Given the nature of Australian Football, Aussie Rules betting can be highly exciting and rewarding. In this article, we highlight the top 10 AFL betting sites and give you some background information about this great sport from Down Under.
- Best Bookies for Aussie Rules Betting
- What Is Australian Rules Football?
- Top 8 Aussie Rules Betting Sites Reviewed
- What Are the Differences Between Association Football & Aussie Rules?
- What Are the Main Aussie Rules Competitions?
- Aussie Rules Key Dates
- Aussie Rules Popularity
- What Are the Best Aussie Rules Betting Markets?
- History of the Sport
- Australian Rules Football Trivia
- Aussie Rules Betting FAQs
- ThePuntersPage Final Say
Best Bookies for Aussie Rules Betting
18+. Min deposit requirement. Free Bets are paid as Bet Credits and are available for use upon settlement of qualifying bets. Min odds, bet and payment method exclusions apply. Returns exclude Bet Credits stake. Time limits and T&Cs apply. BeGambleAware.org #ad
T&Cs apply. New players only. Qualifying bet(s) must have minimum odds of 3/1 and must be settled before triggering free bet. Free Bet must be used on an accumulator with 3 or more selections. 18+. Full T&Cs apply. BeGambleAware.org #ad
18+. New customers using Promo code R30 only. Min £10 stake, min odds ½, free bets paid as 3x £10, free bets credited after settlement of first qualifying bet, free bets will expire 30 days after the qualifying bet is placed, payment methods/player/country restrictions apply. Full T&Cs apply. BeGambleAware.org #ad
New bettors get 50% of deposit up to £50; Code: PLAY10; 1x per household; Min deposit £15 (no Skrill/Neteller); Wager deposit & bonus 8x; Max qualifying bet stake=initial bonus; valid 60 days; Min odds 4/5 singles, 2/5 per acca leg; Some bet types excluded; See full terms 18+ #ad
18+ New UK+ ROI Customers only. Deposit & Bet min £5 as first bet at minimum odds 1/2 to qualify for 1x £20 Free Bet. Certain deposit methods and bet types excluded. Free bet valid for 7 days, stake not returned. Restrictions apply. Full T&Cs apply. BeGambleAware.org #ad
What Is Australian Rules Football?
Australian Rules Football, or, as it is most commonly known, Aussie Rules, is a game that has been around since the mid-19th century. As the name suggests, Aussie Rules originated from Australia, and is still played there till this very day. In fact, the only professional Aussie Rules league is the Australian Football League (AFL). There are other leagues around the world but, at the time of writing, they are all played at an amateur level.
The game consists of two teams of 18 players each facing each other in an oval-shaped pitch, similar to a cricket field (135-185m long x 135-165 wide). At each end, the field has two main vertical goal posts which are 6.4 metres apart. These must be at least 6 metres tall.
There all also two other posts on either side of the goal posts. These are called ‘behind posts’, and must be at least 3 metres tall and placed 6.4 metres away from the goal posts.
The centre of the field is marked by a circle which is exactly 3 metres in diameter and split down the middle with a 5-metre line, marking the middle of the pitch. A centre square with sides measuring 45 metres is then drawn around the centre circle.
A white line is used to mark the pitch’s boundary, usually arriving quite close to the stands where the fans will be. The other compulsory pitch marking is the kick-off ‘square’, which is a not an actual square but ranges out 9 metres from the main goal posts, creating a rectangle which is 6.4 metres wide.
How Are Points Scored in Aussie Rules?
The aim of Aussie Rules is to kick the football in between the goal posts. There are four goal posts at each end, and teams will get points depending between which two goal posts the football passes. Kicking the ball cleanly between the two middle posts (without the ball being touched) results in 6 points (this is called a ‘goal’). But that is not all.
Scoring between the two adjacent posts or hitting any of the goal posts will result in 1 point (this is called a ‘behind’). If a ball hits the post and goes in between any of the goal posts, it is still considered to be a behind, and hence is worth 1 point. If the ball makes it over the line without it being kicked (so carried, or any other way), a behind is scored.
The match is split into four quarters, each allotted 20 minutes of play. Footie matches start with a bounce ball or jump ball (depending on the state of the terrain) in a similar manner to the way a basketball match starts. One of the field umpires blows his whistle and bounces the ball in the centre circle. Only 4 players are allowed within the centre square until the ball is bounced.
