Most/least predictable professional sports

Following from Ruffers (entirely justified) claim that cricket and rugby were very predictable.

Rugby (union in particular)
Formula One

Tennis (maybe)
Most athletics

Should add that predictable doesn’t necessarily mean bad, I guess you could argue that shows that the measurement of competence has high validity (it’s just a bit boring to watch)

Tennis is extremely predictable - Serena wins.

King of unpredictability is obviously football. It’s set up to be that way, to have grey areas in decision making, to let Man Utd pay off every official in the country, etc etc.

predictable - those “sports” which aren’t sports (snooker/darts)

Unpredictable: DOTA2

Rugby League is infinitely more predictable than Union - at international level, anyway.

Australia (10 WC wins out of 14)
New Zealand (1 WC win)

The rest.

Great Britain won 3 World Cups - most recently in 1972.

not sure if cycling is predictable… over the course of a tour usually predictable… but the odd stage can be unpredictable given weather, crashes, dogs walking in to the road… and even on the odd tour the favourite can crash out

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Snooker’s fairly predictable I think

And yeah, @Ruffers you make a good point about tennis…in terms at the very top level. Outside of the top five though it feels like anyone can beat anyone.

I think individual sports will always have the advantage, because the lack of opportunity to just buy an amazing team (like football).

Baseball can pretty unpredictable given there’s a wide range of factors that could influence or determine it, plus given an innings is just 3 outs for each team this could take anything from a couple minutes to, arguably an infinite amount of time

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Fly ball out to centre from Ruffers, easily caught.

The home run available was:

she’s won 2 of the last 9 slams m80

Probably didn’t want to

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scottish football

everyone loses every time regardless of the result


rugby too. The fact that the time Japan beat a few teams in the world cup is the most interesting thing to happen in the sport for 20 years speaks volumes.

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wasn’t she preggers

I’ve always thought golf to be little more than random. Any one of about fifty players can win any tournament without it being a total surprise.

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2 of the last 6 in which she competed

According to the internet, the most predictable are
Boxing (I was going to suggest, but that’s probs to do with how matches are made)

Least predictable is football.

Basically there are 2 main factors:

Relative strength of opponents
Number of points scored (higher = more predictable)

sub thread - sports that you think have massive match throwing/betting problems:

  1. Boxing
  2. Tennis
  3. Snooker
  4. Cricket
  5. Football