When you read that statement it looks a little strange. How can one point be worth more than another? But statistics seem to show that’s true. With the big servers on court at Wimbledon, let’s look at the perfect serve.
Wimbledon is the home of mighty servers, with alternate big servers booming the ball past their opponent. But what effect does it have, some, it appears?
Over the last couple of years, I’ve been busy collecting data on a range of Tennis matches from the top level of how a match played, in games and sets, right down to individual points. I’ve been carefully examining how one point affects another and spotted what seemed to be a bias on serving aces at Wimbledon. A quick scout around confirms that others have spotted the same bias too.
Men vs Women
Basically, in the men’s single’s an ace is worth around 1.04 points. It seems that when a male player hits an ace, his confidence gets a shot in the arm and he is more likely to win the next point. An ace is significant, especially when struck at key points. The ladies also see a benefit as well but, lacking testosterone, it turns out that is only worth 1.01 points.
Both sound quite small, but even tiny variations can add up to huge variances in the final result. Especially from a trading perspective. See my previous post on this where I discuss how small differences in skill can mean a massive difference in outcomes.
If you look at players like Andy Murray, he is not noted for the same sort of serve you often see at Wimbledon, but over his career, he has been an ‘ace’ returner. So his ability to return well should nullify a lot of his opponent’s firepower. So, as always, you need to examine both sides of the coin.
But overall, an ace is actually worth more than a point.