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yemenmocha
08-28-2010, 08:30 PM
So I'm serving to the AD court and the ****** in the deuce court leans over and puts his leg INTO the AD court service box (to try and distract me while I'm serving to the AD court).

Is that legal?

I know it is legal when I serve right at him (and hit him) and win the point that way, but I wasn't sure if he is allowed to stand in the service box itself like that.

JLyon
08-28-2010, 08:38 PM
In USTA he can stand whereever he wants as long as he is not creating a deliberate hinderance. In ITA though the receivers partner can not touch the service box, warning and then code if it happens a second time.

woodrow1029
08-28-2010, 08:39 PM
The receiver and the receiver's partner can stand anywhere inside or outside of the court. This includes during the service motion. The receiver's partner must remain still during the service motion though. So, he can't move into the box as you're serving, but he can move there before you start your service motion.

However, in Collegiate tennis, the receiver's partner may not stand in the service box.

woodrow1029
08-28-2010, 08:40 PM
And there you go. Two umpires answering your question the same way at the same time! :-)

atatu
08-29-2010, 06:53 AM
The receiver and the receiver's partner can stand anywhere inside or outside of the court. This includes during the service motion. The receiver's partner must remain still during the service motion though. So, he can't move into the box as you're serving, but he can move there before you start your service motion.

However, in Collegiate tennis, the receiver's partner may not stand in the service box.

But, what if you ask him not to do it because it's distracting ? If he continues to do so, isn't that considered a deliberate distraction ?

AR15
08-29-2010, 07:50 AM
But, what if you ask him not to do it because it's distracting ? If he continues to do so, isn't that considered a deliberate distraction ?

That would be your problem.

blakesq
08-29-2010, 08:24 AM
The reciever's partner has no duty to remain still during the service motion. Please point out the tennis rule or code section that says the partner must remain still. And if there is such a rule, how do you reconcile that rule with this code section:

"34. Body movement. A player may feint with the body while the ball is in
play. A player may change position at any time, including while the server is
tossing the ball. Any other movement or any sound that is made solely to distract an opponent, including, but not limited to, waving the arms or racket or stamping the feet, is not allowed."


The receiver and the receiver's partner can stand anywhere inside or outside of the court. This includes during the service motion. The receiver's partner must remain still during the service motion though. So, he can't move into the box as you're serving, but he can move there before you start your service motion.

However, in Collegiate tennis, the receiver's partner may not stand in the service box.

JLyon
08-29-2010, 09:33 AM
The reciever's partner has no duty to remain still during the service motion. Please point out the tennis rule or code section that says the partner must remain still. And if there is such a rule, how do you reconcile that rule with this code section:

"34. Body movement. A player may feint with the body while the ball is in
play. A player may change position at any time, including while the server is
tossing the ball. Any other movement or any sound that is made solely to distract an opponent, including, but not limited to, waving the arms or racket or stamping the feet, is not allowed."

That rule IMO is really sticky and gray and hard to call on, because so many shuffle feet, including the pros (ala Capriati), now is this a deliberate distraction, what about the receiver doing the same thing. Nothing gets a coach hotter than this, but they also in many cases teach their players to use this tactic.

polski
08-29-2010, 12:11 PM
The returner & partner can stand wherever they would like...if either player is struck by the ball before it lands on the court (in or out), the other team is awarded the point.

In order for them to be creating a deliberate hindrance, they have to be noticably making an attempt to distract the opponent (ie - waving arms, excessively shuffling their feet, making verbal distraction attempts). If they just simply stand in your line, they are within the USTA rules.

g4driver
08-29-2010, 12:52 PM
The returner & partner can stand wherever they would like...if either player is struck by the ball before it lands on the court (in or out), the other team is awarded the point.

In order for them to be creating a deliberate hindrance, they have to be noticably making an attempt to distract the opponent (ie - waving arms, excessively shuffling their feet, making verbal distraction attempts). If they just simply stand in your line, they are within the USTA rules.

How did you come up with your theory? Care to quote any rules on the waving of arms, shuffling of feet, etc?

I think you need to reread USTA Rule 26. Hindrance

"If a player is hindered in playing the point by a deliberate act of the opponent(s), the player shall win the point."

"Case 5: In doubles, where are the server's partner and receiver's partner allowed to stand?" "Decision: The server's partner and the receiver's partner may take any position on their own side of the net, inside or outside the court. However, if a player is creating a hindrance to the opponent(s), the hindrance rule should be used."

Standing in the service box is deliberate, whether unintended or not. Sticking a racquet in the service box is deliberate.

Earlier this year, I played at 9 am then again at noon with different guys. Unbelievably, at both 9 and noon, my friends were both lefties in the AD courts and I didn't want to serve to their forehands. I didn't know their partners, but at both 9am and noon, both of these tools where sticking their racquets a foot or more into the AD service box as I was positioning my feet to serve. I walked away the first time I saw it and said nothing. Was it distracting? Very much so.

I wanted to serve down the T to their backhands, and two different guys on the same day were sticking their racquets into the AD service box. They weren't my friends and both got the message soon after my first serve. In baseball, pitchers brush back batters. I'm not into to gamemanship, nor do I reward bad behavior. I hit both players right in the gut about 90 mph. I could have handled the situation better, but bush-league antics are not going to be rewarded when I'm playing. The second guy actually, had the nerve to say "Second Serve" to me, as his partner (my friend) walked to the net, and said "No, it's their point when you get hit."

I've thought about these tools after those matches, and realized I could have done something just as effective without serving at them.

Here's my answer:

When it happens again, I will ask the opponent to move as it is distracting and therefore by definition, a hindrance. 99.9% of players will move away and honor the request. If they don't will I serve the ball to the deuce court slowly, then claim the point due to Rule 26. Hindrance. And move to the deuce court, and then ask "Is this how you want to play?"

Tennis is suppose to be a gentleman's game, so why resort to these bush-league tactics to intimidate your opponent?

Cindysphinx
08-29-2010, 02:07 PM
This comes up from time to time, and I can never seem to find the right rule. I remember reading something that said that the receiver's partner should not change position during the serve. The reasoning is that there is no legitimate or strategic reason for the receiver's partner to change position, so any change of position must be done solely to distract and is therefore a deliberate hindrance.

Maybe someone else remembers seeing this Rule or comment?

polski
08-29-2010, 02:14 PM
How did you come up with your theory? Care to quote any rules on the waving of arms, shuffling of feet, etc?

I think you need to reread USTA Rule 26. Hindrance

"If a player is hindered in playing the point by a deliberate act of the opponent(s), the player shall win the point."

"Case 5: In doubles, where are the server's partner and receiver's partner allowed to stand?" "Decision: The server's partner and the receiver's partner may take any position on their own side of the net, inside or outside the court. However, if a player is creating a hindrance to the opponent(s), the hindrance rule should be used."



I believe you just quoted the specific rules for me. The lawyer in me says to read case 5 & then read USTA rule 26.

Is standing in the service box creating a hindrance? No

Is dancing in the service box waving my arms creating a hindrance? Yes

In this "bush league" situation (I agree that it is just that), the server needs to serve. If the serve hits the returning player's partner, take the point. If they are so deliberate that they distract the server by intentional attempts of distraction, claim the point regardless of whether the serve lands in or out.

