The National Rugby League (NRL) is the top tier of professional rugby league football and is one of the most watched sports with more than 100 million spectators enjoying it both live and on television around the world. There are 16 teams in the league, with 15 based in Australia and 1 in New Zealand. Teams battle it out with one another from March through September, hoping to be one of the top 8 teams to make it to the finals. The NRL Grand Final is held at the Stadium Australia in Sydney and is the most popular sporting event in the NRL.

Established in 1901, to a lot of Australians the NRL and rugby is considered the nation’s number one game. The NRL games are televised every weekend across the country with 2 matches usually on Friday night, 3 matches on Saturday, 2 on Sunday, and 1 on Monday. With so many games being played over the course of the season, it’s incredibly easy to engage in NRL betting online.

In fact, with sports betting online becoming more and more popular, it’s now possible to watch a NRL game on your television or computer and place your wager right from the comfort of your own home without even having to watch the game live-a great option for those who like the convenience of being able to bet on games they can’t attend.

With rugby possibly being the most bet on sport in Australia, every bookmaker supports NRL betting online. For those looking to watch an exciting game and hopefully have a profitable betting experience, betting on the NRL has never been easier.

NRL Betting Types

There are quite a few different betting options in NRL sports betting online. Aside from the popular betting types, bookmakers might also offer their own exotic bets. The following is a short list of some of the most popular betting types you’ll encounter.

Line Betting

Line betting is also known as “Handicap Betting.” It is extremely popular in NRL betting online and more and more Australians are taking advantage of the potentially high payoff it yields. In this kind of bet, the bookmaker decides on a number of points, called the handicap, and bettors may choose to bet on a team to win by more or less that the handicap. If a team has a minus handicap it must win the game by more than the handicap for the bet to be successful. If the team has plus points as a handicap then the opposite is true.

Head to Head

Head to head betting is the most popular kind of bet to make, and the easiest. It’s basically placing a bet on which team you think will win. This kind of bet generally gets easier as the season wears on since you have the opportunity to watch a few games and get to know the players and the teams’ strengths and weaknesses.


Picking the point score difference (margin) can be difficult but might yield a great payoff if you win. Punters will bet on a NRL team they think will win by a certain margin, usually1-12 points and by 13 more points. So, for a bettor who is betting on a team to win by 1-12 points, the winning team must score 12 points or less than the opposing team to win the bet. Likewise, if a punter has bet on the 13+ margin, the winning team has to win by 13 points or more for the bet to win.

1st Score Type

Although the first points on an NRL match is usually a try, that doesn’t always happen. You can place a bet on the first score being a penalty or a field goal.

NRL Futures Betting

Futures betting lets you bet on outcomes over the entire season. In this type of betting you can try to determine who will win the competition or who will even run last.
Team – Number of Season Wins
Here, bettors bet on how many games a team will win over the NRL season. For instance, you can place a bet on a team winning 11 or fewer games, 12-13 games, or 14 or more games during the season.

Other Betting Types

There are additional betting options that can be very profitable in NRL betting online, too. Bets can be made on individual players and various team accomplishments. Bets can even be made on losing teams!

Some of the options for betting on individual players include:

  • Man of the match
  • First scoring play in a game
  • First and last scoring play in a game
  • First player to get injured in a game
  • First to be penalised

Options for betting on a team’s accomplishments during a season include:

  • The top 8 teams
  • The top 4 teams
  • First team to score in a game
  • Which team scores first point
  • Two teams to make the finals
  • Which team will win the final cup

And, if you want to bet on NRL losing teams, then these are some of the bets that are often made:

  • Won’t make it to top 8
  • Won’t make it to top 4
  • Won’t make it to finals
  • Will lose finals
  • Most losses (also called the wooden spoon bet)

Before You Bet

Before you place any bets you should research your teams and the players and make sure you understand the rules and the different betting options. It might also be helpful to watch the players in a few games to see how they perform under various conditions and against different teams. Keeping up with sports’ news can be beneficial, too, since it allows the bettor to be informed regarding any injuries that the players might have sustained.

If you’re just starting out at betting on NRL games online, choosing the head to head betting option might be your best choice. Although you don’t have the best odds with this kind of bet, it is the easiest one to make and your chances of winning are higher. Just something to consider until you get your feet wet a little bit.

Before placing any bets at all it is generally advisable to first investigate and research some of the online bookmakers that are available. The odds and winnings can vary by bookie so you’ll want to find one that is most beneficial to you. A good bookmaker should be able to answer any questions about betting types and options for online sports betting.