Tennis Forecasting 101

With Dr Tim Paulden, ATASS Sports

Tennis Forecasting 101: Models, monotonicity, and the maths of match-fixing

In this talk, Dr Tim Paulden (ATASS Sports) will introduce the classic tennis modelling challenge of converting world rankings into win probabilities, and demonstrate that a relatively new technique called SCAM (shape-constrained additive modelling) can “automatically” generate competitive predictions that respect the problem’s monotonicity constraints. Several higher-level modelling concepts will also be discussed, including the perils of overfitting. Finally, Dr Paulden will summarise ATASS Sports’ recent work on detecting match fixing in tennis, which featured in the Royal Statistical Society’s “Significance” magazine in 2016, and has since evolved into a successful PhD research project.

The talk will begin from first principles – no previous knowledge of modelling is assumed!

Industrial seminar

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