Tamburello - Encyclopedia

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TAMBURELLO (called in Piedmont Tabasso), a court game popular in Italy, particularly in the northern provinces. It is a modification of the ancient game of Pallone, bearing the same general relation to it as Squash does to Racquets. A fullsized Tamburello Court, which need not be as true and even as that for Pallone, is 90 to loo yards long and half as wide, divided laterally through the middle by a line (cordino) into two equal spaces, the battuta and the rimessa. Three players regularly form a side, each carrying in one hand an implement called tamburello, resembling a tambourine (whence the name), which is a round frame of wood upon which is tightly stretched a cover of horse-hide. A rubber ball about the size of a lawn-tennis. ball is used. One of the players opens the service (battuta), which is made from a small square called the trampolino, situated at one corner of the battuta but outside the court. The service must be over the middle line. The ball must then be hit from side to side over the line, the side failing to return it or sending it out of court losing a point. The game is scored like lawntennis, four points constituting a game, counting '5+15+ 10+ 10. Tamburello, a less expensive game than Pallone, is popular with the lower classes, who use it as a medium for betting.

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