Specials Betting: Where’s the Early Value in Sports Personality?

Emma Raducanu (video-link) poses with her Sports Personality of the year award alongside (left-right) Alex Scott, Second placed Tom Daley, Gary Lineker, Gabby Logan, Adam Peaty and Clare Balding during the BBC Sports Personality of the Year Awards 2021 at MediaCityUK, Salford. Picture date: Sunday December 19, 2021. (Photo by David Davies/PA Images via Getty Images)

The 2022 BBC Sports Personality of the Year award may be nine months away from finding a new owner, but now is the best time to seek out the best betting value in one of the most popular ‘special bets’ markets of all.

In 2021 the prize went to Emma Raducanu. The tennis player was unheard of until winning the US Open in September. Resultantly she went from 300/1 to 1/6 in days. The teenager is top-priced 14/1 with William Hill to retain her crown in 2022. To do so, she will surely need to win one of the three remaining Grand Slam events: The French Open, Wimbledon or US Open.

Similarly, the current 5/1 Sports Personality favourite, Lewis Hamilton will probably need to win the 2022 Formula One World Championship. On the evidence of last weekend’s Bahrain Grand Prix, this looks very unlikely. His Mercedes car is some way off the pace of Ferrari and old rivals, Red Bull.

Cav to Be Sports Personality King Again?

One sportsman who has got his 2022 season off to a good start is cyclist Mark Cavendish. The 2011 Sports Personality Of The Year winner has already won a stage at the Tour of Oman.

The 36-year-old also took a stage of the UAE Tour and won the one-day Milano-Torino a week ago. Clearly in fine form, he will be hoping he is selected to race at the 2022 Tour de France where one more stage victory would make him the all-time most successful stage winner.

This would surely earn him a Sports Personality of the Year nomination, and this combines to make his current odds of 40/1 with Betfred very attractive.

Boxing’s Been a Blow for Punters

Boxers Tyson Fury (14/1) and Anthony Joshua (25/1) are relatively short in the betting. But they do not appeal.

In 2017 Joshua was odds-on favourite to win the prize but failed to finish in the top three. Fury has been nominated twice but also failed to find a top-three spot.

It is 15 years since any boxer finished in the top-three of the Sports Personality of the Year – it makes it a sport to ignore.

Name the Potential England Star

Of course, this is a World Cup year. And the bookies are keeping a handful of England’s best players onside.

Harry Kane is as short as 8/1 but can be back at 14/1 in places. Raheem Sterling and Harry Maguire are currently trading at 25/1 and 33/1 respectively.

England are 10/1 to win the World Cup. Each way, this could be a better bet than trying to pinpoint the individual star of the team, the player that voters would choose for Sports Personality of the Year honours should the English team enjoy a deep run in the tournament.

Winter Olympians Are Always Forgotten

The UK does have one major 2022 winner in its midst. Eve Muirhead made it fourth time lucky at the Olympics when skippering the Women’s curling team to gold in China.

But Winter Olympians are rarely rewarded at the Sports Personality of the Year and the UK will need a fruitless forthcoming nine months for her to have a reasonable chance.

The Scottish curler is 16/1 with Paddy Power, but it is noticeable most firms do not even quote her in their Sports Personality of the Year betting market.


It is hard to have many positives at this point in time. Doubtlessly someone will rise to prominence and earn the mantle of strong favourite.

As a cyclist has won this award four times since 2008, only Mark Cavendish stands out as a value proposition at the current prices.

BBC Sports Personality 2022 Odds via Paddy Power*

  • 5/1 Lewis Hamilton
  • 9/1 Emma Raducanu
  • 10/1 Tyson Fury
  • 12/1 Zoe Alcroft
  • 14/1 Harry Kane
  • 14/1 George Russell
  • 16/1 Eve Muirhead
  • 20/1 Anthony Joshua
  • 20/1 Katie Omerod
  • 25/1 Raheem Sterling
  • 25/1 Dina Asher-Smith
  • 25/1 Keeley Hodgkinson
  • 33/1 Ellen White
  • 33/1 Mark Cavendish
  • 33/1 Hollie Doyle
  • 33/1 Marcus Rashford
  • 33/1 Katarina Johnson-Thompson
  • 33/1 Phil Foden
  • 33/1 Rory McIlroy
  • 40/1 Ben Stokes
  • 40/1 Eoin Morgan
  • 40/1 Dave Ryding
  • 50/1 Jos Butler
  • 50/1 Jordan Pickford
  • 50/1 Joe Root
  • 66/1 bar

* Sports Personality betting odds correct at the time of publication. All odds subject to changes.