The Australian Open is called the “Happy Slam” for a reason: players love it. Among other reasons, the Aussie Open marks the start of a new season. Players are fresh, fit, and motivated. Plus, the Australian Open has always been more tech-savvy than its counterparts as it was the first Slam to install a retractable roof and the first to adopt hawk-eye technology.
The tennis betting action, much like the weather, also heats to a boil at the Australian Open. The event enjoys an elite status among sportsbooks, which is reflected in all kinds of specialty odds that complement the standard, non-Slam betting program.
Here’s where to get a few bets down on the Australian Open, how to read Aussie Open odds, and which bets you can make.
Best Online Sportsbooks for Australian Open odds
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How to bet on the Aussie Open online
All Grand Slams offer a wealth of opportunity for savvy bettors, and the Australian Open is no different. Maryland sports betting sites provide comprehensive coverage of all AO matches and offer odds in line with Las Vegas betting operators. The bookmakers usually release Australian Open betting odds for individual matches on the day they’re scheduled, which means there is a limited period for you to make a bet.
Futures bets and wagers are an entirely different ball game. Betting brands dish out odds for tournament winners way ahead of the competitions’ start dates as soon as the season gets underway. This means you should have plenty of time to work out your picks and assess all the factors accordingly. Don’t wait around for too long, though, as the lines may drop and reduce your potential payout. When it comes to the betting program at the Australian Open, there are more than enough options available. Here’s a snapshot of the most prevalent markets.
- Moneyline: The simplest of them all, the moneyline wager, involves betting on the outcome. When two evenly matched players go toe-to-toe during the latter stages of the tournament, the odds on both sides are very similar. In the early stages of the tournament, though, there are many lopsided matchups.
- Spreads: When a clear-cut favorite goes up against a less talented player, there is massive variance on the moneyline board. That’s where the spread comes in handy. The spread makes things more balanced because the sportsbooks assign a certain number of games or sets to the weaker player. For example, say Dominic Thiem is a -6.5 games favorite on the spread against Frances Tiafoe; the Austrian would have to win at least seven more games than Tiafoe to cover the spread.
- Totals: If you’re on the fence about picking the winner or the game/set differential, you can place a bet on the total number of sets or games played in a match. Australian Open totals have the same setup as other Grand Slams. You bet whether the match will have over or under the specified number of games/sets listed by the sportsbook.
- Exact score: This bet revolves around predicting the exact score of the match. The books will generate moneyline odds for each possible combination.
- Tournament winner: It can be tricky to pick a winner in a 128-player field, especially when the event is played on hard court, the most competitive surface. Yet you can net an outstanding payday if your prediction is on target. Alternatively, you can place a top finisher bet on a player you expect to go deep into the tournament. This alleviates some of your risk.
- Props: Similar to in the NFL, NBA and other sports, props in tennis are wacky bets on players’ stats rather than the match outcome. You’ll find a wide array of props for every AO matchup. These prop wagers on things like the number of winners, unforced errors, or aces.
Australian Open live betting
With the advent of live or in-play betting, tennis’ popularity in the gambling realm has skyrocketed. The constant momentum swings, the sheer variety of bets and the constant scoring changes are some of the reasons why.
In a tennis match, live betting odds go up and down every time the ball is served, someone hits a winner or makes an unforced error. What’s more, men’s Grand Slam matches can last up to five hours, unfolding a slew of betting opportunities.
The bookies are primarily focused on the end result rather than how the match plays out, meaning there’s plenty of untapped value. For instance, if Daniil Medvedev is two sets down to Stefanos Tsitsipas, but you’re predicting a comeback, you can back the former at favorable odds to win.
Here are some of the ways you can engage in an Australian Open match once it gets underway:
- Match winner
- Correct score
- Winner of X, Y games
- Will there be a tiebreak?
- The standard fare of moneylines, spreads and totals with adjusted prices
Who are the Australian Open favorites?
When all is said and done, it’s usually the favorites that end up lifting the Norman Brooks and Daphne Akhurst trophies in Melbourne; at least, that was the case during the past 15 years. That’s not to say that we’ve been deprived of epic clashes. There were plenty of those to go around. For example, there was the grueling Djokovic vs. Nadal masterpiece at the 2012 AO Final.
The young guns have improved their hardcourt play considerably over the last few years and are now genuine contenders at Melbourne Park. Stefanos Tsitsipas pulled off a miraculous comeback in the 2021 quarters, knocking out Rafael Nadal after falling two sets behind. Dominic Thiem and Daniil Medvedev reached back-to-back finals in 2020 and 2021, losing to Novak Djokovic on both instances.
With Serena Williams’ recent decline in form, upsets have become more prominent at majors on the women’s side. The field is wide open, so much so that you can make a case for 10+ players to take home the title. Bottom line — there are plenty of picks worth checking out in the favorites’ camp every year:
- Novak Djokovic: With Djokovic closing the gap in the Slam race, the GOAT debates have become more intense than ever. The Serb is always super motivated in Melbourne, evident from his post-2011 results. He’s won eight titles since then and holds a 9-0 career record in the finals. If you want to play it safe, Djokovic is your go-to guy for a tournament winner bet.
