The lockdown period was a tough time for everyone, but it seemed to drag by exceptionally slowly for those who love to follow, and perhaps place the occasional bet on, their favorite sport. Some might argue that missing out on sport was a minor inconvenience in the wider context. Of course, they would be right to a certain extent, but it was not till it was missing that it became clear just how important sport is to the world.
One of the substitutes that sports fans turned to during lockdown was gaming. For those who enjoy a wager, the world of casino games was a particular draw, offering both a distraction and that excitement of placing a bet. The interesting part, however, is that if you look at a list of online casinos, it becomes clear the sports betting sites took a similar route to their patrons. With no live sport, they needed something to keep at least a trickle of customers coming through the door.
Blurring the lines
As a result, the distinction between sportsbooks and casino sites has becoming increasingly blurred. When you think about what makes a good casino site, it is really not so different to what sport fans are looking for in a sports book. The ingredients include a wide range of games (or sports to bet on), cutting edge technology, fast payment of winnings, mobile compatibility and good customer service.
Sportsbooks have found they can deliver casino offerings that are just as good as those set forth by the companies who have been doing it for years – sometimes, they are even better. The names William Hill, Ladbrokes and Coral are among the oldest sportsbooks in the world. Let’s see how they have evolved in these changing times.
This London-based bookmaker was founded by the eponymous William Hill back in the 1930s – before sports betting was even legal in the UK. It’s one of the most familiar names in sport and through various sponsorship deals over the years has been synonymous with some of the most prestigious tournaments and horse races.
The business moved into casino gaming in 1998 – a long time ago in the casino world but very recently in the context of the company’s history. The online site has a luxurious and opulent feel, in keeping with the company’s old English history. There is a fantastic range of games and the customer service level is second to none.
The other two famous names in sportsbooks have now become one. The Coral brand has been around even longer than William Hill, while Ladbrokes was the last bookie to operate the UK’s famous football pools in the early 1990s.
Today, punters still have loyalty to the different brands, and each also has its own casino offering. While Coral casino is relatively small-scale and still mostly sport-focused, Ladbrokes casino has been heavily marketed and is once again one of the most recognized brands in the sector, thanks to its generous bonuses and heavily promoted introductory offers.