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Cindysphinx
05-13-2009, 02:34 PM
Our league coordinator sent around a list of "Rules Every Player Should Know." There are two things on it that sound wrong to me.

The first is this:

Server must call the score after every point. Assuming the server is calling the score, unless a player challenges the score immediately, he loses the right to challenge at a later time: the players have accepted the server's version!

The second is this:

Players should not talk while the ball is moving toward the opponent's side of the net. If such talk interferes with an opponent's ability to play the ball, warn the offending player it is a hindrance and play a "let." If it happens again, it is loss of point due to deliberate hindrance.

Are these correct statements of The Rules/Code?

Steady Eddy
05-13-2009, 02:48 PM
The second one sounds ok, I'm a little more ambivalent on the first one. I don't like it when people bring up old scores and want to rehash stuff that you thought was settled a long time ago. But they say it must be brought up immediately. Sometimes there is no pause between saying the score and hittting the serve. You don't get time to object. Other times, (esp when the score is 40-30 or 30-40), you don't hear it right. You only become aware of the error after the next point. But aside from these exceptions, I think it's true. At the end of one set, a player said "How could it be 6-3? I served first?" It's not fun to have to recall the entire chonology of the set to avoid replaying part of a set after it's won. When we say, "The score is 4-3", that should settle it. Way later he shouldn't be allowed to say, "Back when we thought it was 4-3, I think we were wrong." I keep track of the score, but I cannot recall each game in order. I shouldn't be required to.

Cindysphinx
05-13-2009, 02:54 PM
I thought a hindrance claim was always loss of point, not a let, in an unofficiated match.

Steady Eddy
05-13-2009, 02:57 PM
I should have said that I wasn't sure about the second one. It's the first one where I have some questions, and I've posted those.

JavierLW
05-13-2009, 09:56 PM
Our league coordinator sent around a list of "Rules Every Player Should Know." There are two things on it that sound wrong to me.

The first is this:



The second is this:



Are these correct statements of The Rules/Code?

Here's the actual code rule for the hindrance part:

HINDRANCE ISSUES
33. Talking during a point. A player shall not talk while the ball is moving toward
the opponent’s side of the Court. If the player’s talking interferes with an opponent’s
ability to play the ball, the player loses the point. Consider the situation where a
player hits a weak lob and loudly yells at his or her partner to get back. If the shout
is loud enough to distract an opponent, then the opponent may claim the point
based on a deliberate hindrance. If the opponent chooses to hit the lob and misses
it, the opponent loses the point because the opponent did not make a timely claim
of hindrance.

I believe it may of used to say something about a let. Or maybe that was my impression because it's a seldom used call.

Also what they dont state in your quote which is important is that in order to call hindrance, you have to call it immediately before attempting to hit your shot. (sort of how you have to call let immediately otherwise you lose the right to call let)

Here is the server announcing the score code rule:

SCORING
31. Server announces score. The server shall announce the game score before
the first point of the game and the point score before each subsequent point of the
game.
32. Disputes. Disputes over the score shall be resolved by using one of the
following methods, which are listed in the order of preference:
• count all points and games agreed upon by the players and replay only
the disputed points or games;
• play from a score mutually agreeable to all players;
• spin a racket or toss a coin.

I dont believe it says anywhere about losing your right to dispute the score if you dont challenge it right away.

Ive talked about this with tennis pros though (as far as situations Ive dealt with) and this may be a "common sense" thing to follow.

Otherwise they can argue that you've accepted the score. (although maybe you can say you didnt hear them or something)

raiden031
05-14-2009, 03:30 AM
I got that as well. Funny because last night I played a match that went into a 3rd set. The guy didn't think we were supposed to switch until after 8 points were played. He said he played 2 other matches like that. I don't get how so many league players don't know the basic protocol for a usta match. In addition, almost NOBODY actually spins the racquet before the warmup. Oh and most don't know that you are not supposed to rest after the first game of a set.

Cindysphinx
05-14-2009, 04:43 AM
Yeah, I thought about writing to the guy who sent this around and pointing out these problems, but I didn't want to be "That Guy." (Credit to Grover).

Then again, I don't want my players to read the list of rules and think they are correct when they are not. Then again, if the rest of the league is going to have an incorrect view of the rules, I'd at least like my teammates to know what others have been told.

On this business about forfeiting the right to contest an incorreclty-announced score . . . I know it is well-intentioned, but it causes as many fights as it avoids.

