The T20 World Cup kicked off in Nagpur on Tuesday, and for those betting on India – favourites to win the cup, their first loss must’ve hurt as sources estimate about Rs 700 crore was placed in the pool.
Bookies resurfaced for the T20 season after the IPL T20 betting scandal in 2013; two IPL franchises – Rajasthan Royals and Chennai Super Kings – were suspended for two years and N Srinivasan was removed as BCCI president.
Sources say about Rs 25,000 crore has been placed in bets on the tournament that is being played in India.
Perhaps making up for lost time, bookies even cashed in on friendly matches before the tournament, placing bets on teams like Oman and Netherlands, sources said.
India opened the tournament playing against New Zealand match, but suffered a harsh defeat by 47 runs.
Playing on home turf, India had the odds stacked in its favour. Before the start of the match, it started as a favourite with Rs 55 paise while New Zealand had a rate of Rs 1.50.
However this was only India’s second defeat in Twenty20 internationals this year, and given the favourable conditions, bookies are backing India to win the world cup. The payout rate is Rs 2.30, which means if one bets Rs 1 on India emerging as T20 victors, they win Rs 2.30. India is followed by Australia with Rs 5, South Africa with Rs 5.50 and England at Rs 6.50 to win the championship. Reigning champions West Indies, who have an all-star lineup with T20 specialists, have a rate of Rs 17. Pakistan, whose team was delayed over security concerns in India, have a rate of Rs 19, while Sri Lanka are at Rs 27 and Bangladesh Rs 47.
Aside from teams, bets will also be placed on the total number of centuries, six sixes in an over, total 6s, total 4s, fastest 50, hat-tricks bowled, the team that remains undefeated, and the team to make the highest score. The top batsmen and top bowler of the tournament also has takers, with Virat Kohli leading the batsman table, and Ravichandran Ashwin leading the bowlers.
Police in Mumbai have increased their checks on betting circles to ensure no-betting zones. Spokesperson for Mumbai police Dhananjay Kulkarni said teams have been formed at all police stations and the crime branch units to react swiftly. “We are also keeping a tab on old and high profile bookies, to ensure that there is no betting in the city during World T20,” he said.
However, sources said bookies are operating from smaller cities in Gujarat and Rajasthan to avoid being caught.