No bets, no sport. The United Kingdom are among the wildest sports betters in the world. This gambling is not only highly addictive, it has become a sport in itself.
In 2016 the Global Gambling Statistics found out that 18 billion dollars were lost in Britain due to gambling and that 8’800 gambling machines were installed across the country. All statistics are reported by Beating Betting and Global Betting Statistics.
To understand why the UK has a deeply anchored betting culture, let’s go way back to the 1790’s. Horse racing was esteemed among upper classes and this recreative activity took off when a man named Harry Ogden created in Newmarket Heath a new system of betting.
Instead of pricing every horse the same, he realised that some of the horses were better than others. Harry Ogden implemented the system of odds. This means that if you were to bet on a horse with a higher rate, the winning returns would be somewhat small. But if you were to bet on a less performant horse, the profits would be greater in case of win.
This system is still applicable now and knows a great success. The UK is one of the biggest football nations, with 46% of UK residents following it on TV. With approximately half of the country watching this sport, the betting statistic of football reaches an incredible 76.8% in 2019 according to Beating Betting. Also tennis, boxing and golfing have a high rate in betting.
An additional problem is that with Internet, apps and online sites, people are induced to bet more. In this generation everything is accessible in no time whatsoever, therefore, betting companies launched apps where you can find all information and odds changes for matches that are in-play. While a few years ago you had to reach the nearest betting company under rain and storms, you can now comfortably bet from your sofa while watching the game live.
The Beating Betting site states, that people were more likely to bet online and that those of them betting in-play believe they are 2.2 times more likely to be profitable. This sets a naïve way of thinking as you would be persuaded that during a football match where one team leads 3-0, a reverse of situation would seem impossible. This builds a confidence and sureness that leads to always bet more.
The most alarming issue is that the 52.3% who are betting more than £10 per month, concern people from 18-24. The younger generations do not understand that sport betting is a form of gambling and see it as an easy way to make money.
The incredible statistic is that 58.5% of the betters between 18-24 see themselves as profitable when betting. This industry holds the younger generation in an unrealistic bubble which generates only misfortune and addiction.
I have myself tried sports betting and faced some disappointments, but also a one-time incredible luck. Combining 12 matches through 3 different sports and leagues, I won an astonishing sum of £657.82 with betting only 10 pounds! This kind of luck strikes to play more, and I did. Only since this unbelievable and risky bet, I redeemed only losses.
So, play reasonably while keeping in mind, that a successful bet does not mean it will occur each time you play. Even if its sports and matches cannot be faked (except in cases of corruption), odds are relatively low for you to win a series of bets. Don’t forget that betting would not be as prominent if the companies were to lose more money than they cash in…
Words: Alexandra Girgis
Images: Keenan Constance on Unsplash and Alexandra Girgis
Infographic: Alexandra Girgis