Earlier it was stated that the secret to winning at tennis betting is to be both a « backer » and a « layer », but at different points during the event, placing bets at different times during the event as fortunes change and the odds swing in your favour. This can be done with both « in-play » betting and « pre-event » betting. One method used with in-play betting is called « scalping ». As its name suggests, scalping involves skimming a tiny profit by backing or laying at exactly the right moment as the odds move slightly in your favour, perhaps when one player scores two or three consecutive points, and repeating the process again and again. The biggest drawback of scalping is that it is very time-consuming and fraught with mental and physical tension. Not only must you pay full attention to what’s happening during the match by live video broadcast, but you must also catch exactly the right moments at which to bet, which is, in fact, made impossible by the 5-second delay imposed by the exchange betting software between the time you place the bet and the time it is accepted. We’re not elaborating on this here because, as stated previously, this article is about winning by mathematics, not by the sweat of your brow. The maths aspect involves betting, not during the event, but before the event starts. That is, pre-event betting.
There are a few tennis betting « systems », some purely manual, others using software programs, some of which are enormously complicated. From the investigations of the writer (a mathematician), they all require the input, at some point, of a « probability factor » by the bettor. This probability factor is usually the odds at which you want your « balancing » bet (the « lay » bet on the « backed » side or the « back » bet on the opposing side) to be triggered, giving you the « win-win » scenario mentioned earlier. So, how do you determine the value of this probability factor? That, dear reader, is the crucial point of the whole matter, the linch-pin that holds any exchange betting « system » together and determines whether it succeeds or fails, whether you win or lose. Up to now, it seems, this probability factor has had to be determined by the sheer experience of a few seasoned professional gamblers, or by trial-and-error guesswork by lesser mortals. Little wonder that so many punters lose or do not win as much as they could because they do not know the EXACT value needed to optimize their bets! Accuracy is of paramount importance when determining the probability factor, in order to maximize the chances of winning consistently. A search on the Web for a tool to calculate it proved negative. The writer therefore created one that encompasses not only all aspects of exchange betting but also the peculiarities of the tennis scoring system, and called it the Abacus Exchange Betting Calculator, for want of a better name. The probability factor is calculated to two decimal places, merely by entering the pre-event odds of both opposing sides, and has enabled the writer to make consistently more than 10% profit from tennis betting since Wimbledon 2009.
As a parallel test, the writer also placed bets according to « gut feeling », in sufficient numbers to establish a trend. It resulted in a loss of 10% of the working capital (or « bank »). Other tests were done, using the Abacus Exchange Betting Calculator, by betting on other sports where small odds swings occur, such as American Football, snooker and darts (very long matches only, otherwise the swings are too large). The results here just about covered the commissions paid on winnings; so, it is not worthwhile. It seems, then, that the particular mathematical formula or algorithm (which is very complex) discussed here works well only in conjunction with the unique scoring system of tennis. As a scientist, the writer feels that it is highly probable to win at sports betting consistently over time only when the following factors are present: An exchange betting web site is used, not a conventional betting web site. (Beware of many sites that pretend to offer exchange betting by appearing in search engine results for « exchange betting »! Ensure that their software system enables you both to back and to lay bets at any odds you want against other punters, not against the house. If in doubt, check that their web site looks like the one at Betfair.)