Asian Handicap

Goalkeeper kicking the ball

Asian Handicap – What Is It and How Does It Work?

Asian Handicap (also known as “spread or line betting”) is a type of wager placed on sports markets. There are many features that make this form of betting special, but perhaps the most known one is the fact that Asian handicap markets do not have a “draw” outcome. This form of wagering is said to have come from Indonesia (this is why it’s called “Asian”) somewhere around the beginning of the year 2000. Asian handicap bets are renowned for their simplicity, yet complex nature; this is why they are preferred by both new and seasoned punters and continue to be offered by sportsbooks to this day.

Explaining the Handicap Part

Bookies often introduce Asian handicap markets to events that are known to have a very significant difference in odds. In an attempt to “virtually” equalize the chances between the two competing teams, sportsbooks would give a “condition” advantage to one of them, which usually comes in the form of additional points/ goals (depending on the sport). Here is a short example.

Team A has decimal odds of 1.5 and team B – 6.5. The market presented by the bookie will give a one-and-a-half goal advantage to team B. Even if team A wins the sporting event at a 1-0 result, the Asian handicap result would be 1-1.5. Punters that bet on team A to win would still receive their winnings; however, those that bet on team B would gain much more, from winning their handicap bet. In order to avoid any “draw” results, the points or goals given as an advantage will have an “uneven number”. In football markets, that advantage can be even can be ½, or even a ¼ of a goal.

Sportsbooks Known to Offer Asian Handicap Markets

Among the most famous sportsbooks to offer handicap wagering, are bet365, 888sports, Unibet, Bet Victor, and quite a few others. Bear in mind that the shelf-life of these market opportunities is very shorts, and even the most renowned bookies online won’t keep a market up for too long. Experienced punters are always on the lookout for handicap betting opportunities.

Different Types of Asian Handicap Betting

Although handicap wagering is in a league of its own, it isn’t uncommon to see it combined or merged with other forms of betting. For example, in some cases, a handicap wager can be a part of an accumulator bet. On other occasions, this type of wagers is made available for both pre-match and live play betting; for example, wagering on an Asian handicap in-play at bet365 is something that happens quite frequently.

Although this bet type and all its variants are quite popular among punters, handicap bets are considered to be a rarity, let alone any other combinations from them. You have to know that sportsbooks generally don’t like offering Asian handicap markets, as they might be at a huge loss if they haven’t calculated the advantage properly, resulting in a situation where punters that have bet on both outcomes scored a win. Perhaps, this is why, specifically, Asian handicaps in-play bets are only available “once in a blue moon”.

Most Common Sports for This Bet Type

Asian handicap in basketball and football is most common; however, this type of wagering is also prevalent in baseball, hockey, and volleyball. Although it isn’t unheard of for such a wager to be offered in sports where participants compete “1 vs 1”, it is largely accepted that Asian handicap betting is most commonly offered in team sports.

How Over Under Betting Works?

Sportsbooks Are Unable to Stop Offering Handicap Bets

Although sportsbooks don’t like offering Asian handicap bets, they do so out of necessity. More often than not, there are sporting events where the difference in odds between the participating teams is far too great to ignore, and in order to give “the underdogs” a chance, bookies will resort to handicap betting. From a different perspective, this is almost always good news for the punters!