Sports betting has been around for a very long time – in fact, probably almost as long as competitive sports have been around. All bettors sometimes win and sometimes lose, and the good ones manage to win more than half the time.

However, every now and again, someone places a bet that wins huge against incredible odds. So here are some of the most remarkable bets in history.

The Superbowl Safety: 2012

Before the Superbowl XLVI, Jonah Reichnitz bet $1 000 that the first score of the game would be a safety.

The odds were 50-1, as there had only been six safeties in total in the XLV preceding Superbowls. In addition, there had only been one safety as a first score. At those odds the payout was $50 000.

Betting On Mali: 2010

In January 2010, Mali was losing to Angola by 4-0 in the opening game of the Africa Cup of Nations. There were 16 minutes left on the clock and the outcome looked certain.

But that didn’t stop an American punter from placing a small 5 pound ($8) bet at odds of 1000-1 that Mali would score four goals in that time and finish in a draw. Incredibly, they did, and he walked away with $8000. It just goes to show, don’t be afraid to bet small amounts on massive odds.

Billy Walters At The Superbowl: 2010

Billy Walters is said to be so lucky that many Vegas bookmakers are afraid to take his bets.

In 2010, he managed to find one bookmaker that would take a whopping $3.5 million wager that Drew Brees and the New Orleans Saints would upset Peyton Manning and the Indianapolis Colts.

He was backing the underdog at an insane price – but he won.

The Saratoga Superfecta: 2008

A superfecta is where you bet on the top four horses of a given race. If you pick one right, you get a better payout than simply betting on the winning horse.

Usually, the payouts aren’t huge because the top horses are favourites. However, at the seventh race at Saratoga in 2008, the top three horses had odds of 88-1, 20-1 and 37-1.

No one wagered much on that combo – but two people each placed c10 on it, and each walked away with $75 000.

Xabi Alonso Goal: 2006

Adrian Hayward says he had a dream in July 2005 that Liverpool player Xabi Alonso would score a goal from beyond the midfield line at some point during the upcoming season.

The odds were a staggering 125-1, and he put down 200 pounds ($313), the bookie thinking it was the easiest $200 ever made.

Long story short, the goal happened, and Hawyward walked away with 25 000 pounds ($43 880).

The Mick Gibbs Miracle: 2001

In 2001, an English man named Mick Gibbs placed a paltry 30p (c48 US) on an insane 15 soccer match parlay. His odds were the biggest on this list: 1, 666, 666 – 1.

And incredibly, remarkably, unbelievably, he picked 15 winners. From that tiny bet, he won $784 000.

If there’s one thing you’ve learned from this list, it should be that just betting the small change in your pocket can really pay off. If you’re keen to get your bets in, head over to one of our recommended online betting NZ sites and place your bets today!