A Newbie’s Guide to Betting on Table Tennis

With most major sporting seasons and events either delayed or canceled because of the outbreak of COVID-19, you might be having a difficult time finding something to bet on. But you may have noticed that a lot of people are starting to talk about Table Tennis.

That’s right. Table tennis.

A sport which hardly anyone seemed to care about a few months ago has now become a top conversational topic among sports bettors around the world.

This is because while most other sports are canceled, table tennis matches continue to take place day after day during quarantine, especially in Russia.

While the Russians are all over Table Tennis, our friends over in China are sure loving it as well!

  • Is it worth it to bet on table tennis?
  • Is it fun?
  • How do you watch table tennis?
  • Can you place live wagers on table tennis matches?

You probably have a lot of questions.

In this guide, I will answer all of these questions and more. I will also recommend some websites which offer competitive odds on table tennis along with exciting promotions.

Let’s get started by giving a brief overview of table tennis for those who are not familiar with the sport.

By the way, looking for other things to bet on during coronavirus? Check out our full list of suggestions!

An Introduction to Table Tennis

Even if you have never watched professional table tennis matches, you should be somewhat familiar with the game as there is a good chance that you put yourself in your youth.

Table tennis is also referred to as Ping-Pong. The organization which is involved with regulating table tennis professionally around the globe is the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF).

In the past, table tennis balls measuring 38 mm were used, but following the Sydney 2000 Olympics, ITTF adjusted the rules, replacing those 38 mm balls with 40 mm balls.

The reason for this adjustment had to do with the thicker fast sponge layers on table tennis paddles which was coming into use at that time. The paddles were causing the balls to fly too quickly through the air, making it hard to follow the action on TV. So, the ITTF switched to the 40 mm balls in order to make the balls move more slowly again.

There was another big change the next year in the rules of ITTF table tennis games. In the past, a 21-point system was used for scoring the game, but as of September 2001, ITTF switched to an 11-point system. The result naturally became shorter matches.

Another new rule went into effect in 2002, which forced the person serving the ball to toss it at least 16 cm up before serving. This allows the other player more time to react.

After the ball was served, it is in play. Each of these rounds of play is known as a “rally.”

There are situations where nobody scores during a rally. When that happens, it is known as a “let.”

For example, this might happen if one player serves while their opponent is not prepared to play.

Another time it might happen is if the ball comes into contact with the net in service.

There are a number of ways in which it is possible to score a point during a rally. Here are some examples:

  • The most obvious and basic way to score point is to send the ball to your opponent, and your opponent fails to return it.
  • If your opponent obstructs the ball in any way, you might score a point.
  • If your opponent hits the ball two times in a row, that could lead you to score a point.

Rather than getting into this extensively in this article, I recommend that you look up the full, detailed rules for professional table tennis.

Regardless, you can see the points are awarded essentially for mistakes by your opponent, whether in the form of simple misses or other errors.

Where is Table Tennis Played?

Table tennis is most popular in the Asian and European markets, and has become a big deal not just in China, but also in Russia.

While table tennis is not as popular in the United States, interest in the sport has been growing there, especially in 2020.

Here are some major table tennis competitions which you can follow:

  • World Table Tennis Championships
  • The Table Tennis World Cup, the Olympics
  • The ITTF World Tour
  • European Championships
  • Europe Top-16
  • The Asian Championships
  • The Asian Games

Along with these international table tennis competitions, you can also follow professional clubs and leagues in different countries. For example:

  • Japan: T.League
  • Germany: Bundesliga
  • Russia: Moscow Liga Pro

In particular, it seems like there are a lot of Russian table tennis matches on a frequent basis. There are quite a few Ukrainian matches going on right now too.

That is why right now, so many people are betting on Russian table tennis specifically as we wait out the COVID-19 outbreak.

The vast majority of the action you see on table tennis as a USA customer right now is going to be on Russian and Ukrainian matches.

