Darts betting is increasingly popular across the UK and Europe. It’s one of the most precise sports in the world, but one of the hardest to master, with the slightest deviation in any throw potentially costing a player the match. The sport can be compelling viewing and as its popularity has grown, so have the opportunities to bet on it.
Structure of the Sport
Darts has grown in stature over the years, thanks largely to the Professional Darts Corporation and is one of the most high profile sports in the UK, with the annual World Championship drawing huge television audiences. The sport is complicated by the fact that there are two governing bodies: the PDC and the British Darts Organisation (BDO), which is less lucrative. Punters will be able to find events to bet on with both the PDC and the BDO, though the best players all want to be with the PDC.
The darts schedule is packed with big events. The main tournaments are those held in the UK and Ireland under the authority of the PDC. These include the World Championship, the World Grand Prix, the Premier League, the Grand Slam of Darts, and the World Matchplay. The biggest event in the BDO calendar is the BDO World Championship. But as the sport becomes ever more popular around the world, there are events in a number of European countries, as well as South Africa, China, Thailand and Japan.
There are a range of dynamic darts betting markets for the darts punter to get stuck into, but one of the most interesting is the Most 180s market. Named after the maximum possible score a player can achieve in one visit to the board, this market often features some very tempting odds, as the favourites are usually significantly overpriced.
Hitting the treble 20 section of the board is incredibly difficult, and players need to be at the top of their game to hit it regularly, so if the match favourite is having an off day, he or she may not be able to rack up too many 180s, even if they win the game. Some players also tend to hit more maximums than others, so knowing which players rely heavily on the 180s as opposed to those who favour the treble 19 bed, can pay dividends in this market.
The handicap darts betting markets are a good option if you’re betting on a match with a clear favourite. They may be a prohibitively short price in the Match Winner market, but you squeeze out a bigger price if you take them in the Handicap market with a leg or set handicap, or if you back their opponent with a handicap advantage. When weighing up a handicap bet, you obviously have to consider the basic stats such as rankings, forms and head-to-head records, and it’s also a good idea to note which players need a leg or two to get up to speed, as they can be caught out in shorter-format matches.
For a long time, the Tournament Winner market at PDC events was all about Phil Taylor, but his dominance has declined in recent years, and there are a number of players capable of winning most events. One useful piece of advice to bear in mind for this market is that it can be profitable backing three or four players to win rather than backing your favourite each way. Just make sure that if you do select four, the odds will combine in such a way that you will make a profit if any of them win.
Best Bookmakers for Darts Betting
As Sky television cover many of the main PDC competitions, Skybet is a good place to start for the darts punter, and their markets for Premier League games often feature | Prediction, Betting Tips & Odds which can be a handy way to maximise your returns. BetVictor and Betfair are also known for offering tempting darts ‘specials’ which are usually based on specified multiple bets, while Paddy Power have been known to offer Free Bets when a Premier League match ends in a draw. As ever, though, it is important to shop around and compare the prices on offer at multiple bookmakers before you make your bet.
Where to watch darts
The best way to watch darts is through television, and most of the major darts tournaments are broadcast on Sky TV, ITV4 or the BBC, but there are live streams available with some bookmakers. As long as you have placed a bet on the market, you will be able to watch live stream footage with Paddy Power, Betfair and Ladbrokes, although it is worth noting that all live betting streams lag around five seconds behind real time events, so caution should be exercised if using these streams to bet in-play.