Cricket Betting Introduction

Cricket is one of the oldest sports in the world, having roots dating back to southern England in the late 16th century. Thanks to its relentlessly growing popularity in the Indian subcontinent, it is also considered the second most popular sport in the world, after association football. As a result, betting in cricket has become a blooming market in its own right. In fact, it’s almost a parallel economy in India now, complete with its own rules and payment system as well.

The system is so complicated that, in fact, it can be quite confusing to understand. If you’re new to all of this, a number of questions must have arisen in your mind by now. For example,

  • How exactly is betting in cricket done?
  • How are the ratios for a particular game fixed?
  • How does a bookie earn profits in this business?

In this article, I will attempt to answer all these questions as accurately and clearly as possible. As I mentioned already, this Cricket betting guide is aimed towards the beginners and the ones who are betting in sports betting apps.

How To Bet On Cricket

Although a lot of people do not seem to agree with this fact, the plain truth is that betting in cricket (or any other sport, for that matter) is very much like the share market. Namely, you must look at the situation closely and make a well-informed guess about the likely outcome of the match. How much you earn, and whether you earn money or lose it, depends on this guess.

The factors which influence the outcome of a match are literally countless – the pitch report, weather, strengths and weaknesses of individual players, team combinations, player forms, pace and spin combination, and much more. No matter how accurately you analyze all these factors, it is still impossible to correctly guess the winner every time.

That said, you can come up with a strategy that takes certain factually correct and very specific factors into consideration. For example:

  • Who are the players and teams involved?
  • What is the weather like?
  • Who are the umpires?
  • Where is the match being played?
  • What is the pitch like?
  • What are the pre-match odds?

In this section, I will list some of the most popular cricket bets which you can place. Some of them are pretty straightforward, while others can be trickier. Make sure you go through the list and choose the ones which seem like a good fit for you, depending on your skill and experience.

  1. Match betting – You will have to choose if you think that the home team will win, lose, or the match will end in a draw.
  2. Completed match – You must place a bet on whether you feel that the game will be completed that day or not.
  3. Tied match – Similar to match betting, you must bet whether you feel the match will end in a draw or not.
  4. Innings runs – You must correctly guess the number of runs that will be scored in the first innings of the match.
  5. Top bowler – You must choose the player you feel will claim the most wickets in a match or series.
  6. Top batsman – You must pick the player you feel will score the most runs in a match or series.
  7. Team of top batsman – You need to guess which team the top batsman will belong to.
  8. Bowler match bets – Between two players, you need to choose the one you feel will score the most runs in the game.
  9. Tournament outright winner – As the name implies, you simply need to choose the team you feel will go on to win the tournament itself.
  10. Series winner – When a series is being played between two teams, you can bet which of the two teams you feel will come out on top at the end of the series.
  11. Over/under score – In this bet, a sportsbook will post a certain score which they feel that the team will reach at the end of the series or match. You need to bet whether the team’s actual score will be more or less than this predicted score.
  12. Series score – You need to guess what the final score of the series will be.
  13. Method of dismissal – You can predict how a particular batman will end up being dismissed during the match.
  14. Win toss – As the name implies, you simply need to predict which of the two teams will win the toss at the beginning of the match. Obviously, this is a guess that is based on pure chance.
  15. Toss combination – Apart from predicting which team will win the toss, you will also have to guess whether they will choose to bat or bowl first.
  16. Odd/even runs – You will have to bet whether a particular team will score an odd or even number of runs in a match.
  17. Most run outs – You must predict which of the two teams will score the most run outs in a match or series.
  18. Man of the Match/Player of the Series – As the name suggests, you need to predict which player(s) will earn these two titles.

You can then add these points to your initial theory, and develop it into a hypothesis. You will then have to test your strategy against some previous matches, to check whether it would have earned a profit over the past couple of seasons. If you’re experienced or observant enough, you will be able to come up with a hypothesis that is around 90% accurate.

Cricket Betting Tips

How are the ratios for a game fixed?

A general rule of thumb that everybody in the business almost universally agrees with is that winning small is far better than losing big. You must learn to control your ego and emotions, and never bet more than you can afford to.

Betting is all about mathematics, and the ratios offered are entirely contingent on the situation of the match in a particular instance of time, as well as the amount of money already put on every one of the teams. As mentioned above, experienced players rarely bet on a match where one team is heavily predisposed to win. Instead, much higher odds are put on the relatively unpredictable options listed above, such as man of the match and score prediction.

Newcomers often erroneously feel that they can predict these options easily and thus end up placing bets on them. However, the truth is that the chances of someone predicting these things correctly are very slim. Thus, the bookies usually earn a lot of profit from such bets. Matches between equally matched teams tend to oscillate back and forth in favour of both the teams, and thus the rates vary accordingly as well.

