It would interest you to know that a whopping 28% of Nigeria’s population representing 60 million out of the 213 million people residing in Nigeria actively participate in sports betting, making it one of the biggest revenue generators for the country. With such a big and growing market, many bookmakers have dived into the competitive sea of providing sports betting services ranging from live sports betting, virtual sports, casino games to even horse racing. For this article, we’ll be focusing on virtual sports betting and the top virtual sports betting sites you can trust in Nigeria.

What Are Virtual Sports?

The increasing popularity of online betting has drastically reduced the need for traditional offline betting, bookmakers no longer have to open up shops in different physical locations to reach their customers, coupled with the fact that online betting offers players the ease and convenience of placing bets from the comfort of their homes with just their mobile devices and good internet connection. 

Virtual sport is a subset of online betting that began to gain recognition during the Covid-19 pandemic which was a huge blow to the sports betting industry all over the world. Sports competitions were being cancelled or postponed, the volume of betting crashed, bookmakers were losing money and had to come up with an alternative, hence – virtual sports betting. Before we explain how virtual sports betting works, what are virtual sports?

Virtual sports are very much like real-life competitions or games but instead of having live players, the events you see are simulated by software that combines modern gaming features with high-quality graphics to reproduce a very realistic sports event gameplay. 

Unlike real-life sports which are based on the skills of players, virtual sports is based on pure chance, this is because the outcome of a virtual match is determined by a Random Number Generator (RNG) which is an algorithm that generates numbers in an unpredictable pattern. 

Types of Virtual Sports

Any sport can have its virtual equivalent, and many bookmakers now provide a variety of simulated matches, races or fights with 3D graphics. Here’s a list of some of the popular virtual sports available to players-

  • Football (soccer)
  • Basketball
  • Tennis
  • Motorsports
  • Dog racing
  • Horse racing
  • Hockey
  • Cycling
  • And lots more

Most virtual sports/games usually last for a few minutes. It’s a win-win situation for both bookmakers and bettors as an unlimited number of games can be set up in a day without fear of postponing a match due to weather or interruptions during the game from changing players, this means that there are more chances to place more bets which equals more money.

The same type of bets available in real-life events is also offered in virtual sports betting, creating a similar real-life experience for the bettors. For instance, just as in a football match, you can bet on the total score, outright winner or part of the game at all. 

Is Betting On Virtual Sports Legal?

Betting on virtual sports is the same as any other form of betting. So yes, betting on virtual sports is legal in Nigeria. But there’s a catch, if the site which you’re betting on isn’t properly registered with the right authorities then your activities might be considered illegal. 

For a bookmaker to be authorised to carry out their business within Nigeria, they must have obtained a licence from the National Lottery Regulatory Commission and the Lagos State Lottery Board. They must complete the registration process and meet all requirements stipulated by these two bodies before they can begin operations. You can check out our comprehensive list of legal betting sites in Nigeria.

Top Virtual Sports Betting Sites in Nigeria

As much as virtual sports betting is growing in demand, not all bookmakers offer this service to bettors, so we’ve taken the time to outline the best out there. We’ve ranked these sites putting several factors into consideration like level of user-friendly interface for their website, amount of bonuses, best odds, early payouts and cash out options.

  • 1×Bet
  • 22Bet
  • Betway
  • BetBonanza
  • BetFair
  • BetWinner
  • AccessBet
  • Bet9ja

1×Bet

Established in 2011 and originating from Europe, 1×bet is the registered brand name for  Beauforbet Nigeria Limited which is licensed under the Lagos State Lottery Board. 1×bet offers its users an amazing time on the website and has mobile versions for Android and iOS devices. Their customer service is one of the best with 24/7 customer support, a quick response email, live chat options and a telephone number for calls.

Here’s a list of other special features and services-

  • Up to 200% welcome bonus worth N100,000 or it’s equivalent in any other currency when you make your first deposit on the app (minimum of N400)
  • Fast withdrawal time with a minimum of N1000. Withdrawals via EWallets, Debit/credit cards usually takes 15 minutes. While withdrawals for bank transfers can take between 1-7 days
  • Fair odds with home edge on major markets  of 2% in the top leagues and sometimes 6% on commercial leagues
  • Cash-out options
  • Asian handicap
  • Live betting
  • Multi-live streaming
  • Virtual betting

Some Virtual Sports/Games Available On 1×bet 

Football, basketball, tennis, volleyball, bicycle racing, greyhound racing, Motorsport, horse racing, wrestling, martial arts, swimming, baseball.

