break someone's serve

In tennis and related sports, win a game served by one's opponent, as in The only way he'll win the match is to break Bill's serve. The use of serve, from the earlier service, meaning “starting play” in these sports, dates from the early 1600s.


Nearby words

  1. break ranks,
  2. break someone,
  3. break someone of something,
  4. break someone up,
  5. break someone's heart,
  6. break the back of,
  7. break the bank,
  8. break the ice,
  9. break the news,
  10. break the record

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.