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View Full Version : Why do so many opponents call out when the ball strikes the line?


christo
05-10-2009, 11:50 AM
What is it about USTA play that makes generally honest players make out calls on balls that strike their side and baselines (especially)? Totally ruins the match as far as I'm concerned. Don't give me the crap about parallax etc. These players are making a conscious decision to NOT give the benefit of the doubt to the opponent.

rich s
05-10-2009, 12:11 PM
I've been saying for a long time......the closer the match, the worse the vision.

sureshs
05-10-2009, 12:28 PM
How do you know the ball was in?

Ronaldo
05-10-2009, 12:55 PM
How do you know the ball was in?

If you do not see it out? It is in. Played dubs, server shanks a serve off the top of his racquet. Ball flies over the fence and into a tree. Server pretends he hit an ace and walks over to the other side to serve. I look at my partner, shrug my shoulders, and give him the point.
His partner falls out laughing. He knows what happened.

Cruzer
05-10-2009, 12:59 PM
Some players just have bad eyesight, period. They don't intentionally make bad calls. They call what they see but unfortunately they don't always see where the ball really lands. I know a couple of people that usually wear glasses but don't wear them when playing tennis.

OrangePower
05-10-2009, 01:19 PM
What is it about USTA play that makes generally honest players make out calls on balls that strike their side and baselines (especially)? Totally ruins the match as far as I'm concerned. Don't give me the crap about parallax etc. These players are making a conscious decision to NOT give the benefit of the doubt to the opponent.

Sorry you had a bad experience. In my USTA experience, this is very rare. I have found 99% of players to be more than fair.

Sure there are occasional bad line calls. But I think these are overwhelmingly honest mistakes rather than attempts to cheat. After all, even professional linespeople make mistakes, and they are trained, right on the line, not sweating, and not focusing on getting into position to hit the ball.

Also, sometimes you might see it in from your side on the court when in reality it was out, especially on the opposite baseline. I mean it's pretty far away, and you dont have a good angle to see it.

JavierLW
05-10-2009, 01:20 PM
Some players just have bad eyesight, period. They don't intentionally make bad calls. They call what they see but unfortunately they don't always see where the ball really lands. I know a couple of people that usually wear glasses but don't wear them when playing tennis.

And I know tons of people that DO wear glasses and they make horrible line calls. Glasses can distort your vision, especially if you have a astigmatism.

(at least they do that for me, that's why I wear contacts)

Otherwise I just think a lot of people just suffer from making calls in a manner that is the opposite of what you are supposed to do. They REALLY want it to be out and it's close so their reaction is to call it out.

There is a difference between a conscious act and a bad habit sometimes. Maybe it's not a good excuse but at least it's better then the occasional ****** who's clearly consciously cheating. (I had one of those, he would call it out either super early or sometimes after it had landed several feet in)

SystemicAnomaly
05-10-2009, 01:27 PM
There are factors other than parallax and dishonesty that can account for bad calls. One of these is vantage point. Parallax is one aspect of this, proximity is another. Often, when a player is too close to the bounce location, their ability to make an accurate call is seriously compromised. The visual system, specifically the smooth pursuit (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Smooth_pursuit) system, cannot keep up with the flight of the ball when it is very close to us. The same thing happens when we are about to hit the ball -- the ball essentially becomes invisible to the eye/brain shortly before contact. Note, that for a baseball batter facing a 90 MPH pitch, the ball becomes "invisible" about 15 feet before it reaches the batter. The same thing happens to a tennis player hitting a ball or making a line call from a close proximity.

When a ball exceeds the ability of the smooth pursuit system to track it, the saccadic system is often employ. If the eyes jump ahead of the ball, lying in wait, the eyes/brain can catch a glimpse of the ball location (often just a blur). If the head & eyes are very still when looking at a line (on the court) or looking at a contact point, the ability to make a good contact or to make an accurate call is improved. This is why lines persons are taught to stop tracking the ball and, instead, are told to fix their gaze on the outside edge of the ball, keeping the head & eyes very quiet (very still).

For a lines person, the vantage point is usually much better than that of a player trying to make a call. The lines person is not too close the bounce location (and they are also in a position which minimizes parallax).