Special Bets/Bonus Offers

# Special bonus on different games

# Bonus on your account balance depending on the number of bets you’ve placed

# Regular offers on every new deposit

22Bet

22bet is the official trademark for Arcadia Hospitality Limited and it is licensed by the Anambra State Gaming Company Limited. With sports betting license number ASGCL/013/19 and Casino licence number ASGCL/017/19.

22bet was established in 2017 and has a strong social media presence. The mobile version of their website is super fast and user-friendly and is available for both Android and iOS devices. Their customer support service is open 24 hours every day of the week, with a responsive email and the option to live chat on the app.

Here’s a list of other services and special features-

  • Up to 100% welcome bonus worth N50,000 upon your first deposit of at least N365/$1.00
  • Fast withdrawal time. For withdrawals via bank transfers and debit/credit cards are usually processed within 24hours.
  • Great odds on almost all markers with house edge of 5.5% on both top leagues and non-commercial markets
  • Cash-out options
  • Asian handicap
  • Live streaming
  • Live betting
  • Virtual betting

Some Of The Virtual Sports Available On 22bet

Football, beach volleyball, snooker, ice hockey, baseball, table tennis, volleyball, tennis, beach soccer, formular 1, handball.

Special Bets/Bonus Offers

# Accumulator of the day-  a variety of accumulated games carefully selected from the most exciting sports of the day for you to choose from

# Friday reloaded sportsbook bonus- any deposit made on Fridays will attract a 100% bonus if up to N40,000.

BetWay

BetWay operates under the umbrella of Digibay Limited which is licensed by the Lagos State Lottery Board with licence number 003504 and by the National Lottery Regulatory Commission with licence number 0001003.

Starting operations in 2006, Betway is a pacesetter in the African online betting industry. It emphasizes new technology which is evident in their super-fast and user-friendly website, available for Android and iOS devices and consumes fewer data. They have an efficient customer service running 24/7 with quick email replies, live chat, phone call options and several other special features and offers-

  • Up to 100% welcome bonus worth N100,000 in free bets, accessible upon initial deposit of at least N100
  • Withdrawals are processed within 48 hours and only via bank transfer
  • Great odd for top leagues with home edge between 4.5% to 6%
  • Cash-out options
  • Live betting
  • Live streaming
  • Virtual betting

Some Virtual Sports Betting Available On BetWay

Football league, tennis, basketball league, dog races and horses racing. 

Special Bets/Bonus Offers

# Jackpot- offers on jackpot is usually in millions

# Weekly prediction game- you have the option to pick the first teams that will score in any four matches to win.

BetBonanza

BetBonanza is a registered trademark of EPL Partners Nigeria Limited and is licensed under the Lagos State Lottery Board with licence number 001370. Established in 2014, BetBonanza strives to offer good service to its customers, although it does not have a mobile app for Android or iOS, its website is compatible with mobile devices. Their customer support service is open from the hours of 8:00 to 22:00 every day, with the options of email and live chat. 

Other special features and offers-

  • Up to 100% welcome bonus worth N100,000 when you make an initial deposit of at least N100
  • Fast payouts with withdrawals being processed for bank transfers and debit/credit cards within 24 hours.
  • Excellent odds with house edge of 7% on almost all markers
  • Cash-out options
  • Asian handicap
  • Live betting
  • Virtual betting

Some Virtual Sports Betting Available On BetBonanza

Virtual football league, turbo football, greyhounds, colour-colour, spin&win, super 6.

Special Bets/Bonus Offers

# Inside life- you get one free bet when you place five bets

# Quickbets- free betting tips from experienced BetBonanza tipsters

# Get half back- when you place up to 7 or more bets, and one game spoils the selection, you’ll get half of your stake back as a free bet.

# Yakata bonus-  if your combined bet wins, you get up to a 200% bonus.

BetFair

BetFair is a trademark of The Sporting Exchange Limited and is regulated by the UK Gambling Commission alongside the Malta Gaming Authority for International Customers. Established in 2000, it is one of the strongest sports betting brand names. BetFair offers two distinct services- betting exchange and sportsbook selection. It is a global company so it’s safe and reliable, with up to date technology, mobile-friendly interface, 24/7 customer service, responsive email and live chat options.