This situation has been asked & answered several times in Tennis Magazine's "Court of Appeals."

polski
08-29-2010, 02:18 PM
...and blakesq quoted the rule about waving arms & stomping feet.

woodrow1029
08-29-2010, 03:21 PM
The reciever's partner has no duty to remain still during the service motion. Please point out the tennis rule or code section that says the partner must remain still. And if there is such a rule, how do you reconcile that rule with this code section:

"34. Body movement. A player may feint with the body while the ball is in
play. A player may change position at any time, including while the server is
tossing the ball. Any other movement or any sound that is made solely to distract an opponent, including, but not limited to, waving the arms or racket or stamping the feet, is not allowed."

The receiver's partner dancing in and out of the service box while the server is serving would be solely to distract the opponent. That is what I meant by must stay still.

blakesq
08-29-2010, 04:40 PM
I would have to disagree, based on the rule I quoted. A player can change position at ANY TIME. Thus, a player can move from inside the service box to outside the service box during the serve. That scenario can be considered "dancing in and out of the service box". However, if someone is moving in and out of the service box while waving his arms, then I think that is done solely to distract.



The receiver's partner dancing in and out of the service box while the server is serving would be solely to distract the opponent. That is what I meant by must stay still.

woodrow1029
08-29-2010, 05:29 PM
I would have to disagree, based on the rule I quoted. A player can change position at ANY TIME. Thus, a player can move from inside the service box to outside the service box during the serve. That scenario can be considered "dancing in and out of the service box". However, if someone is moving in and out of the service box while waving his arms, then I think that is done solely to distract.

If the receiver's partner is walking around while the server is serving, and moving in and out of the service box, I would call a hindrance for that if I were the chair umpire, and I don't know of any reason why that would not be considered a deliberate attempt at distracting.

g4driver
08-29-2010, 06:02 PM
I believe you just quoted the specific rules for me. The lawyer in me says to read case 5 & then read USTA rule 26.

Is standing in the service box creating a hindrance? No Says who? You? Tennis Magazine? The USTA has no comment on this in their Publication "Rules of Tennis", and Tennis Magazine isn't an authority or governing body for USTA matches. This is certainly a hindrance to me . It is distracting just as much as someone dancing in the same box. It distracts the server from his serve. Period. The only difference in your example is one person is moving and one is not. It makes no difference to me, the hindrance is clearly present.

Is dancing in the service box waving my arms creating a hindrance? Yes
Agreed: Per Hindrance Issues 33. Any movement or sound that is made solely to distract any opponent, including, but not limited to, waving the armas or racquet or stamping the feet, is not allowed. So my opponents sticking their racquets into the service box is movement solely to distract , and by definition any movement is "not allowed."

What else is a player doing standing in the service box, if not a clear and intentional distraction to the server? They aren't allowed to hit the ball, so what is the purpose of standing there if they are not in fact a creating a hindrance? Please riddle me this Batman.

In this "bush league" situation (I agree that it is just that), the server needs to serve. In your opinion. In my opinion, the offending behavior needs to be stopped immediately. Do not reward or encourage bad behavior. If the serve hits the returning player's partner, take the point. If they are so deliberate that they distract the server by intentional attempts of distraction, claim the point regardless of whether the serve lands in or out.

This situation has been asked & answered several times in Tennis Magazine's "Court of Appeals."

Here is a fact: no one including you, or anyone at Tennis Magazine, nor the USTA can tell me how I feel. You can't tell me if I am being distracting or not. Care to argue this point too?

In 30+ years of tennis, I have had two numb-nuts stick their racquets into the service box while I attempted to service, on the same day. It isn't normal, and I don't practice serving under these conditions, and therefore, these actions are in fact distracting and a hindrance. If I got to practice serving around a human body in the service box, I am sure I could get use to it too, but have you ever seen anyone do this on a regular basis? I haven't. Not in high school, college or the pros and certainly not in USTA match play.

Everyone is different. What hinders me may not hinder you. e.g. If my opponent calls "Short" loudly after popping up a ball moving toward my court, can I call a hindrance? Yes, according to the Rules of Tennis Hindrance Issues #33, I can, but I never have, since the word "Short", or "Back Up" has never distracted me in any manner. If I can claim my opponent's yelling while the ball is moving toward me is a hindrance, I hope you can clearly understand that my opponent's partner standing in the service box is clearly distracting since this position serves no other purpose, other than to distract the server.

Can you state an legitimate alternative purpose of standing in the service box other than distracting and hindering the server? Is so, please do enlighten me.

I am referring specifically to the rules that govern the courts where I play, USTA Rules, not ITF rules. The rule is very clear. It's not gray in my mind in any manner. It's not up to my opponent, you or Tennis Magazine to determine if I am hindered. It's up to me.

Rule 26: "If a player is hindered in playing the point by a deliberate act of the opponent(s), the player shall win the point."

The deliberate act is standing in the service box. By standing where I am intentionally trying to serve (whether down the T, the middle or wide), the player is clearing creating an intentional distraction.

Do I serve wide to avoid the player, or serve at him? Do I imagine him to be invisible? If I am thinking any of this thoughts when I am about to serve, I am being distracted intentionally and you are arguing for the sake of arguing, if you don't consider this a hindrance, regardless of what you read in Tennis Magazine.

Yet another reason, why standing in the service box is a hinderance.

What if I can't see the returner due to the position of the tool who is standing between us? If this not a hindrance? I could simply setup my serve to put the jerk between me and the returner and claim hindrance without anything else. The player in the service box isn't allowed to move to distract me once I'm ready to serve, and if I can't see the returner do you, and Tennis Magazine, or the USTA really expect me to serve in this situation? If you answer yes, please refrain from every voting again, and excuse yourself from any jury duty for the sake of anyone near you.

Sometimes common sense isn't.

If I am hindered due to my opponent's deliberate choice to stand in the service box, in playing the point (serving), I win the point. Period. Dot. I'm simply serving, claiming hindrance, the point and then getting ready to serve to the opposite court. I challenge you, Tennis Magazine, or any USTA official to argue this point with me at any time.

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hindered

hin·dered hin·der·ing\-d(ə-)riŋ\
Definition of HINDER

transitive verb
1: to make slow or difficult the progress of : hamper (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hamper)

2 : to hold back : check (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/check)

intransitive verb
: to delay, impede, or prevent action

JLyon
08-29-2010, 06:05 PM
g4driver:
I'll agree with you except if a player sets up camp in the service box and does not flinch until you have already hit the serve, how can that be considered a hinderance? Now if they were dancing the polka it would be different. By your logic you could claim a hinderance on a returner who starts moving towards the service line while you serve, but it might be their natural return.
I guess different strokes for different folks.

MrCLEAN
08-29-2010, 06:16 PM
Peg him and take the point.

g4driver
08-29-2010, 06:23 PM
Jlyon,

I can chew gum, while flying a jet at 180 mph down to 200' above the ground in a driving rain or snowstorm, while Air Traffic Control and other pilots are talking on multiple radios in my headset, and concentrate and stick the landing on speed, on centerline in a 500' Long by 150' W part of the runway. Why? Because I have done for 20 years. It is second nature. Serving to a court with player who isn't allowed to touch the ball, isn't second nature, and therefore a distraction.

