Tennis betting dissected and explained!

Odds are the key in any sports betting endeavour as they determine the amount you stand to win from your winning wagers. Majority of bookmakers list their odds in three different ways:

Fractions – By far the most popular method of listing odds in the United Kingdom and Ireland.

Decimals – Extremely popular in the southern hemisphere and throughout Europe.

Money line – Extensively used in the permissible gambling/betting areas of North America.

What do these tennis betting odds actually represent?!

So, if a certain player has the listed odds of 1.85 to win a particular Grand Slam match, what do you think this means?!

Betting odds are simply represent the likelihood of a certain outcome (also known as implied probability). Hence, if a player has 1.85 odds of winning a match, the bookmaker believes that his exact chances or probability of winning are:

Implied probability = 1 / decimal odds

Implied probability = 1 / 1.85 = 0.5405 = 54.05%

Understanding such implied probability of the betting odds is essential for succeeding at tennis betting in the long run. The knowledge of converting such odds of an outcome into its implied probability can help you significantly in becoming a long-term success at tennis betting.

How do you figure out your winnings if you bet on a certain tennis player and he/she ends up winning the match as expected? The calculation is pretty simple:

Bettor’s Profit = (Stake x Odds) – Stake

Now, if you bet £ 100 on a player listed with 1.85 odds to win a certain tennis match, your exact profit (if that player indeed wins the match) will be calculated this way:

Earned Profit = (£ 100 x 1.85) - £ 100

Earned Profit = (£ 185) - £ 100

Earned Profit = £ 85

Therefore, you’d book a profit of £ 85 on a £ 100 bet. A decent profit indeed!

Let’s take the example of Rafael Nadal in Australian Open 2014. He was world number one at that time and was seeded 1 for the tournament. What more he had just returned to the top form in the year 2013 and had won both US open and French Open, besides nine other prominent titles!

He easily dismissed Roger Federer in the semifinals and was a solid 1.18 favourite going up against Stan Wawrinka in the Australian Open finals. It meant that anyone who bet £ 100 on Rafael Nadal win would get back £ 118 in return, a profit of £ 18. Furthermore, there was a good probability of 84.7% of Nadal winning the match.

Regardless of how he defeated Novak Djokovic in the semifinals and was playing the best tennis of his career, Stan was considered a major underdog with 5.6 odds going into the championship match. Such odds were based on his defeats in his previous 12 encounters with Nadal. That he hadn’t even managed a single set in all his 12 defeats didn’t help his cause much.

But few expert bettors predicted an upset in the final.

Stan’s power game was ideal for the superfast Melbourne hard courts and even though Rafa was a good all-court player, his strength still lay in clay-courts and defensive baseline play.

Stan Wawrinka’s odds meant that anyone who bet £ 100 on the Swiss would get £ 560 in return (including the £ 100 investment), a profit of £ 460. However, his odds of causing an upset were a meagre 17%.

It was a long shot by any means!

However, in the end Stan Wawrinka emerged as the 2014 Australian Open champion - his first ever Grand Slam victory, beating Rafael Nadal in four sets!