Tennis

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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 originated in the United Kingdom in the late 19th century as "lawn tennis" which has heavy connections to various field/lawn games as well as to the ancient game of real tennis. After its creation, tennis spread throughout the upper-class English-speaking population before spreading around the world [citation needed]. Tennis is again 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. In the United States, there is a collegiate circuit organized by the National Collegiate Athletic Association.

The rules of tennis have changed very little since the 1890s. Two exceptions are that from 1908 to 1960 the server had to keep one foot on the ground at all times, and then the adoption of the tie-break in the 1970s. A recent addition to professional tennis has been the adoption of electronic review technology coupled with a point challenge system, which allows a player to challenge the line (or chair) umpire's call of a point.

Tennis enjoys millions of recreational players and is also a hugely popular worldwide spectator sport, especially the four Grand Slam tournaments (sometimes referred to as the "majors"): the Australian Open, the French Open, Wimbledon, and the US Open..

Tennis as the modern sport can be dated to two separate roots. In 1873, Major Walton Clapton Wingfield developed a game that combined elements of rrackets and the Basque ball game pelota, which they played on Perera's croquet lawn in Birmingham, United Kingdom. In 1872, along with two local doctors, they founded the world's first tennis club in LearmingtonSpa.3] The Courier of July 23, 1884 recorded one of the first tennis tournaments, held in the grounds of Shrubland Hall.

In December 1873, Major Walter Clapton Wingfield designed and patented a similar game — which he called sphairislike (Greek: σφάίρίστική, from ancient Greek meaning "skill at playing at ball"), and was soon known simply as "sticky" — for the amusement of his guests at a garden party on his estate of Nantclwyd, in Llanelidan, Wales. He likely based his game on the evolving sport of outdoor tennis including real tennis. According to some tennis historians, modern tennis terminology also derives from this period, as Wingfield borrowed both the name and much of the French vocabulary of real tennis and applied them to his new game.

Lawn tennis in the U.S., 1887

The first championships at Wimbledon in London were played in 1877. The first Championships culminated a significant debate on how to standardize the rules.     

(Wikopedia – the free encyclopedia)                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               

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