Online sports betting in Australia

Sports betting in Australia is a massive business, with billions of dollars wagered legally every year. The most popular sports to bet on include AFL, NRL, football, basketball and of course, horse racing, which is a large percentage of the total take at Australian bookmakers. 

Most popular Australian sports competitions for betting

Australians are able to bet on basically anything at bookmakers, but there are definitely some sports and events that attract greater interest. These include the AFL, NRL and A-League, which are the top flight leagues in their respective sports. The most popular sports competitions to bet on in Australia include: 


The Australian Football League is an Aussie Rules competition that features 18 teams dotted right around the country. The AFL is a domestic sport in Australia that was originally created by railway workers over 100 years ago as a way to warm up on cold days. 

Now the AFL is barely recognisable and is often played in front of crowds of upwards of 80,000 people. The sport itself is a full contact competition and regularly sees players get injured in a variety of ways. Methods of scoring include goals and points and there are 18 players from each team on the field at any given time. 

AFL betting is exceptionally popular in Victoria, Western Australia and South Australia, but it has continued to gain a foothold in rugby league dominated states like Queensland and NSW. Betting sites will have markets available all year round on the AFL, including odds for awards like the Brownlow Medal, Rising Star and Coleman Medal. 

The reigning champions are Collingwood, who defeated Brisbane in the 2023 decider, but had made a slow start to the new season. 

Our team of wagering hounds write AFL betting tips articles on many of the top matches that happen during the season, including all finals.


The NRL, or National Rugby League, is the no.1 rugby league competition in Australia and is largely based in the northern states of NSW and Queensland, although there is one Victorian and an ACT team in the mix. There is also a team based in New Zealand. 

Rugby League is probably the second most popular football code in Australia, with it shading rugby union in terms of fanbase. It also draws huge betting interest in Queensland and NSW, particularly when the State of Origin, played between these two states is on. 

League is played on a rectangular field between two teams of 13 players, with the goal essentially to take the ball over the try-line. The kicker will then have an opportunity to add a further two points to the score with this known as a conversion. Teams can also score field goals, which is when the kicker drop kicks the ball through the goals. 

Australian sports betting sites have got extensive markets on the NRL, including the ability to place same-game multis, futures markets (for things like the Dally M Medal and premiership winner) and match day markets on things like winner, try scorers and tackles. 


The NBL or National Basketball League is the pinnacle of basketball in Australia, with this competition having featured some of the top basketball players in the world. In recent years NBA draftees like LaMelo Ball have used the NBL as a launching pad prior to their big-stage debut. 

The NBL has also fostered some incredible Australian talent, which dates back a long time, including NBL title winner Luc Longley, who was the starting centre next to Michael Jordan at Chicago during their title winning days. Other older NBL stars include Andrew Gaze and Shane Heal, who famously took it right up to the Dream Team at the Olympics. 

NBL betting is done all year round, but heats up during the summer months, with the season generally beginning in October and running through to the start of June the following year. This schedule has been interrupted by the covid pandemic this year, but the games have gone on. 

Popular all-year-round betting markets include NBL Champions (title winner), MVP (both league and team MVPs) and things like first coach to be sacked. Match day markets include head to head, top point scorers, rebounds and many other markets. 

There is presently nine teams in the NBL, with eight of these in Australia and one in New Zealand. The 2020-21 and defending champions are the Perth Wildcats, who won their 10th title in the competitions history. They are the most winningest team in Australian basketball. 


The A-League is the no.1 soccer competition to bet on in Australia, with it running from October to May each year. A League betting can be done at all Australian sports bookmakers, with these including the TAB and giants like Sportsbet and Ladbrokes. 

Soccer betting is one of the most popular sports leagues Australians bet on, although the weight of money wagered is probably lower than competitions like the EPL, which is massive down under. Aussies have the option of betting on on the outright winner of the A-League each year, while match day markets are extensive. 

The A-League is the latest incarnation of Australian football, with it being presented in various guises over the years. The A-League currently has 12 teams in it and there is constantly speculation about the next team to join or fold. Bookmakers even feature markets on things like the next team to join the league. 

Sydney FC won the 2020 A-League grand final, which was the fifth time they have been crowned champions. other teams to win the league in recent years include Adelaide Strikers and Melbourne Victory. 

