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Babolat invents ‘tennis of the future’


Originally published on: 17/01/12 09:28

Top-flight tennis is fit to burst with numerous forms of data, from the use of Hawk-Eye for plotting service habits to break point conversion rates, winner counts and other assorted percentages and crucial match stats.

But given that the figures collected hold such important presence in the upper echelons of the game – and is later pored over by coaches, players and fans alike – it’s about time the art of performance evaluation filtered down into tennis at club level.

Enter racket and apparel manufacturer Babolat, who have announced their vision to develop the innovative ‘Play & Connect’ racquet.

The futuristic model integrates sensors into the frame that will record the flow of data, meaning that all players – whether they are novices, amateurs or professionals – will have access to information about their game to measure and challenge their performance.

According to Babolat, the innovative bat will allow players to better understand their game and to improve their performance on the court in an enjoyable way.

“Innovation is only valuable if it advances the game of tennis to the benefit of the greatest number of people,” offers the company’s president and CEO, Eric Babolat.

“In 1875, Babolat invented the first strings for tennis racquets. More than 135 years of innovation and progress later, I am proud to present today our vision of the tennis of tomorrow, brought by our Play & Connect racquet.”

The French manufacturer, whose racquets and strings are currently used by the likes of Rafael Nadal, Kim Clijsters, Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, Li Na and Andy Roddick, will present the first prototype Play & Connect racquet at this year’s French Open.

By September, 100 prototype racquets will be tested around the world before the official launch of the stick in 2013.


Tim Farthing, Tennishead Editorial Director & Owner, has been a huge tennis fan his whole life. He's a tennis journalist and entrepreneur as well as playing tennis to a national standard. He also helps manage his local club and volunteers for his local tennis organisation. He's a specialist in content about the administration of professional tennis and tennis coaching for all levels.