Fast4 making a racket

FAST4 tennis – four games, four points, four rules.

LAUNCH: Mark Philippoussis.

Much like Twenty20 revolutionised cricket, the shortened Fast4 is set to take the tennis world by storm when it gets launched internationally in Sydney and Melbourne on January 12 and 14 respectively, and Orange Indoor Tennis Centre manager Chris Besgrove can’t wait.

“Anything that helps our game is alright by me,” he said.

“It’s all happened very suddenly, but I think anything they do like this is a good thing for tennis, and it’s about time they did something like this.

“They’ve got Roger Federer, Lleyton Hewitt, Rafael Nadal and Mark Philippoussis on board to launch it. It’s great.”

An adapted version of traditional tennis, Fast4 was designed to provide a less-time consuming version of the sport for those who can’t participate in the longer, traditional form of the game.

Traditional games of tennis normally last between 30 minutes and four hours for women, or between one and seven hours for men – depending on how competitive the match may be.

The longest games for each sex have been six hours and 31 minutes, and 11 hours and five minutes respectively.

A five set game of Fast4 however, will rarely last longer than 75 minutes with sets likely to take between 12 and 15 minutes to complete.

“If people enjoy it, and the content then we’ll definitely do something here in Orange,” Besgrove explained.

“People can play it in their lunch breaks, so it’s much more available.”

Much like the fallout from Twenty20 cricket, the worry of traditionalists condemning the sport remains likely.

“And they’ll be a pain in the back side really,” Besgrove said.

“The grand slams and big tournaments won’t be affected, traditional tennis will still be there. This is just a way to improve the sport, and appeal to more people.”

This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.