A number of global and local brands offer a full sports betting service to residents of India and this includes handicap betting. The most popular betting sports in India are football and cricket and both these sports provide scope for handicap betting. Bettors also place Asian handicap betting bets on football and cricket markets. So, here are the best betting sites in India for handicap betting markets, followed by our guide and FAQ.

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Introduction to Handicap Betting

As part of this guide, here are the answers to the most common questions related to handicap betting in India. You’ll also find a more advanced FAQ at the bottom of this guide.

What is handicap betting?

Bookmakers compile betting odds for sporting events to attract bets on all options. The mathematics work in their favour and each betting market has a built-in profit margin. A bookmaker asked to quote odds for heads or tails from the toss of a coin would suggest 10/11 (1.91) for each outcome. As you know, the true odds are evens. But the variance is the bookies’ edge.

In some markets there is a strong favourite and weak underdog. For example, you could get a football match with the following odds for the result in 90 minutes:

  • Home Team 1/10 (1.1)
  • Draw 7/1 (8.0)
  • Away team 25/1 (26.0)

Professionals and money buyers may stake ₹10,000 on the Home Team to win ₹1,000 but recreational players are not interested in that type of bet. Backing the draw or Away Team is having a bet for the sake of it and unpopular. Therefore, the bookmaker will find it difficult to balance the book. In cases like this, handicap betting comes into its own. Betting odds are amended so the outsider gets a virtual head start to level the playing field and attract bets on both teams to win and the draw. Then bookmakers adjust the line and odds in response to the weight of money.

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What is handicap in betting?

The definition of handicap in betting is a head start given to the outsider to create a betting market which will attract bets on both outcomes. The best illustration of a binary betting market is the result of a toss of a coin, which can be heads or tails. In sport, a binary market is the winner of a match in the Indian Premier League for example.

The definition of handicap in betting is a virtual head start given to the underdog to offer more appealing odds.

There has to be a definite outcome if a match has a minimum number of overs for each side. The two possible results are a win for the Home Team or a win for the Away Team. Matches are generally even, but you could have a scenario in which there is a big favourite and outsider. So, a handicap would create a more balanced event and book.

The handicap meaning is an adjustment to match odds to equalise the probabilities. Asian handicaps are a derivation and eliminate the tie and quote quarter goals. Hence, Asian handicap betting provides more options and the probability of both outcomes is even.

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How does handicap betting work?

Handicap betting creates balanced betting markets by applying a handicap to the favourite. In effect, a handicap is a head start for the outsider. Bookmakers issue match odds for a football match for example and then create a handicap. There is a direct relationship between the match odds and handicap. This relationship is consistent across leagues in different countries. So, handicaps for matches in the Premier League in England are the same for fixtures in Indian football. If the Home Team is 1/5 to win a match in either league, the equivalent handicap will be the same. Also, the calculation for the settlement of bets is also consistent across sports and leagues.

Example of handicap betting

The handicap meaning and definition of handicap are best explained with an example. The Indian Premier League is huge for betting and bookmakers offer odds on many markets. One popular bet is the number of wickets taken by two bowlers. This is a three-way market including the tie. So, here is a typical market for most wickets taken in a match:

  • Ben Stokes 4/5 (1.8)
  • Draw 7/2 (4.5)
  • Mohammad Shami 5/2 (3.5)

In a handicap market, Shami would have a one wicket head start and the odds would be something like this:

  • Ben Stokes minus 1 wicket 7/4 (2.75)
  • Draw 7/4 (2.75)
  • Mohammad Shami plus 1 wicket 7/4 (2.75)

The handicap creates an even book and there will be bets on all three options. Assuming both players take two wickets, Shami would be the winner on the handicap because he has a head start of one wicket. Consequently, Stokes would have to take two more wickets than Shami to be the handicap bet winner. However, If Stokes took one more wicket than Shami, the outcome is a handicap tie.

Bookmakers in India who offer handicap betting

Here are some of the best betting sites that offer handicap betting in India:

Spin Sports

Spin Sports offers an online sportsbook that features betting markets in a wide range of categories including football and cricket. The site features handicap betting and Asian handicap betting for most sports. Bettors can place bets on handicaps and alternative handicaps. Mobile users can also place handicap bets on the full range of sports.

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Royal Panda

Royal Panda is an active bookmaker in India and offers customers a comprehensive sportsbook with a menu of about 30 sports. The operator offers handicap bets for desktop and mobile users for most of the betting sports. In particular, the site features handicaps and Asian handicaps for many leading football leagues around the world.

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Zulabet

Zulabet has an outstanding sportsbook for customers in India featuring markets for the most popular betting sports and some of the more obscure. Handicap betting is an important part of the service, especially for football matches in many leagues. Bettors can also choose from Asian handicaps for major leagues in football and other sports.

