Online sports betting has witnessed a meteoric rise in recent years, with the popular activity becoming increasingly accessible to punters thanks to the rise in technology. Mobile betting has become the preferred method for most, but what are the most popular sports for bettors to place wagers on? That is what we have dissected below, along with information about each individual sport.
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Below is the list of the most popular sports for punters to bet on in the UK.
The most watched and popular sport in the world is football and that unsurprisingly translates to the betting world as well. There is a huge number of betting markets available within football events, ranging from the leagues and matches that you are able to bet on to the individual markets themselves.
Punters can place wagers on regular markets such as the full time result all the way down to how many corners or throw-ins they think will take place in the match that they are betting on. Football will likely always be sat at the top of the pile when it comes to the most popular sports to bet on.
There are many big competitions and matches that punters are able to place bets on, with the biggest club football matches taking place in Europe. European football attracts huge betting interest in competitions such as the Champions League, Europa League, Premier League, Bundesliga, Serie A, La Liga and more.
However, that is far from where the betting action stops when it comes to placing football bets. The biggest bookmakers will have in-play markets available from football matches from across the world on a near 24/7 basis, as well as having the live stream component attached to them.
Tennis comes in as the second most popular sport to bet on and it is likely down to two main contributing factors. The first is the simplicity of the sport – the bets that are available are easy to understand and you can turn over money quickly whether you are wanting to bet on the next point, game, set or the match result.
The next reason is down to the sheer number of markets and matches that are regularly available to bet on. There will almost always be in-play markets featuring tennis matches that you are able to bet on when you enter a major bookmaker’s site, making it particularly accessible to sports punters.
There are four major Grand Slam events each year in tennis, with all four being the biggest tournaments of the year. Those are Wimbledon, the US Open, the French Open and the Australian Open, which take place annually throughout the tennis calendar. For the most part these are the events that will generate more interest from casual tennis fans and bettors alike. However, the more hardcore tennis punters will look to find value in the smaller weekly events across the ATP Tour.
The National Football League is the biggest American Football League in the world and attracts an enormous number of eyes each week across the globe. The bulk of games take place throughout Sunday during the NFL season, though there are also games on Monday and Thursday night.
Naturally, the largest bulk of money wagered on NFL matches each weekend comes from the US markets and primarily on the Sunday where the majority of games take place. The season then wraps up with the Super Bowl, where an enormous amount of money is wagered on the game.
Additionally, there is the opportunity to bet on American Football at the collegiate level where games will take place throughout Saturday’s during the season. Essentially, the weekend is your time for NFL/American Football betting.
4. Horse Racing
It’s tough to find a sport that can compete with the excitement of horse racing, particularly when it comes to placing bets on it. It is rare that any punters that attend a race day won’t partake in betting and the addition of online sports betting to the mainstream has meant this practise has become even more popular.
There are race meetings taking place nearly every single day across the world, with the top bookmakers giving their customers access to bet on races from every corner of the globe. In the UK, all of the major horse racing events are covered across the year, as well as every local meeting that takes place every week.
Some of the biggest meetings across the year include Cheltenham Festival, Aintree Grand National Festival, King George Stakes, All Weather Championships Finals Day and more. Once you place a bet on a horse race you will soon understand why this sport is included within the top five most popular sports to bet on amongst regular sports bettors.
Rounding off our list of the most popular sports to bet on may be somewhat surprising to some, as it is basketball. The NBA is undoubtedly the most popular basketball league in the world, though there are a number of other leagues throughout Europe and at collegiate level where interested punters can place bets.
Spread betting is the most common market where you must predict the winning margin of the game that you are betting on, though props betting on the bigger games is also increasingly popular. Within this, you can bet on an individual player’s stats such as total points, rebounds, assists, three pointers made and more.
Undoubtedly the biggest basketball event of the year is the NBA Finals, which routinely takes place in June each year. It puts together the winners of the Eastern Conference and Western Conference in a best-of-seven series to decide who is crowned as the NBA Champions. There is strong betting interest in this event and again attracts the more casual basketball punter.