I was starting my service game in a recent match. We were losing, and I was serving at 2-4 in the second set. I served the first point and hit a good serve. Returner pops up a sitter to my partner, who is a weak net player. She hits a rather dodgy FH volley. When she played it, based on the trajectory I thought, "Well, that's going long." I could not see where it landed, but I didn't see any out calls from the opponents.

I thought about asking, "Was that out?" But I have been chided so many times from partners not to ask that (under the dubious logic that this gives the opponents a chance to change their call and hook you) that I decided not to ask.

I stepped up to the ad court to serve and shouted, "15-love." I said this very loudly and before I started my service motion, just to make sure they heard me. No reaction from the opponents. I served, we lost the point.

I go to the deuce court and shouted, "15-all." The opponents then said, "No, it's love-30." That is when I learned they had called the first ball out.

My partner got angry and said they couldn't dispute the score because I had announced it and they hadn't objected.

I wasn't having any of that. The most important thing is to Get It Right. If her volley was long, then we shouldn't try to win that point on a technicality like their failing to dispute my score announcement.

Anyway . . . can anyone recall anything in the comments to the Rules about this idea that you can't contest the score if you don't do so right away?

Cindy -- who held to take it to 3-4, thanks for asking

Nellie
05-14-2009, 06:51 AM
Could these be local league rules/interpretations?

JavierLW
05-14-2009, 07:00 AM
Could these be local league rules/interpretations?

It sounds like they are local league made up rules.

That happens a lot actually, but if you look up some bylaw somewhere they are not supposed to supersede the actual rules of tennis.

In Cindy's example it's her job to call the score, so it's reasonable that she would correct it since she's assessed what the real score is.

But if they had some sort of dispute (she thought her ball landed in, they thought it landed out, etc....) and then they disagreed on the score, that's when the idea that not correcting it immediately is deemed bad practice by some.

However I still dont think the rules cover that anywhere, in fact it has the whole series of things you do to try to resolve a score dispute. In those steps some of them make it obvious that you may of disagreed on a point in the middle somewhere. (replaying disputed points, going back to a mutually agreeable score.....)

Xisbum
05-14-2009, 08:24 AM
If I don't hear a call, I almost always ask for one before serving the next point. Then I politely ask if they can speak a bit louder the next time.

My 2 centavos.

Cindysphinx
05-14-2009, 09:45 AM
If I don't hear a call, I almost always ask for one before serving the next point. Then I politely ask if they can speak a bit louder the next time.

My 2 centavos.

I think that is the best way to do it, Xisbum.

There are many people who disagree with this approach. This would include teaching pros and doubles partners I know. One doubles partner in particular would get really angry with me if I asked whether a ball was in or out. She seemed to think . . . I have no idea. It was a sign of weakness? It let the other side know you were an Easy Mark and they could hook you at will? I dunno.

I want there to be no misunderstanding. If I thought a ball was out and I missed a hand gesture, I'd like to be clear on what happened right then. Especially given the prevalence of Low-Talking Servers in our league.

JavierLW
05-14-2009, 12:11 PM
I think that is the best way to do it, Xisbum.

There are many people who disagree with this approach. This would include teaching pros and doubles partners I know. One doubles partner in particular would get really angry with me if I asked whether a ball was in or out. She seemed to think . . . I have no idea. It was a sign of weakness? It let the other side know you were an Easy Mark and they could hook you at will? I dunno.

I want there to be no misunderstanding. If I thought a ball was out and I missed a hand gesture, I'd like to be clear on what happened right then. Especially given the prevalence of Low-Talking Servers in our league.

You could phrase it like: "That was in, right?" (in a nice manner, not in some sort of loud demanding way)

That sounds different then saying "Was it in or out?" which may sound more clueless.

It also may make them think twice about changing the call unfairly.

And it would be more then fair to do so because some people are actually taught that no call means in. (they didnt say anything so they must mean it's in)

I was taught that way in the 80's, but nowdays it seems too problematic to not actually call it "in" because you can get confused with people who just dont make loud enough calls, or people who are sitting and thinking about their call.

Obviously if you really weren't sure, and they come back and say "No, it was out", then you just say "Okay, thanks." or something to that effect.

Xisbum
05-14-2009, 12:14 PM
I think that is the best way to do it, Xisbum.