About Mathematics of Cricket Betting Odds

Are you interested in maximizing profits and minimizing risks while betting on sports? Well, who isn’t? If you want to know whether a wager is worth the pursuit or not, you should be well versed with the mathematics of betting odds. Basically, there are three types of odds involved in this process:

  • American (Moneyline)
  • Decimal
  • Fractional

These three types of odds are essentially representatives of different formats to present probabilities. Also, each type of odd can be readily converted into another, and can also be expressed as an implied probability percentage. My main motive is to provide you with the basics of betting odds so that you can use those in sports betting.

After you ascertain the likely probability for an outcome, you can make an informed decision whether to place a wager/bet or not. To successfully identify promising opportunities, you need to determine if the probability is greater than the implied probability seen in the odds. Since the bookmaker’s profit margin is also considered at odds, the house is always going to win.

How to convert odds to implied probabilities

To start, let’s take a more detailed look at the three types of odds mentioned above:

  • American odds or moneyline odds are accompanied by a (+) or (-) sign, where the (+) sign is associated with the lower probability count having the better payout.
  • Decimal odds are used to represent the amount of money won for every dollar you wager. For example, if the odds for a certain candidate or team winning are 4.00, then the payout for every USD 100 wagered will be USD 400.
  • Fractional odds, also known as traditional odds or British odds, are generally expressed in the form of a ratio or fraction, as their name implies.

Upon your first look, the calculations involved with odds seem to be rather intimidating and confusing. However, you needn’t worry because after you properly understand the details of the aforementioned three kinds of odds and the method of converting the numbers into implied probabilities, you will find the mathematical concepts much easier.

 Nowadays, you will often find an option to display the odds in a format of your choice on various online betting websites. If you want, you can also convert odds manually by using certain conversion formulas. In fact, if you are mathematically inclined, converting odds to their implied probabilities can be a very exciting experience. For that purpose, you can use the formula given below:

Implied probability of an outcome is calculated by Stake divided by Total Payout.

Here’s the odd conversion table along with the winning probabilities:

Odds Conversion Table

FractionDecimalAmericanImplied Probability


  • Let’s say a bookmarker estimates that the fractional odds of team A defeating team B is 9/12. Entering this value into the above formula, you can calculate the value of the implied probability – 75%. The probability of the outcome is directly proportional to the magnitude of the number.
  • Let’s now consider an example of decimal odds. If a participant has 2.20 odds of winning a certain competition, the implied probability can be calculated to be 45.45% (dividing 1 by the odd — 12.20=0.454512.20=0.4545 ).
  • Finally, here is an example of American odds. Let’s say India’s chance of winning the next ICC Cricket World Cup is -250. In that case, the implied probability can be calculated to be 71.43%.

You should keep in mind, though, that probability estimations change with time and thus odds can change as new bets keep coming in. Also, the odds shown by various bookmakers can differ significantly, and thus are not entirely reliable. Thus, although it is tempting to simply support the regular winners every time, you should only do so if the odds accurately reflect their chance of winning. After all, it would be foolhardy to risk a large amount for half the amount of profit.

The general rule of thumb is that if the probability estimated for an outcome is higher than the implied probability that was assessed by the bookmaker, you have a solid betting opportunity in your hand.

Why does the house undoubtedly win every time?

If the bookmaker is seeking a secure profit from a particular event, he or she should estimate the true chance or probability of an outcome. Doing this will set the odds up for viewing in such a way that the bookmaker will undoubtedly profit, without depending on the outcome of the said event. Revisiting the Cricket World Cup example above, let’s consider some data:

  • India: -250 (implied probability = 71.43%)
  • England: – +200 (implied probability = 33.33%)

As I mentioned above, the odds put up for viewing do not represent the real chance or probability of an event taking place or not. This is because the bookmaker always adds a sort of profit margin to these odds. Thus, the successful punter always receives a lesser payout than what he would’ve gotten if the odds had been accurate.

The sum of these probabilities is equal to 104.76%. If you are wondering why the sum of all probabilities does not equal 100% over here, remember that the odds you see here are not fair odds. 

If you choose to bet on both India and England in the above example, it means that you are putting 104.76 dollars at stake in order to win 100 dollars. From the bookmaker’s point of view, they will be collecting 104.76 dollars from you and expect to pay you 100 dollars, with the stake included. Thus, you can calculate that they will be making an estimated profit of 4.5%. As you can clearly see, the bookie is at a clear advantage when it comes to the odds.

Experts claim that by winning more hands, a player could actually receive less money. This especially holds true for beginners. It can be explained by the fact that several wins will likely get you smaller stakes. Thus, you will be forced to play more to earn larger amounts of money, which puts you at greater risk of losses. Every player knows that occasional losses are more or less an inevitable part of betting. Over time, these losses can accumulate to a sizeable amount and set you back financially.


As long as the probability estimated for an outcome is higher than the implied probability which has been estimated by the bookie, you should consider it to be a good betting opportunity. Also, you must always remember that the odds you see on display do not accurately represent the actual probability of an event occurring or not.