There is no doubting that Virtual Sports is a hot topic at sports betting sites. The sheer volume of punters who are betting on these virtual events has seen their importance to bookmaking sites increase markedly in a very short period of time.

With Virtual Sports betting now the third largest betting market in the UK, behind football and horse racing, it is clearer than ever that UK bookmakers need to have a first rate Virtual Sports betting service available for customers, but do they?

In this article, we are going to look at a number of top UK betting sites, including Betway, bet365 Sport and Ladbrokes and give you the lowdown on the different types of esports on offer at each, as well as the different betting markets available for some of the more popular esports, such as football, at each of the different sites.

Let us begin by taking a broad overview of which Virtual Sports each site has to offer.

What Virtual Sports do our three top UK Sports Betting sites offer?

Betway (7 sports)

  • Virtual Football
  • Virtual Horse Racing (Flat and Jumps)
  • Virtual Cycling
  • Virtual Greyhounds
  • Virtual Motor Racing
  • Virtual Speedway
  • Virtual Trotting

William Hill (6 sports)

  • Virtual Football
  • Virtual Horse Racing (Flat and Jumps)
  • Virtual Greyhounds
  • Virtual Cycling
  • Virtual Speedway
  • Virtual Motor Racing

Betfair (6 sports)

  • Virtual Football
  • Virtual Horse Racing (Flat and Jumps)
  • Virtual Greyhounds
  • Virtual Cycling
  • Virtual Speedway
  • Virtual Motor Racing

Coral (7 sports)

  • Virtual Football
  • Virtual Horse Racing (Flat and Jumps)
  • Virtual Greyhounds
  • Virtual Cycling
  • Virtual Speedway
  • Virtual Motor Racing
  • Virtual Tennis

Bet365 Sport (8 sports)

  • Virtual Horse Racing (Flat and Jumps)
  • Virtual Greyhounds
  • Virtual Soccer
  • Virtual Motor Racing
  • Virtual Speedway
  • Virtual Cycling
  • Virtual Tennis
  • Virtual Trotting

Paddy Power (4 sports)

  • Virtual Horse Racing (Flats, Jumps and Sprints)
  • Virtual Soccer (World Cup and Super League)
  • Virtual Greyhounds
  • Virtual Motor Racing

Ladbrokes (5 sports)

  • Virtual Horse Racing (Flat and Jumps)
  • Virtual Greyhounds
  • Virtual Football
  • Virtual Motor Racing
  • Virtual Speedway

Betfred (10 sports)

  • Virtual Horse Racing (Flat, Jumps & Sprint)
  • Virtual Greyhounds (Flat & Sprint)
  • Virtual Football
  • Virtual Speedway
  • Virtual Bingo
  • Virtual Boxing
  • Virtual Darts
  • Virtual Motor Racing
  • Virtual Cycling
  • Virtual Tennis

BetVictor (6 sports)

  • Virtual Horse Racing
  • Virtual Dog Racing
  • Virtual Football
  • Virtual Motor Racing
  • Virtual Speedway
  • Virtual Cycling

SkyBet (5 sports)

  • Virtual Horse Racing (Flat and Jumps)
  • Virtual Greyhounds
  • Virtual Football
  • Virtual Motor Racing
  • Virtual Speedway

BetStars, Leo Vegas Sport  (0 sports)

  • None of the bookmakers listed above offered Virtual Sports as of the time of writing.

Interestingly, every site bar one (BetFred), used the same software to power their Virtual Sports offering, the only differences between many of the sites being the number of sports they have on offer and the markets available for each of the Virtual Sports.

Betfred however was different as it used a completely different type of Virtual Sports software to the other sites, which included some sports you cannot find at other sites in the UK including Virtual Darts, Virtual Boxing and even Virtual Bingo.

It was also strange to see that two sites, BetStars and Leo Vegas Sport do not offer any form of Virtual Sports betting, however it should be noted that both these sites are add on sites to other sites (PokerStars in the case of BetStars and Leo Vegas Casino in case of Leo Vegas Sport), whereas the other sites listed developed their primary business model around sports betting.

The four sports that all sites that offer Virtual Sports betting offered were Virtual Horse Racing, Virtual Football, Virtual Greyhounds and Virtual Motor Racing. Most other sites also offered Virtual Cycling and Virtual Speedway.

Virtual Tennis, Virtual Darts, Virtual Boxing and Virtual Bingo (which in my view, isn’t a real Virtual Sport anyway, although it was located within that section) were the Virtual Sports that were offered by the fewest number of bookmakers from our review.

How do betting markets compare for Virtual Football?

To further compare each site, we have also decided to look at how the number of markets available to bet on in one of their major Virtual Sports (Virtual Football) differs across the sites.

Betway Virtual Football

  • Duration – 5 minutes
  • Competitions – International & Domestic
  • Total Betting Markets – 18

William Hill Virtual Football

  • Duration – 4 minutes
  • Competitions – International
  • Total Betting Markets – 6

Betfair Virtual Football

  • Duration – 3 minutes
  • Competitions – International & Domestic
  • Total Betting Markets – 5

Coral Virtual Football

  • Duration – 5 minutes
  • Competitions – International & Domestic
  • Total Betting Markets – 5

Bet365 Virtual Football

  • Duration – 3 minutes
  • Competitions – Premiership, Superleague & World Cup
  • Total Betting Markets – 21

Paddy Power Virtual Football

  • Duration – 3 minutes
  • Competitions – World Cup & Super League
  • Total Betting Markets – 3

Ladbrokes Virtual Football

  • Duration – 3 minutes
  • Competitions – International & Domestic
  • Total Betting Markets – 5

BetFred Virtual Football

  • Duration – 4 minutes
  • Competitions – International & Domestic
  • Total Betting Markets – 15

BetVictor Virtual Football

  • Duration – 3 minutes
  • Competitions – International
  • Total Betting Markets – 25

SkyBet Virtual Football

  • Duration – 3 minutes
  • Competitions – International & Domestic
  • Total Betting Markets – 5

What is clearly evident here is that even though all of the bookmakers, bar BetFred, use the same software to power their Virtual Soccer or Virtual Football service, the number of betting markets available on each game and how long each betting event takes to complete does differ from site to site.

The shortest time between games is three minutes, with some operating at four minutes and others at five. The highlights package of the game tends to be about equal for most bookmaking services so what is different is generally how long you have to get your bets on for each game before the game starts.

There is a marked difference in the number of markets available to bet on in each Virtual Football game. Most sites tend to offer around 5 key betting markets, with just a few offering a considerable number more than that (Betway, bet365, Betfred and BetVictor). Bet365 and BetVictor both have over 20 markets available, but there is a considerable overlap between markets on these sites.

What this shows is that the although it may seem that bookmakers tend to offer Virtual Sports in most cases, the number of Virtual Sports on offer at them, together with the number of markets you can bet on for your chosen Virtual Sport can differ quite markedly from site to site, even if the actual software used to power Virtual Sports betting is the same across almost all sites.