The fastest recorded tennis serve is about 260km/h but smash is far easier to do and shoot with far higher velocity. I am trying to find the maximum speed tennis players are able to shoot the ball and I feel the shot is smash, not serving. Correct me please if I am wrong. So what is the fastest recorded tennis smash?

1 Answer 1


The speed of overhead smashes that are hit during tennis points are not recorded (or at least if they are recorded, those metrics are not kept or stored anywhere permanent). The speed of the serve is mostly a gimmick for the fans to observe and - to my knowledge - it's only matches on the show courts at the 4 majors where any kind of statistics around serve speed is recorded and the data is kept as part of match statistics.

If I had to guess, however, it would probably be Roddick against Federer at Wimbledon ;). See this clip: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uaw_P5ZX4r8

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    How fast was his smash?
    – user527
    Apr 24, 2014 at 13:51
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    @edmastermind29 The commentator said "780 miles per hour" that is 1255.29 km/h, is this possible? Can a smash be really ~5 times faster than the fastest serving? 348.692 m/s would be faster than the speed of sound 340.29 m/s and I could not hear any sound shock. I feel the commentator was not serious about the speed, just making it more hyperbolic.
    – hhh
    Apr 24, 2014 at 14:09
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    @hhh Agreed about the engagement in hyperbole.
    – user527
    Apr 24, 2014 at 14:10
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    Yes, the commentator was just being funny. As I was saying - overhead smashes are not measured by any kind of radar devices like serves are. I can tell you from having played high level tennis myself, that an overhead smash would not be significantly faster than a serve - in the case of a player like Roddick, I would bet that any overhead smash he hit (like that shown in the video) would not exceed 170 mph (273 kmh). The players are already swinging as hard as they can on a serve - so there isn't really much more room for additional pace to be generated.
    – jamauss
    Apr 24, 2014 at 21:56
  • @hhh There's an interesting comment on that video from "The AViator" who watched the video in slow motion and counted the number of frames that it took for the ball to move across the court. Based on an assumption that the video was recorded at 24 frames per second, he determined that the smash was approximately 116 miles per hour. Jul 2, 2022 at 18:08

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