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How To Bet On The Indian Premier League


Making consistent profits betting on the Indian Premier League takes a combination of discipline, sound money management and most importantly the ability the identify value. In our detailed guide to betting on the IPL, we'll show you how to improve your betting returns and hopefully become a long term successful IPL bettor.

Betting On The IPL: An Introduction

Once a year for seven weeks, the eyes of the cricketing world are firmly fixed on domestic crickets richest tournament. The Indian Premier League cricket schedule is over the best parts of April and May, as eight franchises battle it out for the biggest prize in T20 cricket – a cool $2.2 million US dollars is on offer for the winning squad.

The drama starts before the Indian Premier League cricket goes live on field, as each of the eight franchises bid to retain, trade and sign players in a glitzy auction that has become as much a part of the IPL as the cricket itself.

Part of the IPL's popularity is no doubt down to the vast quantity of overseas stars that are freed to play for a domestic Indian franchise courtesy of a no-objection certificate issued by their international sides governing board. As the English domestic season and early international fixtures clash with the IPL, there has been an issue with the England & Wales Cricket Board (ECB) releasing their contracted players in the past. This objection appears to be receding, as year-on-year more England international players are released to play for the majority of the IPL cricket schedule.

The IPL has several rules that each squad must follow:

#1 - Easch squad must contain between 18 and 25 players. 

#2 - Each squad can contain up to 8 overseas players (some are only available for part of the IPL) but any final playing XI taking the field can only contain no more than 4 overseas players.

#3 - Each squad must encourage the growth of Indian youth cricket by signing a minimum 6 players from the Board of Control for Cricket in India's (BCCI) under 22 years old pool of players.

#4 - Salary cap of 80 crore.

Some of the biggest stars, both domestic and overseas, command huge figures to sign for a franchise. In 2016 new Indian Test match captain and batting sensation Virat Kohli was paid $2.26 million US to lead the Bangalore franchise – not bad for seven weeks work. MS Dhoni was snapped up by the new Pune franchise for the princely sum of $1.89 million US. Those figures pale into insignificance when you consider Yuvraj Singh's previous riches. The left handed batsman, famed for once hitting Stuart Broad for 36 runs in one over, was signed for Delhi in 2015 for $2.67 million US. A year previous Bangalore snapped him up for $2.33 million US!

The auction can also be extremely profitable for 'unknown' overseas cricketers as well. Glenn Maxwell only made his début in domestic Australian cricket in 2010 - two years later Mumbai were paying $1.00 million US to secure his services off Delhi, despite the fact he'd never played international cricket.


1 - Betting On IPL Online
2 - IPL Betting Odds Explained
3 - IPL Value Bets
4 - IPL Betting Explained
5 - Best IPL Betting Strategies
6 - IPL Betting Spreadsheet
7 - Selecting A Bookmaker For IPL Betting
8 - IPL Free Bets & Bookmaker Offers
9 - IPL  Live Streaming
10 - Following IPL Betting Tips
11 - Summary

1 - Betting On The IPL Online

The Indian Premier League (IPL) was launched in 2008 as an officially sanctioned T20 tournament to rival the Indian Cricket League (ICL), which was viewed as a rebel league by both the BCCI and the ICC (International Cricket Council) .

Whilst the ICL offered decent lump sums that appealed to recently retired international cricketers, it couldn't match the numbers the BCCI were now offering for its players to stay loyal to its officially recognised domestic events, including of course its new cherry on top of the cake, the IPL. Any player taking part in the ICL was treated as an outcast and given a life time ban by the BCCI.

The IPL has been hit by several scandals over its nine year history to date, meaning the format has changed over the years due to the number of franchises competing in each edition. There have been a total thirteen different franchises since the competitions 2008 birth, five of which have either been sold by its owners and renamed, or suspended due to breach of contract. However, perhaps most damaging to crickets good name is the recent suspension of founder members Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals. Both franchises were suspended for a minimum of two seasons starting in 2016 due to match fixing/corruption allegations.

As of 2018 there are eight franchises that play each other twice in a round-robin opening stage, meaning each side competes in 14 group stage matches. These eight Indian Premier League cricket teams are named below alongside the year they first appeared in the IPL:

#1 – Chennai Super Kings (2008)
#2 – Delhi Daredevils (2008)
#3 – Kings XI Punjab (2008)
#4 – Kolkata Knight Riders (2008)
#5 – Mumbai Indians (2008)
#6 – Rajasthan Royals (2008)
#7 – Royal Challengers Bangalore (2008)
#8 – Sunrisers Hyderabad (2013)

With 2 points awarded for a win and 1 point for a tie/no result, the top 4 sides qualify for the knock-out stages. This is where it gets slightly confusing! The top 2 sides from the group stage play in a match titled Qualifier 1. The winner goes through to the Final, the loser into a match called Qualifier 2. In between these two Qualifiers is a match called the Eliminator, in which the sides that finished 3rd and 4th in the group stage play a match in which the winner goes into Qualifier 2 (to play the loser of Qualifier 1) and the loser gets knocked out.

