Virtual sports are becoming a trend as more sports are incorporated into the esports industry. Technological advancements and accessibility of the internet has been the driver of the popularity of esports.
Tennis is a sport that has been around for ages and comes in many forms. It has a popular version in the US known as pickleball, and several outlets offer some of the best pickleball paddles to get you started on your playing journey. Tennis is a game loved by millions of viewers, and it’s no wonder that esports has incorporated it into the professional gaming world.
Wildlife Studios is the developer for Tennis Clash, and they’ve made playing tennis no longer have restrictions, as all kinds of people engage in the esport version.
What is Tennis Clash?
Tennis Clash is an online multiplayer tennis game that uses intuitive controls and 3D graphics for a virtual version of the actual sport. The graphics in the game have a realistic look and it also is the official tennis game for the esports Olympic series.
Where Did It All Begin?
After many years of debating whether esports were a sport, the first Olympic Esports Series was finally held in 2023. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) created the Olympic Esports Series as a simulation and virtual sports competition. The first official series took place in Suntan Centre, Singapore. The series started on the 1st of March and ended on the 25th of June. It allowed amateurs and professionals to engage equally as players from all over the world. The finals were to take place from the 22nd to the 25th of June.
This esports event is a unique addition to the traditional Olympic sports people are accustomed to. The streaming took place globally through Olympic Social Media feeds. This event also signifies the growth in the Olympic Virtual Series, which took place in 2021 and had over 250,000 participants from 100 countries. Supporting virtual sports in the Olympics means esports can develop worldwide. The International Olympic Committee’s collaboration with Wildlife Studio is a step towards recognising video gaming and its technological contributions.
As the event gains popularity, more esports will likely be added to the event to showcase some of the very best of virtual sports.
2023 Tennis Clash Series Finals
The ITF and IOC announced that the finalists for the Tennis in the Olympic Esports Series for 2023 were a six-player field. Five players were from the Qualifiers held on 4-10 May, and the sixth was a wild card player from Singapore. Here is the finalists list:
William Foster from Great Britain, nicknamed Fozzy
Shenghao He from China, nicknamed Kafe
Brian Netter, from the United States of America, also known as BRUIN
Shengquan Lyu, also form China
Anass Benghazi, Anteo, from France
Andrew Arriola, DéjàVu from Singapore (the wild card player)
Players were drawn into two groups, with three players each for the first round. The top players from each group would then advance into the semi-finals. The winner of each group will then play against each other while the losers battle for third place.
Who Won the Tennis Esports Series in 2023?
France took the cup with Anass Benghazi, “Anteo,” winning the Olympic Esports Series in 2023. This came after he defeated Shenghao from China in the grand finale of the Tennis Clash mobile game. He’s the first ever to win the event.
He took the third and fourth games with a 3-1 victory. This confirmed his talent, considering that he had been runner-up at the 2022 Roland-Garros eSeries, where he was also part of the semi-finals in the 2023 tournament.
William Foster from Great Britain took third place against Shengquan. Andrew Arriola and Brian Netter were eliminated after the group stage.
How Esports Will Revolutionise Playing and Learning Tennis
There are multiple ways esports could revolutionise how Tennis is played. Imagine playing your favourite sport at 60 and possibly competing in some tournaments? Here are a few ways the virtual world can bring your sportsperson to life:
Tennis esports can assist in improving and learning the perfect technique
Esports could be considered the faster and cheaper way of learning the game. Most esports apps assist with learning basic movements with the opportunity to improve over time. They also have a real-time assistant or instructor with feedback.
You can track your learning progress
This means you can access all your training statistics, where your learning progress is monitored. You can always see your best performance days and what you did to achieve that. On these apps, you can see the number of strokes, consistency and precision in your movements.
You can learn all tennis essentials
In the virtual games, you start with warming up and then practise all movements, including forehand, serve, and backhand. You could play an entire match with your skills as you get better in the game, even on a real court. Please note playing esports isn’t a replacement for the actual game; it’s just a version of the game.
You can play tennis from home
Another significant part about this is you can do all this from home. Most tennis esports come with setups suitable for all forms of spaces ranging from small to the largest. You could have a perfect tennis session in your living room. All training and gaming sessions are available online from anywhere, at any time.
Could Esports Replace Real Sports?
Real sports and esports can both be entertaining. One shouldn’t be looked at as a replacement for the other, but as a way of enhancing the other. Esports should be seen as a technological version of the real sport. There are ways in which the two are similar and different from each other.
How They Are Similar
- Both sports need a duration (time frame)
- Both forms of sports need someone to participate; the difference is the location
- They have games and leagues
How They Are Different
- In real sports, referees are real people who are part of the game, whereas virtual sports referees are video assistants embedded into the system.
- Esports games are updated from time to time, and the rules change. On the other hand, real sports rarely have changes, and the rules are more like tradition.
The Future of Tennis Clash
Esports are a growing trend, and we will likely see more collaborations as more people recognise and appreciate Tennis Clash. Video gaming enthusiasts will be the biggest fans of this development. As we see more partnerships with major tennis associations, there’s likely to be a merger between the real game and the virtual version. Wildlife has also recently announced the collaboration with the US Open, which is a major success for the developer as they promise better gaming for both worlds.