24hPoker Sports is the sportsbook arm of online poker provider 24h Poker. Registered and licenced out of Malta, it is likely that the sportsbook offering is a later addition to complement the poker and casino facilities on the site. We take a look at whether they have paid enough attention and made sufficient effort to operate as a legitimate online sportsbook and compete with the top firms in the industry.
The website is fairly basic with a grey, black, white and gold colour scheme used for the main body of the page and a blue background with an image of a basketball match in the background. Users are able to flick between sports, poker and casino by clicking on the links at the top of the page. For some reason these links are just in small plain text which does not look very good, nor does it instantly catch the eye, so has to be marked down as a negative from the design angle.
On the left hand side of the page is a ‘search’ bar which is actually very useful. Customers are able to type in the name of the team/player/event they wish to bet on and are instantly presented with the list of odds and markets involving the name in the search. This is a feature that more bookmakers should have as it speeds up the navigation process. Beneath, customers are able to visit the live action for different sports. Another useful feature of the homepage is the ability to see upcoming events. Customers can view the different events starting in the next two hours to two days.
The list of different sports can be found beneath the live betting on the left hand side of the page and the centre devoted to the live betting odds for different sports.
There appears to be a mobile website for the poker and casino strands of the site, but not for the sportsbook which is disappointing. Navigating around the webpage on a mobile device can be difficult.
Overall, there are some decent features to the 24hPoker Sports website which make it easy to navigate and find selections. However, improvements could be made from an aesthetic perspective, improving the graphics and text to give a slicker and more sophisticated look.
The website can be viewed in English, Swedish, Finnish, Russian, Norwegian, Portuguese and German.
In total there are 26 different sports listed on the 24hPoker Sports website. This offering falls a little behind an established firm such as BetVictor who have 32 sports on their website, but compares favourably against 1Bet2Bet (21) and 18Bet (18) – two firms who are also trying to gain increasing market share and exposure.
Alongside the popular sports such as football, tennis, basketball and American football, there is also betting on alpine skiing, floorball, futsal and bandy. This list of marginal sports is quite impressive and differentiates 24hPoker Sports from its immediate competition. There is no horse racing or greyhound racing betting however.
The depth of the football betting markets is surprising. Odds can be unearthed for matches from Lithuania to Qatar and in total 24hPoker Sports cover 60 different countries from around the world.
In the UK, all of the top professional leagues are covered, with the Conference North and South also having matches priced up.
In addition to the 1X2, Asian handicap and Total Goals markets, for English Championship games there are typically 72-75 additional bet types for each match. As expected, this falls below the large European bookmakers such as Coral who typically offer 105-110 markets and Ladbrokes who usually put up in the region of 90-95, but outperforms BetInternet (63-67 markets) and BetBright (45) – two firms who could be considered comparable in size.
Ice hockey coverage is very solid – with odds on matches in thirteen different countries around the world available. The major leagues such as the NHL and top action in Europe havw 20+ additional markets for each game.
There are odds for both NFL and the NCAA (college) American Football leagues, although this is perhaps an area for improvement. The sport is gaining popularity around the world and many bookmakers offer an extensive number of different betting opportunities on each game. 24hPoker Sports offer Asian handicap betting, the moneyline, and points betting, but there are no specials or combination bets that may entice lower staking punters.
Live betting is offered on football, ice hockey, tennis, basketball, American football and volleyball.
To look at how competitive and fair 24hPoker Sports odds are, we compare them against three bookmakers of different size and standing. The bookmakers used were Bwin, Betway and 18Bet. Matches from football, tennis and American football provide suitable scope to analyse how 24hPoker Sports size up against their rivals.
The competitiveness of odds can be assessed by how close to 100% the sum of all the odds equates to, when said odds are converted to percentage probabilities. If the bookmaker had no built in profit, then the probabilities would indeed add up to 100%.
Football – Stoke City v West Ham
All of the books were actually quite similar for this match. 18Bet had marginally the most competitive odds, with their book compiling to 106.4%, this was followed by Bwin and 24hPoker Sports who tied for second with 106.8% and Betway were last with 107%. It must be noted that these differences were negligible.
Tennis –Novak Djokovic v Andy Murray
A bit more of a discrepancy here. 18Bet were by far and away the best, with a 102.4% book. Bwin were second best with a 106%, followed by 24hPoker Sports who compiled to 106.6% and Betway were by some way the worst at 108.1%
American Football – Cleveland Browns v Tampa Bay Buccaneers
24hPoker Sports came out worst on the American football betting. Their 105% book was higher than Bwin and Betway who had exactly the same with 104.6% and 18Bet who gave the most value at 103.8%
From looking at these three matches, we can see that 24hPoker Sports are generally in line with their rivals, but are far from market leading in their odds.
There are NO sportsbook promotions currently offered by 24hPoker Sports. This is both surprising and disappointing and something that needs to be addressed by the marketing team. 99% of bookmakers, especially those without a solid reputation, will offer some sort of sign up bonus or matched bet etc. The firm do offer generous bonuses for their casino and poker strands of the site, but this hasn’t trickled down to the sportsbook.
There is a small link to ‘help’ and ‘live chat’ in the top right hand corner of the homepage. The help page simply offers a contact us form where users can send their queries to email@example.com. There is no mention of a telephone number or an address from which customers can write to the company. Clicking on the live chat link brings up a chat box where customers can interact with customer service agents. There is however no indication of when this service is manned, so individuals may have to wait hours to have a query resolved. The failure to offer a telephone or fax number and the lack of a protocol in terms of response times for emails is poor and leaves plenty of room for improvement.
Deposits methods are few and far between, but what is there is listed in our payment methods table.
24Hour Poker Sports are certainly not a sportsbook without hope, and there are some positive aspects of their service. Fairly deep markets, a wide range of sports and reasonably competitive odds mean that this bookmaker is not an instant write off. However, the major error the company have made is not to entice new customers with a sign-up bonus or promotion. When there are established companies offering similar if not better odds, in addition to concessions and specials, the incentive to bet with 24hPoker Sports is low. New companies need a USP and 24hPoker Sports do not currently have one. Probably best used by existing poker and casino members.