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The weird and wonderful world of sports betting: What are the key terms you need to know?

March 20, 2016

- Grant Whittington

If you are new to the wonderful world of sports betting, you may well find yourself overwhelmed by the sheer range of betting verbiage and the terminology used to describe key actions. In this respect, it may be tempting to overlook these terms as examples of useless jargon, but understanding such terminology is actually crucial to placing successful, real-time wagers.

Learning the full gambit of sports betting terms can be difficult and time-consuming, however, so it is important to pick out the most importance examples or those that are most relevant to you. Here are five of the core sports betting terms…

Accumulator

Perhaps the most popular sports betting term, an accumulator, or acca, refers to a cumulative wager where you designate a selection from several events of your choosing. Your bet is essentially placed on the first event, and if successful your winnings roll over to the next. Successful wagers in all events lead to a significant return, although just one failure in the selection will make your bet null and void.

Ante-Post

Largely associated with horse racing, ante-post prices are those released prior to the day of a specific event. Ante-post prices can also be applied to alternative sporting events too, although it is important to note that these are liable to change as betting continues in the build up to the occasion itself. Runners and participants can also pull out ahead of time, so backing ante-post prices is fraught with risk.

Doubling-up

A strategic basis for many widely used betting systems, doubling-up is most commonly associated with the casino game roulette. After a loss, a player is required to double the size of their previous bet in a bid to win back the money that they have lost while also securing a profit. This may be referred to as the Martingale system, and it is widely favoured among aggressive players.

Odds-on

This refers to a scenario when the odds of a specific game or event or shorter than evens (e.g. 4/5). Winning selections of this type pay out less than the amount staked in addition to the original wager, so odds-on terms are usually reserved for clear favourites. So while odds-on wagers are likely to win, they do not deliver a huge return.

Spread Betting

In simple terms, wagers are determined by your ability to predict the outcome of an event. Precise returns and losses are calculated in proportion to the precise outcome achieved and exactly how right you are, with the result driven by the overall spread of your bet. Spread betting is also a term used in investment, and it essentially means the same thing across all financial disciplines.

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