Tennis is a racket sport that can be played individually against a single opponent (singles) or between two teams of two players each (doubles). Each player uses a tennis racket that is strung with cord to strike a hollow rubber ball covered with felt over or around a net and into the opponent's court. The object of the game is to maneuver the ball in such a way that the opponent is not able to play a valid return. The player who is unable to return the ball will not gain a point, while the opposite player will.
Tennis is an Olympic sport and is played at all levels of society and at all ages. The sport can be played by anyone who can hold a racket, including wheelchair users. The modern game of tennis originated in Birmingham, England, in the late 19th century as lawn tennis. It had close connections both to various field (lawn) games such as croquet and bowls as well as to the older racket sport today called real tennis. During most of the 19th century, in fact, the term tennis referred to real tennis, not lawn tennis.
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can be traced as far back as the ancient Greek game of sphairistike (Greek: Σφαιριστική), and is mentioned in literature as far back as the Middle Ages in The Second Shepherds' Play
, in which shepherds gave three gifts, including a tennis ball, to the newborn Christ. Sir Gawain
, a knight
of King Arthur
's round table, plays tennis with a group of giants in The Turke and Gowin
The Medieval form of tennis is termed real tennis. Real tennis evolved over three centuries from an earlier ball game played around the 12th century in France. This had some similarities to palla, fives, pelota, or handball, involving hitting a ball with a bare hand and later with a glove. One theory is that this game was played by monks in monastery cloisters, based on the construction and appearance of early courts. By the 16th century, the glove had become a racquet, the game had moved to an enclosed playing area, and the rules had stabilized. Real tennis spread in popularity throughout royalty in Europe and reached its peak in the 16th century.
In France, François I (1515-47) was an enthusiastic player and promoter of real tennis, building courts and encouraging play among the courtiers and commoners. His successor, Henri II (1547-59) was also an excellent player and continued the royal French tradition. During his reign, the first known book about tennis, Trattato del Giuoco della Palla was written in 1555 by an Italian priest, Antonio Scaino da Salo. Two French kings died from tennis related episodes--Louis X of a severe chill after playing and Charles VIII after being struck with a ball. King Charles IX granted a constitution to the Corporation of Tennis Professionals in 1571, creating the first pro tennis 'tour', establishing three levels of professionals-- apprentice, associate, and master. The first codification of the rules of real tennis was written by a professional named Forbet and published in 1599.
(Swedish pronunciation: [bjœːɳ bɔrj] (listen)
; born 6 June 1956) is a former World No. 1 tennis player
widely considered to be one of the greatest in tennis history. Between 1974 and 1981 he won 11 Grand Slam
singles titles, six at the French Open
and five consecutive at Wimbledon
. He also won three year-end championships
and 15 Grand Prix Super Series
Borg set numerous Open Era records that still stand, most notably winning 41% of the Grand Slam singles tournaments he entered, winning both the French Open and Wimbledon for three consecutive years, and winning three Grand Slams without losing a set. He also was the first male professional to win 11 Grand Slam singles titles, and his career match win rate remains the second best of the Open Era.
A teenage sensation at the start of his career, Borg's unprecedented stardom and consistent success helped propel the rising popularity of tennis during the 1970s. As a result, the professional tour became more lucrative, and in 1979 he was the first player to earn more than one million dollars in prize money in a single season. He also made millions in endorsements throughout his career. The downside, however, was the constant attention and pressure eventually caused burnout and his retirement at the age of 26.
- April 1, 2018 - Sloane Stephens won the title at the Miami Open, defeating Jeļena Ostapenko in straight sets. It was Stephens' sixth career singles title, first Premier Mandatory title, and first title since winning the US Open in September 2017. On the men's side, John Isner won his first ATP World Tour Masters 1000 title, defeating Alexander Zverev in three sets.
||I have broken every rule recommended by instruction books over the past fifty years.
|— Björn Borg
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