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Ironwood
01-07-2010, 12:39 PM
Played mens doubles indoors last night, against an opponent who often quick serves his second serve.  I've known him for years and know his pattern.  It's all gamesmanship.  But, when I don't play the quick second serve and ask it be retaken, he wants first serve again. I think he does it just to get his first serve again if he can't entice you to swing away at a serve you weren't ready for. What is he entitled to?

Ripper014
01-07-2010, 01:04 PM
Just put your hand up between serves to signal you are not ready. I believe according to the rules you have to play to the speed of the server, but if you are not ready... well then you are not ready, within reason.

You could always find a better group of people to play with, life is too short to have to deal with this kind of thing.

Delano
01-07-2010, 03:29 PM
My impression is that a let is only played for a substantial disruption between serves. So if he quick serves you and you immediately return the ball, I don't think that would qualify for a let (any more than clearing a ball from a first serve that was in the net).

If he's doing this purposefully out of gamesmanship, it'll be hard to get him to agree to any subjective interpretation of the rules that would deny him a let, so be ready for a major argument if you deny it. I have a feeling that you don't really need to win the argument so much as you have to force him to defend his request for a let - ie.., if you call him out on the quick serve and make him insist on the let every time he does this, he'll stop even if he gets away with it the first time. But if you *never* object, he'll see how much he can get away with.

dlk
01-07-2010, 03:46 PM
Just put your hand up between serves to signal ysou are not ready. I believe according to the rules you have to play to the speed of the server, but if you are not ready... well then you are not ready, within reason.

You could always find a better group of people to play with, life is too short to have to deal with this kind of thing.

Yeah, & you would have to evaluate your own tactics, by attempting to control the pace on your opponents serve. Really, you need to be ready for the server.

JavierLW
01-07-2010, 04:59 PM
Yeah, & you would have to evaluate your own tactics, by attempting to control the pace on your opponents serve. Really, you need to be ready for the server.

That's within reason.

You DO NOT have to get extra ready for someone who quick serves you.

Definition of quick serve:

It's when the server typically misses the first serve and quickly winds up and takes the second serve, sometimes even all in one motion. (and without any attempt in a lot of cases to clear loose balls, etc.....)

They have to give you time to get set and get ready for the second serve. That should only take like 1 or 2 seconds (after all what else is the returner doing unless they have to pick up a loose ball) but some servers will not even allow that.

Quick serving is a bad habit, and it's a form of gamesmanship. If someone employs that strategy they have no right to complain if their partner takes their own sweet time "getting ready".

zettabyte
01-07-2010, 05:03 PM
Game him back on long/wide serves. Hit them into your side of the net then go chase it down. Make him wait for you.

Cindysphinx
01-07-2010, 06:09 PM
Code:

29. Receiver readiness. The receiver shall play to the reasonable pace of the server. The receiver should make no effort to return a serve when the receiver is not ready. If a player attempts to return a serve (even if it is a “quick” serve), then the receiver (or Receiving team) is presumed to be ready.

30. Delays during service. When the server’s second service motion is interrupted by a ball coming onto the court, the server is entitled to two serves. When there is a delay between the first and second serves:

• the server gets one serve if the server was the cause of the delay;

• the server gets two serves if the delay was caused by the
Receiver or if there was outside interference.

The time it takes to clear a ball that comes onto the court between the first and second serves is not considered sufficient time to warrant the server receiving two serves unless this time is so prolonged as to constitute an interruption. The receiver is the judge of whether the delay is sufficiently prolonged to justify giving the server two serves.

Hmmm. Sounds like a gray area to me. I think that if you are ready and then become unready, the delay is your fault and he gets a first serve. If he just quick serves you, it is his fault for not seeing if you are ready and he only gets one serve.

Steady Eddy
01-07-2010, 09:35 PM
Be sure when he quickserves you to not make any effort to return it. It's almost a reflex to want to try to see if you can return it, and it looks bad to start after a serve, then stop and ask for a let. So make no effort to return it. Maybe you guys should play that the server has to ask "ready?" before serving?

kylebarendrick
01-07-2010, 10:21 PM
Hmmm. Sounds like a gray area to me. I think that if you are ready and then become unready, the delay is your fault and he gets a first serve.