The above process happens at the beginning of the match and after every goal scored. In the case of a behind, the ball must be kicked back into play by the defending team from within the kick-off square.
Time is stopped after every goal and after every behind, resuming when the ball is bounced in the centre circle or kicked in respectively. This means that in fact, each quarter is usually longer than 20 minutes.
How Do Teams Win?
As one may assume, the team who manages to score the most points across the 4 quarters wins the game. As in every sport, the most spoken about stories are the comebacks – one of the most impressive having occurred during the 2013 AFL match between Brisbane and Geelong, which saw the former making up for a 52-point deficit with an impressive display in the last quarter.
Top 8 Aussie Rules Betting Sites Reviewed
*Odds correct as of 15th July 12:35PM CET
We have placed betting giant bet365 up in the top position for more than one reason. Firstly, it is the only Aussie Rules betting site which give a live visualisation of the match, along with detailed match statistics. In addition, it's also one of the most popular Australian betting sites that offers a wide variety of live betting markets for this sport.
Apart from this, you'll also be able to find outright markets for the AFL Brownlow Medal, as well as the VFL, SANFL and WAFL Grand Final winners.
- Live match visualisations
- Quality in-play betting experience
- Outright odds for VFL, SANFL and WAFL
- No livestreaming during AFL matches
Betfair are no new name on the block either! They have the most extensive list of available markets for the whole sport; however, the site lacks any live stats or scores when matches are underway, so it kind of leaves punters in the dark once a match has started. Similar to bet365, they also offer the outright odds for the winner of the AFL Brownlow Medal.
To make up for not offering any live updates, Betfair offer punters information about where they can watch the Aussie Rules matches on television.
- Most extensive list of markets
- Information about match TV coverage
- Outright AFL Brownlow Medal market available
- No live score updates for Australian Football
3. Mr Green
The man with the green hat has completed our top 3 for this list. Mr Green have one of the most in-depth statistic pages readily available at all times, making it easier for bettors to research the team or player they are betting on. The site itself also checks all the boxes when it comes to design and functionality.
Mr Green also offer a particular Instant Betting feature, which allows punters to bet on the next method of scoring during a match (goal or behind). This immediately adds another level of excitement to the game.
- In-depth statistics available
- Great design and user experience
- Instant Betting feature available
- No live match statistics except for score and time elapsed
4. Paddy Power
Paddy Power offer a variety of markets, along with some of the most competitive odds out there. The boys in green also come up with several tempting sportsbook promotions for new and existing customers alike. They also value customer support, so bettors can reach out at any time of the day via one of the various methods offered.
- Very competitive odds
- Cash out available
- Large variety of pre-match markets
- No Aussie Rules livestreaming
Australian Rules Football is just one of the many sports 888sport offer. Although markets available are not many, the ones that are can easily be located. You'll also be able to enjoy live betting while AFL matches are underway, and, similar to Mr Green, there's also a dedicated page for historical statistics. The betting site also has a native app available for iOS and Android users.
The extensive number of deposit and withdrawal options available is also something that works in 888sport’s favour, especially for new punters looking for the best betting site for Australian Rules Football.
- Detailed pre-match statistics
- iOS and Android app available
- Wide variety of withdrawal and deposit options
- Limited Aussie Rules betting markets available
6. William Hill
We're not going to lie – the fact that William Hill did not make it further up in our rankings comes as a surprise even to us. Their pre-match Aussie Rules markets are not as extensive as maybe one would expect from such a huge betting operator. Having said that, the odds here are as competitive as always, and punters will still enjoy a great, all-round experience, especially when placing in-play bets.
- Great in-play betting experience
- Competitive odds for outright markets
- Overall top-quality betting site
- Pre-match markets only available close to match date
- No Aussie Rules live match statistics
Next up on our list is 10bet. This betting site is just so well-organised! After picking out Aussie Rules from the Sports list, punters may then sort through the options by Live bets, Top Leagues and Daily match list. All matches have a dedicated and detailed statistics page, as well a large variety of pre-match odds.
