Saturday, May 05, 2007
The right royal tennis encounter between Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer at Palma de Mallorca in Spain on May 3rd stands out for its split court. This novel method was tested for the first time in the history of tennis. The court was split into two halves, partly clay and partly grass and the players changed sides at regular intervals. The mixed surface demanded the players get accustomed to a variety of movements as different muscles get exercised on different surfaces. The innovation of using mixed surfaces could become popular and give a new face to tennis. Presently different tournaments are identified by their surfaces, Wimbledon for grass courts, Roland Garros for clay and synthetic courts for US Open. A novelty has been introduced and we must wait and see how the players, tennis federations and spectators will take it. Perhaps the sponsors of major tournaments could lead the way.