Once ready, the receiver cannot become unready. Point to the server.

JavierLW
01-08-2010, 07:10 AM
Be sure when he quickserves you to not make any effort to return it. It's almost a reflex to want to try to see if you can return it, and it looks bad to start after a serve, then stop and ask for a let. So make no effort to return it. Maybe you guys should play that the server has to ask "ready?" before serving?

You cant just wait and watch the serve either. That's why people suggest that you need to get your hand up, and better yet say something as well.

If the guy quick serves you out of the blue you may not think to do that and it will be too late, but if it's someone that you know has a pattern of quick serving you, it should just become automatic.

As soon as the first serve is missed, stick your hand up while you are moving to where you need to go to indicate that you are not ready. If they try to serve anyway, call "LET!" right away. (they may get that serve out anyway but at least you said something)

Just make sure you are not taking more time then what is reasonable.

If you simply dont do anything and you let them serve, you lose the point, you really dont get to say you were not ready.

JavierLW
01-08-2010, 07:17 AM
Code:



Hmmm. Sounds like a gray area to me. I think that if you are ready and then become unready, the delay is your fault and he gets a first serve. If he just quick serves you, it is his fault for not seeing if you are ready and he only gets one serve.

It's not a gray area, that doesnt mean you're getting ready for one serve and then you're not ready for the second serve, they are two different instances.

You became "unready" because you were trying to prepare to return the first serve, but the server missed. (and perhaps you had to return it back to the server, etc....)

Also good returners move a little before the serve, so it's not like everyone is necessarily just standing around waiting for serves. (some servers take a hop forward or several small steps into a split step to get their momentum going)

That rule really has to do with when on THE SAME INSTANCE, you display that you are ready to the server, and then while they are in their motion you decide that you are not ready.

Cindysphinx
01-08-2010, 07:24 AM
I think the rule is ambiguous on this.

Server serves first serve. You raise your racket while you wait to see if ball will roll out of play. Server quick-serves and you make no effort to play the ball.

Does the server get one serve or two?

I could try to look it up, but I can't access the Code etc. on this computer.

JavierLW
01-08-2010, 08:04 AM
I think the rule is ambiguous on this.

Server serves first serve. You raise your racket while you wait to see if ball will roll out of play. Server quick-serves and you make no effort to play the ball.

Does the server get one serve or two?

I could try to look it up, but I can't access the Code etc. on this computer.

They only get one serve. If they serve when you are not ready that's their fault, not yours, as long as you properly showed that you were not ready.

Rule says that they are not supposed to serve if the returner is not ready.

It doenst specifically say what happens if they serve anyway, but it certainly doesnt say they get rewarded by getting their first serve over, that's crazy. Anyone should be able to see that it's not fair if that happens.

Ironwood
01-08-2010, 08:05 AM
[QUOTE=Cindysphinx;4256168]Code:Cindyspinx....that's the answer I was looking for.  Essentially he should only be entitled to replay his second service and not get two serves, if he is the reason for the retake of his second serve. That is if he quick serves his second serve and I don't play it because I am not ready he should only get one serve.  It is not a question of my being slow or not playing to normal pace....he usually doesn't look up to see whether the receiver is ready or the court is clear of balls.  If he misses his first serve, he quickly goes into his second serve motion...and having played with and against him at the club for years I know it's just gamesmanship. His service is not overpowering, but his placement is deceptive...especially when you look up to see the ball already in flight. He looks for an edge where ever he can find it. He's a decent guy off court, but frustrating to play against. I have doubles again tonight and I think he's in the foursome again. It'll be interesting to see how it goes!

woodrow1029
01-08-2010, 08:43 AM
I think the rule is ambiguous on this.

Server serves first serve. You raise your racket while you wait to see if ball will roll out of play. Server quick-serves and you make no effort to play the ball.

Does the server get one serve or two?

