An area where cricket betting has seen drastic improvement over the last decade or so is the number of betting markets that you can pick from. They range massively, and whilst they won’t compare with the likes of football or other major sports in terms of volume at least, most of the bigger bookmakers will offer a really solid range to choose from.
One thing we will mention is that you need to be pretty cautious when choosing your betting market. Often as these markets turn in-play the odds can change quite drastically, so it’s worth taking extra caution in the bets you make and also to try and anticipate which to make.
The markets that we have added in this article aren’t the be all and end all of cricket betting markets. In fact, we are likely only going to scratch the surface, but what we have included is some of the more popular markets along with ways in which best to take advantage of those. They won’t be betting tips as such, but more along the lines of things to look out for when betting within the outlined markets. Newbies should start learning about the basics of cricket betting.
As with any sport, the most popular market is going to come from the final results market. This is essentially whether you think the game will end in a home win, away win or draw. The first thing you need to look out for with these markets is the range of results on offer. A Test match will include all three markets to bet on whilst a World Cup Twenty20 game will only include a home win or away win, due to the inclusion of super overs to avoid draws.
Cricket is unlike a lot of sports in that the odds are often much more even, especially for this type of market. If you compare the betting scheme of cricket to football betting, then a match which contains the top of the league side versus the bottom of the league side in cricket is going to be much tighter in the betting, whereas something like football will have one as a clearer favourite. This is because cricket includes a lot more variables than football and you will often see ‘smaller’ teams pick up results more often than that of other sports.
To Win the Toss Bet
Each game starts with a coin toss before the match and the winner of the toss will decide if they want to bat or bowl first. You won’t find a 50/50 market and the result is totally random, but what you will find is the bookmaker still takes its edge and if you are betting in terms of positive or negative expectation then this market is one of be avoided.
Betway includes this market scenario for the coin toss of major games like India vs England with both teams priced at 1.90 to win the toss. This means that whatever happens, the bookmaker can’t lose as both results are odds on.
It’s in there as a pure gimmick and is one that will likely need to be avoided more than anything. Betway hosts a series of prop bets and more commons ones bettors should consider.
Draw No Bet
The draw no bet market is similar to that of which team is going to win the match except if it finishes as a draw then you will get your original stake back. It actually changes the odds for each team pretty massively and can often yield a better price for one team rather than betting in the To Win match market.
You should probably be looking to target this market if the likelihood of the game is going to be a draw.
Often there are pitches around the world that don’t create too many results and this will give you a better price on the outside team, whilst also providing cover should the game finish as a draw.
While reviewing BetFair, the bet trade platform by excellence, we came upon this advice on how bettors can lay the draw bet:
While being careful not to get caught out by the weather, trading the draw price in-running offers a chance to utilise all that stats and pitch analysis.
Most pitches deteriorate sharply as the pitch gets older, making life tough for batsmen as bounce becomes uneven and cracks aid the spinners. It is perfectly normal for a pitch to yield 400+ runs in the first innings but less than 150 in the fourth. Over the first three days when the pitch is favouring batsmen, the draw price invariably collapses, based on a false assumption that conditions won’t change. When they do, wickets tend to tumble in quick batches, dramatically transforming the match and markets.
Man of the Match
Another relatively standard market is simply selecting who you think will be Man of the match. It is possible to use this type of market quite profitably, and before anything you will notice that players are often generously priced with odds starting around 10.00 and working their way upwards. Obviously it’s never going to be an easy task singling one player out, but it is possible and you could even make a couple of sections which still make a tidy profit, should you find the right fit.
What we will say is that you can look ahead to see what type of player the pitch is going to favour. So if it’s a flat, hard track then it’s likely going to favour the batsmen, whereas a green, seaming wicket will obviously favour the bowlers. Either way, this has already eliminated half the potential field.
Then you can look to see which players have prospered previously at that ground and even which players are in form coming into that match. The amount of detail is endless, but you can sharp get down to a handful of potential winners and then make your selections from there without too much effort.
