Leading article: Hot stuff

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The Independent Online

It is known as a hot dog, apparently, because the arc described by the player's racket as it travels down between their legs to strike the ball resembles the filling of the savoury snack.

Believe that explanation if you like. All we know is that if most of us attempted the outrageous tennis shot played by Roger Federer in his US Open semi-final against Novak Djokovic it would probably have resulted in some painful bruising to a sensitive area of the anatomy.

Everyone loves the trick shot. Just as we all like the ball jugglers in football; the batsmen who are prepared to try something new; the quick-thinking improvisers on the rugby pitch.

Of course, unless such trickery is married to skill, teamwork, application and discipline they are of little use. But what a dull world it would be for sports enthusiasts without the imaginative and the audacious. So here's to many more sporting hot dogs to come. The fans will provide the relish.