Our brain lies to us. Quite often, the first accurate picture that the brain sees is not what has really happened. When the ball is bouncing, opponents are often tyrning their heads or moving their eyes to catch a glimpse of the event. If the head or eyes are still moving as the bounce occurs, the opponent probably "sees" the event with the periperal vision. While peripheral vision is extremely good at detecting motion, it is very poor with other details -- such as acuity, color and precise location.

If the eyes/had of an opponent is moving at the time of an event, then the ball is probably already past the bounce location when their brain is able to process an accurate image of the ball. The image that the opponent sees in their head is that of the ball past the bounce event, not at the actual event. The brain attempts to fill in the lack of information garnered by the peripsheral system. In doing so, an inaccurate image is "seen" by the brain. The brain lies. The player honestly believes that they have witnessed the ball bouncing "out".

Since you, as a player, are further away from the bounce event, your head & eyes are probably relatively very quiet when witnessing the event. So, even tho' you are further from the bounce event, you will sometimes have a better perspective that an opponent who is moving head or eyes.
.

benasp
05-10-2009, 04:15 PM
Great post on the theorical aspect of line call, this mean that if it's not very out, it's in.

IMO, this is nearly impossible to accurately judge a serve that land on the line +- about 6 inch.

Mick
05-10-2009, 04:22 PM
the rule should be: if you don't see it out then it is in.

OrangePower
05-10-2009, 04:27 PM
the rule should be: if you don't see it out then it is in.

That *is* the rule.

Mick
05-10-2009, 04:28 PM
That *is* the rule.
yep but unfortunately, some of the people i play with don't play by this rule.

Swissv2
05-10-2009, 04:36 PM
Sorry you had a bad experience. In my USTA experience, this is very rare. I have found 99% of players to be more than fair.

You are lucky. 99% of players I have watched, when in a USTA match, will call it out when the ball hits the line.

Ronaldo
05-10-2009, 05:50 PM
You are lucky. 99% of players I have watched, when in a USTA match, will call it out when the ball hits the line.

Glad we play most of our matches on clay. Tough when your partner sees it out and you can see the mark and it is in.

Swissv2
05-10-2009, 05:52 PM
Glad we play most of our matches on clay. Tough when your partner sees it out and you can see the mark and it is in.

I live in a dry climate, so I am not too fortunate to play on clay. One of these days I want to try it out (grass too :) )

SystemicAnomaly
05-11-2009, 04:58 AM
the rule should be: if you don't see it out then it is in.

Problem is: this might not be enough. In case you missed it in my long post above, opponents will often be very certain that they see an "in" ball as "out". They truly believe that they saw it "out", so they make the call that way. This has nothing to do with bad eyesight, it has to do with the way our eyes perceive motion in certain situations.

To be sure that you do not fall into this trap, you should make "out" calls only when you see the complete bounce event in your foveal (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foveal) (central) vision (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foveal), not your peripheral vision. You should never make an "out" call if either your eyes are moving or your head is turning during the bounce event. If this should happen, ask you partner if he/she saw the bounce clearly. Otherwise, ask you opponent how they saw the ball and accept whatever they say in this situation.

Cindysphinx
05-11-2009, 05:02 AM
Problem is: this might not be enough. In case you missed it in my long post above, opponents will often be very certain that they see an "in" ball as "out". They truly believe that they saw it "out", so they make the call that way. This has nothing to do with bad eyesight, it has to do with the way our eyes perceive motion in certain situations.

To be sure that you do not fall into this trap, you should make "out" calls only when you see the complete bounce event in your foveal (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foveal) (central) vision (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foveal), not your peripheral vision. You should never make an "out" call if either your eyes are moving or your head is turning during the bounce event. If this should happen, ask you partner if he/she saw the bounce clearly. Otherwise, ask you opponent how they saw the ball and accept whatever they say in this situation.


But . . . How realistic is this really? I mean, if you are playing a match and especially if you are the player closest to the ball, you will rarely have both your eyes and your head still when a ball bounces.

I think all you can do is the best you can do. Look for the space between the line and the ball. If you don't see that, just play the ball.

