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Glossary of Tennis Terms

Tennis - Glossary of Terms follows below:

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Defensive lob A high, deep shot, which allows the player on the defence time to recover court position
and forces the offensive player away from the net.

Deuce court side, on which the first point of each game begins, also called the right court or the forehand court.

Dink shot soft dipping shot that just clears the net; often used in doubles, especially on return of serve.

Double-fault Failure to hit either of two serves in play.

Drive volley or swing volley Hitting the ball in the air with a longer swing than the normal short volley

Drop shot A delicate shot that barely clears the net and falls short in the opponent's court.

Drop volley Same as the drop shot, but hit off a volley, usually from a position close to the net.


Daisy cutter A low shot that skids or takes a very low bounce, usually because of backspin.
Default The failure or refusal of a player to take part in or complete a match, resulting in a victory for the opponent. Also used as a verb, as in "Smith was forced to default because of a knee injury."
Defensive lob A high shot, often used against an opponent at or near the net, designed to buy time.
Defensive volley A volley, usually hit from below the top of the net, simply as a means of returning the opponent's shot to keep a rally going. See offensive volley; volley.
Deuce When players are tied at 40, the score is called "deuce". At deuce, a player must win two points in a row to win the game. If the players split the following two points, the score reverts to deuce.
Deuce court The receiver's right service court, where he or she receives serve when the score is deuce. The opposite of advantage court.
Double fault The server is given two attempts at a valid serve. If both attempts fail, it is a double fault and the receiver wins the point. Also used as a verb.
Double hit The act of striking the ball twice during a single stroke; it results in loss of the point.

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Doubles A match between two teams of two players each.
Doubles court The playing area for a doubles match, which includes the two alleys as well as the singles court. The area is 78 feet long by 36 feet wide.
Down the line Descriptive of a shot that is hit straight from near the sideline, as opposed to a cross-court shot.
Drag volley A volley hit with backspin.
Draw The process by which matches are arranged and scheduled for a tournament. Generally, seeded players are given byes or scheduled before the draw, and names of the other entrants are then randomly selected to determine match-ups and order of play. The word is also used to mean the schedule itself, after the draw has been completed. See also seed.
Drop Shot A soft shot that drops just over the net; usually hit with backspin to minimize its bounce. It's most commonly used against an opponent who is playing deep, as contrasted with the chip shot. This shot is most effective on a clay court surface.
Drop volley A drop shot that's hit before the ball has bounced.

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