Additional services and features include

  • Great odds on all games
  • Withdrawal time of 24 hours for EWallets and within 5 working days for bank transfers and debit/credit cards.
  • Cash-out options
  • Asian handicap
  • Live betting
  • Live streaming
  • Virtual betting

Some Virtual Sports Betting Available On BetFair

World cup, club football, greyhounds, motor racing, horses, sprints, horses jump.

Special Bets/Bonus Offers

# Get up to €100- this offer is for new customers. When you make a bet of €10 five different times, you’ll get a bonus of €20 in free bets.

# Bet €10 to get €40- also for new customers, your first deposit of €10 will earn you €30 in free bets.

BetWinner

BetWinner is a registered brand name for Advanced Hospitality Limited and is licensed under the National Lottery Regulatory Commission with licence number 2385/493. Starting operations in 2018, it operates in other countries as well like Germany, Portugal and India. Its mobile application is user friendly and comes with a 24 hours customer support service, an email and a live chat option. 

Other features and offers include- 

  • Great odds on almost all markets with house edge below 4% in top leagues and non-commercial markets; in goal markets house edge varies between 5% and 7%
  • Up to 100% welcome bonus worth N100.000 on your first deposit of at least N400
  • Fast withdrawal time within 24hours for bank transfers and debit/credit cards
  • Cash-out options
  • Asian handicap
  • Special bets
  • Live betting
  • Live streaming
  • Virtual betting

Some Virtual Sports Betting Available On BetWinner

Football league, greyhounds, speedway, 1×2 network, golden race, edge gaming, leap gaming.

Special Bets/Bonus Offers

# Birthday Bonus- BetWinner will gift you a special bonus on your birthday

# Every Thursday Bonus- you’ll receive a 100% bonus on any deposit above €10 made on Thursdays

# BetWinner bonus for series of lost bets- you get a bonus as compensation when you have lost a series of bets

# Advancebets- a bonus for players with unsettled bets in their accounts

AccessBet

AccessBet was established in 2010 is owned by T M Gaming Networks Limited. AccessBet comes with a user-friendly interface on its website that is compatible with mobile devices. Its operating hours are from 8:00 – 20:00, with a responsive email address and live chat option. Other special features and services are-

  • Up to 100% bonus worth N100.000 on your first deposit of at least N500
  • Fast withdrawal time within 24 hours for bank transfers
  • Great odds in major top league markets with house edge a little higher than 4% 
  • Cash-out options
  • Live betting
  • Asian handicap
  • Virtual betting

Available Virtual Sports Games On AccessBet

Greyhound racing, horseracing, soccer, tennis, rugby, handball, Ice hockey, volleyball, football, Aussie rules, water polo.

Special Bets/Bonus Offers

# Bonus on multiple bets- when you play multiple games you can receive up to 51% bonus on your winnings.

Bet9ja

Established in 2013 and licensed under the name KC Gaming Networks Limited, Bet9ja is one of the biggest home brands that has enjoyed various sponsorships. Bet9ja offers super fast and easy applications for their Android and iOS users as well as a mobile-friendly website that is open between the hours of 8:00 – 21:00. For customer support, they have options to call via telephone, email or live chat on the website.

Some other features they offer are-

  • Up to N100.000 welcome bonus on your first deposit of at least N100
  • Great odds with house edge of 5% top leagues and non-commercial markets
  • Swift withdrawals as payouts are being received within 24hours
  • Cash-out options
  • Live betting
  • Live streaming
  • Virtual betting

Available Virtual Sports Games On Bet9ja

Football, tennis, horse racing, Bet9ja league, beach soccer, badminton, boxing, crickets, darts, golf, snooker, rugby, volleyball, squash.

Special Bets/Bonus Offers

# Bet9ja rewards- the company has a reward system that pays you more for playing more games

# Bet maker- a quick and easy feature to help you find your missing bet

# Odds Surge- increased odd on sports competitions

# Bet9ja league- free bets- you get free bets when you place your bets on the exclusive bet9ja league

# 170% multiple bonuses- get an extra 170% bonus on your winnings when you play at least 5 multiple games

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