For many Singaporeans, betting on sports – especially football and basketball (NBA) – has become a regular pastime and a way of giving them an additional interest in what they would watch anyway.
Although considered a form of gambling, it can be distinguished from other types like online casinos where often many of the games like slots are down to pure chance, because there is an element of skill involved in predicting the results of sports teams or individuals.
Online betting is any kind of gambling conducted over the internet and includes casino games as well as online sports. That is compared to the traditional image of bookies, where the stake is either placed at a brick and mortar establishment or handed to an individual at a race track, for example.
Online betting means bow that gamblers are able to bet whilst an event is actually in progress – live betting – as opposed to the traditional form of sports betting commonly known as ante-post.
Not all online bookmakers are able to take bets on sports – legally, at least. Instead, operators will normally need a license in order to offer betting odds on sports, such as the English Premier League or horseracing. The World Cup, the Champions League, and La Liga are other popular betting markets.
Singapore Sports Betting
Although many online sports betting sites in Singapore are actually illegal, in practice, the rules which operate in these areas are ambiguous and usually laxly applied by the appropriate authorities.
(Technically only the Singapore Pools, a state-owned lottery company, is the only bookmaker licensed in the country for betting on football and motor racing).
What trips up many Singapore players who indulge in sports betting is not the law, but their failure to properly understand how betting odds work, and the various methodologies involved.
The other common failing is not doing enough homework before first placing a bet. Time should be taken to study the form book, the weather conditions, the impact of injuries or suspensions to key players if football betting for example before a bet is placed.
Players might consider trying out the different types of bets offline before venturing any real money.
Sports Betting Sites
Sports betting sites offer betting odds which are essentially probabilities that a likely outcome will occur. These odds are not decidedly randomly but, instead are calculated using complex computer models that take in multiple factors. Highly skilled and qualified actuaries are often employed as well to provide a degree of human oversight,
When choosing a sports betting site, new players, in particular, may want to consider factors such as payment methods including the ability to pay using the Singapore dollar, and whether e-wallet options and the ability to play using payment providers like Skrill are available. They might also check potential betting websites as to whether any welcome bonus or free bets are on offer.
Punters may also consider what online sports are offered – is it just the main sporting events that are covered or are less common markets also available for bettors?
Betting odds are compiled by bookmakers (bookies) as a way of representing what they believe is the likelihood of an event or outcome occurring. Punters need to understand when wagering that the chance of them receiving any pay-out is less than even. This is because betting odds are always weighed in favor of the operator. This is known as the house edge and represents their profit.
Sports Betting Odds
There is essentially three odds formats commonly used.
Fractional odds are popular among British and Irish bookies and are typically expressed as a ratio.
For example, if one team was 3/1 to win a football league match, it means that, if one Singapore dollar was bet, the punter would earn S4 back for a winning bet ($3 in profit plus the original stake of $1 back).
Decimal odds is the most common type found in Singapore and Asian betting markets and simply represent how much will be earned for every S1 successfully wagered. For example, for the same match if the odds on a win were 2.75, and $100 was bet, then the total payout would be $275, representing a profit of $175 on the original amount of the bet.
American odds – also known as moneyline odds – are signified using either negative or positive numbers. A negative number means that gamblers have to stake that figure to win $100 (or whatever the equivalent). For example, if the Los Angeles Lakers are – $320 to win an NBA match, then $320 would need to be bet to win $100 (the total payout would be $420.
If the Chicago Bulls were +150 for the same match, this means they would be considered as the underdog, and betting $100 would yield a profit of $150 if successful.
The Asian handicap methodology is one of the most popular and widely accepted forms of betting in the world and is particularly popular with many gamblers based in Singapore. Its advantage lies in its comparative simplicity and the fact that its many options include the possibility to bet on a losing team and still end up a winner.
Asian Handicap bets grow in increments of 0.25 making it easier to understand the implication of betting more or less. Mainly used for football betting, Asian handicap works in such a way that the possibility of a draw is effectively eliminated by giving one team a virtual lead over the other at the outset.
Read More: Best Singapore Betting Sites For 2022
Other Types of Bet
Although the most common bets are on one team to win or lose, there are many other types of wager typically offered by the operator of a sportsbook. These might include the first team to score, the identity of the first goalscorer, or even the number of yellow and red cards on offer.
Experienced players might consider an accumulator, where several bets are combined and it will only succeed if all parts of the bet succeed. The odds on such bets working are long, but, on those occasions when things go their way of the punter, then the subsequent pay-out is large.
One thing that should be remembered with any form of online gambling, is that the chance of winning in the long term is stacked against an individual. That is why they should never bet more than they can afford, and, if they find, they are on a losing streak, they should be prepared to step away for a while.
Gambling should be fun and a harmless pastime – when it stops being that, it is time to seek help.