I will say that people have horrible vision when looking across a line. I have partners who ask me repeatedly whether the serve was long when I'm calling the service line for them. I assume they are asking because they would have called it out and are surprised that I did not.

raiden031
05-11-2009, 05:11 AM
You are lucky. 99% of players I have watched, when in a USTA match, will call it out when the ball hits the line.

In my 2 1/2 years or so of usta leagues, I've only witnessed maybe 3 definitively bad calls by opponents. I've witnessed countless times where they gave me the benefit of the doubt when I felt they probably won the point. I don't get why you perceive things differently. Maybe you want to believe you are being hooked, whereas I want to believe that the match is played in good faith.

bad_call
05-11-2009, 07:40 AM
But . . . How realistic is this really? I mean, if you are playing a match and especially if you are the player closest to the ball, you will rarely have both your eyes and your head still when a ball bounces.

I think all you can do is the best you can do. Look for the space between the line and the ball. If you don't see that, just play the ball.

I will say that people have horrible vision when looking across a line. I have partners who ask me repeatedly whether the serve was long when I'm calling the service line for them. I assume they are asking because they would have called it out and are surprised that I did not.

agreed. when in doubt play it in.

beernutz
05-11-2009, 08:52 AM
You are lucky. 99% of players I have watched, when in a USTA match, will call it out when the ball hits the line.

Where do you play? I've only played USTA for about 4 years but in that time I could count on one hand and have fingers to spare the guys who have hooked me on line calls.

raiden031
05-11-2009, 08:54 AM
Where do you play? I've only played USTA for about 4 years but in that time I could count on one hand and have fingers to spare the guys who have hooked me on line calls.

There's a running joke where I live when we are playing a pickup game or tennis block, in which when a ball is close we will say "its good, but out if it was a usta match". Even though we joke about it, as I said its never been a problem in my usta experience.

randomname
05-11-2009, 09:15 AM
You are lucky. 99% of players I have watched, when in a USTA match, will call it out when the ball hits the line.

Either you play tennis at a school for the blind or your the one who isnt seeing the lines correctly. over the last 6 years I've probably played 5 people or less who I thought were either blatantly cheating or consistently calling close shots that caught the line out.

Annika
05-11-2009, 09:21 AM
I find this to be more of a problem when playing usta doubles.

Also, my eyesight must be pretty bad because when I'm on the "run" and the ball touches the line/or just misses it, it's somewhat of a blurr to me. Can anyone actually see the ball perfectly clear when it lands? So for me, if it's a blur, it's in!

slick
05-11-2009, 11:37 AM
Most teams I have played are pretty honest.

However last year in a big regional match my wife who was watching from the fence overheard the one of the members of the doubles team we were playing say to the other to "call any close balls out" and that's what they did. We lost a close match and I didn't find out about the comment until after the match.

I don't want to win so bad that I will compromise my integrity.

Ronaldo
05-11-2009, 06:10 PM
Where do you play? I've only played USTA for about 4 years but in that time I could count on one hand and have fingers to spare the guys who have hooked me on line calls.

Played USTA for 23 yrs and not only is this nation full of hookers, so is the Caribbean. Btw, my teammates are hookers.

randomname
05-11-2009, 06:28 PM
Played USTA for 23 yrs and not only is this nation full of hookers, so is the Caribbean. Btw, my teammates are hookers.

Is this some kind of all-prostitute team?

Ronaldo
05-11-2009, 06:32 PM
Is this some kind of all-prostitute team?

Most of us think hookers are lower than any prostitute. Just remember lines are out.

mdthsv
05-11-2009, 06:38 PM
Glad we play most of our matches on clay. Tough when your partner sees it out and you can see the mark and it is in.

Our public courts are 90% clay. This helps in many line calls, but is often used as a crutch for bad calls. Many players do not understand that just because a mark is out, does not mean the ball was out.

Clay is a wonderful surface for equalizing bad calls because the mark often tells the tale of the shot. Most of the time, out is out. However, when a ball (particularly one with pace) strikes a line, the mark left shows an enlongated oval shape, indicating the ball skidded off the line. In general, a clear, round "ball mark" followed by normal tail means the ball was out. A consistant oval shaped mark or a mark that "looks different" more than likely means it caught some line.

