Snooker has had a reputation in the past for match-fixing but extensive live television coverage has seen the sport clean up its act. There is an impression that the sport has been corrupt in the past but stories of fixed matches are few and far between.
Snooker betting is very popular especially on the major ranking tournaments and in particular the World Championship in the spring at the Crucible Theatre in Sheffield. The 17-day tournament provides good betting opportunities year after year.
Snooker is structured around a ranking system whereby the top 16 players automatically qualify for the ranking events. Players lower in the rankings go through a qualifying tournament which gives new talent a chance but also allows former ranked players to qualify for the major ranking events. The result is matches that bring together up and coming players and established players and the betting is often wrong. Matches are priced on reputation more than current form and that is a fundamental flaw that can be exploited.
The major televised tournaments provide a great way of making money on the sport, especially when a ‘name’ meets a relatively unfamiliar emerging talent. Keen followers and gamblers on the sport will be aware of some of the lesser lights but the casual bettor may not realise that the unknown is good enough to beat the familiar face. Most punters lump on the ‘star’ players creating valuable betting opportunities for the more refined snooker bettor. The beauty is that money can be made in every ranking tournament as there will always be matches that meet the criteria.
Frame betting is popular but there are far too many variables in this market. Trying to predict how many frames one player will beat his opponent by is fraught with danger. The odds on offer are enticing but the bet involves too much guesswork. In a best of 19 match a player could be cruising to victory so his level drops and the opponent has nothing to play for so could win meaningless frames towards the match conclusion. The tournament winner and match winner offer lower odds but better value.
Giant-killing is common in snooker unlike other sports like boxing in which if a boxer beats his opponent easily you can assume he is the better fighter. In snooker its not really head-to-head combat because players are competing against the balls on the table. While one player is building a break the other can do nothing. This means the up-and-coming player in good form can often beat the more established player on a poor run of form. The confident player can dominate the table and match.
In golf course form is important but in snooker previous venue and tournament form has little relevance. The most important factor is current form and levels of confidence and this is revealed by a study of recent results. There are exceptions and the World Championship and Masters have produced multiple champions but within these events there will be shocks and giant-killing. The strategy is to identify in-form players and back them against better known players who are struggling.
There is plenty of information online about players’ current form and recent results. In any 16 or 32 player ranking event there will be several clashes between star names and new talent. Current form is more important than reputation and past results in an event and armed with the right information you can make money betting on snooker for many years to come. Ignoring the obvious is the key to beating the bookie with snooker betting.