Tennis is a sport played between two players (singles) or between two teams of two players each (doubles). Each player uses a strung racquet to strike a hollow rubber ball covered with felt over a net into the opponent’s court. The modern game of tennis was born in the United Kingdom in the late 19th century. Then it was called “lawn tennis”. Tennis soon became popular among the upper- class English-speaking population.
Then it began to be played around the world. Tennis is an Olympic sport and is played at all levels of society at all ages. The sport can be played by anyone who can hold a racket, including people in wheelchairs.
Other than the fact that the tiebreaker was adopted in the 1970s, the rules of tennis have not changed much since the 1890s. A recent addition to professional tennis has been the adoption of “instant replay” technology coupled with a point challenge system. This allows a player to challenge the official call of a point.
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Tennis is a major spectator sport, especially the four Grand Slam tournaments: the Australian Open, the French Open, Wimbledon and the US Open. These tournaments are considered to be the most Prestigious tennis tournaments in the world. They are held annually.
Apart from the Olympic Games, Davis Cup, Fed Cup and Hopman Cup they are the only tournaments regulated by the International Tennis Federation (ITF). These events possess historical significance and also carry huge prize funds. Grand Slam men’s tournaments have best-of-five set matches throughout.
At present, the Grand Slam tournaments are the only tour events that have mixed doubles contests. Grand Slam tournaments are held in conjunction with wheelchair tennis tournaments. The exception is Wimbledon, (where the grass surface doesn’t allow this) and junior tennis competitions.
Grand Slam tournaments are often seen as the culmination of a particular season, such as the US Open Series. Wimbledon players are required to wear predominantly white. This rule has made certain players like Andre Agassi avoid the tournament.
Rod Laver, Bjorn Borg and Pete Sampras are among the greatest tennis players in the history of the sport. Among the contemporaries, Roger Federer is considered to have the potential to surpass the achievements of these illustrious predecessors. Many even feel that Federer could become the greatest player in the history of the game.
Tennis is a sport played with a felt-covered rubberball, a racket, and a court.
First, early in the 11th century, players in France played this sport with their hands. It was called “Jeu de Paume”. In the 15th century the sport came to Poland and the players played with rackets. Now it is called “tennis”. It became popular in England and France. King Henry III was a big fan of the game.
There are many different kinds of courts, like grass, clay or hard court. The goal of tennis is to hit the ball over the net into the other player’s court. When the other player cannot return the ball, a point is won. The game is played with two or four people. When it is played with two people, it is called “singles”, and when it is played with four people, it is called “doubles”. The court has "alleys" on each side, which are "fair" territory when playing doubles.
A tennis game has a number of sets. Each set has a number of games, and each game has points. The points are counted love (0, after the French l'oeuf), fifteen (15), thirty (30), and forty (40). If both players get to forty, the score is deuce from which 2 more points are needed to win the game. When one player reaches six games, it is one set. If it is a three-set match, the player who wins two sets first is the winner. If the game count reaches 5–5, the set must be won with two more games than the other player, like 7–5 or 8–6. If the game count gets to 6–6, a "tiebreaker" is played. In a tiebreak, players have to get at least seven points while getting two more points than the other player to win the set. In tiebreak points are called “one,” “two,” etc.
The game started in Germany during the 1700s. Tennis is now a sport that is played at the Olympics. They also have big tournaments like the U.S. Open, Australian Open, French Open and Wimbledon. These four are known as Grand Slam events. Tennis’s official name is "lawn tennis".[source?] Since 1998, every September 23 has been called "Tennis Day".
There is also soft tennis. Soft tennis is different from regulation tennis. For example, the racket, ball and rules are much different. Soft tennis is popular in Japan. Thousands of people play soft tennis. Tennis is quite a popular sport which lots of people enjoy watching.
Shots[change | change source]
There are many different "shots" and "strokes", ways to hit the ball, in tennis. A stroke is the way the body is moved to hit the ball. A shot is how the ball is hit. These include:
- The backhand is a type of stroke hit by swinging the racquet away from the body. The stroke begins with the arm holding the racquet held across the body. It is then moved in front of the body to hit the ball. For a right-handed player, a backhand begins on the left side of his body, continues across his body as the ball is hit, and ends on the right side of his body. It can be either a one-handed or a two-handed stroke.
- The forehand is the opposite of the backhand. It starts with the arm outside of the body and moves across the body. For a right handed player, the arm starts on the right side of the body and moves across the body to the left side. The forehand is hit with one hand (most commonly the hand the player uses to write).
- A serve (sometimes called a service) is a shot to start a point. The serve is usually started by tossing the ball into the air and hitting it across the net. The serve may be done underhand or overhead. The overhead serve the most common form. The serve is done from behind the baseline (the line at the back of the court). The serve must land on the inside of the service line and center service line on the other side of the net to call it good. The serve that is set has to be in the box diagonal to where the server serves.
- A volley is a shot that is hit before the ball bounces on the ground. Usually, a player hits a volley while standing near the net. It is sometimes done farther back, in the middle of the court or even near the back.
- A drop shot is tapping . A good drop shot travels just far enough that the opponent cannot run fast enough to get to it.
- A lob is a shot that can use backhand or forehand swings. For a lob the person has to swing through, but make the tennis ball go up. When the ball goes up the goal is for the ball to land in between the baseline (the line at the back of the court) and the service line.
Four Grand Slams[change | change source]
Winning all four Grand Slams in the same year is called a Calendar Slam. They are the most important tennis tournaments of each season (year). This is because of the world ranking points, tradition, prize-money, and public attention.[source?]
Images[change | change source]
Other websites[change | change source]
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