What are features of positive and negative middles?

Increasing with heavy paces, competition in betting leads to divergences in lines of bookmakers. The coefficient difference creates an arb — a win-win bet with a relatively moderate income; and a middle is a divergence in handicaps and totals.  There is a section "Middles" and "Scanner rating of middles" on our website.

Bookmakers middles

A middle is an arbitrage situation similar to a surebet in a set of facets. We also speak of two opposite bets on the same event, but both bets shall win at the same time in case of a certain income. Initially, such a strategy was used in basketball only, but then it found a use in hockey, rugby, and tennis.

We must note that bookmaker middles do not ensure incomes for every possible outcome. Considering the average bookmaker interest, loss will account for up to 15%, while the winning income will increase 60% of the total bet. Therefore, a middle constitutes a combination of bets engaging for a moderate loss, but in case of getting into a narrow middle, profit can exceed the amount betted.

The middle coefficient is the ratio between a possible win and possible loss (in case of missing the coefficient difference range).

Rules for searching middles

Start with finding two bets complying with the following requirements:

  • Regardless of the outcome, either bet will win;
  • The range of outcomes ensures that either both bets win, or the one partially wins, while the other provides the refund;
  • The coefficient enables to break the bet down so as to, in case of any outcome beyond the middle, a gambler’s loss would be as low as possible.

In order to find a suitable set of bets, one needs to find as many bookmakers and their lines as possible, as well as to calculate all the variations of bet combinations. Besides, one should keep in mind the requirements mentioned above. It can be a solid and difficult task demanding numerous calculations.

Tip: for successful middle search, use special scanners. The searching must go with no delays as the latest data is required. Today, various apps enable us to bet via smartphones, tablets, so using any device, one can bet virtually at the same time.

2 types of middles: positive and negatives

Positive: regardless of the outcome, a gambler gets the profit, but significant amount increase is possible only in case the result gets into the middle.

Negative: the outcome is beyond the middle, a gambler suffers losses.

Here’s a simple case:

A basketball game K1-K2. Bookmakers set different coefficients for the same outcome. Bookmaker 1 sets 1.98 for TO 160. Bookmaker 2 sets the same coefficient for TU 165.

In this case, the task is simple. A gambler needs to bet the same amount (for instance, $50) in both markets. The total amount will be $100. In case one event wins, the gain will be $98 (1% overall loss). If the total falls within the range between 160 and 165 points, both bets win, and the overall gain will amount to $198 (+98%).

One should understand that playing on middles may not give the profits at once. Falling into a narrow middle is a rare situation, but the one winning middle will cover losses of 10 consequent bad bets.

A middle bet with 10% loss of the total bet is considered risky. One should choose middles with possible losses less than 5% of the total bet. They often can be found in Live bets when during a basketball game a bookmaker gives a delayed respond to an unsuccessful attack, personal foul, or foul shot.

Pros and cons of middle betting


  • A gambler takes risk for a moderate amount, with a high possible gain;
  • No refunds for middles (bookmakers often make refunds on surebets, so they can seem to be not that appealing; the theory of win-win betting with surebets is demolished);
  • Insignificant or significant profit is ensured in case of successful falling within a middle;
  • The advantage over a bookmaker when betting on value middles;
  • The strategy seems not suspicious for bookmakers (it may save from account fines, suspensions, or rejection of withdrawal);
  • Numerous middles in the line (each bookmaker has unique lines that repeat rarely, so the coefficient difference can be found);
  • Middles appear more often than arbs.


  • Each leverage within a middle must be checked for correctness and compliance with pre-bet limits;
  • Rare value middles;
  • On general middles, your gain will not be ensured.

Subtleties of middles

Using middle-searching resources, one should not forget about computing errors. Check the data before placing a bet. There are numerous details and factors: traumas of sportsmen, differences in game rules, etc. The respond to hot offers must be immediate, as any bookmaker is able to remove a middle from the line. Bookmakers have specialists watching for convergences in coefficients with their competitors, so such bets are not safe and profitable.


Absolutely, such a strategy is worth noticing, but in contrast to surebets, it ensures 100% gain for any outcome, as forum chatters state.