I could try to look it up, but I can't access the Code etc. on this computer.
Second serve.

muddlehead
01-08-2010, 09:05 AM
to the op, i say buck-up and just get ready a bit quicker for his second serve. can't be that hard, now, since it seems everyone knows it's coming. put it in the life's too short category. as an aside, a few years back in a doubles friendly, i served a rare game winning ace in the ad court. receiver's partner in deuce court said he wasn't ready. serve again. my answer to that? won't play with him again.

Spokewench
01-08-2010, 09:45 AM
The problems (not many) with quick servers is this; they hit their first serve; it is a let, i.e. it came over the net on the returners side, I have to clear the ball and the quick server doesn't let you get back to baseline, they just let you get somewhere in the vicinity of where they think you should be and serve away. I learned to deal with this now; by being assertive with my hand up and a slightly turned away stance. If they serve to me then, I just say I was not ready (i had to clear their ball) and ask them to serve again. I do not give them a first serve. If they keep asking for a first serve, I quietly refuse and get ready to receive the second.

blakesq
01-08-2010, 10:25 AM
Spokewench has it right. I may get a little more peeved than Spokewench, but he handles it the correct way.

The problems (not many) with quick servers is this; they hit their first serve; it is a let, i.e. it came over the net on the returners side, I have to clear the ball and the quick server doesn't let you get back to baseline, they just let you get somewhere in the vicinity of where they think you should be and serve away. I learned to deal with this now; by being assertive with my hand up and a slightly turned away stance. If they serve to me then, I just say I was not ready (i had to clear their ball) and ask them to serve again. I do not give them a first serve. If they keep asking for a first serve, I quietly refuse and get ready to receive the second.

Cindysphinx
01-08-2010, 10:31 AM
to the op, i say buck-up and just get ready a bit quicker for his second serve. can't be that hard, now, since it seems everyone knows it's coming. put it in the life's too short category. as an aside, a few years back in a doubles friendly, i served a rare game winning ace in the ad court. receiver's partner in deuce court said he wasn't ready. serve again. my answer to that? won't play with him again.

Receiver's *partner* said he wasn't ready?

I always thought that if I served the ball when the receiver's partner wasn't ready but the receiver was (for instance, by trying to return the serve), then the point stands. If the receiver's partner isn't ready, it is up the receiver to hold up a racket or to not try to return the serve.

True?

kylebarendrick
01-08-2010, 10:44 AM
Cindy, that is my understanding as well. You are responsbile for allowing the receiver to get ready before you serve. You are not responsible for their partner.

jswinf
01-08-2010, 11:04 AM
The problems (not many) with quick servers is this; they hit their first serve; it is a let, i.e. it came over the net on the returners side, I have to clear the ball and the quick server doesn't let you get back to baseline, they just let you get somewhere in the vicinity of where they think you should be and serve away. I learned to deal with this now; by being assertive with my hand up and a slightly turned away stance. If they serve to me then, I just say I was not ready (i had to clear their ball) and ask them to serve again. I do not give them a first serve. If they keep asking for a first serve, I quietly refuse and get ready to receive the second.

I'm not as sure as blakesq that spokewrench has it right, but maybe it's a failure to communicate. If server's first serve was a let, he has another first serve coming. If you feel he quick-serves on that one, make no attempt to return it, and ask them to serve again it seems to me they should still be on their first serve.

It's clear a lot of this gets down to "real people" tennis, with the dynamics of clearing balls between shots and getting back into position, instead of just yelling at the ballboys (persons?) to hurry up.

smoothtennis
01-08-2010, 11:22 AM
I play a guy that does the really quick second serve thing. Since I know it's happening, many times I turn my back to get ready for the point, and walk to the spot I want to return from, then when ready, I quickly turn around ready to go - works great.

Tennisman912
01-08-2010, 11:27 AM
True Cindy, if the receiving partner is not ready but the returner plays the return, it is game on.

From Cindy “29. Receiver readiness. The receiver shall play to the reasonable pace of the server. The receiver should make no effort to return a serve when the receiver is not ready. If a player attempts to return a serve (even if it is a “quick” serve), then the receiver (or Receiving team) is presumed to be ready.”

