So you’ve set up online and decided to add tennis to your betting repertoire. A rainy day outside, laptop on the couch and the TV on, you’re ready to go. This article will give you some idea of the things to consider before placing bets on tennis. It’s not always easy to achieve winning bets, but if you can start without making glaring mistakes, you’re already well ahead of the pack. This is our essential guide to betting on tennis, and if you start with the essentials, in sure time the details will become clear too.
The first thing to be aware of is the competitions. Almost all major tournaments from the 4 global Grand Slams, i.e. the Australian and US opens, French open and Wimbledon are covered by bookies; and throughout the year you can find smaller events, namely the ATP 1000, the ATP500 and ATP250. In addition to this are events like the annual Davis competition. It’s worth noting that all events other than grand slams and Davis are only 3 sets long, which is important to note as there can be more volatility in these games, with more opportunities for upsets. In longer matches, superior opponents have a longer chance to stand out, which tends to be the difference in the Grand Slams.
The markets for bets in Tennis principally divide into 2 categories; Tournament and Match. Although both are somewhat different, the primary market that bookies deal in with tennis relates to match up or in the case of a tournament, outright winner. This works like most other heads up sports where the line is on a favourite verses an underdog. In addition to this, different bookies have different prop bets that they hold, particularly in regards to match bets. For example, many include set betting, whereby a bookie takes a line on just how many sets the game will last, and you can be under or over it. In addition to set betting you may find prop bets such as number of sets, total games, game handicap and most aces.
Essential Factors: The Players psyche
There are various factors that can effect a player’s motivation, leading up to the event and during it. Emotional highs and lows off the court are worth taking note of; for instance, Czech player, Lukas Rosol smashed the odds when he defeated three seeded players before smashing the final of the 2013 Bucharest ATP tour in dedication to his recently deceased father. In addition to freak external events like this, recent form plays a big role on player psychology and performance. ‘Good runs’ in recent competitions tend to breed upon themselves and can create spots
Essential Factors: Is there value?
You might be good betting on Federer to win the Quarter Final of the Australian open against a relatively unknown 10th place seed, but you’re unlikely to get much value betting say, $400 in order to win 20. Tennis in particular can be hard to find these kind of spots at the upper levels, however lower number seeds in lower competitions are hotly contested against.
Essential Factors: How is the surface?
It’s no small thing that some players are awful on grass and some are awful on clay, and vice versa. Though it should already be reflected in the price of most bookies, it is important if you want to make strategic bets to have some awareness of player statistics so that you know that Raonic isn’t as good as grass and Andy Murray is rubbish on clay. Whether or not it’s the key ingredient in your strategy, just understand it’s a factor your need to at least consider.
Essential Factors: What’s the weather like?
Many stadiums that have no roof can leave players at the mercy of the elements; this can dramatically effect a players game as exemplified by Andy Murray’s victories in the 2012 US Open where he took advantage of the awful conditions in that tournament to score wins over Novak Djokovic and ‘Tomas Berdych. Wind in particular, effects opponents who are used to a high ball toss or lack control in their toss, such as Domink Hrbaty, Florian Mayer or (in this case) Berdych, so if the weather turns you may want to hedge or bet again.
Notes on Grand Slams
It is worth noting that getting value in the outright winner in the grand slams is not very tenable at the current time; only a hand full of names have dominated these events in recent years, and usually come in at a price varying between 2/1 and 4/1 depending on their rank. This has made the wider sport of tennis attractive to punters looking for relatively predictable outcomes, attracting attention from a broad stretch of fields in the wider sport betting world. There is a lot more competition at the lower tier events like ATP’s where competition is much steeper and shorter matches create higher volatility.