- Stefanos Tsitsipas: Of all the next-gen players, Tsitsipas has the best all-surface game. While the forehand is his biggest weapon, he carries other tools in his arsenal that make up his top-notch game. After winning the 2019 ATP Finals, the Greek star asserted himself as a genuine threat at the top echelon of hard-court tennis.
- Ash Barty: Aussie local and 2013 finalist, Barty is a player nobody wants to face. She has solid groundstrokes on both wings and an excellent serve to back them up while also excelling at volleys. On top of this, the World No. 1 is playing in front of her home crowd and will surely be motivated to be the first local to win the AO title in more than 40 years.
Australian Open betting tips
If you put in the research, you can generate a lot of value with Australian Open tennis betting, especially on individual matches. Finding an edge on the tournament win level is a bit more challenging because the top-seeded players almost always come out on top.
Generally, the fast hard courts at the Australian Open suit players with strong baseline games. That said, the serve has become a significant factor in recent years as the courts are faster than ever before. Consider:
- Endurance plays a vital role: The Australian Open is all about survival of the fittest, and not many players can withstand the brutally hot weather conditions at Melbourne Park. It’s no coincidence that Djokovic, who is regarded as the fittest tennis player ever, has often found a way to get the best of his opponents, especially in the later rounds. Long story short, look for players with high endurance capabilities.
- Surface adjustments: The consensus among players is that the courts at the Australian Open are faster than ever, giving players less time to react when returning. This seemingly provides an advantage to aggressive baseliners and power servers like Nick Kyrgios, Roger Federer, and Juan Martin del Potro.
- Don’t look for upsets: Generally, hard courts are the most balanced of all three surfaces and offer the fewest variables. They are designed to give players a stable bounce and sound footing, which is why the better player usually prevails. Very rarely will you see an underdog buck long odds and beat an elite-level player.
Doubles betting at Australian Open
Although singles get the lion’s share of attention, tennis doubles can be wildly entertaining and often feature star pairings like Jaime Murray–Bruno Soares and Nikola Mektic–Mate Pavic.
An entirely different skill set is required to excel at doubles, which is why the top singles players usually don’t fare well on the doubles court. Though much is the same, doubles have different characteristics, which means that bettors have to develop new strategies.
For instance, the ability to hit the ball deep is not as significant in doubles as it is in singles. On the other hand, serve, volley and return are all vital qualities for both partners.
Aussie Open previous winners
One key factor to look at when placing Australian Open bets is the recent results of the players in the draw and their previous performances at the tournament. With that in mind, let’s check out the winners and the runners-up of the previous five editions on the men’s side:
|2021||Novak Djokovic||Daniil Medvedev||7-5, 6-2, 6-2|
|2020||Novak Djokovic||Dominic Thiem||6-4, 4-6, 2-6, 6-3, 6-4|
|2019||Novak Djokovic||Rafael Nadal||6-3, 6-2, 6-3|
|2018||Roger Federer||Marin Cilic||6-2, 6-7, 6-3, 3-6, 6-1|
|2017||Roger Federer||Rafael Nadal||6-4, 3-6, 6-1, 3-6, 6-3|
In women’s singles, Margaret Court holds the record for most AO titles with 11, followed by Serena Williams, who triumphed seven times. In the past five years, we’ve seen four different winners:
|2021||Naomi Osaka||Jennifer Brady||6-4, 6-3|
|2020||Sofia Kenin||Garbine Muguruza||4-6, 6-2, 6-2|
|2019||Naomi Osaka||Petra Kvitova||7-6, 5-7, 6-4|
|2018||Caroline Wozniacki||Simona Halep||7-6, 3-6, 6-4|
|2017||Serena Williams||Venus Williams||6-4, 6-4|
Australian Open key facts and stats
The Australian Open traditionally takes place in January each year and is one of the most anticipated events on the tennis calendar. The event features 128 players in the main draw, 32 of which are seeded based on ranking. Here’s the scoop on the other stats that may prove helpful the next time you tune in for Australian Open tennis:
- Tournament schedule: End of Jan./Beginning of Feb.
- Centre court: Rod Laver Arena
- Capacity: 14,820
- Event attendance: 130,374 in 2021
- Surface: Cushion acrylic hard courts
- Most titles: Novak Djokovic (9) and Margaret Court (11)
- Longest match: 2012 Final between Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal – 5 hours 53 minutes
- Prize pool: $71.5 million in 2021
- First held: 1905
- Retractable roof: Yes, on three stadiums—the Rod Laver Arena, the John Cain Arena and the Margaret Court Arena
- Weather conditions: Extremely high temperatures and humidity
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