Starved of major league sport during the global pandemic, online sportsbooks and bettors in Pennsylvania initially turned their attention to the football backwaters of Belarus and Nicaragua. Similarly, baseball betting fans have been tuning their collective sports betting radars into the baseball leagues of Korea and Nicaragua (again), and it seems as if opening their minds has proved to be an education for clients.
As time went on with the major leagues out of action, once those Pennsylvanian sports betting minds were opened, they eventually turned to the most unlikely source of all in an attempt to fulfil their sports betting needs – Table Tennis.
The sleeping giant of Table Tennis betting awakens
As one bookmaker cheekily put it, some may “giggle” at the thought but for many sportsbooks and bettors alike, table tennis it has been a godsend.
Industry experts agree. Keith O’Loughlin, a senior executive at SG Digital, a company which supplies sportsbook platforms and trading services to sportsbook operators, recently stated he has been encouraged by the numbers on unheralded sports betting products he has seen evolve across the globe;
“We have seen customers transferring in droves to alternative products,” Mr O’Loughlin remarked.
Of all the obscure sports that Pennsylvanian sportsbooks taken bets on during the global pandemic, Russian, Czech and Ukrainian table tennis have by far proved to be the most popular. Some sportsbooks are reporting 6-figure daily betting handles taken on the Setka Cup, the Win Cup (Ukraine), the TT Cup (Czech Republic) and Russia’s Moscow Liga Pro series.
Moreover, Table Tennis also been a boon for sports bettors too in the Keystone State with one anonymous bettor raking in an impressive $10 000 win on a 6-leg parlay bet.
Why is Table Tennis Betting so popular?
In short, table tennis betting is simply so popular now as there is so much of it. With a minimum of 90 matches each day, there are plenty of winning opportunities. Handicapping has begun on the better players and live in-play betting is booming across the Keystone State’s sportsbooks. Since you can put money on each point in Table Tennis, sportsbooks have received a high volume of wagers from live in-play sports betting enthusiasts who would normally focus their attention on Tennis’ ATP and WTA tours.
It’s also worthwhile to bear in mind that eSports betting is not possible in Pennsylvania and betting dollars that might have otherwise found their way into eSports in neighboring states like New Jersey are being spent on Table Tennis betting in the Keystone State.
Jamie Shea, head of Sports Book Digital with DraftKings, said recently the sportsbook has helped to educate about the sport;
“Table tennis clients have really embraced it and it is interesting to see silver linings. A lot of people have used this time to really get to know who the players are. We have held a tutorial on how table tennis works as we found lots of tennis gamblers have moved there. Table tennis being the highest volume product on a Saturday afternoon would have been ludicrous a few weeks ago, but now it’s reality” Shea said.
While many believe that Table Tennis betting will die a quick death in Pennsylvania once the major professional and college sports league return. However, Shea’s boss at DraftKings, Johnny Avello, the head of the sportsbook disagrees;
“That’s the most eye-opening event that I’ve seen that handles the kind of money that it does,” Avello said of table tennis. “The way it’s being bet, I think that’s gonna stick around.”
We agree Johnny. Table Tennis betting in Pennsylvania is here to stay.