This is the only relevant part of the code for this situation. Regarding the OP's question, No, he should not get a let and I would never give him one as that is probably a good reason why he still resorts to the quick serve in the first place thinking he can't lose. Either you rush your return or give him a let, either outcome is good for him.

I would hold up my hand, turn so I am not facing him so he can’t claim I was ready. Do not return it to him. I would talk to him nicely so he knows I know what is going on. I would also say I will do this as long as he tries to quick serve and the reason why. He will either tone it down a bit and understand or get mad and throw a hissy. If the later, I would find others to play with. But here is an important point. You have to move at a reasonable pace and not intentionally turn for 20 seconds just to give him a taste of his own medicine otherwise you are the one gaming him (don’t stoop to his level is my point). In reality, you shouldn’t need more than 5 seconds. Conveniently, about the amount of time it takes for the average person to go through their pre serve routine and hit the serve (not a coincidence IMHO). I would only probably turn away ONCE and linger “a little too long” not ready the first time to make the point that you understand what he is trying to do and it isn’t going to work and he needs to get over it and play tennis. The rest of the time I don’t really have time to turn sideways as let’s face it we are not moving far and already have our grip ready so we don’t need much time to get ready for the second serve.

If you are especially devious, you could “accidentally” untie your shoe moving into position so then you would have to tie it and at first not give them a first serve (which they would be entitled to for more than a reasonable delay just like if another ball from another court rolled into your court before the second serve) but if you take your time tying them and give them a first serve, they should also get the message.

You want to address the issue and move on. A gamesmanship show down will not help you take the high road and is unwinnable against someone who thinks this type of play is a good idea. Be firm, but fair and move on. Life is short and I have never actually had this situation come up in my entire playing days but it could, especially playing a “gamer.”

Good tennis

TM

Ironwood
01-09-2010, 08:28 AM
Well, I figured out how to deal with a quick serving opponent in doubles.....partner him! My quick serving doubles nemesis was in our foursome last night and I partnered with him to win 2-1 in a club friendly. I didn`t see a lot of quick second serves last night, and it left me wondering if he figures when he's on the other side of the net to me, he has my number by rushing his second serve enticing me to play it when I'm not entirely ready. It will be interesting to see how he plays next time we face each other....likely next week.

Cindysphinx
01-09-2010, 09:13 AM
I am always amazed at how fast some people play in doubles. I mean, I walk to my spot, turn around, and they are already waiting.

That is so weird to me. I mean, I need to *think.* Where am I going to serve and how much spin will I use? What happened last time I served to that opponent? Am I coming in or staying back? If I'm coming back, I need to remind myself not to do anything stupid and to keep my racket in front and keep the right grip. And I need to remind myself to bend my knees and catch bad tosses.

How people get ready to serve in 2.2 seconds is beyond me.

muddlehead
01-09-2010, 09:33 AM
re: receiver's doubles partner saying he was not ready...correct. the point stands. obviously. umm, overruled. i'll guess he was weakly attempting to upset me. we all know the type. it's part of the fun of our fair sport. all manner of personalities out there. i replayed it cause i'm the nicest player in the world in friendlies. league or tourneys, different story. i brought the episode in this topic to demonstrate, imho, the cure for this kind of nonsense is to not play with dorks like this again.

fuzz nation
01-10-2010, 05:01 AM
I think that the problem with this issue is that the rules don't quite specify the receiver's proper course of action between serves. I think they should point out that the receiver is allowed proper time to reset himself/herself to receive serve with no delay (don't recall anything addressing this). That would make the server's pace of play the priority, but also accommodate the receiver in allowing for those few seconds to get reestablished at a ready position.

I was amazed in recent years that Maria Sharapova and a few others in the pro's were allowed to do that whole ritual before receiving serve, even when the server would be waiting on them. I thought that was a case of semi-bad sportsmanship, but also poor officiating. If nothing else, it seems to really delay the action and make the match a lot more boring to watch with all that maintenance going on between points.