Ronaldo
05-11-2009, 06:46 PM
Our public courts are 90% clay. This helps in many line calls, but is often used as a crutch for bad calls. Many players do not understand that just because a mark is out, does not mean the ball was out.

Clay is a wonderful surface for equalizing bad calls because the mark often tells the tale of the shot. Most of the time, out is out. However, when a ball (particularly one with pace) strikes a line, the mark left shows an enlongated oval shape, indicating the ball skidded off the line. In general, a clear, round "ball mark" followed by normal tail means the ball was out. A consistant oval shaped mark or a mark that "looks different" more than likely means it caught some line.

Confused, if there is space between the line and the mark, it is out. Everything else is in. No mark, its good.

LuckyR
05-12-2009, 09:33 AM
You are lucky. 99% of players I have watched, when in a USTA match, will call it out when the ball hits the line.

Either you are grossly exagerating or you live in an unusual area. Most folks I play in USTA will go overboard to be fair. True there are the exceptions, they are very annoying but statistically they are exceptions.

I have had a little bit of a struggle with this issue, but now I don't look at the ball anymore, I look for court between the ball and the line, ie if there is no court between the line and ball I call it in (or don't call it out).

raiden031
05-12-2009, 09:46 AM
Either you are grossly exagerating or you live in an unusual area. Most folks I play in USTA will go overboard to be fair. True there are the exceptions, they are very annoying but statistically they are exceptions.


Actually now that I think about it, I can say that nearly every match, at least one of my teammates claims that their opponents made numerous bad calls. I think its odd that its so common by how much its discussed, yet I never experience it. So I think that the false belief of being hooked in USTA matches is far more prevalent than the actual occurence of it. I think its about attitude and people don't like to admit to losing fairly. They need an excuse.

LuckyR
05-12-2009, 10:05 AM
Actually now that I think about it, I can say that nearly every match, at least one of my teammates claims that their opponents made numerous bad calls. I think its odd that its so common by how much its discussed, yet I never experience it. So I think that the false belief of being hooked in USTA matches is far more prevalent than the actual occurence of it. I think its about attitude and people don't like to admit to losing fairly. They need an excuse.

I don't disagree with your assessment.

oldhacker
05-12-2009, 03:46 PM
There is actually a scientific reason why people often call line balls out. It is to do with the way the eye tracks the ball. Someone posted an article about it on here recently. Apparently about 80% of wrong calls by line judges (who are hopefully unbiased) relate to in balls called out whereas only 20% of errors relate to out balls called in.

robby c
05-12-2009, 06:03 PM
Many players call shots near the lines based upon if they see space from where the ball comes up at the end of the skid, but that's a mistake. It's the front part of the skid where the ball actually touches. I didn't catch on until I started playing on clay as an adult.
That's why the Hawkeye system used by the pros confirmed that most wrong calls are the long ones.
Robby C

Ajtat411
05-13-2009, 11:48 AM
So can't this be fixed by making an agreement with the other opponent that any ball that hits the line is considered OUT. This way, if you know that the other team is calling line balls OUT, you could do so without being called a hooker.

I know this is not the USTA rule, but I've seen balls called OUT even when they hit the line or seem to. Also, the running joke like someone posted is "If this were a USTA league match, that line ball would be out".

Sakkijarvi
05-13-2009, 11:56 AM
I didn't see anyone else in this thread mention it -- sorry if I missed that 'call' and this is redundant...but line judges make the wrong calls in pro matches all the time, and they have no dog in the fight. I mean to point up the honest error aspect, whatever the scientific explanation of it is. If I recall, Vic Braden explained the eyesight issue, along the lines of an earlier poster, in "Mental Tennis". That's off the top of my head.

lovin'it
05-14-2009, 06:11 AM
sadly, i think to some, out, means 'out of reach'...

i actually had one brilliant opponent who said to my shot 'that was on the line, i'll give it to you'...and truly, for her, it was a gift, as she was notorious for bad line calls.

