Handicap betting - also referred to as the 'spread' - involves giving one selection a virtual deficit (a handicap) to overcome at the start of an event. Conversely, choosing another selection in the same market will usually involve that selection receiving a virtual start. If your chosen selections score is greater than it's opponents AFTER the handicap has been applied, your chosen selection is deemed the winner.
This type of market is predominantly offered to "even up" a market so in that a selection deemed "inferior" to it's opponent(s) has a greater chance of winning the event. If the competitors are deemed to have equal chances, you may also come across the term 'scr' or 'scratch' in replacement of a handicap being applied. This means no handicaps are applied to final scores and that the winner of the market will be the outright winner of the market (or the 'Draw')
However, be aware that on a small number of occasions the selection deemed inferior will receive the deficit to overcome - this will usually be signified by a higher price but please do not hesitate to contact us if you wish to clarify the selections.
Handicap betting can be offered in one of 4 ways:
In a match situation, handicap match betting gives one team or player a virtual deficit to overcome (a handicap) at the start of the event - the opponent receives a virtual start. You bet on who will win with the handicap taken into account.
Handicap match betting also offers the opportunity to back the 'Handicap Tie' selection. Choosing this selection is effectively betting on the match finishing in a victory for the team receiving the virtual deficit (-1, -2 etc.) by the EXACT WINNING MARGIN offered. This is best illustrated in an example, please read on:
Manchester United vs. Liverpool ends in a 3-1 victory to Liverpool. Prior to the match the Handicap Match Betting was offered as follows:
Liverpool (-1) 2/1
H'cap Tie (-1) 9/4
Man Utd (+1) Evs
Backers of 'Liverpool (-1)' would be winners as Liverpool's score after the handicap has been applied is greater than their opponents, 3 minus 1 = 2; this is greater than Manchester United's final score of 1.
Backers of 'Man Utd (+1)' would lose as Man Utd's score after the handicap has been added on is not greater than their opponents, 1 plus 1 = 2; this is not greater than Liverpool's final score of 3.
Important: The handicap is only ever applied to your chosen selection, IT IS NOT applied to both sides to determine settlement.
Backers of 'H'cap Tie (-1)' would also lose as the finishing winning margin is not equal to the handicaps offered. In order for this market to win, the match would have had to have finished in a Liverpool victory by an exact 1 goal margin, e.g. Liverpool win 1-0, 2-1, 3-2 etc. If the handicaps offered would have been 'Liverpool (-2)', 'Man Utd (+2)' this selection would have been deemed the winner.
Important: People interested in betting on the 'Handicap Tie' market should consider the market as a whole. Remember that you are betting on the team receiving the deficit to win by the exact margin offered.
Similar to the handicap match betting offered above, this market effectively eliminates the possibility of a 'Handicap Tie'. A team is given a half handicap advantage e.g. +4.5 so after the handicap has been applied there is no possibility of a tie.
For example, in Rugby League a team may be given a handicap of +11.5 points. The 11.5 points would then be added to their total at full time and if this is greater than the other team's total, they will be deemed the winner. As the Handicap Match Betting market, the handicap is only ever applied to your chosen selection, IT IS NOT applied to both sides to determine settlement.
If a No Draw Handicap Match market is inadvertently offered for an event where a draw has occurred, all stakes will be returned as Void.
Handicap league betting spans the whole season of a competition. The team judged to be the favourite to win the league starts with a handicap of 0 or Scratch (scr). Every other team in the league is given virtual head starts over them with an equivalent handicap points score (+4, +7, +10, +14 etc.) The "weaker" the team is deemed, the greater handicap they go on to receive.
At the end of the season, all the teams' handicap scores are added to their actual points total - NOT just to the individual team selected. The team with the most points is then deemed the winner of the market. Each-way places are then determined by the teams finishing 2nd, 3rd etc. Dead heat rules will apply if more than one team ties for a place..
Predominantly offered in football match betting, this bet type is known as an ‘Asian Handicap'. Due to it's intricate nature, a separate article detailing how it works can be viewed here.
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