WHAT DO LOVE AND TENNIS HAVE IN COMMON? February 08 2017, 0 Comments
Ever wondered about how tennis is scored? Unlike most other sports, where point is worth one point and no more, tennis is different. You could be excused for being confused because it has a scoring system all of its own.
At the beginning of the game, when both sides have no score, the game is love-love meaning nil-nil. To win a game, you need to score above 40. That sounds like it could take a long time but not to worry. Your first point will score you 15, your next, 30 and the next point will give you the 40. One more point and you’ve won that game. But no one asks the value of that one more point. It is just a win. Don’t ask why but no one ever scores 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 in tennis.
In professional tennis, there may be no love lost between the competing players. Trophies are won through hard work. They are never won with love. This is because love actually means nothing in tennis. Literally nil. So, if the score is 40-love, someone has scored nothing and is not likely to see an award. One more point to top 40 and the game is won and medals and trophies can be awarded. It is a love match.
There are a number of suggestions as to where the affectionate name of the love score came from. One such theory is that it is derived from the French word l’oeuf, meaning an egg. I guess it is because of the shape of the egg which is broadly oval, and looks like a zero on the scoreboard. If that is so, we could find ourselves calling 40-egg! Rather not, let’s just stick to love, which is particularly appropriate in February.
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