Tennis Retirement Rules

What Are Tennis Retirement Rules?

When betting on Tennis you need to be extremely careful. Occasionally a player will "retire", meaning they forfeit the match and the other player wins. This could be for many reasons with the main one being injury. Smashing balls across the court for an hour can take it's toll, and sometimes a player carrying an injury may not want to continue, so they will just forfeit the match to the other player. For example, if player 1 forfeits, player 2 wins.

Seems straight forward, right? Wrong.

Bookmakers have different rules on how they deal with your bets when a player retires. Unfortunately they don't just settle the retired player as a loser, and the other player as a winner. For this reason you need to educate yourself on retirement rules before placing any bets on tennis, otherwise your funds could be at risk!

Below we have a very easy to use table that you can view, which will help you place your bets on tennis risk and worry-free! To put it simply, if you are backing & laying a bet on tennis then you can only use a bookmaker from group 1, as all of the exchanges are also in group 1.  If you are doing an offer with bookmaker from group 2, then you must dutch your bet with another bookmaker also from group 2.

Note: Dutching is just where you place a back bet on the other outcome. There are only 2 outcomes on this match, so rather than backing & laying, we are just backing 1, then backing the other on another website. This works the same as laying as there's only 2 outcomes.

And of course if you're backing any in group 3, you should also dutch with another from group 3. The only difference between Group 2 and Group 3 is disqualification (which is EXTREMELY rare), so my advice to people when doing small ish stakes is to just treat Group 2 and Group 3 bookies the same and dutch between, as the chances of disqualification coming into play is minimal.

What Are The Dangers?

To put it simply; if you don't check retirement rules, you could lose a lot of money.

As an easy example lets say you have £20 on Roger Federer and £20 on Rafael Nadal in a match. Rafael Nadal then decides he can no longer continue and retires. If you haven't made sure your retirement rules match, your money could be at risk.

Bookmaker 1 might void Federer as the match hasn't finished, refunding your £20 stake.
Bookmaker 2 might however settle Nadal as a loser, making you lose £20.

Overall, you'd be down £20, as bookie 1 voided rather than settling the bet as a winner. For this reason, make sure you read the table below!

Which Bookmakers Use Which Rules?
  • For clarity, below are the rules which the main bookmakers use as of January 2020:

Group 1 Group 2 Group 3
Betfair Exchange 10bet Bet365
Smarkets Exchange 12bet Betstars
Matchbook Exchange 21bet Betway
138 Betboro Betvictor
32red BetBull Kwiff
888sport Bethard M88
Betfair Sportsbook BetUK STSBet
Betfred Betvision VBet
Betsafe Boylesports
Blacktype Energybet
Brucebetting Fansbet
Bwin Fun88
Coral GiveMeBet
Dafabet Guts
Genting K8
Grosvenor Mansionbet
JenningsBet Moplay
Ladbrokes Netbet
Leovegas Novibet
Marathonbet Space Casino
Mrgreen Sportnation
Paddypower Sportpesa
Partypoker StarSports
QuinnBet TLC bet
Redbet Vernons
Skybet William Hill
Sportingbet
Toals
Totesport
Unibet

Group 1 (All exchanges included here): All bets are valid if one set is complete.
All of the exchanges are in this category so you are safe to back and lay. A whole set has to be completed for both back and lay bets to stand. If they haven't finished the first set and someone retires then all bets will be void and returned to you. If one set is complete and a player retires then your bets will stand.

Group 2: All bets are valid only if the full match is complete.
The full match has to take place for your bet to stand here. If there are any retirements before the match is over then your bet will be voided. This is why you can't back on a website in this group and lay off, because if your player retires in set 2, 3, 4 or 5 then your back bet will be voided, but you will lose your lay bet on the exchange.

Group 3: All bets are valid only if the full match is complete - apart from disqualifications
This group is exactly the same as group 2 however if a player is disqualified then bets will stand. This is an extremely rare occurrence and has only happened 6 times in majour tournaments from 1990 to 2017.

So as you can see, you should only be backing and laying group 1 bookies. If you choose group 2 or 3 bookies then you need to be dutching them with a bookie in the same group.

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