Generally speaking, table tennis is considered to be a pretty small betting market. For this reason, sportsbooks typically list it pretty far down, and you may not even have noticed it in the past.

So, it is pretty funny and surreal to see a lot of betting sites nowadays listing table tennis right at the top of their betting markets where everyone will be able to spot it in an instant.

Why Bet on Table Tennis?

You may end up surprised at how seriously this is taken by some!

The most obvious reason to start betting on table tennis as of the time of this writing is because most other betting markets have dried up due to coronavirus, but table tennis hasn’t.

But there are some other excellent reasons to watch and wager on table tennis as well:

  • Matches are fast-paced and exciting

One reason to wager on table tennis is simply because it is such a thrilling, fun sport to follow. You do not need to dedicate a lot of time to watch a single match, so for those with short attention spans or busy schedules, it can be an ideal fit.

  • You can learn a lot quickly

Another advantage of matches being so fast-paced and brief is that you can watch quite a few in quick succession. This can abbreviate the learning process, since you can pick up quite a lot of information in a relatively brief span of time.

  • Opportunities abound

Since I have started checking, I have been noticing half a dozen or more table tennis matches scheduled almost every day. The majority of these are in Russia or the Ukraine. So almost every day, you have a good chance of finding action worth taking.

There are some great odds. If you want to make money betting on any sport, shopping the odds is essential. Thankfully, table tennis seems to be a betting market which turns up value in the odds on a fairly frequent basis.

As all of these benefits will continue to be relevant long after COVID-19, I wouldn’t be surprised if table tennis remains a more popular sport following the outbreak in the years to come.

We will, of course, want to return to the sports we usually bet on. But after you discover what table tennis has to offer, you may decide to make it part of your regular betting rounds over the long term.

Types of Table Tennis Bets

Now that you have a few solid reasons to think about wagering on table tennis, let’s talk about the different types of table tennis bets you may encounter.

  • To-win a tournament:
  • This is a wager on the player who will win a table tennis tournament.

  • To-win a match:
  • This is a bet on the player who will win a single match of table tennis.

  • Spread betting/handicap betting:
  • With this type of wager, points are added or subtracted from each player.

  • Over/under:
  • With this type of bet, you usually will be wagering on whether the number of rallies it will take for a player to win a match will be above or below a certain number.

  • Correct score:
  • If you have a guess at what the final score of the match will be, you can place this type of wager. You might also find over/under wagers on the score.

  • Futures bets:
  • With this type of bet, you place a wager on a distant outcome such as a tournament which will take place months from now.

  • Live bets:
  • As with many other sports, you can place live, in-play bets on table tennis matches. With how fast-paced the matches can be, this can be a very exciting way to wager.

  • Prop bets:
  • Proposition bets allow you to wager on a wide range of events which are based on pure chance or which are qualitative rather than quantitative in nature.

  • Accumulators:
  • Types of wagers such as teasers or parlays fall into this category. If you make an accumulator bet, you are picking multiple selections together, all of which need to win in order for your accumulator bet to win. These types of wagers are unlikely to succeed, but they can pay off incredibly well if they do.

Not all betting sites offer all these types of bets. So, it is to your advantage to join a number of different online sportsbooks to maximize your selection of bet types.

Joining multiple online betting sites also should increase the number of matches and tournaments which are available for you to wager on.

Strategies for Betting on Table Tennis

I would love to see ol’ Forrest go up against any of those Ruskies!

As with any other sport, there are numerous different possible strategies you can apply to try and win your table tennis bets.

Getting into this in-depth would be outside the scope of this article. But here are a few quick tips:

  • Betting against the favorite can work in this market
  • Usually, this is an overly simplistic strategy, and it doesn’t necessarily pay off in most major markets, despite how popular it is. But table tennis is a smaller market, so it is something of an exception. It is very common, for example, for Chinese players to be overvalued both by the public and even by the sportsbooks. While Chinese players to dominate table tennis, sometimes a foreign underdog is an excellent value.

