Its interesting to see numerous tennis balls in a court yet only this number is used in tennis game.
How many tennis balls are used in a match? The number of tennis balls used in WTA. ATP, and Grand Slam tournament is 6 (SIX) balls, the balls are changed after the first seven games, and after every nine games that follows. The balls number apply for both the singles and doubles. For all the major competitive tennis tournament in Grand Slam Tournament categories at least 237,000 new tennis balls are used every year.
Pressurized balls are the ones used in the professional tournament and needs to be changed frequently since they lose its bounce after several hitting.
Actually, a single tennis ball in a competitive game experiencing constant hitting of about 105 racket hit or hitting the ground, a tennis ball can last 2-3hrs after which the bounce is significantly reduced and can only be used for warm ups.
However, in a casual tennis game, 2 or 3 tennis balls can be used in a match. Although professional players may train with new balls after every tennis set or as desired.
Thousands to millions of tennis balls are manufactured every year. In fact, for the main competitive tennis tournament about 325 million worth of balls are used every year.
How Often Are Tennis Balls Changed In A Match?
In a competitive tennis tournament such as ATP, WTA, and Grand Slam, tennis balls are changed after the first seven games, and then after the next consecutive nine games that follows.
The rule does not apply for general training or perhaps less professional tennis game as the balls can be changed whenever it seems fit.
The main reasons for changing the balls is because since the pressurized tennis balls leak their internal pressure to the outside environment, the balls after prolonged use are likely to have
- Reduced optimal bounce height distance
- Reduced spinning speed when hit
- A thud sound when hit since they are flat
- Flat tennis ball are dead and unsuitable to be used in a tennis match
Despite having a specific number of games after which the balls can be changed, you can also test your ball to see when to change assuming you are not in a competitive game.
To test the ball efficiency, test for:
1. Bounce Height
A new ball bounce distance off the ground is much higher than a used ball
2. Remaining Pressure
Simply squeeze the ball. A ball that has lost pressure easily flattens compared to a ball that still has enough pressure
3. Speed And Distance Of Movement
Balls that are in good condition move fast and over a longer distance compared to a ball that has lost pressure.
4. Spin Test
A tennis ball with sufficient pressure is light enough and spins much faster than a ball that has started to go flat or is dead.
How Many Games Before New Balls In Tennis?
After the first 7 games, the balls are changed. Thereafter, the balls are changed after the next 9 games. Initial 7 games change accounts for extra bounce left on the balls to be used for warm up by players before starting a new game. Furthermore, it is possible to see tennis players checking three or more balls while in a court.
So, why do tennis players take 3 balls? Tennis players take three balls to be able to select the best ball for a serve. A new ball that is smooth travels faster and is suitable for use in a first serve. A tennis ball that has been hit and is fluffy moves at a much reduced speed and is not desirable for a serve. That is why players have to check a tennis ball before serving.
How Many Tennis Balls Are Used In Grand Slam Tournament?
At least 237,000 tennis balls are used in Grand Slam tennis tournament every year. Grand Slam tournament comprises of 4 groups of tennis tournament each of which uses a varying number of tennis balls.
|Name of Grand Slam Tournament||Approximate Average Number of Tennis Balls Used Yearly|
|Total Grand Slam Tennis Balls Used||237,000|
How Many Tennis Balls Are Used In The Australian Open?
In the Australian Open, the total number of balls on average that are used in tennis match is over 48,000 tennis balls. The high number of balls is because of several matches played.
Just like in other tournament, 6 balls are used at the start of a game that are changed after the first seven games and thereafter are changed after 9 games.
Australian Open tennis ball brand that is commonly used is the Dunlop AO Tennis balls. In fact, Dunlop tennis ball is often considered as the official Australian Open tennis ball brand.
How Many Tennis Balls Are Used In A Match At Wimbledon?
A total of over 54,000 tennis balls are used in Wimbledon tennis tournament every year for all courts. The number may seem many but considering the high number of games played for all sets in Wimbledon, 54,000 is a good average.
Keep in mind that at the start of a game six balls are used, the balls are changed after the first seven games, then later changed after every nine games.
Statistically, how many matches at Wimbledon is approximately 675 matches. The high number of games accounts for the high number of Wimbledon tennis balls used.
Wimbledon tennis balls often belongs to the Dunlop tennis ball brand. Dunlop tennis ball brand is manufactured by Slazenger, a British Sports equipment manufacturer.
How Many Tennis Balls Are Used In The French Open?
The total number of tennis balls used in a French Open can be approximated to be over 65,000 tennis balls every year. French Open tennis balls common brand used was Babolat tennis ball brand but was later switched to Wilson tennis ball brand.
How Many Balls Are Used In A US Open Tennis Match?
In the US Open, more than 70,000 tennis balls are used every year. Since it is a competitive tournament, every game starts off with 6 tennis balls that are changed after the first seven games, and after every other nine games that follows.
In fact, since there are over 300 matches to be played in a US Open, 70000 tennis balls is a good average approximation of the balls used in the US Open. US Open tennis balls are mainly the Wilson LABS tennis ball brand.
How Many Tennis Balls Are Used In Junior Tennis Tournament?
Normally, 2-3 tennis balls are provided for the beginning of a match in a junior tournament. In addition, another 3 balls can be added to be used for the third set assuming all goes well. The number of the balls used can also vary.
What Happens To The Used Tennis Balls After A Match
Imagine the huge quantity of tennis balls waste. Just add up the number of used US Open tennis balls, Australian Open tennis balls, French Open tennis balls, Wimbledon tennis balls, WTA tennis balls, and ATP tennis balls. That’s too much number of used balls.
This Is How The Used Balls Can End Up:
- Some balls can be souvenirs whereby competitors give out to their fans.
- Some upcoming players can take the a few balls to use in practice.
- Some balls are dumped in backyards.
- Some balls are left in club courts.
- Some balls are used by dogs to play.
- Some balls are thrown on roofs.
- Some balls end up clogging drainpipes.
- Some balls end up in landfills.
- Some balls are used in furniture ends to reduce the rate of scuffing a floor.
- Some balls are used for packaging to act as a cushion
- Some balls end up in recycle centers.
How many tennis balls are used in a tennis match is 6 balls for the start of a new game, the balls are changed after the next 7 games, and thereafter the balls are changed after 9 games. Grand Slam Tournament tennis balls used in a year is about 237,000 tennis balls. Most used tennis balls can end up in various places including landfills, and recycle centers just to mention a few.