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Betting odds – Converting probability to odds

By Admin on August 19, 2012 in Betting Guide, Odds guide

With this betting odds article we illustrate how you work out odds from probabilities. This, so you can use the probability and betting stats articles found on-site with ease. We use the decimal odds type exlaining. Understanding betting odds is not hard, but if you are a beginner it is better you set aside 10 minutes to grasp the information given here. Let’s get to it:

Probability in sports example

Betting odds in sports betting come from probability in sports. Probability in sports can for instance be the chances of Norwegian Andreas Thorkildsen making an over 90.00 meter or more javelin throw in the London Olympics. An example from Premier League betting can be the chance of Norwich winning at home against Chelsea. Yet another example can be the probability of you finishing a 10K run under 50 minutes. As you can see, everything that can be measured in any way shape or form has a probability attached.

How do we get the probabilities? has covered the basis of probabilities in many articles. First, obviously our probability and betting stats articles must read material. To those articles you can add plenty of sports specific reads. If football betting is your thing, read our soccer betting articles. If you are into tennis betting, our how to bet on tennis articles will be good. If you prefer baseball betting, basketball betting or American football betting, we got good articles on that too.

Practical bet probability construction

  • Gather data: Using the Thorkildsen to throw a javelin over 90 meters in the London Olympics as an example; we find as much info on throws done in competition. Let’s for argument sake say we have found 100 throws
  • Arrange the data using frequency distribution (see our article on the subject). Let’s for argument sake we see that 90 throws have been under 90.00m and 10 have been 90.00m or above.
  • Find the probability; we do this by dividing the relative frequency of 90+ meters over the total number of observations (100). We then find that there is 10/100=0.1=10% probability of a 90m+ throw to be launched by the great Norwegian athlete.

Probability to odds

The easiest way to calculate this for the decimal odds style is to use the formula of 1/x, where x simply is the probability in decimal format. 1 in this setup simply symbolizes 100%. Using our javelin over 90m example we get 1/0.1 = 10. If you want to find out how to convert this odds to other ways of stating odds read our article on: odds conversion.

Our decimal method is preferred in-house, but worldwide, the most common probability to odds conversion happen through looking at odds for an event happening or odds against an event happening. In our case the event is Thorkildsen to throw 90.00m or more.

In our follow up article we look at how probability is converted to odds using other methods than the decimal method applied here.

The best of luck,

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