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Message de rosminet posté le 2004-06-19 00:26:10 (S | E | F | I)
Listening to players or commentators talking about tennis can be a linguistic minefield. There are so many slang terms and so much technical jargon that sometimes it feels like they're speaking in a foreign language. Fear not. Follow our guide and you'll be an expert on all the court lingo in no time.

  • Banjo
    A loosely strung racquet -or, of course, a guitar-like instrument that makes a strange sound.

  • Choke
    To lose a set or match due to mental stress or the pressure. Most noteworthy example was Jana Novotna in the 1993 women's final, which provoked floods of tears on the Duchess of Kent.

  • Egg and bacon, egg and sausage
    A breakfast reference, this one is when the scoreline of a match is 6-0, 6-1 or 6-1, 6-0.

  • Deuce
    Derived from the French for two -"deux", as in two points from victory in a game when the score is 40-40. The French don't actually use the term themselves. The much more straightforward "egalite" (equality or equal) is what they say across the Channel.

  • Down the T
    A serve that lands right in the middle of the court, near the T-shaped join of the service boxes.

  • Floater
    Not toilet humour. This is an unseeded player who could prove to be very dangerous, 'floating' through the draw.

  • 15:30
    Tennis's peculiar scoring system is said to originate due to the clock being divided in four quarters, as four points are needed to win a game.
    However, most are at a loss to explain why it goes 15, 30, 40 and not 15, 30, 45. In the modern game people often now say 5 for 15.

  • The Australian formation
    A position in doubles tennis where the net player crouches down directly in front of the server on the same side of the court. You just have to hope your partner's aim is not off.

  • Milkfloat
    A pathetically weak serve, obviously named after a slow-moving vehicle.

  • Hacker
    A weak player who never comes up with any winners and often hits the ball off-centre -bears no comparison to a computer geek.

  • In the zone
    When you are playing out of your skin you are said to be "in the zone".

  • Tight
    When players are nervous they are said to be "tight".

  • Mooball
    A high, looping groundstroke hit from the baseline with huge topspin, much favoured by the Spanish players.

  • Hot-dogging
    Not a reference to being in public car-parks with Stan Collymore but a highly creative shot where a player hits the ball with the racquet behind his back and from between his legs. Famous exponents of this are Henri Leconte and Goran Ivanisevic.

  • Mixed veg
    A derogatory term for mixed doubles. Enough said.

  • Qualie
    A qualifying match or tournament, held before the main event.

  • Drive volley
    Often described as the most difficult shot in tennis. Volleys are normally punched but a drive volley is performed with a full swing of the racquet. Normally played with ferocity and therefore sometimes wayward and dangerous.

  • Shank
    To mishit the ball badly but somehow still ensure it goes in.

  • Double bagel
    When the scoreline of a match is 6-0, 6-0, a similar analogy to "a pair", as in a "pair of spectacles" in cricket when you get two ducks.

  • Tube
    To hit a ball directly and very hard at your opponent's body. As in 'I really tubed him that time!'

  • Love
    There is a dispute over this scoring phrase. Some say it refers to being sportsmanlike as in "playing for love or playing for nothing" because you don't have any points. The French, of course, revel in being awkward and say it originates from their word egg "l'oeuf", as an egg also looks like 0.

  • The alley and the alley-cat
    The Americans call the tramlines between the between the single and doubles court the alley. You are an alley cat if you deliberately stand in the alley to receive a serve in an attempt to put off your opponent.

  • Gut
    Still on cats, the professionals still use "cat gut" for their strings. Except, of course, the "gut" in question comes from the intestine of a cow. The rest of us normally use synthetic strings but the professionals insist natural gut gives them greater feel -although it doesn't last as long. Not that super-rich tennis stars are bothered about that.

  • Rubber
    Not what you're thinking. The name given to one match within a Davis Cup or Fed Cup tie.

  • Poach
    When the net player reaches across and intercepts a ball on his doubles partner's side of the net.

  • Tank
    To lose a set or a match on purpose.

Wimbledon 2004 - Evening Standard

Réponse: re de chrisg, postée le 2004-06-19 00:32:47 (S | E)
Excellent !

Réponse: re de mariet, postée le 2004-06-19 04:33:06 (S | E)
Thanks rosminet. Now I can pretend I understand tennis (which I don't !).


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