15, 30, 40, game. Have you always wondered how this “strange” tennis scoring system came about? Well, according to Daria Gavrilova, there’s a straight-forward story behind it.

“The most known story is that it came from using a clock as a scoreboard,” Gavrilova says in her TikTok video that she also posted on Instagram. “It started with 15, 30, 45 and 60.”

She goes on to explain:

“To make sure that you can’t win a game by winning one point, the idea of deuce was introduced.”

So why 40 and not 45?

“They changed 45 to 40 so if you win the next point, you get 10 points and if you win two points in a row, the clock moves to 60. And if you lose, you go back to 40.” Well, that explains it, doesn’t it?

Gavrilova, who hasn’t played since falling to fellow Aussie Ash Barty in the second round of the Australian Open, has become a TikTok star thanks to her funny tennis videos that have gone viral.


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