My point is it is bush-league for the return's teammate to stand in the service box while the server is serving. There is no legitimate reason to do so.

If the returner wants to move toward the box this is somewhat normal, especially if he anticipates a short serve. e.g. the server always serves a second server with more spin middle of the court, rather than a deep flat or kick serve.

The teammate in the box CAN NOT touch the ball with his body, his clothing, or his racquet. He is there for one purpose: to distract the server. I challenge anyone in the USTA rules office to argue this point against me. I will be at the Open starting Wed through next week and will try my best to get a USTA official to argue anything other than distraction, and I will do my best to get the USTA to admit to such and consider adding this prohibition to their rules when they consider new rules.

And I did hit both players on that Saturday...somewhere in the 90s right in the gut. I regret doing that now, but yes, I was upset by their actions, and by my own actions distracted. I won't hit anyone else on purpose, and to this day, I am ashamed of my actions on the court that day, even thought my friends thought it was funny.

atatu
08-29-2010, 06:39 PM
That would be your problem.

Apparently not just mine....

NoSkillzAndy
08-29-2010, 06:45 PM
Peg him and take the point.

I'm with you. If someone is intentionally trying to distract me or psych me out by standing in the box or near the center line leaning in, they had better be prepared to see the serve come -at- them. No need for a warning, they initiated it with their gamesmanship.

It may be legal for them to be standing there or leaning in, but it's also legal for me to hit them with my serve. Do we really need to go there? Nope, and firing a serve in their direction usually corrects their unnecessary positioning rather quickly.

esgee48
08-29-2010, 07:07 PM
I agree completely with this philosophy. If they're dumb enough to get hit, then TS to them. I actually like to see something like this because it cuts down the angle the returner/receiver can hit because the dumb partner is in the way.

Beacon Hill
08-29-2010, 07:07 PM
Jlyon,

I can chew gum, while flying a jet at 180 mph down to 200' above the ground in a driving rain or snowstorm, while Air Traffic Control and other pilots are talking on multiple radios in my headset, and concentrate and stick the landing on speed, on centerline in a 500' Long by 150' W part of the runway. Why? Because I have done for 20 years. It is second nature. Serving to a court with player who isn't allowed to touch the ball, isn't second nature, and therefore a distraction.

My point is it is bush-league for the return's teammate to stand in the service box while the server is serving. There is no legitimate reason to do so.

If the returner wants to move toward the box this is somewhat normal, especially if he anticipates a short serve. e.g. the server always serves a second server with more spin middle of the court, rather than a deep flat or kick serve.

The teammate in the box CAN NOT touch the ball with his body, his clothing, or his racquet. He is there for one purpose: to distract the server. I challenge anyone in the USTA rules office to argue this point against me. I will be at the Open starting Wed through next week and will try my best to get a USTA official to argue anything other than distraction, and I will do my best to get the USTA to admit to such and consider adding this prohibition to their rules when they consider new rules.

And I did hit both players on that Saturday...somewhere in the 90s right in the gut. I regret doing that now, but yes, I was upset by their actions, and by my own actions distracted. I won't hit anyone else on purpose, and to this day, I am ashamed of my actions on the court that day, even thought my friends thought it was funny.
What if the receiver took a position inside the service box? It is unlikely you would have seen that before. And it would most likely be done in order to distract you. Would you call a hindrance there as well?

Sometimes players take unusual positions on the court to put you out of your comfort zone. They are trying to force you to make an error or think twice before you hit the ball. Yes, they are hindering your ability to execute your shot the way you would like to. And yes, it is intentional. But I don't believe it is the kind of intentional hindrance referred to in the rule book as being something that is illegal. If I were the referee overseeing your match, I would not allow your hindrance call. But I would agree your opponent is being kind of a jerk.

MrCLEAN
08-29-2010, 07:34 PM
I'm with you. If someone is intentionally trying to distract me or psych me out by standing in the box or near the center line leaning in, they had better be prepared to see the serve come -at- them. No need for a warning, they initiated it with their gamesmanship.

It may be legal for them to be standing there or leaning in, but it's also legal for me to hit them with my serve. Do we really need to go there? Nope, and firing a serve in their direction usually corrects their unnecessary positioning rather quickly.
Exactly. There is no tactical advantage to be crowding the box. The ONLY reason they do it is to basically challenge you. I don't try to hit them, but I'm not afraid to go up the middle either. Their call.

What if the receiver took a position inside the service box? It is unlikely you would have seen that before. And it would most likely be done in order to distract you. Would you call a hindrance there as well?

Sometimes players take unusual positions on the court to put you out of your comfort zone. They are trying to force you to make an error or think twice before you hit the ball. Yes, they are hindering your ability to execute your shot the way you would like to. And yes, it is intentional. But I don't believe it is the kind of intentional hindrance referred to in the rule book as being something that is illegal. If I were the referee overseeing your match, I would not allow your hindrance call. But I would agree your opponent is being kind of a jerk.

Where they stand to return in no way hinders your ability to execute your shot. I've had guys try to come waaaay up on a 2nd serve, even though I've got a good one. It's up to me whether or not I want to take it personally and try to blast one, in fact, I'm sure that's what they want me to do. Just hit the ball, if they put themselves in harms way, that's their problem.

tennis tom
08-29-2010, 10:44 PM
Jlyon,
And I did hit both players on that Saturday...somewhere in the 90s right in the gut. I regret doing that now, but yes, I was upset by their actions, and by my own actions distracted. I won't hit anyone else on purpose, and to this day, I am ashamed of my actions on the court that day, even thought my friends thought it was funny.


I don't think you should regret it, if they were putting themselves in the line of fire than they were asking for it. There's no rule against hitting opposing players. It's only a fuzzy little ball, no player that I know of has been killed or crippled by a ball.

Tennis is said to be an allegory for war and similar to boxing. Compared to football, rugby, and many other sports it's too tame and too polite. It's not easy to hit someone intentionaly with a ball, I've tried a lot of times. It's a good skill to possess. Be proud of it, at the 4.0 level especially it's all about macho and intimidation.

polski
08-30-2010, 04:22 AM
Here is a fact: no one including you, or anyone at Tennis Magazine, nor the USTA can tell me how I "feel." You can't tell me if I am being distracting or not. Care to argue this point too?

Technically, how you feel is irrelevant. This matter would need to be interpreted by an official to determine whether or not a hindrance call is warranted. What you "feel" is deliberate may not be deliberate at all. They may just be out of position & not realize it, etc.

If you dispute that, you need to go talk to Dr Phil about your "feelings." Your "feelings" may be hurt by these evil tennis oppoinents of yours, but your "feelings" matter roughly zero. You would flat out be wrong to call hindrance on an opponent based on them standing somewhere you don't want them to stand. If you did that to me, I would argue it. My biggest argument: screw your "feelings." Grow a pair, cry baby.

g4driver
08-30-2010, 04:23 AM
What if the receiver took a position inside the service box? It is unlikely you would have seen that before. And it would most likely be done in order to distract you. Would you call a hindrance there as well?

I've seen this plenty of times from one very professional and great pro who hit against me on occasion before moving back to Baltimore this summer. He is a friend. He would do it during practice matches to hone my brain to block him out, and to get me to hit a spot in the service box. He was good enough to make the return if I missed my target. He's was trying to get me to block him out mentally and serve to a spot.

