Born in Sacriston, County Durham, Betts was educated at Fyndoune Community College in Sacriston.Betts participated in Under-19s cricket and Under-20s cricket with Durham, but left in September 2000 upon the refusal of an improvement in his contract. In November, Betts drew up a three-year contract with Warwickshire after they had lost Ed Giddins, Allan Donald and Graeme Welch. Looking for seam bowlers, Warwickshire picked him up.
Betts signed for Middlesex in November 2003.
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