Best Betfair trading strategy for Tennis Trading

Profitable Betfair trading

Before we talk about this Betfair trading strategy in particular, we need to make sure you are off on the right foot. To do that, lets understand what profitable trading is and how you would do it.

There are many ways to trade a Tennis match. But, as with all Betfair trading strategies, you need to make sure you have a positive expectancy. That sort of means you need to ensure you win more than you lose. But the reality is a little bit more complicated than that. Core to any trading strategy you have, whether it be trading on Betfair or any other market. You have to judge the potential payoff you can achieve and balance that out with any losses.

That all sounds really obvious and isn’t exactly a shocking revalation, but how you achieve that can be surpising and that’s core to the strategy we are going to talk about. To understand why being profitable isn’t just a case of making more than you lose and how you can lose more than you win and still be profitable, watch this video: –

A novel betfair trading strategy

Now that we know how to be profitable, we need to construct a strategy and some parameters to reach for that goal. To do that we are going to use Bet Angel’s dutching calculator.

Dutching on tennis markets sounds completely bizarre. Dutching is traditionally used as a great way of covering a very large number of runners where you have a very large field where the outcome of an event is uncertain. Therefore, you use dutching to cover a number of selections. This is so you guarantee that you get a result if any of those selections go on to win.

But why would you Dutch a tennis match? You’ve got player A wins or player B wins, so you either Dutch one or both of them and you can’t Dutch both of them so why would you Dutch one? Why don’t you just place a back bet into a normal trade?

However, when we created the Bet Angel dutching tool we did a couple of interesting little things to it which allows you to use the dutching tool in small fields, like tennis markets.

Odd Tennis trading strategies

If you use Betfair trading software then you will be used to trading in and out of a Tennis match. But in this example, we will introduce a clever little tactic that you can use exclusively on Bet Angel. As hinted above, it uses the dutching calculator. But also it beautifully describes what your objective is when trading and how you should approach your Betfair trading on a sport like Tennis.

When you are Betfair trading pre off racing, one of the problems that you have is the markets all over the place, there’s no certainty. It’s a market, driven by pure emotion and all of the dynamics behind that market creates a lot of uncertainty. Nobody knows exactly what the price should be so people are constantly trying to work out what it is. It can be a little manic and counter intuitive.

However, in a tennis match if a player starts at a price, you know roughly where it’s going to be if something occurs within that match and you also know that if they are a break or set up, or they’ve got a mini break within a game you can get a good estimate of roughly where the price is going to be. When you look at Bet Angel, what we’ve done is we’ve created the perfect tennis trading tool to help you do this, Tennis Trader.

Using Bet Angel’s Tennis trading tools

Bet Angel’s Tennis Trader will not only bring in live tennis scores to you at very high speed, but it will also look at the match and then give you a projection of where it thinks the price should be. This means it can provide you with tennis predictions that will allow you to frame your trade very well from an expectancy viewpoint.

This key feature will allow you to perfectly encapsulate your opening and your closing position. You can also ask for a certain type of trade and work out what the payoff is and what you need to do to achieve that payoff. This means you’ve got pretty much everything right in front of you.

Tennis trader can estimate where prices can be based on the type of match and the starting price of individual players. This is important because a match between Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal will have a different set up from a match where a highly ranked player is up against a much weaker tennis player. In this situation you would expect short prices about the favourite and price movements across the whole match.

Differnet Tennis tournaments also display differing characteristics. A grand slam will be very differnet from a Masters tournament and the French open semi final will trade very differently from the Hard courts of the US Open or the Grass courts of Wimbleon.

However, Tennis trader and other tools in Bet Angel will allow you to find some key trading opportunties and if you are laying players in order to trade out later, it will give you a good shot at indentifying a decent trade.

So, rather than try and talk you through that let me give you a practical example. Watch this video to see the full example.

Tennis trading example

When I created the example in the video, I was picking on the match that I thought may present a good illustration of what we’re talking about and that’s exactly what happened! It was a very interesting match, Novak Djokovic eventually won but del Potro gave him a run for his money. In fact it looked at one point as though Djokovic may actually be eliminated from the tournament, but he managed to turn it around.

This is one of the great wonders of tennis is that it doesn’t follow a straight line, there are many paths that the game can take. The odds reflect that. so the odds fly around all over the place and then eventually the match ends. It’s not impossible, but it’s quite rare for somebody to dominate the match from start to finish. Typically you’re looking for the path that the match will follow and there are many paths.

So, one of the key concepts of Tennis Trader is the ‘set matrix’. Using that you can plot and show the different parts in the way that the match could go in, the odds that they will reach at certain points within that particular match.

