Set-Level Strategic and Psychological Momentum in Best-of-Five Matches in Professional Tennis

8 Pages Posted: 7 Sep 2021

See all articles by Craig A. Depken

Craig A. Depken

University of North Carolina at Charlotte - The Belk College of Business Administration - Department of Economics

John Gandar

University of North Carolina (UNC) at Charlotte

Dmitry Shapiro

Department of Economics, Seoul National University

Date Written: 2021

Abstract

We provide a theoretical and empirical analysis of the set-level strategic and psychological momentums in best-of-five contests where players have asymmetric abilities. Theoretical predictions match observed Set 1 outcomes, the only set with no set-level psychological momentum, but do not match any other sets. We  find evidence of psychological reversal: in every set following a non-tie net score, the winner of the previous set underperforms as compared to theoretical predictions.

Keywords: tennis, best-of-N tournaments, contests

JEL Classification: Z20, L83, C73

Suggested Citation

Depken, Craig A. and Gandar, John and Shapiro, Dmitry, Set-Level Strategic and Psychological Momentum in Best-of-Five Matches in Professional Tennis (2021). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3907627 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3907627

Craig A. Depken (Contact Author)

University of North Carolina at Charlotte - The Belk College of Business Administration - Department of Economics ( email )

Charlotte, NC 28223
United States

John Gandar

University of North Carolina (UNC) at Charlotte ( email )

9201 University City Boulevard
Charlotte, NC 28223
United States

Dmitry Shapiro

Department of Economics, Seoul National University ( email )

San 56-1, Silim-dong, Kwanak-ku
Seoul 151-742

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