Serve – The stroke that starts the game of tennis

Tennis is one of the most popular outdoor sport played by people all over the world

Not only is this game super fun and helps the people playing work up a sweat, the game also has the aspect of technicality, which is extremely critical.

The game is played between two opponents or two pairs of opponents. The two opponents play with racquets, which are used to pass the ball from one side of the court to another.

The objective is to not miss the ball and always stay within the boundaries of the court. The game comprises of many strokes, but the most important stroke of them all the stroke that starts the game of tennis – the serve.

A game of tennis commences with one particular type of stroke, called the serve or the service. This is when the player stands at one corner of the court and tosses the ball to hit it with the tennis racquet.
The goal of the service is to land the ball diagonally in the opponent’s side of the court. Most players usually use the flat serve, but other serves include the underhand serve, the slice serve and the kick serve.

Please note that this is the only type of stroke where the player has the leverage of taking their own time and lining up for the perfect serve.

But from 2012 onwards, a 25 second time limit has been allotted to all the serve shots. When a player is expected to serve the ball, they have to stand behind the baseline without touching it.

At the first serve of the game, the server is expected to stand to the right of the center point of the baseline and on the service box. During the second phase of the game, the serve occurs from left to right diagonally.

The Kick serve

This service, which is also referred to as the flat serve, is what is used most commonly by tennis players. The flat serve is often the hardest hit shot in an entire game of tennis because the objective is to startle the opponent.

The player who has to serve the ball tosses the tennis ball straight over their head and swings the racquet from behind their head, and strikes the ball the highest point possible.

The highest point is when the ball makes contact with the racquet. When struck with a lot of power, the ball goes to the other side of the court, so that the game on tennis can commence.

The Underhand serve

This is when the ball is struck below the shoulder level. This is a service mostly used by children.

Although it is a legal service and can be used whenever, but is often looked down upon. But an interesting fact – Michael Chang used this serve against Ivan Lendl in the 1989 French Open.

The slice serve

This type of serve, when used to start a game of tennis, incorporates a side spin. The server uses the racquet to brush the back of the ball towards their dominant side. For a right-handed player, this kind of a service makes the ball curve towards the left.

The ball is thrown towards the dominant side of the thrower and is hit laterally.

When a person initially starts learning how to play tennis, the service strokes turn out to be one of the most difficult strokes to master.

But once this stroke is mastered, the players have a lot of advantage as they get the power to control where the ball lands on the opponent’s end of the court. This is why the service, the stroke that starts the game of tennis is so crucial and important.

Leave a Reply