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Over Under Betting Explained

Over Under Betting - © L.S. - Fotolia.com

Another way for a sports investor to wager on the game is with over under betting. This form of betting, also sometimes called betting the total, is a wager placed on the predicted outcome of a given event. It need not be sport related, but most Over/Under betting takes place using the combined score of a sports match. It is relatively simple, yet provides a good variation on plain vanilla wagering without getting into the complications associated with lay betting or arbitrage.

As with all types of betting, punters wanting to do some Over/Under betting will benefit from careful study of the sport in question. However, the depth of knowledge required by some of the more complex betting systems is not needed here. Thus, it is possible to do over under betting in a variety of sports without being at serious disadvantage to a one sport specialist.

Generally, the first mark in Over/Under betting is the sportsbook prediction of the outcome. To use an example from American football, say the sportsbook prediction for the Super Bowl score is that the combined team scores will be 54. Punters then place their preferences in bets that the score will be more or less. The payout on Over/Under betting, which is a 50-50 bet as the odds are even, is usually subject to a 10% vigorish. However, given that it doesn’t matter which team scores more or less points as long as you end up on the right side of the total score.

What does over/under 2.5 goals mean?

When seen in soccer betting the familiar Over/Under market is usually centred around 2.5 Goals for a set price. This means that you just decide at that 50/50 shot, whether a game’s total goals will be over or under 2.5 goals.

Why the half goal? Because it eliminates the outcome of a push in the market. You either win or lose. Some bookies will offer an expanded range of Under/Over 1.5 Goals or Over/Under 3.5 goals for example, for varying degrees of odds.

One factor of over under betting to be aware of is the shifting mark. Many of the betting sites and casinos will shift the mark if all the bets start coming in to one side or the other. Typically, this is done in half or whole points based on a fixed amount building up on one side. Say three weeks before the Super Bowl the favored team suffers several key injuries, resulting in a widespread belief that the overall scoring potential of the match will be reduced. For each 10,000 that comes in to the lower side, the sportsbook will downshift the mark. Thus, making a bet rather far in advance of the match and not being attentive can leave a punter quite far out of optimal position. Therefore, it is wise to wait until the match is relatively near and keep a sharp watch on the sports news leading up to the event.

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