Undoubtedly the A-League is one of the most popular sports betting mediums down under. 

Big Bash League

The Big Bash League is Australia’s top T20 competition, with it running over several months in the summer. The BBL has copped flack in recent times because of its extended format and inability to attract star players, but it is undoubtedly one of the most professional competitions in the world. 

BBL betting is also extremely popular, with thousands of markets available on every match, including things like winner, top run scorer, top wicket taker and even novelties, like whether anyone will be caught behind square leg. Basically, T20 cricket is the perfect medium for sports betting, with lots of odds available and short matches. 

Australian sports betting bookies will also feature extensive markets on a range of futures markets. These include things like the winner of the BBL final, who will make the finals, what players will make most runs for tournament and top wicket taker for tournament. 

The BBL has featured some of the finest cricketers the world has seen since its inception in 2011, including spin great Shane Warne, Universe Boss Chris Gayle and champion all-rounder Jacques Kallis. Cricket fans in Australia are crying out for players of this calibre to again come out to Australia. 

What sports do Australians bet on most?

The diversity of sports the staff at the World Gambling List bet on is breathtaking. If our attention is not on the NBA in North America, we’re probably finding a winner in the English Premier League or doing our money on the races at Royal Ascot.

While we will have individual pages for all the major and marginal betting sports around the world in time, here are a few of the most popular leagues and events on which online bookmakers offer wagering.

  • Horse Racing: The sport of kings is globally recognized as a punter’s sport. It’s one sport that is almost more about the betting than the storyline for many. Some of the countries where horse racing is most popular include the United Kingdom, Ireland, USA, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.
  • Baseball: The National sport of the United States and a very popular sport to wager on. Baseball is also prominent in Japan and Canada and has a massive global audience. The big stars are paid huge money, while many Hollywood films have been based around both the good, and the bad, parts of baseball.
  • Basketball: With so many leagues around the globe, billions are wagered on this sport annually. Some of the more popular leagues to bet on include the NBA, Heba A1 in Greece, the Chinese Basketball Association and Spain’s national league. It is not uncommon for basketball betting sites to have markets for every league around the world, with matches taking place almost every day. 
  • FIFA World Cup: We all know just how popular the soccer, or football, World Cup is when it comes to betting. Brazil 2014 broke all sorts of records for money gambled, with the 2018 Russian incarnation pushing the boundaries even further. Betting sites around the globe go into meltdown for the duration of the tournament. Qatar is due to host the next incarnation of the football World Cup, although it is unclear if it will go ahead because of the covid-19 crisis engulfing the world. 
  • Ice Hockey: While predominantly popular in the USA, Canada and Russia, ice hockey does have its fans when it comes to betting. The NHL is the best ice hockey league in the world and features teams from all over the USA and Canada. Online betting companies will generally have extensive markets available on any ice hockey that is taking place around the world. 
  • AFL & NRL: Most of our readers are probably saying “WHAT?” right now. But the Australian Football League (AFL betting guide) and the National Rugby League (NRL betting guide) deserve to be mentioned. Australia is probably the biggest-betting country on the planet per capita and these two sports are at the top of the chain when it comes to Aussies having a punt. All of the top Australian betting sites will have markets available on the AFL, while we constantly have AFL tips and NRL tips articles being published. 
  • Cricket: India, Pakistan, Australia, England and South Africa are just some of the countries obsessed by this odd sport. Cricket is bet on by millions with particular interest surrounding the Indian Premier League, which features many of the best players from around the globe in a Twenty20 competition. Coming up in 2021 cricket betting will take centre stage with the T20 World Cup, while in 2023 we have the 50 Over World Cup to look forward to, with home team England favourite to win the tournament. Other teams in the betting include India, Australia and South Africa.
  • Darts: Darts has blossomed into a popular betting sport, with most online betting sites now hosting odds on many tournaments and events around the world. Darts betting is particular prevalent in the United Kingdom, but it also a firm foothold in North America, Australia, China and many other countries. Read our guide to darts betting, which includes some funs observations from a legendary commentator.
  • Esports: One of the fastest growing areas in gambling, esports betting, charged by its younger demographic, is storming up the list of sports to bet on. For the uninitiated, esports is professional video gaming. Esports is insanely popular in most of Asia, North America and Europe. Popular video games with professional leagues or events include League of Legends, Dota 2, FIFA and NBA 2k. Find our more about esports betting sites in our detailed guide.
  • Rugby World Cup: The last RWC event happened in Japan in 2019, with South Africa taking out the title. New Zealand was the pre-tournament favourite, but they were upset in the semi finals. Many of the countries taking part un the Rugby World Cup, such as New Zealand and England, have big-betting fans when it comes to matters of national pride. There is some good money to be made during events such as this with some careful study. More on the RWC right here.
  • The Super Bowl: While the grand finale of the National Football League (NFL) is a US event, it continues to grow on a global scale in a gambling sense. Online bookies all over the world offer markets on this game (and regular NFL games); Super Bowl week generally means there is money flying around everywhere.