If a guy wants to crowd the box as the receiver, please bring it. However, when you're playing doubles, and the receiver's partner is the one in the box, this is completely different. Guys, I understand that there is nothing verbatim written in the USTA rules, but here is my argument.

If anyone can offer a legitimate reason for the receiver's partner to be in the service box, other than distraction, please do so. I argue there isn't a legitimate reason.

Questions for the crowd:
1) Shouldn't you be able to see the returner when you server? What if the returner's partner is blocking you're view?
2) How do you know if the receiver is ready if you can't see him? Are you suppose to ask a USTA official since your view is blocked?
3) Are you suppose to wait, and when challenged by the receiver or jerk in the box for a time violation, do you then state, "I can't tell if you are ready, due to your jerk partner who is blocking my view?"
4) Is the server expected to move to accommodate the jerk in the box?

I would love to have a USTA defend the position that the receiver's opponent is not distracting me on the court if he is standing in the service box when I step up to serve and I position myself so the jerk is directly between the receiver and myself.

Do you expect the USTA official to tell you to shift left or right in order to see your opponent?

"Mr USTA official, if this is not a distraction, please offer me any legitimate reason he is standing in the service box since he can't touch the ball with his clothes, racquet or body?" Crickets chirping in the background. Then, "Mr USTA official, since I can't see the receiver, can you please tell me when he is ready for my serve?" Again, crickets

If yelling "Short", or "Back Up" when the ball is coming toward you is seen as a hindrance by the USTA, please tell me you don't think a receiver standing in the service box is less distracting when you attempt to serve.

Thankfully jerks like these are extremely rare, but I had two on the same day. What are the chances of that? And thanks for telling me it's ok to drill these guys, as I have felt bad about for some time.

I have a mantra in life "Don't reward or encourage bad behavior". I have always tried to use diplomacy to lighten the gravity of situations and cool things down. I don't talk to myself during matches, and since I play more singles than doubles, this was very foreign to me.

I appreciate the Devil's Advocates on this forum. It is always nice to read or hear other opinions, and I learn plenty from those around me. I hope I'm not coming across as a jerk or arrogant, as that isn't my intent. If I have or am, this is not my intent in any manner.

v/r

Greg

polski
08-30-2010, 04:33 AM
http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hindered

hin·dered hin·der·ing\-d(ə-)riŋ\
Definition of HINDER

transitive verb
1: to make slow or difficult the progress of : hamper (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hamper)

2 : to hold back : check (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/check)

intransitive verb
: to delay, impede, or prevent action

When someone has a huge kick serve, it hinders my ability to effectively return their serve on my backhand side. Maybe I should just call a hindrance on them in the future & point out rule 26 & refer them to the Webster's definition:

The kick serve to my backhand:
- prevents action
- makes difficult the process

Clearly, this is a rule's violation & they need to stop immediately.

spot
08-30-2010, 04:33 AM
g4driver- just because you are easily distracted by someone doing something explicitly allowed by the rules is not enough for you to claim the point. I fully agree that having the receivers partner stand in the box may be bush league and a jerk rule but that doesn't mean that it is illegal.

Personally I don't get why the receiving partner standing in the box is supposed to be distracting to me while I am serving. When I am serving I am looking at the ball- to me the only person who would be in position to call hindrance would be the receivers partner who has to look past the guy in the box. I couldn't care any less if the receiver's partner was waving their racquet into the box while I am serving but if I was returning I'd sure be annoyed.

g4driver
08-30-2010, 04:44 AM
Polski,

You win.

spot
08-30-2010, 04:48 AM
If you were consistently serving wide to the Ad side every time and my partner was having trouble getting the return past the netman and your partner was just jamming the ball through the hole every time- the proper response would be to have the returner's parner slide further over to take that shot away. I haven't ever lined up touching the service box but I can certainly see a rationale for doing so.

SOmeone taking that position very well might be doing it to be a jerk- but the rules explicitly allow for them to take that position. Once again I have no clue why you think this would be so distracting when you should be looking at the ball while you are serving.

g4driver
08-30-2010, 05:12 AM
Polski,

I found a link which answered my question, and clearly shows you are correct. You win the argument.

http://www.usta.com/Improve-Your-Game/Rules/Distractions-and-Interferences/Hindrances_caused_by_players/?printpage=1

So you are right and I am wrong.

I am not crying, and don't need to sit on anyone's couch. And my pair is plenty big enough on any day to politely ask anyone who does this to move. If they choose not to, I have other options, including serving right at them.

I do find it pathetic that the USTA allows someone to claim a hindrance if they so chose, simply for their opponent's talking as a ball coming is coming toward them, by yelling "Short" or "Back Up". This isn't bush-league, it's simple communication.

On the other hand, the USTA allows bush-league tactics and therefore encourages the server to take whatever action they deem necessary to counter this bush-league play, whether that means serving at the person or ignoring them.

If the USTA is going to allow bush-league play, while banning simple communication, IMO the USTA has issues.

g4driver
08-30-2010, 05:30 AM
Spot, thanks for your comments.

I am talking about a guy standing a foot or two inside the service box when I am trying to serve down the T. I'm not a pro, and since I don't normally practice serving with a receiver's partner standing on the spot where I want the ball to drop, yes to me this is distracting, even though I am looking at the ball when I serve.

I admit that both Polski and you are correct in that I can not claim hindrance for the receiver's opponent simply standing in the service box. I would continue to ask the person to move out of the service box, and if they didn't I would simply serve right them. (Don't reward bad behavior.)

But the two jerks I encounter where sticking their racquets into the service box and beating the racquets on the ground (as if you might knock clay off your shoes with a racquet) when I was serving.

I read this as any movement made solely to distract an opponent is not allowed. (Hindrance Issues #34) Am I wrong here as well?

polski
08-30-2010, 05:37 AM
The moment of truth is when the point is started. Movement before the point cannot be claimed as distracting. However, if they are moving while you begin your service motion, that can be considered distracting & therefore a hindrance.

The same theory applies to the "short" and "watch out" type of comments. The ball is live & therefore, if such communication distracts the opposing team they have every right to claim a hindrance. Notice I say "if."

There is a big difference between being uncomfortable & being distracted. Is it bush-league - probably. Legal - yes. Think about serving in I-formation or Austrailian style. This probably makes the returning team uncomfortable & if they haven't seen it before, they might think it is bush-league. However, it is completely legal.

g4driver
08-30-2010, 05:48 AM
Polski,

I have played against I formations and while rare at my level, I don't find it distracting as the non-serving partner is generally below the net.

The guys I am talking about were actively beating the service box before and during my service motion, and I hit both of them right in the gut. When the second guy said "Second serve", and after his partner(my friend) corrected him. I told him "If you do that again, I'm going to hit you again, and lowered myself to their bush-league antics that day. This is why I was disappointed in myself. I have never in 30+ years of tennis encountered this type crap, and I didn't handle it as well as I could have.

Again, I appreciate you taking a stand on here, and like Spot, answering my questions. I argued my point and admit I am wrong. I am man enough to do both.

I stand my my mantra, not to reward bad behavior, and I'm am just trying to find less confrontational ways to stop bad behavior. Reading and understanding the rule is part of that journey.