What ever happened to good old fashioned Semi-Finals?

As you can see from the above, seven franchises have been registering Indian Premier League scores since the tournaments inception in 2008. Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai Indians jointly hold the records for most IPL trophies with three each. Surprisingly, given the batting talent on show at the M.Chinnaswamy Stadium, the Banaglore franchises have never won the IPL, finishing a best of runners-up in 2009, 2011 and 2016. Likewise, Kings XI Punjab have never finished better than runners-up (2014) and poor old Delhi have never bettered third place in eight attempts.

There are three other previous champions, all of which are not competing in the IPL currently due to varying reasons outlined above. Rajasthan Royals won the inaugural event, Hyderabad based Deccan Chargers were victorious in 2009 and Chennai Super Kings went back-to-back with wins in 2010 and 2011. CSK also finished runners-up on four occasions, making them by far the most successful team in the IPL. Due to this on-field success, plus having the presence of Indian hero MS Dhoni and left arm spinning all rounder, Ravi Jadeja - nicknamed the rockstar due to his unmistakable care-free strut that accompanies him whether hitting sixes or taking wickets - the Chennai franchise were arguably the most popular team in IPL history.

Given the popularity of both the tournament and the T20 format with players, spectators and television broadcasters in general, it's safe to assume that IPL odds will be on offer alongside IPL cricket betting tips for many years to come.

2 - IPL Betting Odds Explained

Betting odds reflect the probability of a given outcome occurring. This probability is often referred to as the implied probability. For example, if a team is listed at odds of 2.00 to win an upcming IPL match, then according to the bookmakers, this team has a 50% chance of winning the match. The implied probability can be calculated as:

Implied probability = 1 / decimal odds

Understanding betting odds is crucial to successful long term betting. If you want to bet on the IPL, or any other cricket tournament or any other sport for that matter, it's key that you understand betting odds and implied probability.

For more advice on betting odds and what they mean take a look at these articles:

How To Bet On Cricket: A Beginners Guide
How To Convert Odds To Probability
Betting Odds Explained

3 - IPL Value Bets

The most important thing when it comes to profitable betting, whether you're betting on the IPL, another cricket tournament or any other sport, is to only place a bet when you have identified a value opportunity. To put it simply, a value opportunity is when you consider the chances of a given outcome greater than the probability implied in the bookmaker's odds.

Determining betting value requires a simple calculation:

Value = (Decimal Odds * Your Assessed Probability) - 1

So for example, if we are offered odds of 2.00 (which have an implied probability of 50%) and we consider the likelihood of that outcome to be 55%, then we have a value betting opportunity because our assessed likelihood is greater than that implied in the bookmaker's odds.

For more information on betting value and IPL staking strategies, read the following articles.

How To Bet On Cricket: A Beginners Guide
What Is Value Betting?
How To Find Value Bets
Calculating The Perfect Bet Stake
How To Manage Your Betting Bankroll

4 - IPL Betting Explained

There are a number of ways to bet on the IPL. Most bookmakers now offer a deep menu of betting options, giving you the opportunity to find betting value across a range of markets. Here we take a look at the most popular IPL bet types.

Match Winner

The most popular market to bet on the IPL with any other bookmaker is the match winner market. There are plenty of fixtures to stake our money on, with 60 matches on the IPL cricket schedule in 2016. Take time to read up the many IPL cricket betting previews that accompany many bookmakers websites as they often give insight into expected team line-ups and any injury concerns that may hinder a sides chances.

IPL Winner

Pre-event (and after each completed match) bookmakers will offer odds on who will win the IPL itself. Fancy one of the favourites to win the IPL but don't like the price? The 2015 IPL champions Mumbai Indians won the trophy despite losing their opening three matches. One accurate IPL betting tip is to sometimes wait until each side has played several matches before placing any outright IPL winning betting tip. Not only can you then get a better price for your selection, you can also watch their early performances through IPL live streaming or on television, whilst checking out the oppositions form too.

Number of Boundaries

In any IPL match you can bet on the number of boundaries (fours or sixes) that either side will hit. This is usually an under/overs line set pre-match and continued in play by many traditional bookmakers. These lines will vary depending on the type of players on show for any team, factored alongside historical boundary data for any given ground. You can also bet on a certain side to hit more sixes than the other – this is a good market to focus on, especially when one side appears to contain several six hitters throughout the batting order, as opposed to relying on a couple of middle order bashers to always hit those maximums.

