Mudgee set to host first ever Fast4 tournament

Fast4 Tennis interest is already spiking in Mudgee, with a four week tournament on the way to the district.

Fast4 Tennis interest is already spiking in Mudgee, with a four week tournament on the way to the district.

In a first not only for the Mudgee District Tennis Club, but also Mudgee as a whole, Fast4 will be coming to the town in a four week competition.

Usually only playing three competitions a year, this year the club has decided to play a short 4 week competition to get players back into the “swing” of things as well as giving new players an opportunity to play in a short term competition without having to commit long term.

While new to most, Fast4 is quickly becoming more and more popular.

In the professional circuit, the game tends to be backed with lots of music, fun and games, and is usually held before a major tournament, or as a lay-over event while the major fixtures are split.

In the Mudgee district, it's about trying something new – never been seen in the area.

Fast4 has a number of variations on the traditional format of tennis, most notably the scrapping of the 'let' rule, aiming to shorten the time played for each of the competition games.

It was designed to provide a less-time consuming version of the sport for those who can’t participate in the longer, traditional form of the game.

Traditional games of tennis normally last between 30 minutes and four hours for women, or between one and seven hours for men - depending on how competitive the match may be.

The longest games for each sex have been six hours and 31 minutes, and 11 hours and five minutes respectively.

A five set game of Fast4 however, will rarely last longer than 75 minutes with sets likely to take between 12 and 15 minutes to complete.

While it's a much different format to what players are used to, the shorter form of the game is sure to excite.

Competition organiser James Hughes said that the speedy variant of tennis has long been on the minds of the local club.

"The Fast4 format is something the club has wanted to do for a while, it's been just a matter of jumping in and giving it a shot,” Hughes said.

“The guys at Tennis Australia have been great in supporting the initiative and we're looking forward to seeing the difference a few rules changes can make.

"Having a shorter competition too gives those who weren't sure about playing in our evening competitions a chance of signing onto a shorter term competition.”

The accelerated format competition kicks off from August 28, with interested players able to pick their preferred day and sign-up at mudgeetennis.com.

The Fast4 tournament will run over four weeks and the cost is $34. 

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