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October 14, 2009

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It's love-431 on world's fastest court

JO-WILFRIED Tsonga and Fernando Verdasco, acclaimed for their speed around the court, admitted to feeling a little nervous as they played a modified exhibition match while hurtling around Shanghai in one of the world's fastest commercial high-speed trains.

Billed as the "fastest tennis in the world," seventh-ranked Tsonga of France took on ninth-ranked Spaniard Verdasco on a mini-tennis court laid down in one of Shanghai's high-speed Maglev trains yesterday as it reached a cruising speed of 431 kilometers per hour during the seven minutes and 20 seconds it took to make the 30-kilometer trip from Longyang Station to Pudong International Airport.

"The feeling is special because we are going faster than our serve and it's crazy," said Tsonga, who along with Verdasco is in Shanghai for the Shanghai ATP Masters 1000. "You are a little bit nervous when it's really fast."

While Verdasco enjoyed the train ride, he wasn't so sure about the standard of tennis on board."For the first time in tennis, nobody won," Verdasco joked. "For me, it was the first time to be (traveling in a train) over 400 (kph). If we don't crash I'm not afraid."


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