  • Learn about the physics of the game
  • Don’t know a top spin from a back spin? Don’t even know what spin is? The more you learn about the different techniques which can be used to strike the ball, the easier it will be for you to understand what you are seeing when you watch table tennis matches. So before you start betting, study up on the physics of table tennis.

  • Watch matches and look up stats to try and spot patterns in how different players approach the game
  • Table tennis matches typically feature two or four players. Because this is such an individual sport, a lot of what you will be doing when you are handicapping is learning as much as you can about individual players and their strengths, weaknesses, strategies and mindsets. A good starting place if you’re following Moscow Liga Pro is this site, which allows you to look up the results of past matches. Watching matches will provide you with much more detailed and useful information.

  • Shop the odds
  • As always, do not take a bet simply because you think you know who will win a match. Only take a bet if you find value in the odds.

Where and How to Watch Table Tennis

Many online sportsbooks are live streaming table tennis these days.

So, if you want to watch table tennis matches live, whether for educational purposes or to place in-play wagers, check to see if any of the online betting sites you are a member of offer a stream for you to watch.

In many cases, it may be completely free for you to live stream the matches. Some sites may require you to place a nominal wager (probably only around a dollar).

Where to Bet on Table Tennis

Now that you know more about table tennis betting strategies and where and how you can watch live matches, let’s go over some recommended online sportsbooks which are offering action on table tennis!

  1. SportsBetting.ag

  2. SportsBetting.ag is a site which is going strong in 2020. Yes, you might recall some issues with debt a few years back, but those difficulties led to BetOnline acquiring the site in 2012. Ever since, SportsBetting.ag has been as reliable as BetOnline, building a solid reputation.

    At SportsBetting.ag, you can bet on Moscow Liga Pro matches as well as the Setka Cup Game in the Ukraine.

    As of today’s date, I am seeing what looks like dozens of matches lined up just for today and tomorrow!

    Although you can find websites that offer futures on table tennis, it does seem to be very much a “moment to moment” sport. So, you will want to check back every few days on this and other sports betting sites to see what new matches are available to wager on.

    When you join SportsBetting.ag, you can receive a 50% welcome bonus up to $1,000 on your first deposit. If you are depositing with a cryptocurrency for the first time, you can get a 100% first-time bonus.

    This site offers reload bonuses as well to loyal customers. If you deposit with a regular currency, the reload bonus is 25%. If you deposit with a cryptocurrency, it jumps up to 35%.

    If you decide to play in the online casino or poker room at the site, there are additional bonuses available.

    Special Promotion During Coronavirus:

    SportsBetting.ag has seen a decline in business during the COVID-19 outbreak, just like all other sports betting websites.

    So, if you are able to maintain your balance until the NBA, NHL or MLB season restarts, you will receive a 20% Balance Boost up to $5,000.

    No special deposit is required to get this bonus. All you need to do is opt in with the click of a button. You can do this right after signing up if you want.

    The important thing to know is that once you do opt in, you cannot make any more withdrawals without opting back out permanently.

    Click this link to sign up now at SportsBetting.ag.

  3. Bovada

  4. Bovada is arguably the biggest name in sports betting in the USA. It is also my favorite. I love this company’s transparency, and my customer experience with them over the years has been pristine.

    As with SportsBetting.ag, Bovada appears to offer mainly Russian and Ukrainian table tennis action. As of the time of this review, their selection of upcoming matches appears to be similar. Bovada also offers in-play betting.

    When you sign up on Bovada, you can qualify for a $250 sports welcome bonus or a $750 bitcoin welcome bonus. Plan to play at Bovada’s casino as well? The site offers even bigger bonuses for casino players.

    Click here to sign up at Bovada.

  5. BetOnline

  6. For more than a decade now, BetOnline has been one of the premier destinations for sports bettors in the USA. While Bovada is my personal favorite betting site, BetOnline is not far behind.

