November 03, 2005

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Soft tennis

Put this in the "sports I never knew existed category": soft tennis, now being played at the Almost Complete Waste of Time East Asia Games in Macau:

Tennis had traveled to Japan by the late 19th century, but there was one problem - there were not enough furry tennis balls. So the Japanese improvised, creating an alternative rubber, furless ball. The game of soft tennis was born.

Rallies appear to have less pace than regular tennis, but the balls still zing - perhaps due to the skidding. The rallies can be just as long as clay-court tennis. It is harder to overpower your opponent than in tennis because the game is slower. Aces are rare. Soft tennis athletes serve overhead, but also underhanded. Spin is a key technique. The appropriately spun ball can just drop dead and catch your opponent flat-footed.

Incredibly, Wikipedia doesn't have a page on soft tennis. You learn something new every day.

posted by Simon on 11.03.05 at 11:13 AM in the Sport category.


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Interesting. I'd never heard of it. Sounds a bit like tennis played with a soft-ball squash ball, doesn't it?

posted by: RP on 11.03.05 at 07:25 PM [permalink]

posted by: herp on 12.02.05 at 03:35 PM [permalink]

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