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Tennis Terminology: M-Z

Tennis Terminology: M-Z

Tennis is a game where two to four players strike a ball with rackets over a net to earn points and win a match. Whether you are a player or fan in the stands, knowing tennis terminology is necessary to better understand the game.

This is a list of common tennis terminology from A-L and M-Z. 

 

M

Match A contest between two (or more) players.
Match Point When you need to win one more point to win and end the entire match.
Mini-Break If you win a point on your opponents serve during a tiebreak that is called a mini-break.
Moonball Usually a defensive move, this shot is hit very high over the net.

N

Net The barrier that separates the two halves of the court.
Net cord judge Official who determines if the serve hits the net.
No-man’s Land Area between the service line and the baseline, where a player is most vulnerable.

O

Overhead When you are at the net and your opponent tries to lob you with a high shot you will hit an overhead.

P

Point The smallest unit of scoring in tennis, it is a period of play between the first successful serve until the ball goes out of play.

R

Rally A series of consecutive shots.
Return Stroke made by the receiver of a service.

S

Scratch Withdrawal from a match due to an injury.
Serve Overhead shot to start each point.
Service Box Rectangular area of the court marked by the sidelines and service lines where a serve is supposed to land.
Service Line The line that runs parallel to the net and forms part of the demarcation of the service box.
Set A unit of scoring. The first player to win six games with a two-game advantage wins the set.
Set Point Situation in which the player who is leading needs one more point to win a set.
Singles Two players on the court who play against one another.
Slice A shot with backspin, or a serve with side spin.
Smash see Overhead.
Spin A method of stroke play which induces a pronounced roll of the ball.
Stance Position of the body prior to playing a shot.

T

Tiebreak When the score in a set reaches 6:6 a tiebreaker is needed and played up to seven points.
Topspin A forwards rotation of the ball after a shot.
Tramline Line defining the limit of play on the side of a singles or doubles court.

U – V – W

Umpire Official who keeps score during the match.
Underspin Another expression for backspin.
Unforced Error When a player misses an easy shot.

Volley When you hit the ball before it bounces on your side it is called a volley.

Wide A call which indicates that the ball has landed out of court, beyond the sideline.

X-Y-Z


Have we missed any popular tennis terms?

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Click here for tennis terminology A-L

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