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Tennis Trading on Betfair - The US Open is always full of surprises!

Martin Futter's picture
Sep 04, 2019

What a great week of tennis trading it has been on the Betfair Exchange! As the US Open reaches it's closing stages, we saw an overweight American woman serve and volley her way past the Wimbledon champion. Taylor Townsend got to the net more than 100 times during her 3 set battle with Halep, a tactic so rare in modern day women's tennis it left Halep clueless as to how to handle it.

We also saw the master of tennis Roger Federer look deflated as he lost another 5 set thriller, leaving us wondering if he can ever win another slam as his 39th birthday edges closer by the day. Media darling Federer who used every medical timeout and bathroom break that he could get away with, has been frustrated after it was exposed that the tournament directors ask him when he wants to play! A privelage a player like Dan Evans could only dream of (they played when Evens had less than a days rest and of course it was a no contest).

This is actually going to be a future trading topic of this post, how do injury breaks effect tennis trading and what strategies can we use to make some money on them when tennis trading on the Betfair exchange?More on that next month!

One thing I would like to mention before that is a note I want all tennis traders to take away from reading this. The US Open is the Grand Slam most likely to shock and have major upsets in my opinion. Why is this? One simple fact, the tennis season is a long gruelling slugfest of daily hitting, this takes it's toll on the body so by the time we reach the fourth Grand Slam of the year at Flushing Meadows a lot of players are needing that end of season break. As a result if you are ever going to go for a long shot to win a slam this is the tournament to do it in, I will give you a couple of names of winners from the last 10 years of Fed, Murray, Djokovic and Nadal dominance who were massive pre-event odds to win the US Open - Cilic and Del Potro. Let's look at some big odds finalists - Nishikori, Anderson and Del-Potro again (all in the past 5 years).

This year we have Medvedev and Dimitrov (world number 73!) in the semi-finals. So again we will have a new first-time Grand Slam finalist to round off the year of Slams. 

So how can we take advantage of this fact? It is all well and good saying tennis traders should back a big odds winner of the US Open but how can you work out which one has a chance? 

Let's take the Medvedev and Dimitrov match as a case study and work out how we could have found the value in those two players. The reason being these two have very different reasons to be backed that I use to make my long odds outright trades and so it is the perfect example for us tennis traders to study.

Medvedev (Opened at odds of around 120 on the Betfair Exchange) - Why was he value and what were the signs he should be backed?

Medvedev was a clear value pick here and he is the perfect example of an in-form underdog who has shown he has the capability to defy the odds in recent week. A young up and comer, Medvedev has risen over 300 places in the ATP tour World Rankings to become world number 9. 

  • Won 14/16 matches during the US hard court season leading up to the US Open
  • Won the last Masters tournament in Cincinnati 
  • Top 10 player who has been improving year on year
  • Doesn't get much media attention and therefore is not overhyped or overpriced based on name alone

These reasons together made for a compelling value pick here for tennis trading experts.

Dimitrov (Opened at odds of around 400 on the Betfair Exchange) - Why was he value and what were the signs he should be backed?

Dimitrov was the media darling 2-3 years ago, named 'Baby Fed' he was expected to be the next generation tennis. However, this fell apart as Dimitrov failed to live up to such lofty expections. So why on earth was he a value pick here?

  • A player loaded with talent
  • Poor form has led to ridiculously good backing odds
  • Dimitrov has won high profile tournaments out of nowhere before - ATP Finals 2017
  • Won the Cincinnati masters a couple of years ago - the high profile warm up event for the US Open

This is a 'sleeper' pick as the Yankees themselves would say, a player more than capable of winning a slam who can raise his game at any time. 

So to conclude this case study what are the two types of player we should look to back at long odds in tennis trading outright betting markets?

1. A player who is in top form, not expected to win but has the talent to. Youth is also a big advantage here. 

2. A player who has been out of form but is loaded with exceptional talent, that could turn that form around at any moment. A high profile tournament winner before is a big advantage here.

I used this principle to good effect when I tipped the Dimitrov as the 2017 ATP tour winner at 12.0+ odds on the Betfair Exchange (I also tipped Goffin as the dark horse pick at 30+ odds) read the original preview here: https://betfairtradingcommunity.com/en/blog/atp-tour-world-finals-london-betting-trading-preview

For members I have written a great article on how to find value in the outright markets: https://betfairtradingcommunity.com/en/trading-advice/how-make-money-trading-outright-betting-markets-betfair

If you are a member or have been reading our posts for a while you will know how passionate we are about tennis trading at BTC, we also have great software to help you find the matches you want to trade, check out Ryan's profitable filter here: https://betfairtradingcommunity.com/en/statistics-tennis?advagg=0

See you next week for another post.