Betting On Darts: 5 Tips For Success
With the PDC World Darts Championship commencing, today on the blog Alex Lee tells us how to bet on darts and make some money doing it.
#1 - Respect The Short Format
Just like in tennis and snooker, the longer the format, the less chance there is of an upset. The shortest format available to bet on in darts is usually best of nine – or, if you prefer, first to five. There are several ways to approach short format darts.
The first is to look for potential upsets involving matches featuring short-odds favourites. This is because typically the odds in a short format darts match won’t be markedly different – in some cases they’ll be identical – to the odds which would have been offered for a longer format game between the same two players. The best players usually win over the long haul, but not quite as often in ‘sprints’. If the outsider, for example, throws first by winning the pre-match ‘closest to the bull’ and goes on to break his opponent in the second leg, he’s suddenly two up meaning he’s only three away from victory. Furthermore, he ‘has the throw’ in the next leg, therefore all he has to do is hold his throw, in other words, not get broken back and suddenly you have an upset on your hands. In-play traders, with an actual ‘live’ TV transmission to rely upon (remember most streams are up to 30 seconds behind) can take advantage of this by laying the hot favourite before the off then trading out in-running by backing him at a higher price.
#2 - Keep In Touch Of All The Events
Just because a player performed admirably in the last TV major doesn’t mean he’ll play just as well in the next. Darts, like snooker, has a number of smaller events which go towards ‘players tour’ ranking points and not all of these are televised on the main stations. Keep abreast of what’s going on by using the official PDC website, darts.livesport.tv and fan sites such as dartsmad.comand live.dartsdata.com.
A lot goes on between each big Sky or terrestrial TV event. Ignore it at your peril! There are no excuses for not staying in touch with the so-called ‘floor’ events. The last smaller event which preceded a TV major is invariably a better form guide than the previous major tournament.
#3 - Factor In ‘The Power’
Good money can be made doing ante-post darts betting – providing you factor in a certain Phil Taylor. The Stoke-born legend has been the man to beat for two decades and he is invariably the ante-post tournament favourite. If you’re tempted to get involved in ante-post darts betting, make sure Taylor is one of the contestants covered. His odds will be short, granted, but there is good reason for this! Even though he’s well into his fifties now, he still remains the benchmark for all darts players young and old. While Taylor lost to Van Gerwen in his most recent major final (the Players Championship in Minehead, UK), he very rarely loses finals.
If you’re thinking of opposing him, try laying him in an early round of a short format tournament, just in case he has an off-night. Otherwise, a way of squeezing a better price out of backing Taylor in individual games is to take him on a minus handicap, thus giving his opponent a head start. Alternatively, if it’s a race to ten for example, a ‘dutch’ (placing money on several markets in order to achieve the same return regardless of which of your selections lands) on say 10-2, 10-3 and 10-4 will return a significantly higher dividend than if you’d just backed him on the ‘to win’ market.
#4 - Make Some Cash From Crondon Park
The Championship League is an event held once a year in Crondon Park, Essex. It’s an internet-only competition where there is no crowd, just a small room, two players, the ref and a scorer. The action takes place over nine days. The winner from each day goes through to the eight-man final day.
While each match is a quick race to six (best of eleven), a lot of cash can be made as it often follows that players who get off to a good start in the morning tend to carry their form through the rest of the day. The hushed, crowd-free atmosphere is a great leveller too as often lesser-ranked players tend to perform to a much higher level than the bookmakers would expect. Be careful if betting in-running, however, due to the time lag of the internet stream.
#5 - Find The Value In Most 180's & Handicaps
An old darting cliché is ‘trebles for show, doubles for dough’. Better bettors can exploit this situation by opposing the ‘Most 180s’ favourite as it does not necessarily follow that the player scoring the most maximums goes on to win the match. Backing the outsider in the ‘Most 180s’ market is a good way to make steady cash in darts without enormous liabilities.
Typically, the ‘Most 180s’ market in darts will read like a football home/draw/away book. Remember to take into consideration the likely number of total legs before making your selection as a race to five could easily throw up a draw in the ‘Most 180s’ column. Similarly, backing players in handicap markets such as +1.5 and +2.5 where the bookies are effectively giving them a head start against their more fancied opponents is well worth a look, especially if you believe the outsider can push their adversary close or even beat them. A +2.5 handicap in a first to six encounter, for example, covers all wins for your player as well as a 5-6 and a 4-6 defeat.
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