TENNIS

COMPETITION

British Colleges Sport runs Tennis events at our National Championships for our full member Colleges. Each region will have participants representing them in the following events:

  • Men's and Women's Singles
  • Men's and Women's Doubles 
  • Mixed Doubles


FE Colleges have the opportunity to represent their region in the National Championships run by British Colleges Sport.  Please visit:  http://champs.bcsport.org - our micro site which covers all things in relation to our Regional and National championships events.


THE ORIGINS OF TENNIS

Tennis 2Tennis - The Beginnings

The idea of two people hitting a ball back and forth across some obstacle, with their hand, feet or some implement, has probably been acted out for centuries. Indeed, tennis historians who have looked hard enough claim to have found evidence of tennis in ancient Greece. But the first recognisable form of what we think of as tennis came in the 13th century, and the game we know today dates from the second half of the 19th century.' - The Book of Tennis by Chris Bowers (JWM, 2002)

 

1316 - The French king Louis X dies after a strenuous game of tennis (the form we know today as Real Tennis, Royal Tennis, Court Tennis or Jeu de Paume), but the blow does nothing to dampen the popularity of the pastime.

 

1530s - The English king Henry VIII builds a tennis court at Hampton Court Palace. It no longer exists, but a similar court built there in 1625 survives and is used today.

 

1870 - The All England Croquet Club is founded in the Wimbledon district of London. Tennis isn't even thought of and is somewhat in decline, as it is still an indoor game played only where royal and rich benefactors have built a court.

 

1873 - An English army major Walter Clopton Wingfield designs, patents, manufactures and markets a version of Real Tennis that can be played outdoors on a lawn. He calls it 'Sphairistike' (from the Greek word for ball games), offering the term 'lawn tennis' as a helpful explanation. Wingfield sells Sphairistike in boxes that feature two net posts, a net, rackets, and India rubber balls, plus instructions about laying out the court and actually playing the game. They cost five guineas (5.25 British pounds), a lot of money at the time. Wingfield's boxes kickstart the modern form of tennis, though the one thing that doesn't work is the name, and Wingfield soon realises that his subtitle 'lawn tennis' is much better than 'Sphairistike'.

 

1875 - The All England Croquet Club's members vote to give one of the croquet lawns over to tennis. The following year four more are converted as the club considers staging a formal tournament.

 

1877 - The first Wimbledon tournament is staged at the (by now) All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club. The first winner is Spencer Gore.

 

1896 - Tennis is one of the core sports in the first modern Olympic Games.

 

1900 - A Harvard university student Dwight F. Davis decides to stage a team challenge match between the USA and the British Isles. He has the cup engraved as the 'International Lawn Tennis Challenge Trophy', but it soon becomes known as the Davis Cup.