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While cricket has yet to fully shed its image as the gentleman’s game, its popularity has increased leaps and bounds in recent years, proving that it can be enjoyed by everyone, not just the British upper-middle classes. Like the game’s image, cricket betting has grown from just gambling on the result of a match to a wide market filled with main bets and side bets.
The bat-and-ball game has a history that dates back 500 years, and possibly even further, with the very name steeped in Old English dialect, meaning stick or club. It was not until the mid-18th century that the game took the form it retains to this day, with the ball being pitched at a batsman.
The rise of the British Empire saw the game spread to all corners of the known world, planting the seeds to make it one of the most popular sports in modern times. It is also seen as a having a great influence in the development of other sports such as baseball and Aussie rules football.
Like football or basketball, the opportunity to bet on the activities of a specific player means that gambling on cricket can be very lucrative, especially for fans who keep abreast of player statistics. Not only that, but with many leagues spread all across the world, as well as many international matches and test series, cricket fans will struggle to find a time of year when they are not able to bet on their favourite sport.
There was a time when betting on cricket was limited to the winner of a specific match, but since the advent of online gambling bookmakers have expanded the scope of cricket betting, finding inspiration in other types of sport betting.
The main betting type is still the outcome of a specific match or series. However, punters can also single out players to bet upon. For example, gamblers can put money on which batsman will make the highest amount of runs, or try to pick who the best bowler will be, judged by the amount of wickets they manage to demolish. Likewise, they can choose to bet on which player has performed the best overall, winning if their choice is awarded "man of the match".
Another type of bet is the maximum betting, where gamblers can choose which batsmen will hit the maximum sixes or fours for the match. They can also try to predict the highest score in one inning.
What you are looking for in a cricket bookmaker may depend on what types of bets you are looking to make. Those who have yet to be initiated into the world of cricket may wish only the most basic of wagers to begin with, while die-hard cricket statisticians will probably be seeking an online portal that offers betting on every conceivable aspect of the game.
Some bookmakers may offer a far more extensive selection of cricket bets than others, which may largely be down to where they're based. Most British-based bookmakers will offer a wide array of bets, while countries where the game is not so established may offer only the most basic options to wager upon.
Online gambling sites will often compete for player’s money by offering very generous introductory bonuses or even free bets. Shop around and see which ones offer the most amount for joining, but remember to check how these bonuses can be used and if they generate any winnings, if they can be withdrawn.