Trader’s View: Roland-Garros in focus

May 14, 2024 / Kambi

In this month’s Trader’s View, we bring the second Grand Slam on the tennis calendar into focus, as players get set to play at Roland-Garros for a shot at one of the most significant titles in the sport.

Below, Kambi’s Head of Tennis, Philip Mardh, previews the event and outlines what Kambi will be offering from a product perspective during the tournament.

Q: What have been the biggest tennis stories of the year so far?

A: We have had a very interesting start to the 2024 season. Novak Djokovic, who won three out of the four Grand Slam events in 2023, has not reached the final in any of the three events he has played. It remains to be seen if he can find the level required to add another Slam title to his incredible 24 titles. The #1 player this season has instead been Jannik Sinner. The 22-year-old Italian has already won three titles in 2024, including the Australian Open and the Masters 1000 event in Miami. Carlos Alcaraz has been battling some injuries recently but was on fire at the Indian Wells event, generally considered the most prestigious event behind the four Slams.

Aryna Sabalenka managed to defend her Australian Open title but is still far behind Iga Swiatek on the WTA rankings. The Polish No. 1 picked up the titles in Doha and Indian Wells during the first quarter and has continued to dominate outside the Grand Slams. She has, however, not reached the semi-final stage of any of the last three Slam events and this has got to be a concern. A big story has been the success of Danielle Collins. The 30-year-old American has announced that 2024 will be her last season but has been in the form of her life lately, winning back-to-back titles in Miami and Charleston – and only losing one set across those events. This was highly unexpected and has made it to mainstream media.

Philiph Mardh

Q: What makes Roland-Garros a unique competition?

A: Roland-Garros is the only Grand Slam event which is played on clay. Clay court tennis is very exciting as it generally provides longer rallies and physically demanding matches. The variety is something to look out for, with drop shots and using sharp angles a classic strategy applied by clay court specialists. With the serve being less dominant than on faster surfaces, we can also expect to see more breaks of serve at the French than at the other Grand Slam tournaments.

Q: Who are the most exciting players heading to France?

A: Are there any underdogs we should keep an eye out for in the men’s and women’s tournaments? Swiatek’s favourite surface is the clay and she has won the French Open three of the past four years. This makes her a strong favourite ahead of Sabalenka and exciting young American Coco Gauff, last year’s US Open champion. Among the outsiders, the above-mentioned Collins is someone to keep an eye out for. Seventeen-year-old Mirra Andreeva is another exciting player to follow. The youngster thoroughly enjoys playing on the clay courts and has the game to do well at Roland-Garros. There is no doubt that the top trio in the men’s competition is Alcaraz, Djokovic and Sinner. But there is a certain Rafael Nadal we should not forget about. The 14-time (!) Roland-Garros champion is very likely playing there for the last time and will give it his absolute everything to try and finish on a high note. We can just hope that 37-year-old’s body will allow him to battle the way we love seeing him doing. An outsider to keep an eye out for is the fast-improving Fabian Marozsan. Marozsan was ranked 413th on his 22nd birthday. Now, two and a half years later, he is into the Top 40! Over the past year, he has won against four guys ranked in the Top 10 including World No. 2 Alcaraz in Rome last year.

Q: What can Kambi partners expect from our offering? How can they get the most from the key markets?

A: The outrights have been online for a while and are updated frequently as the clay court season progresses. We will be adding player-specific specials on tournament progress during the week before the event starts. These will include top players as well as players that are big names in local markets. Tennis is a fantastic live betting sport and for a tennis bettor the smorgasbord of events available during a Slam is hard to beat. Apart from betting on the match and set winner, we see a lot of turnover on the game and point markets. Kambi’s unique Ace in Game offer is also proving popular. We are now also offering Break Point in Game, Total Games won by each player and Player A/B to win at least one set. All these are worth promoting. On the pre-match side, we are the market leaders on number of lines on over/unders and handicaps, the offers that are the most popular on tennis apart from betting on match winner.