    At the moment, BetOnline only seems to be offering action on Ukrainian matches for table tennis.

    At a glance, it looks like the promotions that BetOnline is offering right now are identical to those over at SportsBetting.ag.

  7. GTBets

  8. This website is also called “Game Time Bets.” This website has not been around as long as some of my other recommendations, having gotten its start in 2011. Nevertheless, its transparency and commitment to customer service have allowed it to quickly develop a strong reputation.

    Like most of the sports betting sites on this list, GTBets is accepting wagers on both Russian and Ukrainian table tennis. In-play betting is available.

    When you open an account now on GTBets, you can receive a 150% sign-up bonus up to $500. That is on your first deposit. On your second deposit, you can receive an additional 50% bonus up to $250,.

    The site also offers reload bonuses between 5% and 50%. What you qualify for will depend on your activities.

  9. MyBookie

  10. MyBookie is a popular sportsbook which is renowned for its fast, reliable payouts.

    Right now, they are offering action on the same Russian and Ukrainian matches as the other sites on our list.

    When you open an account with MyBookie, you can receive a 50% sign-up bonus for sports betting along with a 10% cash bonus up to $200.

    Reload bonuses are 25% up to $500.

  11. Bookmaker

  12. When it comes to reliability, it is hard to beat Bookmaker. For more than 20 years, this sportsbook has been serving customers in the USA and around the globe. They process a huge volume of bets everyday, and have garnered a reputation for continuing to support their customers even when they rake in huge wins.

    Naturally, a site like that isn’t going to let bettors down during a pandemic. Right now, you can wager on Russian table tennis as well as Ukrainian table tennis for men and women.

    When you sign up, you can claim a 15% cash welcome offer for sports betting along with a 50% casino bonus up to $1,600!

    Alternately, you can choose from any of several crypto bonuses with match amounts up to $500. The reload bonuses you qualify for depend on your VIP membership tier. The largest one is the Reload Diamond Crypto bonus of 25% cash up to $5,000.

    Incidentally, if you also plan to play at the casino, there is a special promotion right now for 28 straight days of jackpots.

  13. Intertops

  14. Intertops has been around for more than 20 years. This is another website with unique promotions and bonuses. They keep fees minimal as well so that you can make the most of your wins.

    The website does feature a section for table tennis betting, though as of right now, I am not seeing any available wagers. It could just be that I am experiencing some kind of site loading error.

    When you sign up at Intertops, you can get a $20 free bet. There are also a couple promotions which are aimed specifically at customers who enjoy making parlay bets.

  15. Xbet

  16. The same reliable folks who operate MyBookie also run Xbet. Even though Xbet isn’t as well known yet, it is a rising star.

    You can wager on both Russian and Ukrainian table tennis on Xbet.

    When you get started, you can claim a sign-up bonus up to $300. This website also boasts some hefty reload bonuses as high as $250.

Sign Up on Several Sports Betting Sites for Table Tennis

While you can start betting on table tennis right away when you join one of these sites, I recommend that you join at least several.

It is true that most of them are offering bets on the same Russian and Ukrainian events.

Nevertheless, if you join multiple sites, you can shop the odds and choose the most competitive odds you find for the match you want to bet on.

Not only that, but as you have already observed, there are different bonuses and promotions which you can claim that every one of these sites.

So, you can maximize value by signing up for at least a few of them.

Conclusion: The Fast-Paced Action of Table Tennis is Waiting for You

Prior to the outbreak of coronavirus, there’s a good chance that you knew little to nothing about table tennis. You might not even have realized that it is possible to wager on this sport.

But now, you know much more about table tennis and the exciting betting opportunities which are available even now in the midst of quarantine.

So, consider diving into the fun that is table tennis as you wait out the coronavirus pandemic. It might just well become your new favorite sport to bet on!

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