How to Bet on Tennis
Tennis was created back in the 16th century, and as come a long way since then. Today, tennis can be played in either a singles format, or a double format. Singles matches consist of one player against another player, while doubles consists of a team of two players against another team. Tennis betting has become a very popular sport for both fans, recreational players, and sports bettors.
The four Grand Slam tournaments are currently the most popular tennis events for both fans and sports bettors; they are similar to the majors in golf. Tennis can be played on multiple different surfaces as well, which definitely affects some players play.
The main types of surface for tennis play are hard courts, clay courts, and grass courts. It’s not uncommon for one player to be much better on one surface compared to another. Tennis betting has gotten very big, especially when it comes down to the four Grand Slam tournaments.
Tennis Betting Odds and Betting Types
Heads Up Straight Betting
The most popular and common type of tennis bet is heads-up straight betting. This will consist of a match between two players and gives a line just on a player to win. Unlike other sports where you’ll get a spread bet, the way you win your bet in tennis is just to have the player that you bet on win their match.
An example of a straight bet, is if you have Rafael Nadal taking on David Ferrer, Nadal may be the favorite in this match at -300, while Ferrer’s odds were listed at +260. so if you were to bet $300 on Nadal, you’d make a $100 profit since he’s a heavy favorite.
On the other side, if you were to bet Ferrer at +260, for every $100 that you bet, you would win a $260 profit since he’s the underdog.
Bet the Winner of an Event
Another popular tennis betting option is to bet on the winner of an event or tournament, before the tournament even starts. With this bet, you’ll have multiple different players listed with odds varying, but you will also get the “field” option. The field option will consist of all players not listed with odds, and if you were to bet on this; you win your bet if any player NOT listed wins the entire tournament.
For example, if you want to bet on Andy Roddick to win at Wimbledon before the tournament starts, you may get odds of about +600. These odds would be much better than betting him in the first few rounds of the event as he would most likely be a pretty heavy favorite.
Tennis Prop Bets
There are also prop bets in tennis as well. Tennis prop bets typically offer you odds on the number of sets that each match will last. For example if Roger Federer is taking on James Blake and Federer is a heavy favorite over Blake (say -450), the most popular bet for number of sets for Federer to win would probably be three sets (in a standard best-of-five match).
So betting on Federer to win in three sets may give you odds of about -200, while betting him to win in four or five sets would give you higher odds as that is considered an “underdog” bet in this situation.
Major Tennis Events to Bet On
The four biggest events to bet on in tennis are the Grand Slam events. The four events are
- Australian Open
- French Open
- US Open
The Australian Open takes place between January 17th and January 30th in Melbourne Park, Melbourne, and is played on a hard court. The French Open runs between May 22nd to June 5th in Roland Garros, Paris, and is played on clay. The next event is Wimbledon which takes place between June 20th and July 3rd at the All England Tennis Club in London, and is played on grass. The final event of the four is the US Open, which is played from August 29th to September 12th in Flushing Meadows, New York, and is also played on a hard court.
Winning all four of the Grand Slam events is one of the hardest tasks out there for any tennis player, but is also one that every player strives to do. No one has won all four Grand Slam events in singles since back in 1988 when Steffi Graf did it. It has happened a bit more recently in doubles, when it occurred back in 1998 when Martina Hingis won with Mirjana Lucic at the Australian Open, and then Hingis won with Jana Novotna at the French Open, Wimbledon, and the US Open.
Tennis Betting Tips and Betting Strategy
There are a few things to remember before doing any tennis betting. The first is to definitely check on a players strengths as well as their weaknesses. Even if a player is excellent on clay, he or she may not be as great on grass. There have been multiple tennis players who have been excellent on all surfaces but one specific one, for example clay.
If you aren’t incredibly knowledge about tennis, check out the rankings before matches as well. Just because a “big name” is listed as an underdog, doesn’t mean the bet is listed the wrong way. Also, betting on a player to win a tennis tournament before it starts is a bit easier to do than betting on a team to win the NCAA Tournament before it starts.
There are tournaments where you can get some fairly good odds on a player who’s dominant on the type of surface that the event is played on, and is also playing at the top of their game. In that situation you should take the opportunity to place the bet on that player before the tournament starts to get the better odds. It’s more of a risk, but not always a bad one.
Also, don’t get too crazy with betting heavy favorites of -400 or -500 for example, upsets in tennis can and do happen, so just be careful and research your bets! At this point though, you should have some strong basic knowledge about tennis betting that will prepare you for the next Grand Slam.