Jim A
05-14-2009, 06:45 AM
I think what happens a lot of time is that people when they expect the ball to be out (non-hookers that is) take their eye off it and then when its close..go with the original thought

Last night I found out after my match that I called a couple balls in that were a good deal behind the baseline, but being on the run, then losing that focus had no other choice..didn't hurt me so..no loss

pabletion
05-14-2009, 08:46 AM
....Or........., in a thight match, even though there have been no "bad call" incidents, and a high top spin shot lands near the baseline and the opponent thinkts its going out but drops at the last minute... and lets it go and decides to call it out because its a very important point.

Happened to me. Third set super tiebreak to 10, 7-8 and I return a high top spin FH that I think lands on the baseline or very close to it: "out!" what do u do? even if you challenge it, youre never gonna get it and the other guy is gonna swear it was out. After losing, a friend of mine who was watching from a court across told me I got robbed on that point, and why I didnt say anything........ too late.

There are chronic bad call makers, but then there are others that just choose to take one or two times a match during an important point, and when the ball is close.

Ajtat411
05-14-2009, 09:01 AM
....Or........., in a thight match, even though there have been no "bad call" incidents, and a high top spin shot lands near the baseline and the opponent thinkts its going out but drops at the last minute... and lets it go and decides to call it out because its a very important point.

Happened to me. Third set super tiebreak to 10, 7-8 and I return a high top spin FH that I think lands on the baseline or very close to it: "out!" what do u do? even if you challenge it, youre never gonna get it and the other guy is gonna swear it was out. After losing, a friend of mine who was watching from a court across told me I got robbed on that point, and why I didnt say anything........ too late.

There are chronic bad call makers, but then there are others that just choose to take one or two times a match during an important point, and when the ball is close.

That stinks to have to happen on important points.

Do some of you actually try to hit away from the baseline or sidelines when the game gets tighter to avoid these calls. I know that it just happens most times.

Cindysphinx
05-14-2009, 09:48 AM
Last night I found out after my match that I called a couple balls in that were a good deal behind the baseline, but being on the run, then losing that focus had no other choice..didn't hurt me so..no loss

Yeah, what's with the spectators who come up to you later and say, "You called a lot of balls in that were out. You should pay more attention."

Um . . . if you're giving benefit of the doubt, that's unavoidable, right?

Ronaldo
05-14-2009, 12:58 PM
Yeah, what's with the spectators who come up to you later and say, "You called a lot of balls in that were out. You should pay more attention."

Um . . . if you're giving benefit of the doubt, that's unavoidable, right?

Nah, at our club guys will say, "That guy is hooking you on every close call." Then they tell the other guy the same thing. Magpies, Heckle and Jeckle

pabletion
05-15-2009, 10:50 AM
Yeah, what's with the spectators who come up to you later and say, "You called a lot of balls in that were out. You should pay more attention."

Um . . . if you're giving benefit of the doubt, that's unavoidable, right?

Hmm interesting, but Ronaldo has a good point. I on the other hand, only take credibility from friends who might tell me that, that I know wont be messing with me. I has happened to me: on a match point, a friend went for the lob against the guy on the net, the ball landed a couple of inches out, and I thought I saw it clearly. My friend was really upset the guy called it out, thinking he got robbed. My brother, who was next to me on the other hand, saw it in :confused:. So for the guy who lost, my friend, it might have been more upseting that we got kinda involved on it, cause my brother said from outside the court: "that was in!". Sometimes when trying to help you do more harm ;) So if asked, I find its better to say "I wasnt looking"; only when things are really goin outta hand, with a full-throttle line thief will I get involved if a friend is getting ripped off.

Ronaldo
05-15-2009, 12:55 PM
Hmm interesting, but Ronaldo has a good point. I on the other hand, only take credibility from friends who might tell me that, that I know wont be messing with me. I has happened to me: on a match point, a friend went for the lob against the guy on the net, the ball landed a couple of inches out, and I thought I saw it clearly. My friend was really upset the guy called it out, thinking he got robbed. My brother, who was next to me on the other hand, saw it in :confused:. So for the guy who lost, my friend, it might have been more upseting that we got kinda involved on it, cause my brother said from outside the court: "that was in!". Sometimes when trying to help you do more harm ;) So if asked, I find its better to say "I wasnt looking"; only when things are really goin outta hand, with a full-throttle line thief will I get involved if a friend is getting ripped off.