There are many people who disagree with this approach. This would include teaching pros and doubles partners I know. One doubles partner in particular would get really angry with me if I asked whether a ball was in or out. She seemed to think . . . I have no idea. It was a sign of weakness? It let the other side know you were an Easy Mark and they could hook you at will? I dunno.

I want there to be no misunderstanding. If I thought a ball was out and I missed a hand gesture, I'd like to be clear on what happened right then. Especially given the prevalence of Low-Talking Servers in our league.

Most of the people I play with on a regular basis know that I am partially deaf in one ear anyway, so my partners don't think twice about my asking for a call. I sometimes even ask my partners to speak up so everyone can hear. :)

Respect for their elders, I guess.

Gemini
05-14-2009, 12:33 PM
On challenging the score immediately, I believe timing is the key element.

For example: Score is 15-All. I hit a second serve that I deemed to be an ace or unreturnable but my opponent calls it a fault and I don't hear his/her call. I assume I've won the point and my opponent assumes that I heard the call and he/she's won the point. I step up to the line and call the score as 30-15 (even though it's 15-30 based on my opponent's previous line call).

If we begin to play the next point based on my 30-15 score called out then my opponent has no recourse. The time to challenge the score is at the time he/she believes I've called the incorrect score. A player can't ponder whether my current score announcement is correct, play a point or two and then go back and re-hash a point that was played 3 points ago.

As someone said, the issue is if the receiver didn't clearly hear the score at the time the error was made and then questions the score based on the most recent point played (that being the next point). I usually let that one go and will adjust the score based on "courtesty" but one point beyond the point in question is my limit.

Both players should really be tracking the score. It's not just the server's responsibility.

As for the Hinderance call, I'll leave that one alone. I've said enough as it is....

Cindysphinx
05-14-2009, 12:54 PM
On challenging the score immediately, I believe timing is the key element.

For example: Score is 15-All. I hit a second serve that I deemed to be an ace or unreturnable but my opponent calls it a fault and I don't hear his/her call. I assume I've won the point and my opponent assumes that I heard the call and he/she's won the point. I step up to the line and call the score as 30-15 (even though it's 15-30 based on my opponent's previous line call).

If we begin to play the next point based on my 30-15 score called out then my opponent has no recourse. The time to challenge the score is at the time he/she believes I've called the incorrect score. A player can't ponder whether my current score announcement is correct, play a point or two and then go back and re-hash a point that was played 3 points ago.

As someone said, the issue is if the receiver didn't clearly hear the score at the time the error was made and then questions the score based on the most recent point played (that being the next point). I usually let that one go and will adjust the score based on "courtesty" but one point beyond the point in question is my limit.

Both players should really be tracking the score. It's not just the server's responsibility.

As for the Hinderance call, I'll leave that one alone. I've said enough as it is....


I understand what you are saying. But do you have any authority for it, or is it just your opinion?

JavierLW
05-14-2009, 02:00 PM
On challenging the score immediately, I believe timing is the key element.

For example: Score is 15-All. I hit a second serve that I deemed to be an ace or unreturnable but my opponent calls it a fault and I don't hear his/her call. I assume I've won the point and my opponent assumes that I heard the call and he/she's won the point. I step up to the line and call the score as 30-15 (even though it's 15-30 based on my opponent's previous line call).

If we begin to play the next point based on my 30-15 score called out then my opponent has no recourse. The time to challenge the score is at the time he/she believes I've called the incorrect score. A player can't ponder whether my current score announcement is correct, play a point or two and then go back and re-hash a point that was played 3 points ago.

As someone said, the issue is if the receiver didn't clearly hear the score at the time the error was made and then questions the score based on the most recent point played (that being the next point). I usually let that one go and will adjust the score based on "courtesty" but one point beyond the point in question is my limit.

Both players should really be tracking the score. It's not just the server's responsibility.

As for the Hinderance call, I'll leave that one alone. I've said enough as it is....

I could be wrong, but I think you may be suffering from the same symptoms that Cindy's coordinators have.

(the ones where you "think" there is a rule based on something you heard from someone else, or your recollection of what the rules say without having read them, or some sort of interpretation of what is written)

www.usta.com

Look it up, see if you can find it there.

I admit I didnt search the whole entire thing really hard but I didnt find much. And like I said it describes options you can take just in case of an occurance where you've screwed the score up (which isnt necessarily the last point)

It says you can:

- replay any disputed points

(it says "points", not just the last point)

or:

- go back to a mutually agreed upon score.