Highest opening partnership

Highest opening partnership is also a worthwhile market to focus on. So often one side will have an out of form opening batsman that is struggling to find rhythm and as such either gets out himself, or in a pursuit to give himself more time to get in and find form, places undue pressure on his opening partner who has to take unnecessary risks himself in order to keep the runs flowing.

Man of the Match

Man of the Match awards are handed out to players that naturally make a telling difference to the outcome of any given match. For value, concentrate on looking for players that might have several quieter matches, before suddenly popping up from nowhere to bowl a match winning spell on a suitable wicket (thinking an experienced spin bowler) or a middle order batsman blasting his side to victory from the jaws of defeat with a quick fire 40 off 16 balls (thinking six hitting specialist who is slightly hit-or-miss).

Highest 6 overs score

Highest 6 overs score is another market that often can give pre-match value. Some sides have opening batsmen that always look to hit boundaries no matter what the pitch or game scenario is (thinking of Aaron Finch and Brendon McCullum or Chris Gayle and Virat Kohli) Other sides might be slightly more cautious in their approach, looking to set up a platform for their middle order hitters to do damage later in the innings. Quite often the Kings XI Punjab side do this as their strength historically is for David Miller and Glenn Maxwell to hit the fours and sixes down the order.

Individual player performance

Finally look out for bookmaker player performance market (explained below in the Indian Premier League Bookmakers section) This can be a great market to not only be profitable, but to always have an interest as you watch each Indian Premier League cricket match live. As points are awarded for runs, wickets, catches and stumpings, look to focus on cricketers that are either all-rounders or wicket-keepers that bat in the top order. This way they are always in the game with every chance of taking a wicket, a catch and almost guaranteed to have a bat.

5 - Best IPL Betting Strategies

There are a number of ways to find betting value in IPL cricket. Here we list the most important things to consider when applying a betting strategy to the Indian Premier League.

Research Likely Conditions & Ground History

Even in the crash, bang, wallop world of T20 cricket, conditions so often dictate what sort of match we are likely to witness. Take time to research the idiosyncrasies that each IPL venue has. What is the average score historically and recently on any given playing surface? For instance the Wankhede stadium in Mumbai had an average first innings score of 169 in years 2012 through to 2015, yet in years 2013 to 2015 that average rocketed to 180. Other grounds are less suitable for batting such as Ranchi or Raipur, which averaged 149 and 145 respectively in matches held in years 2013 to 2015. Other grounds such as the PCA stadium in Mohali might have traditionally flat batting surfaces, but a larger than average playing area with longer square of the wicket boundaries make high totals harder work than say the M.Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore, which regularly sees totals of 190 or more (including 50% of matches played in 2015 and 2014).

Here is our recommended list of the best cricket stats websites available:

ESPN Cricinfo
Cricket Archive

Batting Positions Are Key

One IPL cricket match prediction that we all need to remember is batsman need time at the crease in order to lead their individual team leading run scorer markets. After all, 120 balls is not a lot of time for each team innings. The orange cap is handed out to the leading IPL run scorer at the end of each season. In the first eight seasons all of the batsman were opening batsmen. We need our batsmen to face as many of these balls as possible, meaning our focus should be on openers if betting on the IPL on Betfair, or any other traditional bookmaker in this market.

Bowlers Take Wickets At The Death

The closing overs of any IPL game is when bowlers can cash in. Sure, they might get hit for more boundaries, but with batting sides taking more risks to score fast runs as those overs tick by, bowlers that ply their trade in overs 16-20 nearly always end up as leading wicket takers. The purple cap is handed out to the leading IPL wicket taker each season. In the first eight seasons, seven of these bowlers tended to bowl at least 2 of their 4 allocated overs at the death. Interestingly, those seven were all seam bowlers, with the only exception being spinner Pragyan Ojha leading the way in 2010. Captains simply don't like bowling spinners at the death for fear of them being hit for sixes.

In Play Value

Given the fast paced nature of T20 cricket, in play odds can vary massively from over-to-over depending on what drama unfolds before our eyes. A bowling side can seemingly be in control, pushing up the chasing sides required run rate with every ball that isn't a boundary. Then suddenly a middle order big hitter such as Kieron Pollard or MS Dhoni hits two or three sixes in a row, the required rate drops from a seemingly improbable 13 an over to a more than manageable 7.5 an over, and the market has flipped. The batting side has gone from being a 4.00 outsider to a 1.33 favourite in the space of an over! The trick is to know when a flip such as this example is likely to occur and striking. The nature of the T20 beast sees this situation occur with regularity, sometimes several times within the same innings – especially during extreme high or low scoring IPL matches.

