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Odds Explained

Fractions and probability are different ways of presenting the likelihood of an outcome. You might be familiar with the concept of fractional odds because they are the ones you see in the windows of high-street bookmakers.

If an event has a 1 in 5 implied probability of occurring (i.e a probability of 1/5, 0.2 or 20%), then the odds are actually 0.2 / (1 − 0.2) = 0.2 / 0.8 = 0.25. This figure (0.25) represents the stake needed make one ‘unit’ on a successful bet. So if a stake of £0.25 would return a profit of £1, then it follows that a stake of £2 would return £8.

In fractional odds this is written as 4/1, 4:1 or ‘4 to 1’. When betting, remember, you get your stake back as well as your profit. If you put £5 down, you would win £20 plus your £5 stake giving you a total return of £25.

‘4 to 1’ can also be written as 20%. Fractional odds can be easy to understand for some numbers, but when comparing odds, ‘9 to 4’ might sound like a much better price than ‘2 to 1’. Actually, ‘9 to 4’ is about 30.8% and ‘2 to 1’ is about 33.3%.

To make it easier for you, we let you set which type of odds you want shown. Set your choice in display settings.

System Format Betting ‘for’ return (incl. £10 stake) Betting ‘against’ return (incl. £10 stake)
Decimal (Betfair) 4.00 £40 £13.33
Fractional (Ladbrokes) 3/1. 3:1 or 3 to 1 £40 £13.33
American (Vegas) +300.00 £40 £13.33
Percent 25% £40 £13.33