Thanks for your time.

AR15
08-30-2010, 05:55 AM
I occasionally play against an opponent that serves from his ally, and places the ball down the tee. When my partner is receiving, I sometimes stand at the net (on my side) near the tee, to cut off this server's favorite serve.

I know when I do this I'm taking a risk of getting of getting tattooed by his serve AND giving up a point. However, against this opponent, I know the odds are in my favor.

Why shouldn't this tactic be used?

blakesq
08-30-2010, 06:19 AM
Well, you would be ignoring the rule that says a player can change his position at ANY TIME.

If the receiver's partner is walking around while the server is serving, and moving in and out of the service box, I would call a hindrance for that if I were the chair umpire, and I don't know of any reason why that would not be considered a deliberate attempt at distracting.

blakesq
08-30-2010, 06:23 AM
uh, why do you have to 'serve around' the player or raquet that is in the service box?



snip

If I got to practice serving around a human body in the service box, I am sure I could get use to it too, but have you ever seen anyone do this on a regular basis?

g4driver
08-30-2010, 06:35 AM
blacksq,


I think Woodrow could counter your argument with the Q &A I found in the link below. If the guy moves away before the ball is struck, hindrance is valid call according to this Q&A.



http://www.usta.com/Improve-Your-Gam...s/?printpage=1 (http://www.usta.com/Improve-Your-Game/Rules/Distractions-and-Interferences/Hindrances_caused_by_players/?printpage=1)



Q. Is it legal for the receiver's partner to stand in the receiver's service box and wave her racket during the server's motion, then move out of the box when the ball is struck?

A. Players may not make motions that are meant to intentionally distract the opponent. The receiver's partner may stand anywhere, even in the service box. Once the receiver's partner takes a position, he/she should remain there until the ball is struck. If the receiver's partner moves away before the ball is struck then it could be deemed that the only reason they took such a position was to hinder the server, and that is not allowed.

cknobman
08-30-2010, 06:39 AM
Peg him and take the point.

I have done this and will continue to do this when the rare case comes up.

Its not fun getting pegged at 100+ mph.

blakesq
08-30-2010, 06:42 AM
he could, but I think the Rules of Tennis and the Code have more authority than an article written by who knows who.

blacksq,


I think Woodrow could counter your argument with the Q &A I found in the link below. If the guy moves away before the ball is struck, hindrance is valid call according to this Q&A.



http://www.usta.com/Improve-Your-Gam...s/?printpage=1 (http://www.usta.com/Improve-Your-Game/Rules/Distractions-and-Interferences/Hindrances_caused_by_players/?printpage=1)



Q. Is it legal for the receiver's partner to stand in the receiver's service box and wave her racket during the server's motion, then move out of the box when the ball is struck?

A. Players may not make motions that are meant to intentionally distract the opponent. The receiver's partner may stand anywhere, even in the service box. Once the receiver's partner takes a position, he/she should remain there until the ball is struck. If the receiver's partner moves away before the ball is struck then it could be deemed that the only reason they took such a position was to hinder the server, and that is not allowed.

g4driver
08-30-2010, 06:58 AM
And, you are right, I wouldn't have to serve around them if I chose to serve at them. ;)

The problem with all these rules is for every rule, there seems to be an answer on the USTA that counters the exact wording by a few words and makes things unclear.

See #34 Hindrance Issues for example.

e.g. 34. Feinting with the body. A player may feint with the body while the ball is in play. A player may change position at any time, including while the server is tossing the ball. Any movement or sound that is made solely to distract an opponent, including, but not limited to, waving the arms or racket or stamping the feet, is not allowed.

Then read the Q & A from above.

Is Rule #34 speaking to the receiver, the receiver's partner or both? I submit it speaks to both. "Any" means "any" doesn't it? Meaning any player can move before, during or after the ball is struck. Then read the Q & A, the the author of this answer says something completely different. The author says "Once the receiver's partner takes a position, he/she should remain there until the ball is struck. If the receiver's partner moves away before the ball is struck then it could be deemed that the only reason they took such a position was to hinder the server, and that is not allowed."

The more I read the USTA rules, the more I realize they are jacked up and conflicting with their own Q&As. Rule #34 says "A player may change position at ANY time", then the USTA counters their on rule with a Q & A which says the receiver's partner can't move away before the ball is struck.

So, you and Woodrow are both right, and both wrong. But I agree the Q&A sessions don't have named authors. Perfect. Glad we have this clear.

I think pegging the guy is now the best answer. MrClean and cknobman get it right. ;)

woodrow1029
08-30-2010, 07:49 AM
And, you are right, I wouldn't have to serve around them if I chose to serve at them. ;)

The problem with all these rules is for every rule, there seems to be an answer on the USTA that counters the exact wording by a few words and makes things unclear.

See #34 Hindrance Issues for example.

e.g. 34. Feinting with the body. A player may feint with the body while the ball is in play. A player may change position at any time, including while the server is tossing the ball. Any movement or sound that is made solely to distract an opponent, including, but not limited to, waving the arms or racket or stamping the feet, is not allowed.

Then read the Q & A from above.

Is Rule #34 speaking to the receiver, the receiver's partner or both? I submit it speaks to both. "Any" means "any" doesn't it? Meaning any player can move before, during or after the ball is struck. Then read the Q & A, the the author of this answer says something completely different. The author says "Once the receiver's partner takes a position, he/she should remain there until the ball is struck. If the receiver's partner moves away before the ball is struck then it could be deemed that the only reason they took such a position was to hinder the server, and that is not allowed."

The more I read the USTA rules, the more I realize they are jacked up and conflicting with their own Q&As. Rule #34 says "A player may change position at ANY time", then the USTA counters their on rule with a Q & A which says the receiver's partner can't move away before the ball is struck.

So, you and Woodrow are both right, and both wrong. But I agree the Q&A sessions don't have named authors. Perfect. Glad we have this clear.

I think pegging the guy is now the best answer. MrClean and cknobman get it right. ;)



You are all reading way too much into this. It's common sense. It doesn't say ANY player. It says that a player may move at ANY time except whent it is movement that is solely intended for the reason of distracting the opponent. The Q&A is clarifying that the receiver's partner moving during the toss is considered something that is solely to hinder the opponent, which is not allowed. It's cery clear, and again, common sense.

tennis tom
08-30-2010, 08:55 AM
I appreciate the Devil's Advocates on this forum. It is always nice to read or hear other opinions, and I learn plenty from those around me. I hope I'm not coming across as a jerk or arrogant, as that isn't my intent. If I have or am, this is not my intent in any manner.

Greg

You are not coming off as a jerk, I've played tennis for about 50 years and have never known that the receiver's partner can stand inside the receiver's service box, that's news to me! I might try that myself someday, not to be a jerk, but if it's legal why not? I wouldn't do this as standard porcedure, it would be more to retaliate if they were being "jerks" first. I'm gonna have to explore thsi new tennis tool. If it's legal why not have it in the quiver if the prize of a trip to Hawaii is dependent on it? All is fair in love and war, and tennis is supposed to be an allegory for war and l'oeuf plays a big part too.

