In one of the more bizarre professional tennis matches ever played, young World Team Tennis star Taylor Townsend was forced to play 2-on-1 in a doubles match Thursday after she injured her teammate with a forehand to the back of the head.
First off, for those who don’t know, World Team Tennis is a coed league that was technically started way back in 1973 but it’s gone through several changes over the years. Unlike the ATP, the league has teams represent cities from the Eastern and Western Conferences and they collect points for each match won, similar to college.
On Thursday, the Eastern Conference championships were held in Washington, with the Washington Kastles outlasting the Philadelphia Freedoms, 21-16.
The Kastles received a huge boost during the women’s doubles match with former ATP great Martina Hingis and Anastasia Rodionova taking on Townsend and Lizel Huber.
Townsend mistakenly struck Huber in the back of the head with her racket. Huber tried to play on but in the next game she couldn’t continue, and later it was ruled she had suffered a concussion.
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Forbidden to play both sides of the court even though she was down a teammate, Townsend trudged on and managed to hold a game point with her serve. She still lost 5-1.
SB Nation was able to snag some videos of the match, with Rodionova and Hingis taking full advantage.
An 18-year-old out of Chicago, Townsend deserves some serious respect for not forfeiting the match and competing, and it could be a sign of greater things to come in her career. She previously won the 2012 Australian Open junior title.