Betting Handicap

Handicap in betting meaning

Handicap betting is a way for bookmakers to make sports betting more fun. It actually makes the win in betting difficult, and hence gives an adrenaline rush to the bettors. Handicap betting requires a team to score one more goal than their handicap to win a bet. This is usually done when one team is far superior to the other, and thus, can make betting while wagering against a superior team more equal and interesting.

In handicap betting, the odds are set by the bookie, but the prices may fluctuate even during the game, depending on how much money is at stake on one side of the market. Don’t forget that handicap betting terms can change even during live betting according to the current score of the game.

What sports can handicap be used for?

Although handicap betting is often used in football games—since it is the most popular sport, handicap is not limited to it. The other sports which witness handicap betting include:

  • Tennis – In this, handicaps can be applied to either of the sets. It can also be applied to either game, in which then all the games of the match are considered to calculate the total outcome, which may not necessarily be the same as the winner of the match.
  • Golf – This sport involves placing handicap bets on rounds of players.
  • Rugby – Here the handicap is applied on the points, and one of the teams would begin the match with a lead of some points, which necessarily may not add to their advantage due to the high points scoring nature of the game.

No draw handicap betting

If you are looking for a bet where only a winner and loser are announced in a game, then the no-draw handicap market is the best option for you. A no draw handicap betting eliminates the chance for a tie, and thus ensures that there is a guaranteed winner irrespective of the final result. In order to eliminate a draw, bookmakers use 0.5 in their handicap mark.

Asian handicap betting

This form of handicap betting is immensely popular in Asia, hence the name. A variant of no draw handicap betting, Asian handicap betting system too does not allow any tie and makes it so appealing to bettors. They are specially designed to eliminate the possibility of a draw in a match, thus offering betting on only two possible outcomes—win or lose.

However, Asian handicaps also offer the possibility of split handicaps, where whole, half or quarter numbers are quoted to your selection.

For instance, Team A may be quoted -1 and -1.5. If it wins by two goals or more, you will win your bet. But if Team A wins by only one goal, you will win back half of your stake as your total stake is split over the two bets. This form of handicap betting offers bettors a guaranteed winning of stakes as you get at least half your stake back rather than losing all of it.

100% up to ₹8000
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100% up to ₹10 000
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up to £25
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up to 250$
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3-way handicap betting

Three-way handicap betting is opposite to both the above mentioned handicap betting systems. This gives bettors the opportunity to bet on the handicap tie option.

Handicap league betting

Handicap league betting is the most common of them all, and widely offered by the majority of bookmakers across a wide range of sports, particularly at the start of a new league. Handicap league betting is done to provide every team an equal chance of winning in order to create a competitive betting market. In the handicap league betting, the teams which are forecast to finish below your favourite team will receive a head start. Once the season is complete, the head start will be added to the league table and the winner will be the team who earns the maximum points.


Therefore, handicap betting is offered by many bookmakers. Although, it may appear confusing at first, but it makes the betting business more interesting since it gives teams a head start. Thus, every bettor must know “What is handicap betting?”

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