How to Bet on PBA Bowling? Odds and Tips

Written by

Joe - Poker Player

Last updated:

February 19, 2023
bowling betting

Knowing how to bet on PBA bowling can be useful for those who are familiar with and interested in the sport. It’s a fairly niche form of betting with limited opportunities for interested bettors. That said, various betting platforms offer a few betting markets (categories) for this game. So, this article provides an overview of the game, the Professional Bowlers Association, betting on the sport, and a few other aspects related to the subject. In turn, you can expect to be able to tackle betting on bowling and possibly make informed betting decisions that can help you win returns.


Bowling Explained

bowling betting

Bowling is a sport in which a player must toss a bowling ball at 10 pins located at the end of an aisle. It’s referred to as a target sport because players toss the ball at a specific target.

Here’s a quick overview of some bowling rules to help you understand the sport.

The game consists of 10 frames, and players take turns playing each of their frames. A player must toss the bowl from the opposite end of the aisle and allow the ball to roll toward the pins and knock them down. In each frame, they get 2 attempts at knocking down the pins. If they knock all of the pins in the first attempt, it’s called a strike. This is one of the ways how bowling scores work. A strike is the highest score you can get in a specific frame, and it can include a bonus of the next two pins you score.

So, knocking every pin is counted as one point.

For example, your scores are as follows.

  • Frame 1, ball 1: 10 (strike)
  • Frame 2, ball 1: 8
  • Frame 2, ball 2: 2

Your score will be (10 + 8 + 2) for frame 1 alone.

The player with the highest score at the end of the 10 frames wins the game.

The sport is also played competitively at large tournaments with players from all over the United States. The Professional Bowlers Association (PBA) is a sports association that manages all major professional (10-pin) bowling in the US.


Slow Play During Qualifying – Timing Rules

A competitor will have 20 seconds to complete their delivery once they have satisfied the lane courtesy requirement and both players from the adjoining pairs have stepped off the approach. Pair lane courtesy means once someone on your pair bowls, you’re supposed to let someone on the left and someone on the right go before someone on your pair bowls again. It sets a nice pace for play.

If you bowl too slowly, the tournament official can give you a penalty, which can be either.

  • First offense – Warning
  • Second offense – $25
  • Third offense – $50
  • Fourth offense and all other subsequent offenses – $100

Players are penalized if they are 1.5 frames behind the players in front of them, and the tournament director has been notified. It is important to understand that all slow players are put on the clock and watched closely. They will stay on the clock until they are within half the frame of the pair that goes before them. The penalties add up in each block but are reset to zero at the start of every following block.


Notable Bowling Players of PBA

The Professional Bowlers Association (PBA) has had its share of superstars. Here are some of the most notable players in PBA.


Jason Belmonte


Belmonte is an Australian ten-pin bowler. He is a US PBA Tour player who also competes in world events. He was one of the first bowlers to use two hands when he bowls. This is called the two-handed approach style.

He has won 30 PBA titles, which ties him for seventh place with Hall of Famer Dick Weber. He has also set a record by winning 14 major championships. Only eight PBA tour history bowlers have won 30 or more games, and Belmonte is one of them.


Dom Barrett

Dom Barrett

Dominic Simon Barrett is among the shining stars from England in the world of bowling. He has won ten titles in various PBA Tour tournaments and is proud to be the eighth triple crown winner in the history of PBA. He is the first ever European to make this accomplishment.

Dom has won the European Bowling Tour thrice (2010, 2012, and 2013). He is also the only player named the ‘World Bowling Writers’ bowler of the year three times in a row. His nickname is “The Dominator.”


EJ Tacket

EJ Tacket

Edward Dean Tackett is an American professional bowler from Huntington, Indiana. He has won 16 PBA Tour titles and is a Professional Bowlers Association (PBA) member. Tackett won the PBA Player of the Year award in 2016. He came in second place for the award in 2017 and 2018. Tackett is right-handed and uses a cranker-style delivery when he bowls.


Notable PBA Tournaments

Over the last few decades, some tournaments have become especially popular among bowlers and fans. Here are three of the most exciting PBA Tournaments.


USBC Masters

The United States Bowling Congress organizes this ten-pin bowling championship. The first tournament event was organized in 1951 as the ABC Masters. In 2005, the name was changed to USBC Masters. This has been one of the most notable tournaments since 2000. Every year, four hundred players compete for the top position. The winner gets a cash prize of $100,000.


The PBA World Championship

The PBA World Championship is a yearly event that started in 1960. It is one of the most-awaited events among bowling players and fans alike. The first-place winner takes home an Earl Anthony Trophy and $100,000. This tournament is open to all PBA members.


The US Open

The US Open is another renowned tournament by the PBA. It is a ten-pin bowling championship that has been held since 1942. The event is held annually and is considered the most challenging competition, with 56 qualifying games.


How to Bet on PBA Bowling

You can bet on PBA bowling by heading to a betting website that offers bowling betting (site names are listed toward the end of this article). When you open the betting options for PBA bowling, the sportsbook (i.e., the betting website) will offer betting markets (categories of bets),

Some examples of popular betting markets are listed below.


Match Winner

This betting market is the most straightforward, and you must determine which player will win a match. The betting website will also set odds for each player based on their chances of winning. For example, the odds of a favorite will ensure that you get lower returns for betting on them winning compared to the returns for betting on the underdog.

Here’s an example.

Player A is the favorite, and Player B is the underdog.

A betting website may set the odds as follows.

  • Player A: -150
  • Player B: +150

In that case, placing a bet of $15 on player A will result in winnings of $10. However, placing a bet of $10 on player B will result in winnings of $15.


Spread Betting

This type of betting also has to do with potentially uneven odds between players. So, if Player A and Player are significantly unmatched (i.e., Player A is much better than Player B), then bettors can consider spread betting. The sportsbook may create a spread bet in which the favorite (Player A) must win by a specific margin (specific number of points). If Player A does not (but wins the game), the bettors of Player B will win. However, if the margin is tied, i.e., Player A wins exactly by the spread amount, then it’s a push. No one wins, and the bets are returned to the bettors.


Side (Prop) Bets

You can also consider bowling side bets, which are also known as prop (proposition) bets. These bets do not necessarily have anything to do with the game’s outcome. Instead, it’s based on the occurrences of specific situations. For example, there may be a prop bet that Player X may score a strike in the 3rd frame.


Quick Questions and Answers about Bowling and Betting on the Sport

Below are some quick and essential questions and answers about bowling and betting on the sport.


What are some bowling betting sites?

Below are some bowling betting sites where you can place wagers safely and potentially make money. These sites are renowned for being reputable and offering their customers good service to ensure that they are happy with their betting experience at the sites.

  • Sports Betting


Can I bet on bowling without not knowing anything about the sport?

Yes, you don’t have to know about a sport to bet on it. You can simply place a wager at a specific betting market and wait for the results. That said, we recommend that you learn about the sport so that you can make informed betting decisions and increase your chances of winning bets.


Final Thoughts

Betting on PBA bowling may not be as prevalent as other forms of sports betting, but that can be advantageous to bettors who know the game well. You can use your knowledge of the players to make informed bets.



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