Double fault or ace - it's a winner for tennis fans

Society Materials 13 August 2008 04:18 (UTC +04:00)

You are always a winner in the eyes of Chinese tennis fans at the Olympics, so much so they will even applaud anyone serving a double fault, the Reuters reported.

But some players unaccustomed to hearing thunderous bursts of clapping and loud "Oohs" and "Aahs" midway through rallies say their concentration has been affected.

Leading Chinese women's player Zheng Jie said on Tuesday home fans were so enthusiastic about the Olympics and that many might not understand the usual etiquette with which tennis was watched.

"Sometimes they may cheer too early, which will interfere with the players," Zheng said after her 6-7 6-1 6-4 win against Nuria Llagostera of Spain.

During the three-hour match the crowd often clapped at wrong moments, including double faults by the Spaniard.

"Some fans may not be familiar with the requirements of the tennis games. I hope that next time maybe they can pay attention to that," said Zheng, who reached the semi-finals at Wimbledon this year.

But she added: "I would like to thank them for cheering me on in such heat and also such a long match."