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LeoVegas

The core produce with LeoVegas is a casino, but the operator has now launched a sportsbook. The site features all the most popular betting sports and the most bet on markets. There is a decent range of handicap betting opportunities and some matches include Asian handicap bets. These markets can be accessed on PC and mobile devices.

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Handicap betting sports

Any sport with a simple scoring system is suitable for handicap betting. Team and individual sports matches are decided by goals or points and the team or player that scores the most goals or wins the most points is the winner. So, bookmakers can easily apply handicaps to most scoring systems. This applies to sports that are popular in India, betting sports in Europe and the four main professional sports in North America (football, hockey, baseball and basketball).

Any sport with a simple scoring system is suitable for handicap betting.

The three most bet on markets for most sports in any part of the world are match result, handicaps and totals. The terminology might be different but the bets are fundamentally the same. Three of the most popular sports for handicap betting with residents of India are as follows:

Cricket

Cricket is the national sport of India and huge for betting. The Indian Premier League is one of the richest Twenty20 franchises in the world. It brings together the best limited overs players in the world on lucrative contracts. Bookmakers offer many betting markets for IPL matches, including handicaps. These bets are suited to head-to-heads between two batters and two bowlers. The winner is the player who scores most runs or takes most wickets. However, if there is a big favourite, bookmakers introduce cricket handicap betting to attract two-way business. Handicap betting is complemented by the best betting offers and many betting odds markets.

11 months ago 0 220
Cricket is by far the most popular sport in India with play all over the country. The interest in the sport has created a demand for profitable cricket betting and ...

Football

Football is the second most popular betting sport in India after cricket. The country does not have a strong domestic league or leading international team. However, there is huge interest in the main domestic leagues in Europe, including the Premier League in England. Hence, bookmakers offer handicaps, alternative handicaps and Asian handicaps on matches in the EFL. Sites feature handicap bets for the total number of goals, red and yellow cards and corners.

11 months ago 0 238
Football is the most viewed sports in the world and live television coverage increases betting and the interest in football betting tips. Virtually every country has a national team and ...

Another popular handicap betting in football market is each team’s points tally at the end of the season. The handicap relates to odds to win the Premier League. Liverpool start of Scratch and the other 19 clubs receive a varying number of points in this handicap football market. Football handicap betting is more popular than handicap betting on most other sports.

Horse Racing

Betting on horse racing is legal in India and there are tracks in a number of states. Winning distances make for good handicap bets. Over the course of the season, bettors in India can bet on the number of winners for jockeys and trainers. Championships are won by having most winners and these markets allow for handicap betting. However, bettors in India not only bet on races in India but other parts of the world, such as the UK and Ireland. So, handicaps and Asian handicaps enhance the horse racing betting experience in India.

 

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Handicap Betting FAQ

Handicap betting in general is designed to encourage two-way betting when there is a big favourite and obvious underdog. A handicap is a head start for the underdog which levels the playing field. The betting odds are usually expressed in half goals or half points to exclude the tie. These handicap markets have two options: Team A or Team B. The most popular handicap market is the outcome of a football match. The underdog could have a head start of 1.5 goals. Betting sites do offer full goal handicaps which means there are three potential outcomes: Team A, Handicap Draw, Team B.  Handicaps promote match betting when the fixture looks uncompetitive.

Asian handicaps have grown in popularity with punters in the UK, other parts of Europe and countries like India. Bettors who reside in India place Asian handicap bets with offshore operators.  They are mainly associated with football and the markets are expressed in goals. The more an Asian handicap bet is accurate, the greater the profit. The loss is fixed by the stake. Asian handicaps are expressed in full, half and quarter goals. They are two-way markets and the outcome of the match can produce a handicap draw which results in returned stakes. The bet is derived from handicap betting in Asian countries as the name would suggest.

Cricket is the most popular betting sport in India whereas football is the most bet on sport in most other countries. However, football betting still generates a huge number of bets in India. For a typical fixture in the English Premier League, there can be over 200 betting options. The most popular markets are the match winner after 90 minutes, the total number of goals and handicaps. Football handicaps can be Asian handicaps or conventional handicaps. The bet is based on giving the underdogs a head start to encourage two-way betting in uncompetitive markets.

The Premier League in England is the most popular football competition for handicap betting. Matches are generally close so there is often no big favourite and big underdog. However, there are fixtures that bring together leading sides playing at home and inferior opponents. In these cases, the match result market will not attract many bets but the handicap promotes betting on both sides of the market.  Football handicaps are expressed in half goals to eliminate the tie. They can also be expressed in full goals which means the handicap draw is one of the options.

