Wimbledon Tennis Matched Betting Guide
Wimbledon is running from Monday 2nd July to Sunday 15th July. Every year there are a few bookmakers that offer daily promotions on it, or just the occasional refund.
We've split this guide into three sections. The most important section is the Retirement Rules section, as you could lose a lot of money if you're not aware of this. Click the links below to jump to each section.
Tennis can be extremely profitable for Matched Betting, especially with an event such as Wimbledon on. For this reason, we're going to explain how the scoring works, and when you should be placing your bets if you're doing an inplay offer. Just like with a goal being scored in football, the odds can swing massively if a certain point is won, so you should understand what the score means, and when to place a bet so your money isn't at risk.
Firstly, it needs to be said that Wimbledon is a Grand Slam event. This is important as the scoring is slightly different to the rest of the year's tennis. There are four Grand Slam events:-
- Australian Open (January)
- French Open Roland Garros (June)
- Wimbledon (July)
- US Open (August/September)
There are two differences to Grand Slam events and every other event throughout the year:-
- The Men play Best of 5 sets. Normally it's best of 3 (so first to 2 sets), but with Grand Slam events the men play best of 5 (first to 3 sets). The women's game remains the same at best of 3 (first to 2 sets)
- There are no tiebreaks in the final set (apart from the US Open). In normal tournaments if the final set goes to 6-6 then there will be a tie break to decide the match. In both Men's and Women's at Grand Slams (apart from the US Open) there are no final set tiebreaks. If the final set goes to 6-6, then they keep playing until one player wins by two games. There is no limit either - it really can go on forever. The longest match happened in 2010 at Wimbledon when John Isner beat Nicolas Mahut 70-68 in games!
Now we've explained the main differences between Grand Slams and normal tennis tournaments, let's take a look at how the scoring works.
In the image above, it is 40-30 to Harriet in the 3rd game. It is 1-1 in games, in the first set. And it is 0-0 in sets.
The idea in men's tennis is to win 3 sets, and in women's to win 2 sets. When either player has done this they win the match. Each set consists of first to 6 in games, where a player must win by 2 games. So if the score was 6-4, the player with 6 game wins. If it was 6-5 then then the player with 6 hasn't won yet, as they haven't won by 2, so it would then go on to 7-5 or 6-6. If it ended up as 6-6 then they will play a tiebreak to decide who wins that set. Tiebreaks will be explained a little further down this page.
In a game there will be one person serving for the whole duration. The winner of the game is the first person to score 4 points, but also winning by two. The points are called out differently though and can be seen in the table below:
Here's an example of how the scoring works.
The game starts and the score is 0-0, this is referred to as "love love". The player then scores the first point making it 1-0, this is called out as "15 love". The player then scores the second point making it 2-0, this is called out as "30 love". The other player then wins the next 2 points making it 2-2, this is called out as "30 all, or thirty all". When a player is leading 40-0, 40-15, or 40-30, then the very next point will be for the game. If they win that point it will be called as "game", and they will have won the game. 6 of these games and they will win the set. If the score goes to 40-40 however, then they must win by 2. You may have heard the term "deuce" before - this just means it's 40-40. When the next player wins a point it will be called as "advantage". If the other player gets the point back then it goes back to deuce. Then to advtange, then to deuce, then advantage, etc, until one player wins two points in a row then it will be game.
As you can see from the image above, Harriet was winning 40-30. So that means if she won the next point it would be game to her and she would be winning 2-1 in the first set. If Karolina won the point then it would be Deuce (40-40) and it would then be a 2 point shootout to see who wins the game. The next point would be either Advantage Harriet or Advantage Karolina, and the point after that would either be game or back to Deuce.
Now you know how each game works you'll want to know how the sets work. As explained before, the first player to win 6 games wins the set. It's as simple as that, however they have to win by 2 games. So if a set is 5-4 and the player wins the 10th game making it 6-4 then they win the set. If however the other player wins the 10th game making it 5-5 then they will play until it's either 7-5, or 6-6. If it's 6-6 then it goes to a tiebreak.
A tiebreak occurs when a set finishes 6-6 and it is used to decide who wins the set. The only exception to this is when it is in the final set (so 1-1 in sets for women's and playing for the 3rd, or 2-2 in sets for men's and playing for the 5th) - in this case they just keep playing until a player wins by 2 games. So 8-6, 9-7, 10-8, or even 70-68!
The scoring in a tie break is simply first to 7, and win by 2 (there's a pattern here of winning by 2, right?). So tiebreaks generally end up 7-3, 7-4 or 7-5. If it's 7-6 then it'll go to 8-6 or 7-7 and keep playing until 9-7 or 10-8 etc. Whoever wins the tiebreak wins the set.
When is it safe to place inplay bets?
Now you know how the scoring works you'll understand why you shouldn't place bets inplay as a game is happening. In between each point there is up to 20 seconds gap, this is not enough time to place a back bet and wait for it to go through and then place the corresponding lay bet. Because of this, we only place bets when there is a change of ends (when the players swap sides on the court). This happens every 2 games, so they will play 2 games on one side, then 2 on the other, then 2 back on the original, then 2 on the other and so on. Every odd number of games in each set, the players will sit down for a minute and then change ends. So when you see a score where there's an odd number of games in that set then the players are likely to be sat down meaning no points can be scored meaning the odds will be sort of stable. By odd number of games, I mean the total games in that set are odd. So 1-0, 2-1, 3-2, 4-3, 5-4, 6-5, etc. They basically change sides after the first game in each set, and then every 2 games thereafter until the end of the set.
The easiest way to check if they're sat down and not playing is to go onto Bet365 and watch the match. What I'd suggest is that you wait until there's about to be an odd number of games, wait for the game to finish so you know they're about to sit down and then place your bets. For example it's 2-2 in a set and someone is winning 40-0. You know if they score the next point it will be 3-2 and they will go and sit down for a minute. Now you just simply watch the scoreboard, wait for 3-2 and know you'll have around 60 seconds to place your back and lay bets. If you place your bet when there is an odd score but you don't have the stream loaded then you don't know if they're about to play the next game or not, so it's always best to watch.
Warning: DO NOT PLACE INPLAY BETS ON SMARKETS - THERE IS SIMPLY NOT ENOUGH MONEY IN THE MARKET!
This is a massive one. Smarkets simply does not have the liquidity on some of the smaller matches. If you're betting on a big match and waiting for a change of ends you should be okay with £10 or £20 stakes, but if you're doing £100s then avoid Smarkets at all costs as there just isn't enough money in the market and your bet will not be matched.
So just to recap:
- Men's tennis = First to 3 sets
- Women's tennis = First to 2 sets
- First to 6 games (win by 2) wins the set. Can go to 7-5. If 6-6 then tiebreak.
- Tiebreak is first to 7 points (win by 2)
- No final set tiebreak
Tennis needs to be approached slightly differently when Matched Betting as the bookmakers have different rules about players retiring when settling bets. Because of this, there are some websites where you can't place a back bet and then lay it off on the exchange as you'll have money at risk. In the table below we list every major bookmaker and put them into groups. All of the exchanges fall intro group 1, so if you're betting on a tennis match with any bookie in group 1 then you're safe to lay it off on the exchange. If you're betting on group 2 or 3 then you need to dutch your bet with another bookmaker in the same group.
Below the table there is an explanation of each group
|Group 1||Group 2||Group 3|
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. You can use Oddsmonkey's Dutch Matcher here to help you do this.
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