(it doesnt just say the last score. so that assumes you might of missed something along the way....)

woodrow1029
05-14-2009, 02:21 PM
Where did they get those rules from? Any other good ones in there?

Cindysphinx
05-14-2009, 02:40 PM
Where did they get those rules from? Any other good ones in there?

Some of the statements bear citations to the Code. There are a few other ones that give me pause:

Like, there's this:

Don't call a ball out unless you can clearly see part of the court between where the ball hits and the line.

No citation to anything. No mention of "benefit of the doubt." No caution against calling balls out when you are in bad position/looking across a line.

On first serves, play to your opponent's call. He/she is the only one who can call a serve "out" and may be giving you the benefit of the doubt on a close call (as is required by The Code, at 26).

Yeah, but the Code says you can call your first serve out if the receiver doesn't put the return into play.

Which goes to show that there is no shortcut for reading the Code, and well-intentioned attempts to create one are going to run into problems.

Steady Eddy
05-14-2009, 05:11 PM
On first serves, play to your opponent's call. He/she is the only one who can call a serve "out" and may be giving you the benefit of the doubt on a close call (as is required by The Code, at 26).
Yeah, but the Code says you can call your first serve out if the receiver doesn't put the return into play.

But that should be common sense. I recall playing a sandbagger in a tournament, and one of the rare points I should have won. He hit a hard first serve very close to the service line. I returned it for a winner. He said that his first serve was out, and proceeded to hit his second serve. Geeze, what if my return had gone out? He probably would have taken the point right there. He was an advanced player and surely knew the rules. I didn't argue it because there didn't seem to be a point 'cause he was going to win easily, (he did). But if you serve and your opponent wrongly thinks you aced him with an out serve, it's not too difficult to see that you should point out that your serve was out.

JavierLW
05-14-2009, 09:41 PM
But that should be common sense. I recall playing a sandbagger in a tournament, and one of the rare points I should have won. He hit a hard first serve very close to the service line. I returned it for a winner. He said that his first serve was out, and proceeded to hit his second serve. Geeze, what if my return had gone out? He probably would have taken the point right there. He was an advanced player and surely knew the rules. I didn't argue it because there didn't seem to be a point 'cause he was going to win easily, (he did). But if you serve and your opponent wrongly thinks you aced him with an out serve, it's not too difficult to see that you should point out that your serve was out.

Actually what happened is they changed that rule probably 5 or 6 years ago to just say you cant call the first serve out on yourself.

Then they fixed it a couple years later to say that you can call your own first serve out but only if your opponent doesnt put it back into play.

That's why it's not all that unheard of to find people who dont know that particular rule, unless they have been paying attention over the past few years to the rulebook they wouldnt know.

Actually a few of the ideas that Cindy quotes may of been a rules at one time or another although Im not all that sure.

As far as only getting one chance to correct the score, Ive heard that from a few tennis pros and different people, not sure if they read the rulebook 30 years ago and got that, or if it's just one of those common "rules" that float around among the people who just make things up.

bad_call
05-15-2009, 04:50 AM
Actually what happened is they changed that rule probably 5 or 6 years ago to just say you cant call the first serve out on yourself.

Then they fixed it a couple years later to say that you can call your own first serve out but only if your opponent doesnt put it back into play.

That's why it's not all that unheard of to find people who dont know that particular rule, unless they have been paying attention over the past few years to the rulebook they wouldnt know.

Actually a few of the ideas that Cindy quotes may of been a rules at one time or another although Im not all that sure.

As far as only getting one chance to correct the score, Ive heard that from a few tennis pros and different people, not sure if they read the rulebook 30 years ago and got that, or if it's just one of those common "rules" that float around among the people who just make things up.

so are you making this up or what?

bad_call
05-15-2009, 04:53 AM
But that should be common sense. I recall playing a sandbagger in a tournament, and one of the rare points I should have won. He hit a hard first serve very close to the service line. I returned it for a winner. He said that his first serve was out, and proceeded to hit his second serve. Geeze, what if my return had gone out? He probably would have taken the point right there. He was an advanced player and surely knew the rules. I didn't argue it because there didn't seem to be a point 'cause he was going to win easily, (he did). But if you serve and your opponent wrongly thinks you aced him with an out serve, it's not too difficult to see that you should point out that your serve was out.

i think the returner/receiver makes the call...unless the rules have changed...again. :-?

