There are two ways to play the sport of tennis. These two ways include a game with four players in it, or doubles, or a game with two players in it, or a singles match. The main difference between these two types of games is the number of players in each match. However, there are also changes to the game that depend on the type of match that is being played.
What Is Singles Tennis?
Singles tennis is a game played by two people, one-versus-one. The two competing players are typically both men or both women, although men and women do occasionally play each other in exhibition matches. At all levels of play, singles tennis is considered to be more difficult to play and more prestigious to win than doubles tennis.
Singles Tennis Court Rules
For doubles matches, the whole court is available for players to use and aim the ball at. However, for singles matches, there is a portion of the court that is considered out of bounds, but is in bounds for a doubles match. This area that is out of bounds for singles matches but in bounds for doubles matches is called “the doubles alley,” and there are lines known as the singles sidelines which block off the boundaries of the singles court
In a singles match, players can only rely on their own skill and ability, rather than a teammate, whom they could rely upon if they were playing in a doubles match. Singles tennis matches usually favor the player that is faster and stronger than their opponent. In singles play, players usually hover around the baseline, as this gives them the best chance at reaching any ball that is hit to them. Being farther back on the court makes it easier to reach a ball that may be hit farther away from them.
Singles Tennis Salaries
In professional tennis, singles tennis players are more highly regarded than doubles players and make drastically more money than them. For example, the men and women’s singles champion at the 2019 U.S. Open made $3.85 million, while the men and women’s doubles champions earned $740,000 per team.
What is the difference between a singles match and a doubles match?
A singles match is played one-on-one instead of two-on-two and is played on a smaller court. Singles matches require more serving, as in a doubles match, players on a team alternate service for each service game. Singles tennis is also more competitive and challenging, and singles titles are more prestigious than doubles titles.