Always fun to play USTA League matches as a visitor with a hostile crowd. Everyone's a line judge and questions every call. At least in doubles you can question their partner.

Winners or Errors
05-15-2009, 01:25 PM
I think there are very few people out there who will call a ball out that they saw as in. If I can see court color between the ball and the line, it's out. I agree that the faster the ball is moving the more difficult it is to see. Also, perspective can screw it up. Bottom line, we're all just there to play and have fun.

Last time I disagreed with my partner on a close serve, we ended up giving the server two serves. No hard feelings at the end of that match.

Racer41c
05-15-2009, 03:31 PM
I know this is rediculous Racer stuff, but here's what I do. On the first call that I see where it's close I see how the other players make the call and react to the call. I can almost tell who's going to be a problem and who isn't. At the first opportunity after that I appeal to the nobler motive of honesty. Something like an out call that is really out I'll say "good call" or if there's one I'm 50/50 on I'll give them the point and let them know it was close.

If it goes south I'll call one of theirs out. If they say anything my answer is "yeah, we have the same umpire".

hrstrat57
05-15-2009, 04:38 PM
the rule should be: if you don't see it out then it is in.

To be even more clear.....if you do not see clear space between the ball and the outside edge of the line or the deep edge of the service or baseline you call the ball in.

Simple.

Winners or Errors
05-15-2009, 04:48 PM
To be even more clear.....if you do not see clear space between the ball and the outside edge of the line or the deep edge of the service or baseline you call the ball in.

Simple.

Agreed. Out is out. In is in.

Steady Eddy
05-15-2009, 05:47 PM
Nah, at our club guys will say, "That guy is hooking you on every close call." Then they tell the other guy the same thing. Magpies, Heckle and Jeckle:twisted: That's a really evil idea!

v205
05-15-2009, 05:53 PM
If you are closest to the ball and you are not sure either way. Play it as IN.

LuckyR
05-15-2009, 06:52 PM
I know this is rediculous Racer stuff, but here's what I do. On the first call that I see where it's close I see how the other players make the call and react to the call. I can almost tell who's going to be a problem and who isn't. At the first opportunity after that I appeal to the nobler motive of honesty. Something like an out call that is really out I'll say "good call" or if there's one I'm 50/50 on I'll give them the point and let them know it was close.

If it goes south I'll call one of theirs out. If they say anything my answer is "yeah, we have the same umpire".

Good line!!!

investorofmercy
05-15-2009, 08:35 PM
I have only had ONLY 1 person that I felt was hooking me on purpose...Everything that hit a line....even drop shots, he called out. After the match, he told me that he called them that way because he though I was hooking him....weird....all perception. I filed a grievance to no avail. If I am not 100% sure that a ball is out, I play it....PERIOD! When I am serving, about half of the balls I serve that I see 2-6 inches out are not called out. I TRULY believe that 99.9% of the people are honest with calls. The ones that I think missed calls, truly beleive that they made the right call.

Sometimes people have no clue...they have not been properly calibrated. With that I mean that, at practice, whenever there is a close call, we all talk about it and make sure that we are all in agreement. sometimes we find that 1 guy might have been miscalibrated by 2-3 inches....It happens. But it's all good.

Ronaldo
05-16-2009, 06:17 AM
:twisted: That's a really evil idea!

And these are the people I call friends. The ones you can depend on?

deltox
05-16-2009, 10:21 AM
in my games during league play i use the real rules, if i cant call it out i play the ball, but many times i play a ball and my opponent stops and watches me hit a shot right by him. he then says omg dude, the ball was out. wtf.. and gets upset, its a lose lose situation

Ronaldo
05-16-2009, 11:42 AM
in my games during league play i use the real rules, if i cant call it out i play the ball, but many times i play a ball and my opponent stops and watches me hit a shot right by him. he then says omg dude, the ball was out. wtf.. and gets upset, its a lose lose situation

Yeah, like he lost the point twice.

