involving two or more horses with their jockeys (the horse riders). Horse Racing betting’s primary objective is to identify which of the horses is the fastest over a certain distance. There are different bet types that a player can bet on.
Betting to win
This is a straight forward bet on your chosen horse to win the race outright.
Betting each way
An each-way bet is effectively two bets on the same horse, consisting of a ‘win bet’ and a ‘place bet’. For the win part of the bet to give a return, the selection must win, or finish first, in the event. For the place part of the bet to give a return, the selection must either win or finish in one of the predetermined places for the event, such as first place or second place. The odds paid on the place part of the bet are usually a fraction (commonly 1⁄2, 1⁄3, 1⁄4 or 1⁄5) of the win odds.
Place only betting
A bet type with less risc would be the ‘place only’ betting type. Many bookmakers allow players to bet the horse to place without the ‘win’ part of the wager.
Betting on Soccer
Besides horse race betting, football is one of the most popular sports betting types, especially in Europe. The worldwide game of football, called soccer in some areas, offers hundreds of matches to bet on every week and countless available markets for each match. Given its worldwide popularity, it comes as no surprise that, in terms of bet volume, soccer is the biggest sport at Pinnacle Sports, the most efficient bookmaker in the world.
In a soccer match, two teams of 11 players competing against each other. A match takes place on a 45-90m x 90-120m pitch and lasts 90 minutes (two 45-minute halves) – unless the competition format requires extra-time (two 15-minute halves) and/or penalties to decide the match. The aim of soccer is very simple: score more goals than your opponent to win the match. In terms of soccer betting, however, there are various markets to look at and different outcomes to bet on that aren’t just decided by the result of a match.
Betting on American Football
American football (football) is also one of the most popular sports betting types in the world. It is a team sport played by two teams of eleven players on a rectangular field with goalposts at each end. The offense, which is the team controlling the oval-shaped football, attempts to advance down the field by running with or passing the ball, while the defense, which is the team without control of the ball, aims to stop the offense’s advance and aims to take control of the ball for themselves.
The offense must advance at least ten yards in four downs, or plays, and otherwise they turn over the football to the defense. If the offense succeeds in advancing ten yards or more, they are given a new set of four downs. Points are primarily scored by advancing the ball into the opposing team’s end zone for a touchdown or kicking the ball through the opponent’s goalposts for a field goal. The team with the most points at the end of a game, wins.
Betting on Baseball
Baseball’s popularity is spreading across the globe. Baseball is often cited as one of the most popular sport betting types for sharp bettors. With thousands of yearly fixtures creating a large sample size to apply an analytical approach, which from a betting perspective offers a viable opportunity to make a profit. A standard baseball game comprises of two teams with nine players on each side. The teams take it in turns to bat and field for nine innings. Each consisting of three ‘outs’ for each team and attempt to score the most runs by circling the four bases on the field.
Betting on Basketball
The rules of Basketball are fairly straightforward. Basketball is a team sport in which two teams of five players on either side of a rectangular court have in play the primary objective to shoot a basketball through the defender’s hoop, while preventing the opposing team from shooting through their own hoop. Basketball is renowned for being one of the most fast paced professional team sports. An end-to-end style of play and high scoring games make basketball exciting for both fans and bettors.
Betting on Tennis
Along with soccer, American football, baseball and basketball, tennis is one of the most popular sports betting types in terms of betting volume. Tennis is a racket sport that can be played individually against a single opponent (singles) or between two teams of two players each (doubles). Each player uses a tennis racket that is strung with cord to strike a hollow rubber ball covered with felt over or around a net and into the opponent’s court. The object of the game is to maneuver the ball in such a way that the opponent is not able to play a valid return. The player who is unable to return the ball will not gain a point, while the opposite player will. A tennis match is composed of points, games, and sets.
A set consists of a number of games (a minimum of six), which in turn each consist of points. A set is won by the first side to win 6 games, with a margin of at least 2 games over the other side. There is usually a tie-break if the set is tied at six games per player. A match is won when a player or a doubles team wins the majority of prescribed sets.
Sport betting markets
With regard to the sports mentioned above, match result (1×2), over/under & the Asian handicap are the most common betting types.
Match result (1×2)
Match result is probably the best known betting option. Also known as 1X2, betting on a match result is when you make a straight bet on the outcome of a game and either bet on a home win (1), a draw (X) or an away win (2) over regular time (including injury time, but not extra time).
Just like the name says, with this bet you can bet on whether there will be more (Over) or less (Under) goals in the game above or beneath a certain amount that you select. The betting line that is mostly used in this situation is Over/Under 2.5 goals.
Asian handicap means an advantage for one of the teams that is given in advance and is applied to the end result of a match. There are many Asian Handicap options and varieties. These could be confusing for some bettors, but it brings a lot of advantages. That is because it gives you as a bettor many possibilities to win your bet. Asian Handicaps also may come in two values, one whole and one half number. Those two (for example -1.0, -1.5) will make a middle number (-1.25) when combined.
Can you become a profitable sports bettor?
To be able to beat the bookmakers and make profit in the long run, one key precondition is required. Betting needs to be considered as a type of investment and need not be regarded as just a hobby.