What is and how does the tie break in tennis work?

What is and how does the tie break in tennis work?

Carlos Alcaraz, after winning a point. (getty)
  • Nacho Atanes
    • Updated:

Los tennis matches They are decided, on many occasions, by few details, and within the moments of greatest emotion within a match, the one that holds the most equality is the dispute of a tie break. Also known as a tiebreaker or sudden death, among the most experienced in the sport, the tie break or tie-break It is a decisive game that is played at a specific moment to break the tie and award the set to one or the other contestant.

The first thing to say about a tie break It is that it did not always exist and that in the past, the matches were decided in each set in a potentially endless way, when one of the two participating tennis players achieved a difference of two games over their rival in question. He tie-break, therefore, it would be installed as a measure to put an end to the exaggerated prolongation of sets and, therefore, also of the parties, in a sport like the tennis in which the tie does not exist as such.

He inventor del tie break He was an innovator and passionate about tennis as James VanAlen, and his job was to simplify a sport that was considered inaccessible to the public, due to its multiple complications and its great length and differentiation between set and set, depending on the equality or inequality that it required. In the first instance, a model of tie-break that it was a nine-point tiebreaker, begun in 1965 and after which modifications would be made until reaching what is now known as sudden death in tennis.

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What is a tie-break and how is it played?

He Tie Break It is a special game that is played differently from the rest of which make up a set and that occurs when the two players are tied at six games in each box. If the set reaches the determined 6-6this decisive game is played, in which the score changes and becomes point to point (1-0, 1-1, 2-1, 3-1…) beginning the tie-break with the player’s serve that has subtracted in the previous game.

The tennis player who starts serving will do so on a single occasion, from the right side, corresponding to the area of ​​equals or deuce. Thereafter the services alternate in turns of two in a tie-break which will end when one of the two contestants reaches seven points, with a difference of two points compared to the rival. Therefore, the tie break or sudden death It can be extended by the minutes and points that are necessary, although the advantage to be obtained is minimal and therefore, it simplifies the completion of the set in question.

The longest tie-break in history

The longest sudden death in tennis history took place at the tournament Dallas ATP 250, played in the year 2022. The match in question had as contenders two of the great servers of the ATP circuit, the Americans Reilly Opelka y John Isner. Both players stand out, in addition to their great height, comfortably exceeding 2 meters in height, for an absolutely differential serve, which meant that the match was decided in two tie-breaks, the second being absolutely equal, with a total of 46 points and a final score of 24-22 in favor of Opelka, who managed to seal the victory and the consequent pass to the final of the Dallas tournament. For his part, John Isnerwho lost on that occasion, can boast of being the tennis player who has won the most tie breaks throughout his sports career, with more than 500 tie-break games in his pocket.

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if we talk the tie break, We must also make room for another particular tiebreaker game that we can see, for example, in the tournaments of Grand Slam and in many doubles competitions. Is he Super Tie Breakthat, in competitions like Wimbledon or the Open the Australia decides the champion of a match.

In this case of super tie-break is disputed, in a Grand Slamin the fifth and final set and instead of being a sudden death disputed to seven points, it is disputed until one of the tennis players reaches 10 pointsalso with a difference of two points over the opponent and the same applicable regulations, in terms of alternating serves, that the tie-break normal.

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