Figjam
05-16-2009, 08:31 PM
Ok how about another twist, on this..
according to the rules as far as I know, the oppenent gets to make the calls on his side... So theoretically a ball could be in the middle of the court and still be called out...
Which got me thinking... what if one guy calls a ball in the middle of the court "out" then the other guy does the same thing to get even and they continue this on every point... how would one of them win?

Ronaldo
05-16-2009, 09:13 PM
Ok how about another twist, on this..
according to the rules as far as I know, the oppenent gets to make the calls on his side... So theoretically a ball could be in the middle of the court and still be called out...
Which got me thinking... what if one guy calls a ball in the middle of the court "out" then the other guy does the same thing to get even and they continue this on every point... how would one of them win?

The last man standing cuz somebody's going down. And saw this in dubs. Guy calls the ball out. Guy serves the next ball in the middle of the box, it is out. Serves agin, it is outski. He and his partner and everyone watching gets the point. They take one, you take two.

GuyClinch
05-17-2009, 10:14 AM
Lots of hooking when I played USTA league tennis. It's very dishonest. But so is tournament play - if its not being officiated (obviously).

I actually tried to change my game up and go for less so players would feel less guilty about hooking. I'd say that the players that don't experience any hooking are likely playing up at a higher level of tennis then I was.

I supsect most good players don't really feel the need to hook because they have confidence in their game. Raiden plays what in the 5.0s? Am I right?

tonyg11
05-17-2009, 10:56 AM
at a tournament you call a line judge. Simple solution.

At some club match, well never in my life have i had someone cheat me on purpose when there was nothing at stake. An honest mistake here and there is no big deal.

canadave
05-17-2009, 01:54 PM
I think the other thing that hasn't been brought up yet is, how many times does one or two close line calls determine a match? It's pretty rare.

When I play a match, I can usually tell if the ball I hit was out or in, 99% of the time. There are a few that I have no clue, and have to rely on my opponent to make the correct (and honest) call. If he decides to cheat me on all of them (which I've never yet run into)....? Well, even so, most matches aren't SO close that those calls will make a win into a loss, or vice versa. And if he's honest, and just misses a few calls...well, he'll likely honestly miss a couple of calls in your favour, too, so theoretically it should even out.

And if there is a match that hinges on a couple of line calls....well, if the match is important enough to really care about in the grand scheme of life, then there'd be linesmen and umpires present, right? ;)

kylebarendrick
05-17-2009, 04:05 PM
I played a doubles match against a strong team a few years ago. My partner was playing great and we were up a set and a break with my partner serving. I watched one of our opponents (the other was fine) make 4 bad line calls in that one game to take the break back in the second. Twice he called serves wide from all the way across the court, that I knew for a fact were in since I was right in front of them.

My partner crumbled after that game and we lost the 2nd set and were bageled in the 3rd. We could have gotten a line judge after that game and it wouldn't have mattered, since the damage was done and so was my partner.

coloskier
05-21-2009, 12:26 PM
On most hard courts, there will be a mark left by the ball, just like clay. If they call it out, I say "show me the mark". If they can't, then I know one of two things. One, they are blind. Or two, they are deliberately hooking you. Unfortunately, where I play, it is usually the later, even so bad that anything within 3 inches of the line is called out. It comes down to this: If they are going to call tight lines, then you have to do the same. If they are blatant about it and there is no umpire available, then you have to make it clear to them that their line calling is unacceptable. You can usually tell by their reaction to your remark on whether they are doing it deliberately or not. If they are indignant about it, then it is deliberate, and, unfortunately, the only way to get them to stop is to call one of their shots that lands in the middle of the court out. That will usually stop it. You have to let them know that they can't get away with it and that you will do everything it takes to make sure it doesn't happen again. If he argues, then make the offer to him that everything that looks close will be considered "in". If he refuses, then he is absolutely trying to hook you.

SystemicAnomaly
05-22-2009, 06:42 PM
If you are closest to the ball and you are not sure either way. Play it as IN.

NOPE, not really a good rule of thumb. Quite often, the player closest to the ball has the worst vantage point, not the best as many people assume. If you are too close to the bounce event, your eyes cannot track the ball accurately. In these situations, that player's partner often has a better vantage point. Even the opponents may have a better vantage point than a player that is too close to the ball.

