A denser pattern is often considered to deliver more control, at the expense of spin potential. A more open pattern is often believed to offer greater potential for power and spin. However, how much power is produced by a player can be strongly influenced by how a player adapts to the characteristics of the racket. Some players may hit harder with a dense string pattern, producing faster shots because of the added control from the dense pattern. Rackets, including those of much of the wood era, are marked with a recommended string tension range. The basic rule is that a lower tension creates more power (from the trampoline effect) and a higher string tension creates more control (less string deformation which results in a more predictable the power and angle of the departure from the string bed.) Some professionals used small-headed rackets with flexible-material strings (natural gut) strung at very high tension. Examples include Pete Sampras and Björn Borg. Some used large-headed rackets with very inflexible-material strings (kevlar). Andrei Agassi is an example. Many professionals during the standard wood era strung at relatively low tension and used natural gut string; both decisions were to increase the trampoline effect for more power. By contrast, almost every professional player today uses the much stiffer polyester string in their much stiffer rackets which also have larger heads and which tend to be lighter. Madeline Hauptman sold a line of rackets, called the MAD RAQ, which featured a Star of David pattern (a six-pointed figure consisting of two interlaced equilateral triangles), as it used three strings instead of two for stringing the racket. This pattern is used in snowshoes. This stringing pattern was said to feature less string notching, improving string lifespan. It was even claimed that many pro shops refused to carry the racket because less string breakage would reduce string and stringing service sales. It has also been claimed that the racket is more difficult to string than a two string racket. However, the Wilson T-2000-type requires a great deal more time for stringing than a typical racket and rackets of that series were very popular. Whatever the cause of the failure of the MAD RAQ in the marketplace, it was the only time a snowshoe pattern was used in tennis. Hauptman switched her racket line to a two string diamond pattern (PowerAngle). This pattern had already been used in much earlier rackets but had not had much popularity. It is said to be easier to string than the MAD RAQ but does not have the benefit of reduced string notching, at least not to the same degree. The claim is that this diagonal pattern offers more comfort than a traditional square pattern.
Aside from the historical significance of these events, they also carry larger prize funds than any other tour event and are worth double the number of ranking points to the champion than in the next echelon of tournaments, the Masters 1000 (men) and Premier events (women). Another distinguishing feature is the number of players in the singles draw. There are 128, more than any other professional tennis tournament. This draw is composed of 32 seeded players, other players ranked in the world's top 100, qualifiers, and players who receive invitations through wild cards. Grand Slam men's tournaments have best-of-five set matches while the women play best-of-three. Grand Slam tournaments are among the small number of events that last two weeks, the others being the Indian Wells Masters and the Miami Masters.
Copyright © 2019 Bleacher Report, Inc. Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. All Rights Reserved. BleacherReport.com is part of Bleacher Report – Turner Sports Network, part of the Turner Sports and Entertainment Network. Certain photos copyright © 2019 Getty Images. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of Getty Images is strictly prohibited. AdChoices