When switching to League View, punters will find the game odds and outright markets organised in separate tabs. You'll be able to bet on the outright Aussie Rules winner at the end of the season, and on teams to finish in the Top 4 as well as Top 8. When you put together the easy navigation, overall site security, variety of markets and support available, it is no wonder that 10bet has made it into our top 10 list of Aussie Rules betting sites.
- Helpful Daily match list view
- Outright markets for Top 4 and Top 8 finishers
- Overall great site security
- Limited pre-match markets available
One of the most popular betting sites in the UK, Coral offer a limited amount of pre-match markets for Aussie rules betting. However, they make up for this with a multitude of in-play betting markets. Unfortunately, there are no current live scores available during live matches, but this has no effect on the efficiency at which the odds are updated on the fly.
- Great variety of in-play markets available
- Great sportsbook promotions
- No live score updates
- Limited pre-match markets
What Are the Differences Between Association Football & Aussie Rules?
Despite both sports sharing the same name, there are many differences to note. In fact, many actually say that the Aussie Rules resembles rugby more than football. Give the number of distinctions, we have chosen the most important points and listed them in the below table:
|Association Football||Australian Rules Football|
|Round ball||Oval-shaped ball|
|One goal, one goalkeeper||3 possible goals, no goalkeeper|
|11 on-field players and 5 one-time subs||18 on-field players and 3 rolling subs|
|Only goalkeeper can catch the ball||All players can catch the ball|
|Two 45-minute halves||Four 20-minute quarters|
|Throw-in, corner, and kick-off after goal are taken by opposing team||When ball goes over boundary line and after a goal, play is resumed by umpire|
What Are the Main Aussie Rules Competitions?
As previously mentioned, Australian Rules Football is a game mostly played in Australia, and so the main competition in the sport is the Australian League (the AFL). The league is made up of 18 teams, with each one playing 22 matches. Winning teams get 4 points, each team that draws a match will be given 2 points, while the losing team gets no points. Points are tallied up at the end of the season and teams are ranked accordingly. The winner is not yet awarded anything, though, as you shall see below.
AFL Final Round and Grand Final
As soon as the AFL league is over, the top 8 teams qualify for the Final Round. This round contains 3 steps leading up to the highly anticipated Grand Final.
- The Qualifying and Elimination Finals. Here, the top 4 teams play in the qualification finals, while 5th to 8th placed teams play the elimination finals. The winner of the qualification finals skips directly to Stage 3, while the winner of the elimination finals moves on the Stage 2. The losing team in the qualification finals will move on to Stage 2, while the losing teams in the elimination finals are duly eliminated from the round.
- Semi-Finals. In this stage, the winners from the elimination finals face the losing teams in the qualification finals for a place in the final 4.
- Preliminary Finals. Here, the winners of both semi-finals will face the winners of the qualification finals in Stage 1, and the winners of the preliminary finals will earn their place in the prestigious Grand Final.
The eventual winner of the Grand Final will then be awarded the premiership – the highest award in the Aussie Rules world.
AFL International Cup
This tournament is organised between countries from all over the world, except Australia. This is because the latter is the only country in which the sport is practised professionally, giving them an unfair advantage over the other nations. The AFL International Cup is held every 3 years – in 2011, a women’s tournament was also held for the first time.
For this event, the teams are split into two divisions, with the games leading up to both finals spread over a two-week span.
The biggest competitions of all have been mentioned already; however, there are a number of other amateur and semi-pro leagues held around the world, including in the United Kingdom.
Aussie Rules Key Dates
The AFL League normally starts around mid-March and ends towards the end of August. Teams normally get just over a week of rest before the Final Round starts towards the first week of September. The most important date of all is that of the Grand Final, which takes place 3 weeks later at the end of September.
Other than that, as mentioned above, the AFL International Cup is held every 3 years, having started in 2002.
Aussie Rules Popularity
Australian Rules Football is hands down the most attended sport in Australia. As a matter of fact, regular AFL league matches have an average of around 35,000 people attending each match.
When it comes to the finals, as you would expect, the attendance increases – almost doubling in number. In 2018, the average attendance for a match in the final round was 77,821 across all the 9 matches.
A staggering 100,022 people attended the Grand Final between West Coast and Collingwood that year – quite a show of support, to say the least!
To put this into context, that is a bigger crowd than Barcelona’s Camp Nou – the biggest football stadium in Spain and Europe – can take!
