Even the seemingly straightforward tennis ball in the game of tennis conceals a great deal of complexity, especially at the highest level. The game is influenced by elements including brand, felt weave, bounce, and durability.

Wimbledon victor Marketa Vondrousova opted out of the US Open doubles this year due to elbow discomfort and the heaviness of Wilson balls. Nevertheless, her commitment remains steadfast for her singles quarterfinal match against Madison Keys, recognizing that in singles, the nuances of the tennis ball can prove pivotal.

Keys said “They are very heavy and the season is long, so I feel like, you know, you just have to fight through it,” an article from USA Today shared.

The tennis balls controversy 

Even the most minute details count in the complex realm of international tennis. The diameter and weight of tournament balls might vary by just one-tenth of an inch and three grams, respectively. They are available in two varieties: “regular duty” for clay courts’ delicate caressing and “extra duty” for hard courts’ demanding resistance requirements. These differences, which are as finely tuned as a champion’s finesse, guarantee the ideal match for your game. It all begins with the ball in your court, whether you’re gliding on clay or taming the hard court.

In the world of professional tennis, each major event has a partnership with a certain ball manufacturer, such as Wilson for the clay courts of the French Open, Dunlop for the Australian Open, and Slazenger for Wimbledon.

An intriguing twist unfolded as top player Iga Swiatek raised concerns about gender equality during last year’s US Open. She questioned the use of extra-duty balls for men and regular-duty ones for women, citing concerns about control.

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Despite her reservations, Swiatek emerged victorious. The selection of tennis balls is determined by the WTA and requires a year’s advance notice to ensure Wilson has sufficient time for manufacturing, explained tournament director Stacey Allaster. Tennis is a captivating sport, blending technique and equipment intricacies.

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