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VICTORIAN TENNIS RULE BOOK REVEALS GAME PLAYED BY THREE

TENNIS was a game made for three according to the first Victorian rule book. Our ancestors started playing the game outdoors for the first time thanks to a Birmingham lawyer who experimented with the sport. Instead of the Wimbledon as we know it with strict singles and doubles teams with no mixing of the sexes the early Victorians were MORE liberal. In a version called the Unicorn one player could play against two opponents. And while ladies were discouraged from playing - they were permitted to battle against the men. This means if Wimbledon was played the Victorian way we could be looking at a big female name like Serena Williams playing the likes of Murray AND Djokovic. History buffs of the sport insist the 1874 'Lawn tennis or Pelota rules of the game' by Thomas Henry Gem was the first of its kind. Former PE teachers Sue Elks, 69, and Christopher Elks, 68, from Wythall in the West Midlands explained the difference the modern game has with the tennis of yesteryear.

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