Apart from AFL matches, the semi-pro competitions in Australia itself also gather quite some crowds, with regular matches drawing an average of around 3,000 people to the stadiums.
What Are the Best Aussie Rules Betting Markets?
Aussie betting markets may vary across different betting sites. Nevertheless, we've included a few of the most popular below. You could also refer to our list above to see which bookmaker best suits your needs.
Aussie Rules betting sites offer the opportunity to bet on the outright winner of the Grand Final. Naturally, you'll get higher odds if you place bets before the league starts. As the league progresses, the favourites to win the final start to become more apparent, and the odds for those teams will decrease, while those for the underdogs become higher.
The simplest bet of all is betting on who will win the match after all 4 quarters are played. In Aussie Rules matches, a draw is also possible; however, it is quite a rare outcome. In fact, there have been several seasons without a single draw in all the 198 matches.
For this market, you'll be required to bet on the margin the team will win by. As expected, the odds here will be higher than for the ‘To Win' market, since the outcome is more specific. Normally, the odds are offered on a winning margin range, such as ‘Geelong to win by 1-12 points' or ‘Melbourne to win by 25-36 points'.
In a game which is all about scoring points for the team, many betting sites also offer markets for the First Scoring Play (goal or behind), First Team to Score, Both Teams to Score, the Number of Match Goals as well as the Time of the First Goal (ex. before/after the 3rd minute).
Quarter Outcome & Points
Since each match is split into 4 quarters, punters often decide to bet on a team to win a particular quarter, on a team scoring under/over a particular number of points in a specific quarter, or maybe on the number of points won in a quarter. Some Aussie Rules betting sites also offer the option to bet on a quarter-by-quarter winning sequence (ex. Carlton – Brisbane – Carlton – Carlton).
From betting on the First, Last or Anytime goalscorer for a particular team to who will manage to score 3 or more goals in a match or who will score the most goals, there are various options available.
This medal is given to the “best and fairest” player in the AFL every year, and was first awarded in 1924. It is widely regarded as the most prestigious award an Aussie Rules player can receive. Punters may place bets on the outright winner, or, in some cases, for the player from each team who manages to get the most votes.
History of the Sport
Australian Rules Football found its roots in Melbourne in 1858, and was eventually embraced by all states of Australia in 1915. The Australian Football League is the national professional competition, and emerged from the former Victorian Football League (VFL) as it continued to gain more popularity.
After 1990, the VFL was officially became a professional league, and was renamed the Australian Football League since it was made up of teams from across the country. This was a major step for the sport, which had previously been practiced on an amateur or semi-pro level for a long time – not only in Australia, but also in countries in Europe, Asia, Africa and the Americas.
Australian Rules Football Trivia
- There are a total of 9 umpires on Aussie Rules – 3 field umpires, 4 boundary umpires and 2 goal umpires.
- The largest crowd to ever watch an Aussie Rules match was 121,696 people during the VFL Final between Carlton and Collingwood in 1970.
- Since 2015, there have been two seasons in which not a single match ended in a draw – 2016 and 2019.
- The highest scoring match was played back in 1978 between Melbourne and St Kilda. 345 points were scored that day, with the home team scoring 21 goals and the away team scoring 31 goals respectively.
- The longest winning streak is that of 23 consecutive matches between 1952 and 1953, and is held by Geelong.
- Tom Mitchell managed the largest number of disposals in a match, racking up 54 against Collingwood in 2018. Just a year later, in 2019, Lachie Neale went close to beating him with a total of 51 disposals against Richmond.
Aussie Rules Betting FAQs
Yes, live betting is available on most sites, including all the ones listed above.
Yes, it is. Among other differences, Australian Rules Football players may pass in any direction, and must bounce the ball every 15 metres.
Over the years it has been referred to by a variety of different monikers, but the most popular are “Aussie Rules” and “footy”.
Each match is split into four quarters, each allotted 20 minutes in length. Time is stopped each time the ball is not in play.
Yes – Aussie Rules is played in more than 30 countries around the world!
ThePuntersPage Final Say
With Australian Rules Football being introduced in more countries, the number of fans worldwide is ever-growing, with more and more starting to appreciate how exciting matches and competitions can become. As interest continues to rise, so will the options available for betting, resulting in what we would call a win-win situation for the sport and punters across the globe.