I try to play scrupulously within the rules of the game. The problem I encounter is when the rules of the game conflict with the "social netwoking" rules of the country club. The folks at ye' ol' club having played tennis well into sinility, have never bothered to learn the fundamentals of the sport they profess to "play". Then I come off as the jerk for playing within the rules. Many of these folks, some who were born with silver spoons in their mouths, don't beleive the rules apply to them, like cracking a can of balls on a rare ocassion or picking up a ball behind them. I especailly love, (read loathe) the ones who arrive on the scene with their one racket slung over their shoulder with no balls. I just sit down and say I didn't bring any either and direct them to the pro-shop, where I say they actually sell balls. From the moment they step on the court they manage to do 100 things wrong, like not closing the gate on arrival and not closing it when they depart--don' be that player!

Ah, but I digress, for which I apologize. So, G4Driver, you're not coming off as a jerk, and don't worry about the slings and arrows on internet forums. People say things they would never have the courage to say to you if you were looming over them in person.

vcat
08-30-2010, 10:22 AM
Funny how this comes up, kind of a similar situation here...I just played a tournament with my Dad where on our opponents serve we positioned my Dad closer to the net (on his side) than normal when I was receiving. We did it so he would be already there to pick off a return of my return of serve...he's a bit slower so it was better to have him start there instead of moving up after the ball was in play. Anyway, I didn't really think it was bothering our opponents, but late in the 2nd set the server tries to fire a serve right at my Dad. He missed terribly and then double faulted (tried it twice in a row). After the match, they shake our hands and say how they didn't appreciate the gamesmanship with the positioning. The things that go on in people's heads during tennis really surprises me sometimes. But now, I think maybe that position has been working so well lately not because my returns were good and feeding my Dad with put-aways, but because we were unnerving the opponent. Interesting.

blakesq
08-31-2010, 08:12 AM
Gamesmanship is doing ANYTHING your opponent doesn't like, which includes following the rules to the letter. Your opponents, VCAT, were punks, and I am glad you beat them. Hopefully you told them so!

Funny how this comes up, kind of a similar situation here...I just played a tournament with my Dad where on our opponents serve we positioned my Dad closer to the net (on his side) than normal when I was receiving. We did it so he would be already there to pick off a return of my return of serve...he's a bit slower so it was better to have him start there instead of moving up after the ball was in play. Anyway, I didn't really think it was bothering our opponents, but late in the 2nd set the server tries to fire a serve right at my Dad. He missed terribly and then double faulted (tried it twice in a row). After the match, they shake our hands and say how they didn't appreciate the gamesmanship with the positioning. The things that go on in people's heads during tennis really surprises me sometimes. But now, I think maybe that position has been working so well lately not because my returns were good and feeding my Dad with put-aways, but because we were unnerving the opponent. Interesting.

g4driver
08-31-2010, 08:46 AM
TennisTom, thanks for the comments.

Polski, Blakesq, and Woodrow have all made me look at things from a different viewpoint about the receiver's partner standing in the box.

That is why I like reading boards like these for both tennis and other subjects. My work forum isn't anonymous and people see things differently, but in the end I appreciate reading a different view, especially when I'm ignorant on a subject or just flat out wrong.

I thought I was a jerk for serving at the guy in the box, but after reading comments from other players on here and talking to friends, I realize I'm not the one being the jerk, since I'm merely countering their chess move with one of my own.

Panic492
08-31-2010, 08:33 PM
G4, I happen to agree with you and the spirit of the rule. Standing in the service box is BS and Bush League. You have no play from that position other than to distract your opponent.

chatt_town
08-31-2010, 09:19 PM
And there you go. Two umpires answering your question the same way at the same time! :-)


Great an umpire...so check this out. Don't you think it's contradictory to say they can stand in the box and at the same time say as long as they are not causing a hinderance? It seems that this would be the same as some shuffling their feet while you are trying to stroke the ball. I understand the rule is what it is but what do you think as an umpire?

Peace,

Chatt_town

blakesq
09-01-2010, 05:49 AM
it is more bush league to be distracted by where your opponent is standing.

G4, I happen to agree with you and the spirit of the rule. Standing in the service box is BS and Bush League. You have no play from that position other than to distract your opponent.

levy1
09-02-2010, 07:27 AM
I don't stand in the service box but sometimes on the second service I will move over to the corner of the box and rock back and forth just a little. I have won a few points doing this but I play 3.5.
One time I was rewarded with a 90 mph fast ball at my head. I asked the player if he did this on purpose and he said no. Later in the locker room he admitted to trying to hit me. I did not move into the box anymore on him but I made sure I did a beat down on him every time I played him.

Taxvictim
09-02-2010, 07:48 AM
The problem I encounter is when the rules of the game conflict with the "social netwoking" rules of the country club.

And don't even try to bring up foot faults, no matter how blatant.

g4driver
09-09-2010, 08:17 AM
it is more bush league to be distracted by where your opponent is standing.


blakesq, anyone can get distracted when they aren't seeing something for the first time.

Would you agree, you don't see a receiver's partner in the service box on a regular basis? I hope you would concede it isn't something often see in doubles. If the guy wants to stand there fine, it doesn't take long to block him out and move on. Will I step back from the service line and delay my serve for a second or two? Most likely yes.

It isn't bush league for me or anyone to be distracted by seeing something for the first time, especially a receiver's partner standing in the service box. It's just different.

Have you ever met some for the first time and put out your right hand to shake the person's hand and then notice the person doesn't have a right hand since you were looking at their face when being introduced by a friend? This happened to me a work last year. I didn't notice the guy's right arm had been mauled in some manner. I quickly withdrew my right hand as he extended is left hand and shook his left hand with my left hand. It was simply something I wasn't used to seeing, and I quickly adjusted.

Serving to a service box with the receiver's partner standing in the box is an appropriate comparison. It's not often encountered. Do I think it's Bush League? Yes. The only reason it is being done is to get in the server's head. If that's how you play, go for it. I had no problem blocking out the two guys who did this to me, and I nailed both of them with my first serves. I didn't feel good about it, but again if people want to play games, any descent 4.0 is going to nail them.

Bedrock
09-09-2010, 08:42 AM
Any formation is good.
I even can stay behide of my receiving partner.

blakesq
09-09-2010, 10:46 AM
OK i stand corrected. It is not bush league to get distracted if you see someone standing in the service box for the first time. However, it is bush league to complain or call for a hindrance if someone is standing in the service box.

blakesq, anyone can get distracted when they aren't seeing something for the first time.

Would you agree, you don't see a receiver's partner in the service box on a regular basis? I hope you would concede it isn't something often see in doubles. If the guy wants to stand there fine, it doesn't take long to block him out and move on. Will I step back from the service line and delay my serve for a second or two? Most likely yes.

It isn't bush league for me or anyone to be distracted by seeing something for the first time, especially a receiver's partner standing in the service box. It's just different.

Have you ever met some for the first time and put out your right hand to shake the person's hand and then notice the person doesn't have a right hand since you were looking at their face when being introduced by a friend? This happened to me a work last year. I didn't notice the guy's right arm had been mauled in some manner. I quickly withdrew my right hand as he extended is left hand and shook his left hand with my left hand. It was simply something I wasn't used to seeing, and I quickly adjusted.

