What Does Love Mean In Tennis?

What Does Love Mean in Tennis

Tennis has many unique terms for scoring and rules concepts. “Love” is a word used in scoring tennis that you will commonly hear at the beginning of a set. Keep reading to learn how the word “love” works in tennis.

What Does the Score Love Mean in Tennis?

In tennis, the term “love” is used to describe a score of zero. Therefore, every tennis match starts as “love-all,” meaning that all of the players have no points. “Love” is still used after someone scores, so long as one side still has zero points. For instance, if the server is losing by a score of 0-15, the umpire would call the score as “love-15.” When referring to a score of zero sets, “love” is also used in place of zero.

Love in Tennis Gameplay

Love is a saying that is used in the game of tennis to represent a score of zero in a particular game. At the beginning of a game during a set of a tennis match, the score is announced as love-love instead of zero-zero.

When announcing a score for tennis, zero is flat out wrong since that is not how the score would be announced during a match. You must announce a score of zero as love. This means that the scoring for a tennis match includes love, 15, 30, 40, and deuce.

History of Love in Tennis

There are various theories about the unknown origin of the term love, but none can be proven to be correct. This means that there is no true knowledge about the origin of the term. One popular theory is that the term love is used because of its close resemblance to the French word for egg, “l’oeuf.” The reasoning behind this concept is that eggs resemble the number zero, and the pronunciation of “l’oeuf” is similar to the pronunciation of the English word “love.”

At the beginning of a tennis game, the score can be pronounced in one of two ways: “love-love” or “love-all.” The latter option has almost always been used in tennis matches since the 1980s.


Why is “love” used in tennis?

Some believe that the expression “love all,” when a game’s score is 0-0, is nice as it portrays the advantage going to nobody. Similar to this theory, the use of “love” when referring to “zero” may refer to an appreciation of the game. If one has not scored in the game, the idea is that their score shows they are not playing to win, but for the “love of the game.”