Definition of Long Shot

What is the definition of the term "long shot" in the world of sports betting? What is meant if a team or player is a "long shot" to win?

In the world of sports betting, a "long shot" is a team or player who is seen as having a low probability of winning a game or contest.

Definition of the term Long Shot - Sports Betting DictionaryFor instance - let's say Rafael Nadal is taking on Marc Gicquel in the first round of a major tennis tournament. Nadal is the top ranked player in the tournament, while Gicquel, who is currently ranked #100 in the world, is unranked in the event.

Now, it's obvious to say that Nadal is the big favourite to win this match, which makes Gicquel the "long shot". Let's take a look at the potential odds for a match such as this one:

Rafael Nadal, -2000
Marc Gicquel, +1100

Now, according to these odds, you would have to wager $2000 on Rafael Nadal in order to have a shot of winning $100 back.

A successful $100 wager on Gicquel, on the other hand, would return you a total profit of $1,100 if he was able to pull off the upset.

As you can clearly see, Nadal is the big favourite to win in this match, which makes Gicquel a "long shot" to win.


The term "long shot" also applies to team sports. For instance, if Manchester United was playing host to Stoke in English Premier League action, Stoke would be considered a "long shot" to win, due to the fact that Man Utd is usually one of the top teams in the league.