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Live betting has amped up the betting action for a lot of different sporting events, but tennis might be at, or near, the top of the list. Sportsbooks now allow you to bet on almost everything that happens inside of the match.

If you’re new to the game, we’ll walk you through what to expect when you’re live betting on tennis.

Different Types of Live Bets: Moneylines and Prop Bets

The main types of bets you’ll see during live betting are a variety of moneyline bets: to win the match, to win the set and to win the game. This allows you to bet on who will win the match overall, who will win the current set and who will win the game the upcoming game.

While is the basic standard, depending on the sportsbook, you could have a lot more options than that are mostly standard tennis prop bets:

  • Will the set go to a tie break?
  • Game score (allows you to bet whether the loser will finish with love, 15, 30 or 40 points)
  • Game score after two, three or four points played
  • Will there be a break point in the next game?
  • Total points in the next tiebreaker
  • Total games in the match

This gives you a variety of options to bet on and make things a little more entertaining. You can tune into the contest and do your best to predict almost everything that’s going to happen.

As you lock in your bets, they are eventually graded as they happen. For example, if you bet on a prop that will be decided in the second set, you’ll be credited into your account after that set is completed.

Rules of Live Betting on Tennis

The rules of live betting tennis are pretty simple. The main key is that you have to get your bet in before the point starts. As each point is played, the odds will change. That means that sportsbooks will quickly pull the lines (suspend them) and then rehang them after the outcome of the point is known.

If you add a bet to your slip to lock in the odds but aren’t fast enough to confirm before the point has started, you won’t be allowed to do so during play. Also, your odds will likely change after the point is played out.

The other main factor to keep an eye on is the completion rules at your sportsbook. Many available bets require the participants to complete the match. In the event of a retirement, injury, or a walkover, many of the bets could be voided. Check the rules section of your specific sportsbook to determine all of the terms and conditions in this case.

A Brief Overview of Live Betting Strategy

One of the biggest challenges with betting on tennis is when you’re wondering just what type of performance a player will put forth. You may look at a match like Novak Djokovic vs. Milos Raonic and determine that Djokovic should win rather easily.

However, what if it’s a smaller tournament that Djokovic doesn’t care about as much? What if he’s a bit tired or a little bit sick? Or what if he simply comes out flat? These are all factors that you have to consider if you’re betting on tennis pre-match.

The good news is that live betting gives you an opportunity to avoid some of these potential landmines. Let’s take a closer look at three very useful strategies when it comes to live betting on tennis:

1. Consider the Evidence

The first advantage to betting on tennis live is you get some evidence. While you might ‘think’ or ‘project’ certain things in pre-match handicapping, live betting gives you clear-cut evidence before you make a betting decision. If Djokovic has come out flat, as per our example above, you can decide to pass on the bet. Or if he comes out looking as strong as you expected, you can jump in at that point.

In any case, this gives you a chance to see some action before placing a bet. That’s really useful as often times matches don’t play out how you originally thought they would.

2. Find Hidden Value

There’s often great value on the betting lines when live betting tennis. A great example is with favorites who come out sluggish. You might want to bet Serena Williams to win a match, but she might be priced at -1000 pre-match. However, if she drops the first set and you still think she’ll wake up and win it, you can often get her at a discount, maybe around -600 or -700.

Tennis is a sport of ebbs and flows, so there are often good opportunities to get a better line during the match than there was pre-match.

3. Hedge Your Bets

One of the biggest benefits of live betting is the fact that it gives you an opportunity to hedge your bets.

Prior to the existence of live betting, you’d have to live with your tennis bet. If you bet on a player and they struggled, you’d have to watch it through to the end. With live betting, it gives you the opportunity to hedge your bets.

Let’s say the player you bet on is looking shaky and you want to get out, you can bet on the opponent during the match. You’ll likely lose money in this case, but at least you can get some of your money back (rather than losing it all).

Want to Learn More About Tennis Betting?

Now that you know all about live betting tennis, brush up on some of the fundamentals of how to bet on all sports, including tennis. 

If you’re feeling up to speed with how to bet on sports, check out some more advanced sports betting strategy, where we help you build your bankroll and boost your winning percentage.

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Dave has a long history in sports media. Since working at The Score Television Network as an intern, he’s been a radio host on Sirius Satellite Radio, made numerous television appearances as a panelist, and has written for publications like FOX Sports, AskMen.com, and The Baltimore Sun.