There was a time when live betting options were limited even at the best sportsbooks. You’d be able to find limited live bets and only on nationally televised games in major sports like football or soccer. Thanks to technological innovation and 24/7 connectivity that is no longer the case. Extensive live wagering is available not only on major sports but lower profile sports as well. In this article we’ll discuss some of the live betting ‘up and comers’. These are sports that might not have widespread adoption yet but that are on the upswing in popularity.
CRICKET: Cricket already has a fairly strong live betting presence and given its worldwide popularity that’s not a big surprise. In fact, cricket is the second most popular sport in the world behind soccer with somewhere between 2 billion and 3 billion fans. Betting has always been ubiquitous in cricket but the advent of live betting is something new. The sport might be unfamiliar to North American fans but it lends itself nicely to live betting with a fairly leisurely pace and a deep statistical set that facilitates plenty of proposition wagers.
VOLLEYBALL: It can be played on a beach or in a gymnasium but in either venue volleyball has surprising international popularity. By most metrics it is the sixth most popular betting sport in the world and is now finding traction with live betting. Offers some of the same matchup advantages as tennis but also provides some easy to understand proposition wagers including handicap bets, totals and even/odd score bets.
HORSE RACING: Horse racing is synonymous with betting and enjoys worldwide popularity. A recent trend is ‘in-running’ horse racing wagering. Live betting on horse racing primarily involves ‘to win’ wagers and allows bettors to get down after the race begins. Traditional pre-race odds are offered and after the race starts the ‘to win’ prices are updated for each horse several times throughout the race. Turns horse racing bettors from passive viewers to active participants during the race. At this point, there’s not much variety in bet types but with a fanbase of experienced and enthusiastic bettors this could really catch on.
GOLF: Golf is generally an underrated betting sport and that extends to live wagering. With a large field of players, multiple rounds and eighteen holes there’s plenty of opportunities for in-running bets. Live betting markets are offered for the winner of the tournament, leader at the end of the current round and the winner out of the group playing each hole. Additional prop bets are available for score over/unders, player matchups over the entire round and a group of three holes. Players can bet if any player in a group will be under or over par for an individual hole.
RUGBY: Not surprising to find it on a betting board given its huge popularity in many countries and that includes live betting. For players at North American facing books live betting options will be minimal—in running odds on the winner and a final score over/under. In other parts of the world and particularly in Europe you’ll find a much more extensive selection of rugby betting odds.
ESPORTS: Professional competitive video gaming is a booming spectator and betting sport. Live betting is the next frontier and quite a few online sportsbooks offer markets on games like League of Legends and Dota 2. You can bet on the overall winner of a game or tournament updated in real time and at some books you’ll find game specific props like ‘Total Map Wins’ and ‘Correct Score’ in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. Tough for a newcomer to bet as there’s something of a learning curve in learning the intricacies of the game.