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Betting on Tennis

Whether you’re betting on regular tournaments or Grand Slam events, tennis is a great-paced sport for bettors to make a little cash on -- it's simultaneously beginner-friendly and thrilling. This page gives you everything from betting strategies to news and player updates. Our experts provide tennis tips and free picks so you can see which way they’re leaning for each major Tournament.

Learn to Bet On Tennis

Betting on tennis requires the youthful spirit of Carlos Alcaraz, the power of Djokovic and the endurance of Roger Federer -- just kidding, all you need is Odds Shark. We'll run through the main markets that tennis bettors wager on and give you some advice for selecting the odds you're most comfortable with. The tennis season runs year-round and is home to hundreds of tournaments, the famous of which are the Grand Slam events: the Australian Open, French Open, US Open and Wimbledon.

Types of Tennis Bets

While having a much different format than major leagues like the NFL, MLB, NBA and NHL, the usual suspects for betting lines all exist within tennis. This makes tennis an incredibly easy sport for existing bettors to sink their teeth into while providing a solid gateway for new fans.

  • Moneyline: The moneyline is a staple in sports betting -- it's one of the simplest bet types out there. This wager has you picking the outright winner of a tennis match. One contestant will be the favorite and have negative odds (ex. -120) attached, meaning a lower payout but a higher likelihood of success, according to the sportsbook. The other will be the underdog, a less likely choice but one that promises a higher payday if you're correct.
  • Total Games: Very similar to an OVER/UNDER wager in other sports, you're instead betting on the complete number of sets (or games) within a match. Oddsmakers will set the number depending on the experience level of each player and their familiarity with that court's surface. For example, if the total is 2.5 in a three-set match and you bet OVER, you're hoping each player wins a set to force a third.
  • Point Spread: The point spread in tennis is very similar to other spread bets. Because matches can become uneven with elite players sharing the court with rising stars, oddsmakers need to create an even betting field. The favorite will receive a negative handicap (ex. -5.5) that indicates they need to win by six games or more -- the underdog in this scenario would have a spread of +5.5, meaning they need to win outright or less by less than six games.
  • Correct Score: This is a tougher market, but a potentially lucrative one. Betting the correct score means you'll predict the exact number of games within a set or the match. For example, if Djokovic, one of the best players of all time, is playing a no-name rookie, you might bet that he wins each set 6-0. If you're incorrect on any set, you'll lose your bet.
  • Tennis Props: Tennis has an incredible amount of prop bets for you to take advantage of -- researching a player's history and their playstyle can lead to massive profits if done correctly. Examples of props within tennis include how many aces a player earns, the amount of double faults, whether or not there will be a tiebreak, etc.

Tennis Scoring Terminology

If you didn't follow 100% of the words above, don't sweat it. Tennis introduces a whole new level of complexity to the English language, so here are a few pointers on some common terms and formatting info.

  • Sets: Matches can consist of two to five sets. To win a set, a player must win at least six games. Each winning set is one point.
  • Match: A player must win two or three sets to win the match, depending on whether it is a best-of-three or best-of-five match. If each contestant wins a set in a best-of-three, then a third must be played to figure out a Sportsbook.
  • Love: This is a fancy way to say “zero.” Cute, too.
  • Points: After love, the first point scored is 15, then 30, then 40, followed by the game point (this is the winning point). If Player X has 30 and Player Y has zero, the score would be 30-love.
  • Serving: A coin is flipped or a racket is spun to determine who gets the first choice. The Sportsbook can decide if they want to serve or receive first, and which side of the court they wish to start on. Players get two serves each. If their second serve fails, their opponent gets the point. Serving continues until the score gets to game point. After each odd-numbered game, competitors switch sides on the court.
  • Deuce: If the score is tied at 40, it’s called a deuce (tie). The game continues until one player wins two consecutive points after deuce.

Odds Shark Tennis Strategies for Betting

Odds Shark's tennis strategies all come back to a few key pieces of information: court surface, player ability and injuries.

Tennis is played on clay, grass, hardcourt and carpet – not the kind you’d find lining the floors of a home, so don’t get discouraged if you can’t emulate Alcaraz in your living room. The type of surface will affect the speed and bounce of the ball and how well the player can move.

Players hold their racket in their right hand (orthodox) or left hand (southpaw). Generally, handedness isn’t as important as style of play -- there are also big servers who rely on, you guessed it, their service game. Baseline players use groundstrokes to keep the game to the back of the court. Some defensive players take advantage of their opponent’s mishaps. Finally, some all-rounders spend their time close to the net.

Athletes can get sidelined by something as small as a blister, so it’s important to examine the overall health of a player when handicapping your tennis bets. Luckily, Odds Shark tennis coverage will give you insight into how healthy a player is.

Where Can I Find More Tennis Betting Guides?

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