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Sports betting types explained

There are a lot of different bet types out there, with the most common one being the single bet. That is a great starting point for betting beginners and frankly many punters never even see the need to branch out beyond placing straight forward single bets. The single bet, where you place your stake on the outcome of an event, be it a team to win a match or a selection to win a tournament outright, is simple, quick and easy to play. It is the least complicated form of betting type and that’s probably why it has remained so popular.

But any knowledge gained is always valuable and it is alway useful to get at least a basic working knowledge of the other sports betting types which are out there. Then, down the line if an opportunity presents itself, you are armed and ready to try and take advantage of a betting situation. Here we will take a look at the types of common bets placed in sports betting.

Single Bet

The core standard of all sports betting types is the single. You simply find a market that you want to have a bet on, whether it is a football team winning a match, a tennis star landing a Grand Slam title, a golfer taking a top ten finish at an event or who is going to win the next FIFA World Cup, you simply make your selection and place your wager. So it is just a straightforward selection on a market option, as long as you happy with the chance of the outcome happening and the odds on the selection, strike your bet and wait for the outcome. There are ways to expand a single bet too, such as in the istance of an each way wager. This is where you place the single bet, but it sort of split into two, half going on your selection to place (finish 2nd, 3rd or 4th for example). If the selection wins you get paid out in full, but if it places you are paid out at 1/4 quarter odds (in most instances). It is coverage on a single bet.

Accumulator Bet

Accumulators are always met with a mixed reaction. Some seasoned punters may avoid them, some see them as a great side bet and newcomers will be allured by the big pay outs which they offer. The basic benefit of an accumulator bet is that they offer a lot of profit for a small stake, which translates to low risk/high reward. There is tremendous value to be taken from an accumulator if you can land one, which is a tough thing to do.

Imagine yourself placing three separate single bets on the outcome of three different football matches. It’s a tough thing to pull off and if two of those three singles win, you would at least be taking something away from your effort. Now combine all of those three selections in an accumulator and you need all three of the results to come good or you will walk away with nothing. But the balance here is that for the same amount of stake placed cumulatively across the three single bets, you could earn a lot more from staking the same on an accumulator.

Accumulators are named by how many selections are in one, so three selections becomes a threefold, five selections a fivefold, nine selections and ninefold and so on. Let’s compare a threefold accumulator with three single bets.

Bet 1 – £1 stake at 2/1
Bet 2 – £1 stake at 5/4
Bet 3 – £1 stake at 3/1
Bet 4 – £1 stake at Even Money

If all of those singles won then you would earn a £7.25 profit from a £4 stake. Now if you turned that into an accumulator of just a £4 stake on the fourfold, if all selections won then you would return a profit of £212. Huge difference as an accumulator works by rolling over the winnings from one selection and staking it on the next and so on until the bet is complete. It all sound great, but the risk is, let’s say the first three selections have won and you have a big stake therefore rolling on to the fourth and everything is riding on it. Like with any betting it is balancing the risk with the reward.

System Bet

The system bet is worth considering as an option if you are weighing up an accumulator. Common system bets are Trixie’s, Yankee, Lucky 15’s and Canadians. What this is, is a full coverage type of bet because they not only run accumulators from the selections but also other bets like doubles, and trebles. Trixie’s (3 selections), Yankees (4 selections) and Canadians (5 selections) cover all possible doubles, trebles, and accumulators. An example of a full cover bet with singles is a Lucky 15 which is four selections, but consists of all doubles, trebles, an accumulator and the 4 singles. The Yankee which is four selections is basically a Lucky 15 without the singles.

System bets have an advantage over straight accumulators because you don’t need all selections to win to get something back. Punters usually throw bigger stakes at System Bets than accumulators in the attempt to earn some nice profit even if all selections don’t win.

This is of course just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the different types of sports bets out there. For more details about sports betting systems, see the Sports Betting/strategies section of the betting school, and read further articles in the betting guide about different types of sports betting.