Using common sense to select a Man of the Match is effective as long as you leave emotions out of your decisions, Value Betting in cricket is another point of view in which bettors take decisions based on mathematical models or betting lines. Following is a statement from Sohail Akhtar, a value bettor that uses his head to make big money on cricket:
…We develop a new player rating system for test cricket. We use multinomial logistic regression to model match outcome probabilities session by session. We then use these probabilities to measure the overall contribution of players to the match outcome based on their individual batting, bowling and fielding contributions during each session. Our measure of contribution has the potential for rating players over time and for determining the ‘best’ player in a match…
Watch Sachin Tendular in One of His Best Plays:
Top Team Batsmen
The top team batsmen is basically a market where you can select which players you think will be the top run scorer for each team. These are split between each team and do not include their opponents selections, unless the market states otherwise.
With this market you generally want to be looking at in-form players and more often than not, the players who are batting within the top 6. This is basically because the guys in the top 6 will be the recognised batsmen and you can even narrow this section down further to be the players in the top 4 as again, they will likely be the better standard.
There are several aspects to rate in a player when it comes to batsmen. Following is an example on how a professional bettor from India rates the popular player MS Doni in a comment response left on Quora in terms of his bat skills:
He is a phenomenal ODI batsmen in that no match is lost until his wicket is down, but he is not a good Test batsman. He struggles against swing and a bit against the turning ball. His technique of pushing the ball on to the offside with hard hands is almost suicidal on a turning pitch. He hasn’t produced a single Test 100 outside the sub-continent.
As a batsman he is outside the top 10 in Indian cricket (ODIs and Tests combined).
An oddsmaker can give odds for MS Doni that aren ´t quite exact to his Test Bat skills. He is very good on other aspects and overall he ends up on the winning side, but when it comes to selecting best batsmen figures are not on his side.
Top Team Bowlers
Similar to top team batsmen, this market means you need to choose which player will be that teams top bowler. This comes down to the number of wickets taken for each bowler and if it’s a tie at the end, then dead heat rules apply where you will get a percentage of the original odds depending on how many players tie for this market.
You can look a little deeper into this market than the top batsmen bet as the pitch will play a much bigger role as to who will take the most wickets.
If the pitch is set up green and will seam about a bit then you should be looking towards fast bowlers.
If the pitch is going to be dry and deteriorate over the course of the game then the spinners will come into play a lot more and should be a better shout.
During the most recent Cricket World Cup held in Australia and New Zealand, betswot.com handicapped all the major bowlers for the tournament. After his analysis he picked out Morne Morkel as the most likely Value Bet against all other great bowlers, here is his argument as to why:
No sport is dominated by conditions as much as cricket. The wickets and grounds have a huge impact on players and who performs best where. With this World Cup being held in Australasia it will suit the quicker bowlers who rely on pace and bounce.
Morne Morkel is a Lanky fast bowler who plays for tournament 2nd favs South Africa. He has a good record in Australia where his Strike rate (balls per wicket) is 26.8. This is better than his career strike rate of 29.9″¦
Malinga is undoubtedly a world class death bowler when fit – but he has not played a match since September, bar the world cup warm up games. The 2 Mitchell’s – Johnson and Starc are classy, left arm pacemen and will take their wickets this tournament. However, Starc has a patchy career of purple spells followed by periods where he loses form. Mitchell Johnson is a worthy favorite as he will blow teams away with his pace. He also is likely to be rotated for matches and at double the price we would rather side with Morkel.
Miscellaneous Markets to Bet on Cricket
The markets above are all pretty much bread and butter when it comes to cricket betting and will be the ones that are most popular with the majority of games. There are in fact a boat load of other markets available for India but they have a lot less depth, although can still be just as profitable.
These might include 1st over total runs, a fifty to be scored, a hundred to be scored, most run outs, 1st wicket method and highest first innings opening partnership. As the game starts then a lot of these markets or ones that are very similar will turn in-play meaning you can bet on these outcomes throughout the game.
In-play betting is actually a section that is much more desirable in cricket than a lot of other sports.
This is because the pace of the game is often a little slower than most sports and as the game starts you will be able to get an idea of how the game might pan out and how the conditions are affecting the game.
If you are able to react to these markets before the bookmaker then you will likely get some really juicy odds when betting in-play, but as we mentioned, you need to be on your toes to get in there quickly.
*Now that you know the different types of bets the next step would be to learn the key the basics of a cricket betting strategy.