Match analysis

One of the things I do when trading Tennis, is use a profit graph. This is so I can better understand the potential within a match and how that affected my trading position. Here is the profit graph for that match.

Along the horizontal axis, you’ve got the score within the match and in the vertical axis are the odds. What we’ve done is we’ve capped the odds at two because they went to much higher prices when it looked like Del Potro was going to win the match but Djokovic turned it around and went on to win. In order to look at the data properly and not distort the graph, we capped it at two so that we can discuss it in some depth.

Let’s discuss what happened within that particular match for some clarity and to see what trading opportunities it presented.

  • Djokovic was serving first and he won his service game
  • Del Potro won his service game

This went on for a little while, until we got to 3-3 and Djokovic was serving to go for 4-3, there was a bit of a battle going on within that particular match, within that particular game I should say and then del Potro had the breakthrough so at that particular point the odds went out to about sort of 1.40 ish. At this point, Tennis Trader said 3-4 in the first set would be 1.41 – so the software was bang on the money there.

When you look at the odds they can vary because there are certain moments when momentum is with one player or the other, or that the market is beginning to discount a player. It’s not unusual to see the market deviate from a model because somebody somewhere has seen something that makes them think that the momentum is with one player. Maybe there are more breaks of serve than expected, so something like that.

Tennis trader is a good guide to where the price should be but doesn’t necessarily mean it will be absolutely spot-on and also because we represent it in odds I often suggest that you look at it in terms of probability. This is because a 1% move in probability can be quite different at shorter prices than it is at larger prices, so always bear that in mind.

It went 3-4 then Djokovic held on to his serve and then it was 5-4 to Del Potro and because at this stage he was only one game away from potentially winning this set then you’ll tend to find that the odds go even more in his favour. Tennis Trader was saying that the odds would be 1.5 and if we actually look at that particular moment in time, you can see that the odds bouncing around all over the place. That is because there were mini breaks going on in that absolutely critical game towards the end of that particular set. But when Del Potro actually won that particular set then the market reset itself to about mid 160s and if you look back at the start of the video above you can see that Tennis Trader was looking at the odds and indicating that they should be about 164 so about mid 160s. It successfully plotted out where all of those key points were within the game

You can basically see how the match panned out from there, the odds drifted out when it looked like Djokovic was in trouble and then he managed to pull it around in the second set he ended up winning the second set a little bit easier – or it looked like he was going win it easier because he was 5-2 up at one point but then del Potro came storming back in and took it to tiebreak. Here, you can see the odds go flying out again, you can see the odds disappear off the top of the chart out point because it looked like Djokovic was going to lose but then of course he did win the second set and then he the odds came crashing right back in again there was a bit of a tussle in that third set but eventually turned it around and the odds came crashing back in again.


The reason that I have described it for you like this is to give you a an idea of how the odds are moving around and how that’s being reflected within the market.

But think about it, we did one trade where we put the position before the match had started. The risk with doing that is you don’t know what’s happening in the underlying match itself, so very often it makes sense to have eyes on a match so that you can get an interpretation of what you’re looking at and how that’s influenced where the match is going to go from there.

But if you look at the key points within the market, we open a position at the start of the market we could have opened a position at the start of that second set when Djokovic came storming back into the match and then at the beginning of that last set. So in fact we’re looking really at four key entry points within that particular match so you could have repeated this trade at least four times and had reasonable margin out of it.

If you look at how we balanced the profit against the potential liability at the beginning of the above video, that shows you that while we were playing with a 50/50 chance at the beginning of the video, what we were effectively doing is not playing with those odds at all. This is because we could actually repeat the trade more than once. Now you could decide that once you’ve done that first trade, you just reinvest the money back into the market or you could actually work with the same amount again but with reduced liability because you’ve got profit in the market.

This is one of the keys with tennis trading but obviously, the difficulty of the tennis trading is you have to sit there and watch the match, which could go on for hours. I am usually happy to trade tennis, but it depends what sports are on which particular time, I tend to pick whatever I think is going to work particularly well at that particular moment in time. So, if a tennis match goes on for three hours, imagine how many horse races I could do and that time could also be a couple of football matches. So that’s one of the judgments you have to make if you a Tennis trading.

Typically what you do when the match is underway is you’ve got the opportunity to strike more than once. So you can either increase the profit you’ve got or reduce the potential liability on the stake that you’re using. Whichever way you look at it that obviously has a positive outcome on your trading expectancy over the course of the entire event.

I hope you found this a very useful and interesting way of looking at a tennis market and also an interesting way of executing a trade on tennis markets using Bet Angel.

1 Comment
  1. Simple steps to success!

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