Betting terms – A complete guide | The Sun

NEW to betting or looking to brush up on gambling-related lingo?

There are a large number of words, terms and phrases that you should familiarise yourself with before getting started. Understanding betting terms will make it easier for you to get to grips with different markets, bonuses and features.

On this page, we will provide explanations of some of the key betting terms. Whether you are looking to wager on football, horse racing or another sport, you will find our guide extremely helpful. So, let’s get started!

Betting terms A-Z

  1. Betting odds – The price offered by a bookmaker on a particular selection. Odds are calculated based on the likelihood of the prediction being accurate. 
  2. Betting strategy – A system used in order to maximise your chances of making a profit when placing bets.
  3. Banker – A pick that is heavily favoured to win. 
  4. Booking points football – With selected bookies, you can bet on the number of cards shown by a referee in a football match. One yellow card often equals 10 points, with a red card totalling 25 points. 
  5. Gambler's fallacy – A belief that if an outcome occurs more often than normal in the past, it will happen less often in the future. 
  6. Hedging bets – A system that involves betting on the opposite outcome to your previous bet, in order to guarantee a small profit. 
  7. Lay betting – Available on betting exchanges, a lay bet involves wagering on a particular event not occurring. You effectively take on the role of a bookmaker. 
  8. Lucky 15 – Commonly associated with horse racing, a Lucky 15 bet features four singles, six doubles, four trebles and one 4-fold accumulator. 
  9. Parimutuel betting – Also known as Pools, this form of betting involves wagering against other punters, rather than a bookie. 
  10. Up and down bet – A bet that consists of two individual sections. With the “Up” bet, you are betting on your selection to win. The “Down” bet refers to the same pick placing.
  11. 1×2 – A bet type only available when a draw is a potential result. The name refers to the three possible outcomes, home win, draw or away win. 1×2 bets are most commonly linked to football. 
  12. BTTS – Available on selected sports, including football and ice hockey. Based on whether both teams will score a goal, you simply bet on “Yes” or “No”. 
  13. Cash out betting – Cash out is a feature offered by online bookmakers that allows punters to settle bets before their completion. An amount of money is offered by the bookie, based on the current in-play odds. 
  14. Corner match bet – Specific to football, this bet simply involves selecting which team will earn the most number of corners during the match. 
  15. Draw no bet – A market where your stake will be refunded in the event of the event ending in a draw. 
  16. Each way betting – A bet type available on horse racing and other sports where there is a winner and other participants finishing in placed positions. While being a single bet, there are two wagers, a “win bet” and “place bet”. 
  17. SP in betting – The starting price given to a competitor at the start of an event, generally in horse racing.  
  18. Bet builder – A feature offered by selected bookies that allows punters to build accumulator bets within a single event. 
  19. Betting exchange – A platform where members bet against each other, rather than a bookmaker. 
  20. Canadian bet – A multiple bet that involves punters selecting five selections from different sports, in order to make 26 individual parts. 
  21. Double bet – A single bet that involves two selections. Odds for both picks are combined, with both needing to win in order for your bet to be successful. 
  22. Heinz bet –  multiple bet that comprises 57 bets in total, across six selections. 
  23. Patent bet – A multiple bet involving seven bets of equal value, on three different selections. Three singles, three doubles and one treble are placed. 
  24. Placepot bet – A bet the equivalent of placing one 6-fold accumulator. 
  25. Single bet – Often described as the simplest bet type. It is a bet placed on a single outcome of a specific event. 
  26. Super heinz bet – A multiple bet that features seven selections and totals 120 separate wagers. 
  27. Tote bet – A bet where your stake goes into a pool, from which winnings are paid from. 
  28. Treble bet – A multiple bet that consists of three separate wagers, on three different events. All picks must be accurate in order for your bet to win. 
  29. Tricast bet – A bet where you must pick the first three finishers, in the correct order. 
  30. Yankee bet – This wager is made up of 11 individual bets, from four selections.
  31. Acca bet – Also known as an accumulator, an acca features multiple selections. All picks must be successful for your bet to be settled as a win.
  32. Ante post betting – Associated with horse racing and greyhounds, an ante post bet is one that is placed before the market has actually opened. 
  33. Arbitrage betting – A betting strategy where you bet on all possible outcomes of an event in order to guarantee that a profit is made. 
  34. EV betting – In betting terms, EV stands for expected value. So, it is not about what you believe will happen, rather the advantage you hold because of your expert knowledge. 
  35. Handicap betting – Where a team or player is given a surplus or deficit, when there is a clear favourite and outsider. 
  36. Liability in betting – The amount of money required in order to cover the result of a bet. 
  37. Undercard – Used in the world of boxing and other combat sports, the undercard is the list of fights that precede the main event. 
  38. RTP – Known as “Return to Player”, RTP refers to the average amount of money that a casino game will pay out over time. 
  39. Betting slip – A receipt that features your selections, odds, stake and potential returns. 
  40. Underdog – A sports team or player that is expected to lose. 
  41. Over-under bet – A bet placed on whether a particular in-game statistic will be higher or lower than a particular number. 
  42. Parlay – Another name for an acca, a parlay is a single bet that features multiple selections. 
  43. Spread bet – A form of betting where you wager on the movement of markets, rather than specific outcomes. 
  44. Evens bet – A bet that will return double your stake. Odds are written as EVS, 1/1 or 2.00. 
  45. Outright bet – A bet placed on an entire tournament or league, as opposed to a specific event. For example, the winner of the football World Cup. 
  46. Void bet – Your stake is returned due to an unforeseen circumstance occurring. For example, a tennis player retiring from a match due to injury. 

Pocket betting terminology

Upon entering a betting site, there will likely be terminology that confuses you. In order to give yourself the best possible chance of being successful, make sure that you are familiar with the terms and phrases outlined on this page.

Referring to different bet types, strategies and features, our guide will benefit all bettors. 

About the author

James Fuller

James is an experienced copywriter with over a decade’s worth of experience in the iGaming industry. He is an avid sports fan, following football, tennis, Formula 1 and golf in particular.

Remember to gamble responsibly

A responsible gambler is someone who:

  • Establishes time and monetary limits before playing
  • Only gambles with money they can afford to lose
  • Never chase their losses
  • Doesn’t gamble if they’re upset, angry, or depressed
  • Gamcare –
  • Gamble Aware –

Find our detailed guide on responsible gambling practices here.

For help with a gambling problem, call the National Gambling Helpline on 0808 8020 133 or go to to be excluded from all UK-regulated gambling websites.

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