6 - IPL Betting Spreadsheet

Keeping a record of your betting is crucial to being profitable in the long term. Only through keeping track of each of your bets can you see where you are going right, and in which situations you are showing poor discipline and making errors of judgement. To assist you with this, we've developed the bettingexpert IPL cricket betting spreadsheet. It's free and you can download it now.

Download the bettingexpert Cricket Betting Spreadsheet.

It's easy to use. Simply enter the tournament, series or match you are betting on, the date, the bet description, your stake, the odds and the bookmaker you placed the bet with. Once the event has been completed, select either Win, Loss or Refund from the Result options and the spreadsheet will calculate your profit or loss plus your running profit/loss and your overall cricket betting ROI. 

cricket betting spreadsheet

7 - How To Choose A Bookmaker For IPL Betting

William Hill offer the widest range of markets for betting on IPL cricket online in our opinion. They cover all the obvious leading markets that we mentioned above, plus offer some side markets that we like such as individual player performance points over/under markets. This is where a player is scored 1pt a run, 10pts a catch, 20pts a wicket or 25pts a stumping throughout the duration of a match.

Paddy Power seem to specialise in offering batsman match up bets; great if you fancy that a certain batsman is in form and is likely to outscore a teammate or an opponent during a certain match.

Skybet also have a growing list of pre-match cricket markets on offer. Although not as extensive as the above two, they offer good value for money, often offering the biggest odds for many outright winning market.

Bet Victor's in play IPL odds are also of interest. Whereas many traditional bookmakers only offer one over/under innings run line, Bet Victor offer several in play alternatives. This means you can back at much shorter odds with a bigger stake if you prefer backing a likely outcome, or alternatively chase a bigger win for a smaller stake betting on a free IPL cricket betting tip you may have read online that might be viewed as less likely.

It's also important to consider a bookmakers reputation. Are they trustworthy? Are you able to withdraw winnings in quick time? Do they have numerous deposit methods? It's important to do your research before selecting a bookmaker for IPL betting. It's also important to consider their welcome bonus when signing up. Some bookmakers offer very generous sign up bonuses that are well worth taking advantage. But remember to read the welcome terms and conditions as what may appear an attractive offer at first glance, may not be so attractive when you consider the conditions that must be met in order to withdraw your bonus as cash.

If you're wondering which bookmaker might best suit your golf betting needs and which offer the best welcome bonuses, refer to our detailed list of bookmaker reviews.

8 - IPL Free Bets & Promotional Offers

Skybet regularly offer price boosts for top team batsman markets. A price boost offers punters enhanced odds often well above market averages. This is very useful if you fancy backing a favourite in an individual leading run scorer market, but think his original price might have been a tad short and not value.

William Hill often offer enhanced IPL odds for a number of markets each week, including price boosts on a number of doubles markets. This includes bigger than normal odds on doubles prices for a certain side to win a match and a certain batsman to top score for that winning side.

To see a detailed list of all current free bet and bookmaker promotions available, please refer to our Bookmaker Free Bets page. Everything you need to know about free bets and bookmaker promotions.

9 - IPL Live Streaming

In its formative years, IPL cricket was streamed live on YouTube for two years. This upset many television broadcasters who had previously paid for the rights to show Indian Premier League cricket live on their TV stations. Until last year viewers in the UK could watch IPL live streaming on a numbwe od live streaming platforms making it easier for IPL betting online as you could monitor the markets alongside live pictures on the same screen. This service is still available in some territories, but in the UK Sky Sports now have exclusive rights to broadcast live IPL pictures on their network.

Read our guide to bookmaker live streams to learn more about this increasingly popular and useful feature.

10 - IPL Betting Tips

Finding profitable IPL betting tips and cricket predictions isn't easy. While there are many IPL cricket tipsters on the internet making daily IPL betting predictions, it's often hard to tell which tipsters are genuine long term profitable IPL cricket tipsters and which are not. At bettingexpert we believe in full transparency. On our cricket betting tips page, you can not only see the latest IPL cricket betting tips but more importantly, each cricket tipster's overall betting profit / loss record. If you want to only follow those IPL tipsters that have shown the ability to identify cricket betting value, it is easy.

For the latest IPL cricket betting tips and predictions, visit our cricket betting tips page. Or if you fancy yourself as an IPL tipster, become a cricket tipster yourself and be in the running for monthly cash prizes, by signing up with bettingexpert today.

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