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Tiebreakers in Tennis

Roger Clarke, Hinsdale

For more than a decade, Roger Clarke, a graduate student at National Louis University, has been teaching tennis in the Chicago area. A tennis professional at LaGrange Country Club and Hinsdale Racquet Club near Chicago, Roger Clarke works with students of all ages.

In tennis, players must win six games to be declared the winner of the set. However, when both players have won six games each, they must play a tiebreaker. Unlike some sports in which tiebreakers end as soon as one side scores, tennis tiebreakers continue until one player is winning by at least two games.

For the most part, tiebreaker games are played the same as the rest of the set. However, instead of points numbered 15, 30, 40, and deuce, points are numbered 1, 2, 3, and so forth.
Serves are also a little different. The first point of the first game of a tiebreaker is served by the player who served during the 13th game.
After that, the serve goes to the other player. Players then rotate their serves every two points. After the first six points of a tiebreaker game, players also switch court sides.

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