Australian Open Betting

The Australian Open Tennis Tournament is the first of the four Grand Slam events conducted each year, preceding the clay-court French Open, Wimbledon played on grass, and the hard-court U.S. Open. It is held during the last fortnight in January, which is the height of Australia’s summer and the heat can take its toll on players just beginning their season after a winter layoff.

The tournament has a history stretching back to 1905, and it used to be contested on grass. However, since 1988, the hard courts of Melbourne Park have hosted the Australian Open, where the retractable roofs of the two main courts, Rod Laver Arena and Hisense Arena, can be shut when it is raining or the heat is extreme, making for indoor competition rarely seen in a Grand Slam event.

The top prize awarded here for male players is the Norman Brookes Challenge Cup, representing the Singles Championship of Australia and presented by the State Lawn Tennis Associations and the Friends of Mr. Norman E. Brookes. For female players, the goal is the Australian Women`s Singles Championship, which comes with the Daphne Akhurst Memorial Cup.

Five days of qualifying matches are played immediately prior to the start of the bracket competition, to which top ranked players and former winners gain automatic entry. Fans’ attention, as well as the majority of the betting, focuses on the Men’s Singles and the Women’s Singles, each of which uses a single-elimination format based upon a 128-player draw.

The basis for seeding 32 players each in the two singles championships is computer rankings. The first seed and the second seeds are placed, respectively, at the top and bottom of the draw. All of the remaining seeds are then placed by ballot in designated positions in the draw. They are followed by the remainder of the field, drawn randomly from top to bottom.

Other major knockout events held during the two week’s of tennis action here include Men’s and Women’s Doubles based on a 64-team draw and Mixed Doubles with 32 teams in competition. There are also Boys’ and Girls Singles and Doubles, as well as Wheel Chair Singles and Doubles for both Men and Women.

The Men’s Singles and Doubles matches are played and decided as best-of-five sets. All other events at the Australian Open are based upon the best-of-three sets. Tiebreak games are played whenever the score reaches 6–6 in any set, with the exception of the fifth set in a five-set match or the third in a three-set match, when a two-game margin is required to win.

Past winners at the Australian Open include almost all of the top names in tennis. Prior to 1969, when the Open Era began, Australian Roy Emerson was the dominant force here, claiming six Men’s Singles championships. Since 1968, American Andre Agassi and Switzerland’s Roger Federer won the title four times apiece. Among women, Australian Margaret Court ruled the early days with a string of seven consecutive wins in 1960~1966, while America’s Serena Williams has triumphed five times, most recently in 2010.

Ante post betting on the Australian Open begins as much as a year in advance, but it is heaviest during the opening weeks of January, after a few preliminary tournaments have been played. Notably, the Brisbane International Tennis Tournament is conducted in the middle of the month, and it draws many of the top players looking for a warm-up and a way to acclimate to the summer climate.

Apart from betting on the outright winner, “match betting” is highly popular—i.e., picking the winner out of two players in a heads-on meeting. Also offered is wagering on sets, with or without handicaps, as well as final score betting. And because the matches are widely televised throughout the world, in-running or live betting markets are available, too.

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