Take a look at the likes of Betfair or Bet 365’s websites and you’ll find endless in play markets offered across a wide array of sports, such as football, rugby, golf and the like. Basically, you can bet in play on virtually any sports where there are televised pictures to accompany the fluctuating betting odds. In Play betting is the term given to bets placed while an event is live and on-going.
In play betting offers a distinct advantage to gamblers who are both watching the event and are connected to the internet with a high speed broadband link, as they can often take advantage of a pivotal moment occurring within a game. It is for this reason that both the online exchanges and bookmakers insist on a time delay between the bet being struck and accepted in their markets. Typically there is an eight second countdown to you placing a bet and it being accepted by the layer.
Bookmakers will temporarily suspend a market if there is an occurrence that is likely to cause a substantial change in the odds. In football, that could include if a team are awarded a penalty, a goal or a red card. The market will then re-form with new prices after the incident, leading to the market suspension, has been resolved.
One clear advantage of in-play betting is that if you miss a pre-match price you were desperate to back, or can’t get your full stake placed, your patience will often be rewarded in play. If luck runs with you and if you can afford to wait say 20-30 minutes before you bet on the side you fancy the odds will drift to a more palatable price (as long as the game remains 0-0, of course). This kind of strategy (cross your fingers and hope to exploit a drift) is also a decent alternative to taking a poor value handicap or Asian handicap bet where the start offered or the price does not represent value.
At kick-off prices are generally efficient, but as the game progresses the odds can take a bit of an adhoc cast especially where games are poised and bookies’ traders are reluctant to take a strong line that flies in the face of the pre-match prices.