Definition of betting in English:



mass noun
  • 1The action of gambling money on the outcome of a race, game, or other unpredictable event.

    ‘football pools and other forms of betting’
    • ‘There is some interesting betting on Saturday's semi-finals.’
    • ‘The two main allegations concern race-fixing and free betting on the sport.’
    • ‘The NBA wouldn't even allow Toronto to have a franchise unless legal betting on NBA games was abolished in the whole province of Ontario.’
    • ‘The betting on the number is interesting to say the least.’
    • ‘The betting on the booze front is that zoning will eventually be put into place in Pattaya entertainment venues.’
    • ‘Many hedge funds - which are in effect sophisticated ways of betting on the markets - have had a tough 2004.’
    • ‘There was heavy betting on Cambridge, but the two crews collided, the race had to be restarted and Oxford won comfortably.’
    • ‘There was some spirited betting on the outcome to the sixth race with steady support for at least four of the runners.’
    • ‘In these games the showdown is preceded by one or more periods of betting on who has the best combination of cards.’
    • ‘From the 1930s the states in turn legalised state lotteries and off-course betting on horse races, and introduced casinos for continuous gambling.’
    • ‘It was construed by others as a challenge to the institution of land markets understood as a lottery, a mode of betting on the results of future population growth.’
    • ‘There was also substantial betting on the result of the photo finish.’
    • ‘How different is the betting on that game as opposed to the South Australian game?’
    • ‘Policy gambling (an illegal form of betting on daily numbers) similarly involved local syndicates.’
    • ‘A U.S. Senate committee has approved legislation to halt all legal betting on college sports.’
    • ‘There is heavier betting on one-day matches because they are result oriented.’
    • ‘The Illinois Racing Board has temporarily has suspended all live and simulcasting betting on some multirace wagers, including pick four and pick six bets.’
    • ‘The impact from the government's lottery is illegal individual betting on the last two or three digits of the first prize of the lottery.’
    • ‘The firm is betting on what it calls the industry trend away from track-based betting toward home-based wagering.’
    • ‘There also is a mode where players breed, own, and train race horses, and there is a wagering mode where players will participate in all forms of betting on horses.’
    1. 1.1 The odds offered by bookmakers on the outcome of races, games, etc.
      ‘Atlantic Way headed the betting at 2-1’
      • ‘Days before the election, Ladbrokes was offering betting odds on Labour of 25-1 on.’
      • ‘In fact, the $4 for a two-goal winning margin was the largest single payout of the morning when betting options were offered for six matches.’
      • ‘In the opening heat of round two, betting was very open with the layers offering 2/1 and better the field.’


  • the betting is

    • informal It is likely.

      ‘the betting is that the company will slash the dividend’
      • ‘The White House refused to say how long the spokesman would stay on, but the betting is that he's likely to step down sometime next year.’
      • ‘To avoid different voting systems, the betting is that STV will be recommended for parliamentary elections too.’
      • ‘In any case where a returned exile seeks to build on the land that was owned by the family, if they are lucky enough to still own it, the betting is roughly nine to one they will be refused.’
      • ‘As much as they want to shake things up, the betting is that, in the short term, the biggest change can be summed up in two sweet words for defense industry executives and investors - more money.’
      • ‘After the November results are in, the betting is that the GOP will still have a majority of state chief executives, always an important feather in the cap of a national party.’
  • in (or out of) the betting

    • Likely (or unlikely) to be among the winners of a horse race and given appropriate odds.

      ‘a formidable Irish challenge, with the first seven horses in the betting all being trained across the water’
      • ‘Eleven of the last 14 Grand National winners have come from the first eight in the betting.’
      • ‘While the racing director did not give individual figures, he said the two jockeys had the best winning percentages when riding horses rated one to three in the betting.’
      • ‘As a bonus, barring something unforeseen, he is a definite intended runner, unlike some of those near him in the betting, and odds of 11-1 are far too big.’
      • ‘He had been 14-1 second favourite for the National, before bookmakers took him out of the betting following the decision by the Naas stewards.’
      • ‘Johnston has the next two horses in the betting.’
      • ‘Tycoon is currently fifth in the betting for the race after a poor run in the Juddmonte International at York.’
  • what's the betting?

    • informal Used to express a belief that something is likely.

      ‘what's the betting he's up to no good?’
      • ‘She has already racked up her first £20m - what's the betting she makes another few next year?’
      • ‘So what's the betting that will create even more car-traffic at the island?’
      • ‘It interests me that such a similar term means such similar things in two languages; what's the betting one evolved from the other, perhaps from Moorish Spain into southern France?’
      • ‘Meanwhile, I'm off to London next week, and what's the betting that the loony on the train sits next to me?’
      • ‘Given that food advice is so faddish, what's the betting that in 10 years time, somebody will come out with ‘research’ that proves the opposite?’