How to bet on sports online from Australia

Time needed: 5 minutes

In this section of our Australian online sports betting guide, we will run you through the steps required to successfully wager on local or international sports.

  1. Find an Australian bookmaker

    It is illegal to bet with offshore online betting sites from Australia so you must bet with online bookmakers with a licence. We recommend betting with one of our endorsed sports betting brands, advertised on this page.

  2. Complete the sign up process at the betting site

    Now you must open your account at the online bookmaker, this process takes a few minutes and involves handing over your personal details and contact information.

  3. Funding your online bookmaker

    Depositing money into your betting account is a crucial part of betting on sports online, with Australian bookmakers having many different deposit options available. These include options like Paypal, Neteller and Visa cards.

  4. Navigating the bookmaker and placing bets

    All of the top online bookmakers in Australia have got betting apps, desktop websites and are accessible across all devices with internet connections and a browser. They are among the best in the world, which means the navigation and ability to place bets is exceptionally easy.

  5. Betting account verification

    Another important thing when betting on sports online is verifying your account. Bookmaker account verification in Australia is in-place to stop money laundering and other practices. Basically you must prove your identity before you can withdraw.

Top Australian bookmakers for sports betting

Sports betting is not slowing down in Australia and the market place of bookies is becoming more-and-more competitive as time goes by. This means there are constantly sports betting sites launching with the ones we currently endorse being: 

Sports betting tips

If you are serious about making a profit betting on sport there are some things you can do to maximize your chances. While there is always an element of luck involved when it comes to gambling, you can enhance your chances by following these betting tips.

  • Do the maths: Sports brokers don’t just take a stab in the dark when they are setting lines, odds or employing staff. Mark our words, there are smart people calculating the markets. So you need to be smart as well. For instance, you are not going to take odds of 1.20 when you are betting on a coin toss.
  • Know your limits: Gambling is littered with tales of people losing the shirt off their back after an unlucky streak. Gamble within your means and never chase your losses, it’s a recipe for disaster.
  • Head over heart: In my heart Denver Nuggets are division champions, in my head there are teams with better qualifications for that mantle. Make your bets based on sound judgment and current form, rather than long past results and gut feelings. If a home team is heavy favourite against a fierce rival, it might be much closer than anticipated.
  • Patience & discipline: Never go all out on one bet. Set yourself a maximum percentage of your bankroll you are willing to part with on a single bet that you particularly like. Impatience has killed many a sports bettor, with the most successful willing to be patient and get small returns constantly, rather than jagging the big fish (gee, it does feel good though, doesn’t it?).
  • Multiple accounts: Check odds at multiple sources before placing any bets. You don’t need to be an arbitrage betting genius to check odds at several websites before placing your bet. This can get you those extra few dollars each time you place a bet, which can add up over time. Every now and then, particularly in futures betting, you will find large discrepancies in odds, and this is the time to cash in. Read more about sports betting strategy here.

Commonly asked questions about Australian sports betting

The sports betting industry in Australia is a minefield of contradictions and poses many questions. If you have any queries you can email us at and we’ll answer the question here.

What odds are used to display on Australian bookmakers?

All of the top betting sites in Australia display their odds in decimal format, which is the standard in this country. Other odds types used around the world include American and Fractional.

Is sports betting online legal in Australia?

Yes, as long as you bet with an Australian bookmaker, online sports betting is 100% legal.

What other forms of gambling are legal in Australia?

Many forms of online gambling in Australia are restricted under the IGA, with these including online casinos, online poker and offshore online sports betting sites.