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Sports betting is attempting to predict the outcome of sports events and placing a wager on that outcome in an attempt to make money.
There has probably been some kind of sports betting ever since there was competitive sport. Although the sports markets have changed considerably over the years the basics are still the same – predict the outcome and win the money.
There are different regulations and laws in different parts of the world but where the past time is legal it is very popular and a significant element of popular culture.
Although bettors can place their wagers in regulated betting shops – or bookmakers – there has been a huge increase in the popularity of sports betting since the rise of the internet. Traditional bookies have joined countless online sites to offer a huge variety of sports markets in their sportsbooks.
It obviously depends on the country but some of the most popular sports to bet on are football and horse racing. Racing, in particular, is a traditional favourite of the bettors but with increased access to worldwide information, betting on football has taken over – at least in most of Europe.
As well as giving bettors more choice of sport and event, the rise in online betting sites has meant more chances to win money on many more aspects of the individual sports. In-play betting – where the wager is made during the event in question – is especially popular and much easier to follow.
The term ‘sports betting’ also refers to a number of markets that are not related to sport in any way apart from on the online betting sites. Markets offering prices on political general elections and even reality television shows can be found in the sportsbook section of most sites.