Quite often a player is focused on either the ball or on an expected contact zone and not on the lines at all. Often, that person cannot make an accurate call.

On the other hand, if their eyes & head are still and they are focused on the line, they can make an accurate call but may be unable to make a clean contact, if needed. I spoke a lot about these matters on page 1 of this thread:

tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?p=3405131 (http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?p=3405131)
.

damazing
05-28-2009, 06:20 AM
I played a match recently where my opponent called every shot on the line out. He even called shots a few inches inside of the line out. I realized during the first set (that I won) that this was his strategy to try and hook me on the calls and also to upset me by a pattern of disrespectful things. (After the points are over on my serve, not hitting me the balls back but spraying them all over the court, quickly serving when I'm not in position etc...)

I don't know if these things worked on other people but I picked up my game and bageled him the second set. I'd love a rematch so I could double bagel him.

Joeyg
05-28-2009, 06:46 AM
"Called every shot on the line out". How many shots of yours landed right on the line? You must be a pretty good player to have so many balls land there.

Personally, I only have a few land on the lines and I have been playing 4.5 and 5.0 league and tourneys for years.

royer
05-28-2009, 07:30 AM
Sorry you had a bad experience. In my USTA experience, this is very rare. I have found 99% of players to be more than fair.

Sure there are occasional bad line calls. But I think these are overwhelmingly honest mistakes rather than attempts to cheat. After all, even professional linespeople make mistakes, and they are trained, right on the line, not sweating, and not focusing on getting into position to hit the ball.

Also, sometimes you might see it in from your side on the court when in reality it was out, especially on the opposite baseline. I mean it's pretty far away, and you dont have a good angle to see it.

I am in complete agreement with OrangePower on this one. As others have stated, my USTA experiences in both league and tournament play have shown that most players are fair, and yes, even "more than fair."

As a spectator, I've seen far more players who play the "just long" ball on the baseline than I've seen players who call a shot "on" the baseline out. As a player, my experience is that most players will play a questionable ball rather than call it out. Always? No. But usually.

I see this a lot on serves that are just long. This is perhaps the most "missed" call in all of tennis. It's especially prevalent with a player who serves hard and fast. Of course playing an "out" serve can create problems as well, but for the purposes of this conversation, it serves as a good example of how most players will give their opponent the benefit of the doubt.

OrangePower is correct in this respect as well: The opponent's baseline is a long way from where you are, and determining whether or not your ball hit the baseline on the opposite side of the court is difficult at best, if not impossible.

I hit with lots of topspin. so my ball tend to dip quickly as it falls. Therefor a ball that looks (in the air) to be going long, often dips in. OFTEN, but not always. I've had many opponents "leave" a ball that appears to be on its way out only to end up hitting or catching the baseline concede the point as a good shot. This happens FAR more often than having such a player on such a shot call the ball out.

OrangePower is correct in this respect as well. Line judges stare at lines, and yet even they sometimes make poor calls. Calling lines while actually playing can sometimes be extremely trying. That's not an excuse for bad calls, it's just a fact. Again in my experience, most players give their opponents the benefit of the doubt.

To the original poster: We all know how infuriating it can be to have a good shot called out, so I can empathize with you there. BUT, maybe, just maybe, the shots are "just" out and the calls are good. "Just missing" a shot is nearly as infuriating, but the fault lies not with my opponent but rather with me.

And yes, as other have said, some players have poor eyesight. That sucks, but ... When it comes to outright cheaters, my experience has shown me that such players are VERY rare.

Ronaldo
05-28-2009, 08:07 AM
When in doubt............call it out

coloskier
05-28-2009, 08:16 AM
When in doubt............call it out

And if you do, prepare to get screwed. :)

bulldawg
05-28-2009, 11:01 AM
Guy at my club calls it out before it hits the ground...the closer the shot, the louder he yells.

Ronaldo
05-28-2009, 12:43 PM
And if you do, prepare to get screwed. :)

Over and over again. Can remember a player that never finished a match. Guys would just quit after some of his calls.