The Origins of Australian Rules Football
Though a subject of considerable public debate, it is said that Australian rules football, otherwise known as Aussie Rules, Footy, or marketed as AFL (Australian Football League), was originally invented around 1858 as a way to keep cricketers fit during the winter months. This immensely well -loved contact sport is still played on an oval shaped field, usually a modified cricket ground.
Since the interstate expansion in the 1980s, this sport has grown into the most well attended and most spectated sport in Australia – a chief contender for the designation of Australia’s national sport. Currently, there are 18 teams in the league, and apart from Tasmania, five of Australia’s six states are passionate participants. These popular games are played not only in all mainland states and territories of Australia, but also on the nearby island of New Zealand.
Understanding the AFL Structure
The AFL season presently comprises of a pre-season competition – the JLT Community Series – followed by a 23-round regular season with games held both at home and away. Once these games have marked out the top eight teams, a four-round final series commences, culminating in the AFL Grand Final held annually at the Melbourne Cricket Ground. This decides the winning team , who are awarded the title of Premiers.
Betting on the AFL
Turnouts for matches in the AFL’s premier competition can average out at over 30,000 people, with as many as 80,000 adoring fans turning up to revel in the excitement of the finals.
Betting has become almost synonymous with most sporting activities in Australia, so with the popularity of this national past-time, the AFL has become a firm favourite for punters all around the country. Because of this immense attraction, Australian bookmakers have developed an extensive range of betting types which enable punters to wager not only on the basic results of the games, but also on exotic bets such as first scoring play, first goal kicker and, on occasion, the most prestigious award – the Brownlow Medal – presented to the best player overall at the end of each season.
AFL Betting Types
Australian bookmakers and gamblers don’t focus on exotic betting as much as their counterparts elsewhere in the world. Instead, the average Australian Football League punter seems to prefer head-to-head and spread betting for AFL betting odds.
Head-to-head betting involves betting on who will win the match with dead heat rules being applied in the event of a draw, i.e. 50% of the dividend is paid. Spread betting is also about wagering on the outcome of a game where the pay-off is based rather on the wager’s accuracy than just a win or lose outcome.
Irrespective of the type of betting you choose, AFL bookmakers also offer margin betting on all matches. The margins average on 1-39 points and 40+ points per side.
The Australian football league is a great sport to bet on, especially if you prefer backing your favourites as they don’t get rolled as often as they do in the rugby league. Many bettors find it hugely satisfying to analyse each regular-season game in order to predict the Brownlow Medal champion.