TENNIS BETTING GUIDE

Tips & strategies to become a more successful tennis bettor

Ok, so you want to bet on some tennis action, what are your options?

Match Betting - Moneyline

The most popular way to bet on a tennis match is to bet on the moneyline. The moneyline bet might just be the easiest betting term to understand. Simply put, if you are betting on the moneyline, this means you believe one player will win the match straight up. In tennis, there are two possible results for a moneyline bet; your player wins and you win the bet, or your player loses and you lose the bet. Remember, there are no ties in tennis, so each match will have a winner.

Let’s assume you want to bet on Djokovic to win this match. We refer to this as taking him “straight up” or taking him on the moneyline.

To win $100 on Djokovic moneyline (-310) you must risk $310
To win $100 on Shapovalov moneyline (+250) you would only need to risk $40

Match Betting - Game Spread

The game spread is the tennis version of a point spread. A game spread is a type of bet which is used to create a balanced or fair wager between both players. To win your bet, the stronger player (known as the “favorite”) must win by a certain number of games, and conversely, the weaker player (known as the “underdog”) can lose by the same number of games, or win the match outright.

Example: Djokovic is -3.5 vs. Shapovalov. This means for Djokovic to cover the game spread, he must win by 4 or more games. For Shapovalov to cover the spread, he can lose by 3 games or less, or win the game outright.

  • Result: Djokoic wins 6-4, 6-4 - Djokovic covers the spread because he won by a total of 4 games.
  • Result: Djokoic wins 7-6, 7-6 - Shapovalov covers the spread because he lost by a total of 2 games.
  • Result: Shapovalov wins 6-2, 6-3. Shapovalov covers the spread because he won outright.

Totals (Over/Under)

In tennis, a totals bet (also known as an over/under bet) refers to a wager where you are betting on the combined amount of games that are played in a match. In this type of wager, the winning player and the game spread have no bearing.

Let’s use the following example:

The total for this match is set at 19 – This means you can bet on whether you think the total amount of games played will be over or under 19.

  • Result: Djokoic wins 6-4, 6-4 - This is a total of 20 games, so the Over would win.
  • Result: Djokoic wins 6-2, 6-3 - This is a total of 17 games, so the Under would win.
  • Result: Shapovalov wins 7-6, 6-0. This is a total of 19, so the bet would push (no action).

Futures - Winner of the Tournament

Before each tournament begins, you have the opportunity to bet on players to win the tournament outright. This is the most popular type of futures bet in tennis. Let’s take a look at the upcoming 2022 Men’s French Open.

The better the player, the smaller the payout. We can see that Rafael Nadal is +110 to win the tournament. This means for every $100 bet on him, you would win $110.
A player like Christian Garin on the other hand has no realistic chance to win. That's why his odds pay so much. He is currently being offered at +10000. This means if he happened to win, for every $100 wagered, you would win $10,000.

The better the player, the smaller the payout. We can see that Rafael Nadal is +110 to win the tournament. This means for every $100 bet on him, you would win $110.
A player like Christian Garin on the other hand has no realistic chance to win. That's why his odds pay so much. He is currently being offered at +10000. This means if he happened to win, for every $100 wagered, you would win $10,000.

Prop Betting

Popular tennis prop bets include:

  • Exact set scores
  • Total tie-breaks
  • First break off serve
  • Will the game reach Deuce?

Props are very popular in tennis, most sportsbooks will have in-live betting that offers these props as the game progresses. Keep in mind that the vig is increased, and max bet is commonly decreased in order for the sportsbooks to protect themselves against big losses.

Tennis Betting Tips & Strategies

If you want to increase your chances of being a successful bettor, here are a few tips to help you on your way:

  • Price Shopping: When placing a bet, you always want to make sure you are getting the best price/line possible. Don’t be afraid to shop around. Different sportsbooks offer different prices; and they fluctuate throughout the day. If you want to save a ton of time, check out betstamp.app. It's free to join, and all the line shopping is quickly and efficiently done for you. You get updates in real time of which sportsbooks are offering the best line.
  • Track Your Bets: Keep records of your wagers, and stay on top of what is working and not working for you. Without documenting your bets, it is difficult to see where you are winning or losing as a bettor.
  • Bankroll Management: Set your bankroll and learn to manage it properly. Don't deviate too far from your average bet size and ensure that you are always betting within your limits.

  • Ignore the ATP Player Rankings: The APTour offers world player rankings. You can find these rankings here: https://www.atptour.com/en/rankings/singles When placing your wagers, I would strongly encourage you not to heavily factor these rankings into your betting strategy. For example, Kevin Anderson is currently ranked 94th in the APTour rankings and Marcos Giron is currently ranked 59th. Does this mean that Giron should be favoured over Anderson based simply on the ranking? Absolutely not. These ranking systems are not perfect. Furthermore, the difference between the 50th ranked player and the 100th ranked player is very slim. It is not the same as the gap between the number 1 ranked player (Novak Djokovic) and the 25th ranked player (Gael Monfils).
  • Stay Informed: Your best approach to any sports wagering is to gather as much information as possible. Nothing beats first hand experience. The more tennis you watch, the better your feel for betting in the market. Stay on top of player injuries, and try to use this information to your advantage.