Serving to a service box with the receiver's partner standing in the box is an appropriate comparison. It's not often encountered. Do I think it's Bush League? Yes. The only reason it is being done is to get in the server's head. If that's how you play, go for it. I had no problem blocking out the two guys who did this to me, and I nailed both of them with my first serves. I didn't feel good about it, but again if people want to play games, any descent 4.0 is going to nail them.

RogerRacket111
09-09-2010, 11:01 AM
Its like people who step up close to the line. If someone does that to me I'm clocking them by hitting a hard serve, I don't care if I double fault.

g4driver
09-09-2010, 11:04 AM
blakesq,

please tell me how many times you have seen a 4.0 and higher men's double team attempt this? Have you ever seen a pro do this? Have you ever seen anyone other than a 3.5 do this?

The next time you see it, please get me some video. I'd love to see the guy at in the box being nailed, because that is what is going to happen.

I admitted I was wrong. Do you need me to quote that for you?

So in your opinion, it's bush league because, in 30+ years of playing tennis I've never seen this, I found it irritating at first? I was wrong. I didn't know the rule. I stand corrected.

Granted you are completely right. You can stand anywhere you want.
It's bush league. It's legal. Go for it pal. Please tell me how it works out for you.

Bedrock
09-09-2010, 12:57 PM
blakesq,

please tell me how many times you have seen a 4.0 and higher men's double team attempt this? Have you ever seen a pro do this? Have you ever seen anyone other than a 3.5 do this?

The next time you see it, please get me some video. I'd love to see the guy at in the box being nailed, because that is what is going to happen.

I admitted I was wrong. Do you need me to quote that for you?

So in your opinion, it's bush league because, in 30+ years of playing tennis I've never seen this, I found it irritating at first? I was wrong. I didn't know the rule. I stand corrected.

Granted you are completely right. You can stand anywhere you want.
It's bush league. It's legal. Go for it pal. Please tell me how it works out for you.


People usually trick with formation for fun. I do like to use some weird formation, if my partner agrees.
I knew a guy who got a ban for serving underhand :) It was too tricky for opponents to rash to the net after such serve. Of course it was some local league. In real life such serve would be accepted as a gift from a very generous man. ;)

Bedrock
09-09-2010, 01:00 PM
I don't stand in the service box but sometimes on the second service I will move over to the corner of the box and rock back and forth just a little. I have won a few points doing this but I play 3.5.
One time I was rewarded with a 90 mph fast ball at my head. I asked the player if he did this on purpose and he said no. Later in the locker room he admitted to trying to hit me. I did not move into the box anymore on him but I made sure I did a beat down on him every time I played him.

It is a very dangerous move :twisted:

blakesq
09-09-2010, 01:17 PM
I am a 4.0 player. I do it once or twice a year, usually if our opponents has a monster serve, and nothing else seems to be working. I have seen varsity high school players do this, at a tournament a few years ago. Thanks for your admission of being wrong, I am often wrong, and it takes a lot of maturity, imho, to admit when one is wrong. As for it "working out for me", it usually doesn't seem to affect play one way or another. However, one thing that does seem to work more often is to crowd the server, e.g., play way up when returning serve (between the base line and service line, for example), and have your partner crowd, but not stand in, the server's box. for some reason that seems to put pressure on SOME servers.

blakesq,

please tell me how many times you have seen a 4.0 and higher men's double team attempt this? Have you ever seen a pro do this? Have you ever seen anyone other than a 3.5 do this?

The next time you see it, please get me some video. I'd love to see the guy at in the box being nailed, because that is what is going to happen.

I admitted I was wrong. Do you need me to quote that for you?

So in your opinion, it's bush league because, in 30+ years of playing tennis I've never seen this, I found it irritating at first? I was wrong. I didn't know the rule. I stand corrected.

Granted you are completely right. You can stand anywhere you want.
It's bush league. It's legal. Go for it pal. Please tell me how it works out for you.

blakesq
09-09-2010, 01:22 PM
G4, why didn't you feel good about it? If someone is standing in the server's box, I would actually feel pretty good if I was able to claim the point if I hit him. I even feel good about it, if i hit a wild serve, and it hits the non-receiving partner on the foot when he is standing in a normal position, i will take that point too. I guess I just don't think its bush league to play according to the rules.

snip
I had no problem blocking out the two guys who did this to me, and I nailed both of them with my first serves. I didn't feel good about it, but again if people want to play games, any descent 4.0 is going to nail them.

g4driver
09-09-2010, 07:10 PM
blakesq,

Thanks for the reply. I'm not sure that you noticed, but I admitted I was wrong a week ago. ;) I have no problem admitting I'm wrong. I didn't know the rules and even worse, I had never read the rules until I downloaded the PDF file few weeks ago after a guy told me I couldn't use a towel between points. Then I saw this thread. A few weeks ago friend of mine and I were talking about I formations, and we didn't know where the server's partner can stand. He's a 4.5, I'm a self-rated 3.5, who played 4.0 for ten years. I self-rated after two back surgeries and expect a bump at the end of the year. So we have two guys who been playing tennis for 30+ years each, and we didn't know the rules.

The towel guy's comment got me thinking. Rhetorical Q: 'How can a pro, especially a sweaty pro like Roddick, use a towel between points but I can't?' I knew there was a 20 second time limit between points and thought I was right but didn't know the truth until I looked it up.

I challenge anyone to find a USTA Rules of Tennis in any metro clubhouse in my area. This is our fault as a community. Recently, I asked my local clubhouse to sell the small USTA Rules of Tennis pamplet like I picked up a the USTA. So I brought back 16 copies for friends, and a few for the clubhouse. I asked them to put them out on display and see if they sell. If you buy them from the USTA, it cost you $2.95 and $2.95 to ship. I paid $1.50 for each. There is consensus among my tennis buddies, that most people don't know the rules for one very good reason ~ the rules aren't readily available in any clubhouse that we can find. The USGA gets it. Walk into almost any golf clubhouse in the metro Charleston area, and you can buy the USGA "Rules of Golf" for about $3.

I understand the strategy of making your opponent uneasy. Moving up a second serve is wise if the second serve is dramatically weaker than the first, or in your case if you feel you can intimidate the server by your chess move.

Hitting people never makes me happy. I don't like hitting my friends, and I certainly don't like hitting strangers. I would simply prefer my opponent choose not to put me in a position that forces me to do something I don't want to -- aim at him. Yes, I could choose to be intimated and serve away from the guy, but that's not going to happen. If people want to do this fine, go ahead. I think it's childish and immature. If an opponent can't beat me with his 'A game' and has to resort to gamesmanship, oh well, go ahead. I don't need to win a tennis game that badly. I'm not a tennis pro. Tennis is a sport and a social game for me. Tennis doesn't not put food on my table. I'm completely comfortable with my self-esteem and winning or losing a tennis match doesn't affect my self-esteem. Tonight when I lost 6-2, 6-2 to a 4.5 player, I actually felt good in many ways. Why? Because I walked away with some great lessons learned. We had some long rallies. Some points probably went 20 hits per point. My serve sucked horribly, so I know I can do much better. I lost many points do to being impatient. But I broke the guy's server for the first time and came back from 40-0 to win a game on his serve. I hadn't played in a week, yet I managed to get four games off of a 4.5. Hopefully next time, I will get a few more games off the guy. And maybe one day, I will beat him.

