London, Oct 23 : It won't be long before you may see Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal wannabes striking the tennis ball with a racquet, that has two handles, quite unlike the traditional single armed racquet.
The bizarre two-handled racquet with a fork-like grip has been designed by Lionel Burt, and is being used by two American brothers, Dann and Brian Battistone.
The racquet, named 'The Natural,' has two handles positioned at a right-angle to the head, allowing players to play two-handed open-stance forehand shots from both sides.
While the use of such racquets has been permitted, it still gets raised eyebrows in the traditional sport.
While playing with this innovative creation, one of the American brothers uses a volleyball-style jump serve, switching the racket from hand to hand mid-leap.
But, the racquet brothers take an International Tennis Federation (ITF) certificate to every game they play, proving that the use of the racket, named 'The Natural,' is legal in every sense of the word.
"We knew some people would be against the racket. There's a lot of tradition in tennis so this is quite radical," The Telegraph quoted Brian, 29, from Las Vegas, as saying.
Burt has claimed that it wasn't quite difficult for them to convince the ITF to approve the racket.
"Their basic position is, 'If you can beat Roger Federer with a snow shovel of that dimension, go ahead and do it."
It took 18 years for Burt to develop the racket, which he designed after being inspired by his permanent back problems caused by always playing on one side.
Story first published: Thursday, October 23, 2008, 15:48 [IST]
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