A handicap in football betting is a head start for the underdogs. The market can be expressed in half or full goals which means two-way and three-way odds.  sian handicaps are expressed in full, half and quarter goals. A typical handicap for a fixture in the English Premier League is +1, which is a full goal handicap so the draw is an option. If the underdog wins the match by any score or it is a draw, the underdog wins the market with a head start of one goal. If the favourite wins the match by two goals, they win the handicap. If the favourite wins the match by one goal it is a handicap draw.

Here is a typical handicap market for an English Premier League fixture:

Underdog +1:  5/4

Draw -1: 13/5

Favourite -1: 6/4

The bet is settled by adding 1 goal to the number of goals scored by the underdog. If the final score is 1-1, the handicap score is 2-1 in favour of the underdog. If the final score is 2-0 to the favourite, the handicap score is 2-1 in favour of the favourite.

Handicaps can be expressed in full goals which means one of the potential outcomes is the handicap draw. However, bettors like to see a definite result in a fixture which means there is one winner and one loser. The most popular football market is the match winner after 90 minutes and the possible results are Home Win, Draw, Away Win. Handicaps that are expressed in half goals are two-way markets and the draw is not an option.

Here is a typical market when the handicap is +0.5.

Underdog + 0.5: 10/11

Favourite – 0.5: 10/11.

There are now only two potential outcomes because a handicap draw is not possible:

  • Underdog wins the match or it is a draw: Underdog wins the handicap.
  • Favourite wins the match: Favourite wins the handicap.

The number of goals scored by each team is adjusted by plus or minus one goal to determine the handicap result. Half goal handicaps in football matches take away the possibility of a draw. In Asian handicaps, markets are expressed in full, half and quarter goals.

You win a handicap bet when the score is adjusted to take into account the handicap and your team scores the most goals. The draw is one of the options when full goal handicaps are offered. In half goal markets, the draw is eliminated if the potential handicap results are Underdog and Favourite. Handicap bets are settled taking the handicap into account. The underdog receives a head start to attract two-way betting. A typical handicap is the favourite giving up one goal to the underdog.

Assuming a handicap of one goal in favour of the underdog, here are potentially winning and losing handicap bets if you back the underdog:

  • Underdog wins the match 1-0 or 2-1: Win.
  • Draw 1-1or 2-2: Win
  • Favourite wins the match 1-0 or 2-1: Loss.
  • Favourite wins the match 2-0 or 3-1: Loss.

The final scores are adjusted by one goal in favour of the handicap to find the handicap result.

A 3-way handicap means there are three potential handicap results: Underdog, Draw, Favourite. A 2-way handicap produces two potential outcomes: Underdog, Favourite.  Handicaps expressed in full goals have three possible results. Handicaps expressed in half goals have two possible results. Some bettors like to bet on the handicap draw while others prefer a definite outcome with one winning team and one losing team. In a 3-way handicap market, the draw is usually the outsider. The handicap favourite depends on the match odds that include the draw.

Betting margins are about the same when there are three or two outcomes but the three-way generally offers more value. Many teams are closely matched in the Premier League in England but there can be uncompetitive fixtures. A three-way handicap generates betting interest when there is a big favourite and underdog. In some cases the favourite gives up two goals to the outsider so must win the match by three clear goals to win the handicap market.

One of the most popular football match bets is the total number of goals. These markets offer betting odds in bands or Over/Under totals. The most common football totals bet is more or less than 2.5 goals. The market is expressed in half goals so there cannot be a tie. The odds are about the same for each possible outcome but you can get a small underdog and small favourite. Other totals bets include Over/Under 1.5 goals and Over/Under 3.5 goals.

Asian handicaps are generally expressed in full, quarter and half goals. Total goals of 0.75 is a betting market in which customers bet on the total number of goals being more or less than 0.75 goals. This is a quarter goal handicap so it cannot produce a tie. If the final score is 1-0 or 2-0, the Over option is the winning bet. If the final score is 0-0, the Under options is the winning bet. Some total goals’ markets are 1 goal which means there can be a tie if the final score is 1-0 to either team.

In a league football match, there are three potential outcomes: Home Win, Draw, Away Win. In Cup competitions and tournaments, matches that are tied after 90 minutes go to extra-time and penalties. You can bet on the match result or the team to qualify and proceed to the next round. Handicaps give a head start to the inferior team and they can be 2 or 3-way markets. The potential handicap results are Home Team, Draw, Away Team or Home Team, Away Team. The number of possible results depends on how the market are expressed in terms of goals.

It’s not always the case, but in most matches the away team is the underdog. Home advantage is significant and there are more home wins than draws and away wins in the English Premier League. An away handicap gives the away team a head start. Handicap bets are settled taking into the account the number of goals given up by the home team. A typical away handicap is a head start of 1 goal at the beginning of the match to the away team.

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