Rackets is quite simply the fastest and most exciting ball game in the world. The small white bullet-like ball travels at speeds up to 180mph. It is rock hard, and deflecting off stone walls and floors, requires such fleetness of foot and sharpness of eye that it is a game sportsmen are unlikely to play well unless they start young.
Rackets developed in the 18th century in two of London’s big debtors’ prisons: the King’s Bench and the Fleet. The prisoners, apparently, wanted to speed up the game of fives, which is played with the palm of the hand, by using (real) tennis rackets.
Despite the antiquity of the game, rackets is flourishing as never before and national and world competitions have a regular home at Queen’s. There are two courts at Queen’s, one known as the Championship Court, the other as The Bridgeman.