Gemini
05-15-2009, 05:04 AM
I could be wrong, but I think you may be suffering from the same symptoms that Cindy's coordinators have.

(the ones where you "think" there is a rule based on something you heard from someone else, or your recollection of what the rules say without having read them, or some sort of interpretation of what is written)

www.usta.com (http://www.usta.com/)

Look it up, see if you can find it there.

I admit I didnt search the whole entire thing really hard but I didnt find much. And like I said it describes options you can take just in case of an occurance where you've screwed the score up (which isnt necessarily the last point)

It says you can:

- replay any disputed points

(it says "points", not just the last point)

or:

- go back to a mutually agreed upon score.

(it doesnt just say the last score. so that assumes you might of missed something along the way....)


No worries. I think the thing that Cindy's coordinator suffer from is that he didn't elaborate on what he meant. I don't suffer from that because I KNOW what I've read. This directly pulled from the USTA site. Check Section 5
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
(Score in A Game):

USTA Comment 5.4: The server states that the score is 40-15; the receiver states that the score is 30-30. The players agree on who won every point except for the second point. What should they do? They should replay the second point from the advantage court. If the server wins the point, the score becomes 40-15; if the receiver wins the point, the score becomes 30-30. The next point is played from the deuce court.

USTA Comment 5.5: What happens in the same situation as except that the disputed point is the third point?
Everything is done the same except that the disputed point is played from the deuce court.

USTA Comment 5.6: The players agree that they have played six points in the game but disagree over the score because they do not agree on who won the second point. The receiver acknowledges that the server called the score after each point and that the receiver did not express disagreement with the score until now. What should happen? The score as announced by the server should prevail because the receiver did not object. Note, however, if the receiver denied hearing the score, then an official would have to be called to go through the normal 3-step process to settle the dispute.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Like I said, it's about timing. The first two examples are instances where the receiver immediately questions the accuracy of the score at that moment. Questioning the score doesn't mean you're challenging the last point necessarily. That's a given.

The third example is good as well because it also references the timing and conditions of questioning the score.

Cindysphinx
05-15-2009, 06:24 AM
Ah, OK. I had a feeling that those dastardly comments were the problem. So if you didn't hear it, then you aren't bound by it. Makes sense.

moonbat
05-15-2009, 07:33 AM
i think the returner/receiver makes the call...unless the rules have changed...again. :-?

I thought if the opponent returns your serve, even if you think it was out, play continues. :confused: (I play doubles where there are two sets of eyes on the other side of the court.)

Steady Eddy
05-15-2009, 08:18 AM
I thought if the opponent returns your serve, even if you think it was out, play continues. :confused: (I play doubles where there are two sets of eyes on the other side of the court.)Yes, but we were discussing a situation in which the opponent does NOT return the serve.

bad_call
05-15-2009, 08:20 AM
I thought if the opponent returns your serve, even if you think it was out, play continues. :confused: (I play doubles where there are two sets of eyes on the other side of the court.)

right. that's what i was posting...if you mean that "play continues" = "point is played".

moonbat
05-15-2009, 11:51 PM
right. that's what i was posting...if you mean that "play continues" = "point is played".

I'm sorry, I wasn't clear. I was agreeing with you. :)

cork_screw
05-16-2009, 06:15 AM
Obviously people can pretty much say and do whatever they want to do, and you probably won't find any idiot talking during points. But think about the woman's game, most scream during their points. Nadal does his little grunts as well. I think it depends what you say. Obviously you can't call a point "out" or in if you're playing on the ATP tour with linesman (different that amateur tournaments where you do have to call your own lines). I think that would stop the point and throw people off. But if people are allowed to scream like Sharapova and Serena well, I guess they haven't made any great progress in enforcing that as a rule.

And no one calls the score before every point.

I think these are more common courtesy points than rules to live by.

Our league coordinator sent around a list of "Rules Every Player Should Know." There are two things on it that sound wrong to me.

The first is this:



The second is this:



Are these correct statements of The Rules/Code?

Cindysphinx
05-16-2009, 07:39 AM
I call the score before every point. I am quite puzzled that others don't. What could be more important than the score?

bad_call
05-16-2009, 08:31 AM
I call the score before every point. I am quite puzzled that others don't. What could be more important than the score?

good practice in doing so.