The French Open might be a distant destination for many on the professional tennis circuit, but that doesn’t mean we can cast it to the backs of our minds as sports bettors. Much like athletes training for a major tournament, sports betting is all about preparation. The sooner you can start weighing up your options the better.
Indeed, as anyone with a semblance of experience in the betting arena will know, every decision you make should be based on its potential value (PV: expected value). It’s impossible to be 100 percent confident that your pick will walk away with a win, but you can be more confident in some athletes than others.
Through a period of assessment and analysis, you can get an acute insight into a player’s chances of victory ahead of a major championship like the French Open. In fact, if you’ve ever scanned through the pages of an online sportsbook and wondered why you can see some odds more than six months before the start of an event, it’s for that reason.
For example, the odds for the French Open are now available at Betway. Despite being scheduled to get underway in May 2017, betting on tennis and the French Open is a 365-day-a-year activity at Betway. This fact means you can start sizing up the field well in advance to improve your EV as much as possible.
Picking a Winner at the French Open
So, how do you get ahead of the game when it comes to the French Open? The first thing you should obviously do is review the odds. If we look at Betway’s early forecasts, we can see that 2016 winner Novak Djokovic is the even money favourite ahead of Andy Murray (5/1) and Rafa Nadal (11/2). Using this as a starting point you can then consider the two most important factors at play: potential and value.
You should always look to pick a player who actually has the skills to win the competition. By taking into account previous form in the tournament – their ATP Ranking, pedigree in the sport and current form – you can start to build up an idea of a player’s potential.
Of the factors listed above, the current form will be the one that becomes most significant as the tournament gets closer. Djokovic might be the most dominant player in the world and the reigning champion, but if he’s not playing at his best then he won’t be the favourite at Roland Garros.
With this in mind, a few months out you should use the early odds and a player’s historical performance at the French Open to create your own ranking. Once you’ve done this, you should gradually move players up and down the list (like a league system) based on their current form. By the time you get to the start of the event, you should have a strong list of players to choose from.
As well as picking players based on their skill, you also need to assess their market value. While few would struggle to bet against Djokovic when it comes to any Grand Slam event, odds of 1/1 aren’t exactly lucrative. In contrast, Andy Murray is a much more attractive price at 5/1; especially when you consider that he made it to the final in 2016.
Essentially, if you’re looking to make the best predictions, as well as the most profit, you need to consider value and potential in unison. If a player is on form, has a solid record at the French Open and their odds are attractive, it should be a bet you’re willing to make.
However, this process does require some time and effort, which is why you should start now. When online bookmakers offer odds on events not due to take place for a few months it can be slightly confusing, but not if you’re someone who is looking to achieve the greatest betting EV possible.