So legally, a receiver's partner can stand anywhere he chooses. And I will quickly compartmentalize my thoughts, and not even notice he is there. Then I will hit him. When I hit the second guy earlier this year, I looked right at the guy and said "If you stand there again, I'm going to hit you again." He never stuck his racquet in the AD Court Service box again during my serve. I think it ridiculous that I have to resort to such tactics. What did he get from doing it? A fastball to the gut.

I like reading forums to see what others think and I respect your opinion to play as you wish. Hope you don't get beamed by anyone with a monster serve when you are trying to get something to work out. When I get to that point, I simply tip my hat and acknowledge the other player is a better man than me on the court. I have no intention of getting drilled by a 100mph serve due by putting myself in the line of fire.

pinky42
09-09-2010, 09:59 PM
And, you are right, I wouldn't have to serve around them if I chose to serve at them. ;)

The problem with all these rules is for every rule, there seems to be an answer on the USTA that counters the exact wording by a few words and makes things unclear.

See #34 Hindrance Issues for example.

e.g. 34. Feinting with the body. A player may feint with the body while the ball is in play. A player may change position at any time, including while the server is tossing the ball. Any movement or sound that is made solely to distract an opponent, including, but not limited to, waving the arms or racket or stamping the feet, is not allowed.

Then read the Q & A from above.

Is Rule #34 speaking to the receiver, the receiver's partner or both? I submit it speaks to both. "Any" means "any" doesn't it? Meaning any player can move before, during or after the ball is struck. Then read the Q & A, the the author of this answer says something completely different. The author says "Once the receiver's partner takes a position, he/she should remain there until the ball is struck. If the receiver's partner moves away before the ball is struck then it could be deemed that the only reason they took such a position was to hinder the server, and that is not allowed."

The more I read the USTA rules, the more I realize they are jacked up and conflicting with their own Q&As. Rule #34 says "A player may change position at ANY time", then the USTA counters their on rule with a Q & A which says the receiver's partner can't move away before the ball is struck.

You need to look at the rule in it's entirety. Yes, it says that a player may change position at any time. However, if that movement (or sound) is made solely to distract the opponent, then it is not allowed. The second clause is not in opposition to the first, it restricts when the first clause applies. It's like saying the speed limit is 55 except in construction zones.

The Q&A is reinforcing Rule #34, not contradicting it. Yes, the receiver's partner may stand in the service box. However, if that person moves, it can be construed that the sole purpose of taking that position and then moving was to distract the server. That violates the second clause which is why it's not allowed. So, pointing out that Rule #34 says that a player may change position at any time doesn't help because that's not the part of the rule you're violating. It's the second part that's being violated.

g4driver
09-10-2010, 05:07 AM
Thanks Pinky42. Your explanation makes sense.

tennismonkey
09-10-2010, 05:52 AM
for example), and have your partner crowd, but not stand in, the server's box. for some reason that seems to put pressure on SOME servers.

i find this is a good test. some players this will have no effect on whatsoever. the majority however this will illicit a couple of double faults -- especially on high pressure points.

blakesq
09-10-2010, 06:32 AM
G4, nice discussion. I hope you don't think I am ragging on you too much. I just like to debate and argue. I guess its a by product of being a lawyer. Thats probably why I read the rules very carefully when an issue like this comes up. I don't have all the rules memorized, but if i don't know the answer to something, I will usually go to the rules, read up on that part, so I will know the answer the next time that issue comes up.

g4driver
09-12-2010, 03:23 PM
blakesq,

Thanks for the posts. I didn't take your posts as ragging on me. You were right. Period. I appreciate your inputs and your take on this setup. Life is a learning process and I have a lot to learn still. On that note, I brought back 16 copies of the USTA Rule's of Tennis for my friends and our clubhouse. There is plenty I don't know, and just yesterday a friend asked me if using string-savers was legal in a USTA match. I told him "I don't know, but brought you a copy of the rules. Please let me know." ;)

The guy asking about the string-savers told me you can't have a vibration dampener on a cross string. I don't use them, but I didn't know this either. I looked that up and sure enough, he's right. Does the USTA actually think a dampener could alter a point, game or a match if a dampener touches a cross string? Wow, the USTA is getting very NCAAish it seems. :(

Neither of us have found any reference to using string savers, but I just put VS Touch in the mains on two racquets, so for $3 a stick, I hope to extend the life of the mains a few hours.

I have a lot of attorney friends. Is it ok to write that? ;) On of our co-captains is an attorney. I'm giving him his rules tomorrow and expect him to keep us out of trouble.

blakesq, thanks again.

woodrow1029
09-12-2010, 05:43 PM
blakesq,

Thanks for the posts. I didn't take your posts as ragging on me. You were right. Period. I appreciate your inputs and your take on this setup. Life is a learning process and I have a lot to learn still. On that note, I brought back 16 copies of the USTA Rule's of Tennis for my friends and our clubhouse. There is plenty I don't know, and just yesterday a friend asked me if using string-savers was legal in a USTA match. I told him "I don't know, but brought you a copy of the rules. Please let me know." ;)

The guy asking about the string-savers told me you can't have a vibration dampener on a cross string. I don't use them, but I didn't know this either. I looked that up and sure enough, he's right. Does the USTA actually think a dampener could alter a point, game or a match if a dampener touches a cross string? Wow, the USTA is getting very NCAAish it seems. :(

Neither of us have found any reference to using string savers, but I just put VS Touch in the mains on two racquets, so for $3 a stick, I hope to extend the life of the mains a few hours.

I have a lot of attorney friends. Is it ok to write that? ;) On of our co-captains is an attorney. I'm giving him his rules tomorrow and expect him to keep us out of trouble.

blakesq, thanks again.

First of all, Stringsavers are completely legal.

Secondly, the rule about dampening devices is not just a USTA rule. It is an ITF/ATP/WTA rule as well. You can have as many dampening devices in your racquet as you wish, so long as they are outside of the stringing pattern of the racquet

jswinf
09-12-2010, 06:59 PM
Lots of attorney friends. Oh, my.

g4driver
09-12-2010, 07:25 PM
Woodrow1029, what the purpose of the rule on dampeners not touching the crosses?

I understand it is a rule, but would it really affect the outcome of a game?

v/r

woodrow1029
09-13-2010, 06:22 AM
Woodrow1029, what the purpose of the rule on dampeners not touching the crosses?

I understand it is a rule, but would it really affect the outcome of a game?

v/r

Honestly I don't know. I never asked what the intent was on that one. I will try to find out.

MNPlayer
09-13-2010, 07:09 AM
Honestly I don't know. I never asked what the intent was on that one. I will try to find out.

Perhaps it's a blanket rule to try to prevent "spaghetti strings" type devices.

blakesq
09-13-2010, 08:17 AM
Thats my understanding too, the rule against dampeners being in the string bed is to stop people from trying the spaghetti string technique, which can impart crazy unpredictable spin to the tennis ball.


Perhaps it's a blanket rule to try to prevent "spaghetti strings" type devices.

Big_Dangerous
09-13-2010, 02:38 PM
Woodrow1029, what the purpose of the rule on dampeners not touching the crosses?

I understand it is a rule, but would it really affect the outcome of a game?

v/r

I thought the Dampener could touch the bottom cross.