3.0 Benchmarked wanting to be 3.5

Discussion in 'Adult League & Tournament Talk' started by MRfStop, Dec 29, 2013.

  1. MRfStop

    MRfStop Rookie

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    Hi new user here,

    I am a USTA rated 3.0. I have been at this rating for a few years now.

    My 3.0 team has been to State here in GA for the past several seasons. After this past season I sent 6-1 at 3.5 and 4-0 in 3.0. There are only 2 local 3.0 teams and there isn't but competition (we went undefeated the past two seasons) I wanted to bump myself up when the new rating went out so that I can play 3.5 and play 4.0 as well but I have a benchmark against my rating and USTA won't allow me to. I emailed the USTA office in Marietta, GA with not much response. The 3.5 leagues and 4.0 leagues have a lot more teams. All of the players that I went to state with have been bumped up to 3.5 and then 4.0 this past August.

    How long does it take for a benchmark to be taken off of a rating? What should I do about getting the benchmark taken off? I had thought that winning in a higher league would automatically bump me up but I guess not. :confused:
     
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  2. AtomicForehand

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    You can play on a 3.5 team even though you are "only" a 3.0.
     
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  3. MRfStop

    MRfStop Rookie

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    Yes, I know and I was 6-1 on a 3.5 this past season.

    But I am wanting to be bumped to 3.5 so that I can play 3.5 and 4.0 instead of 3.0 and 3.5.
     
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  4. JLyon

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    so then appeal up to 3.5 problem solved otherwise just play 3.5 only and keep winning, if you're as good as you think you are 3.5 teams will want you to play.
     
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  5. MRfStop

    MRfStop Rookie

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    I would bump myself up but I have a benchmark against my rating that doesn't allow me to appeal my rating up.
     
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  6. anubis

    anubis Hall of Fame

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    Don't worry about NTRP, it's meaningless. It tries to predict how people will be competitive against their competition, but more often than not it just doesn't fit the bill.

    Just forsake the "3.0" level next season, don't play 3.0 at all. Join a 3.5 league for spring. For winter, do a 7.0 mixed doubles. For summer, do a 7.5 combo league.

    Also, play some tournaments and register as a 3.5.

    I'm in a similar boat as you. I was recently bumped to a 3.5, but I don't like playing 3.5 players. I prefer to play 4.0, so this year I'm going to play 4.0s as often as I can. I don't "need" an NTRP of 4.0, it's not stopping me from playing 4.0 people.

    Good luck!
     
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  7. Nostradamus

    Nostradamus G.O.A.T.

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    why not just play 4.0 team ?
     
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  8. MRfStop

    MRfStop Rookie

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    Anubis, thank you for the advice. I appreciate it.

    Nostradamus, USTA doesn't allow a player to play 2 ratings above their rating. For example I am a 3.0 I can't play in 4.0 leagues. And I am a benchmarked player so I can't appeal my rating up to a 3.5.
     
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  9. J_R_B

    J_R_B Hall of Fame

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    Play only 3.5. If you are 6-1 at 3.5 again without any 3.0 results holding you down, there is no chance you won't be bumped.
     
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  10. JLyon

    JLyon Hall of Fame

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    Have you tried to appeal up?
    Always figured with "B" you could not appeal down, obviously something is missing if you went 6-1 at 3.5 league as a 3.0.
    Would need to see actual match results but I am sure that won't be shared
     
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  11. schmke

    schmke Professional

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    What he says.

    If your area has weak 3.0 players, just playing them and not having dominating results could hurt your rating and keep you from being bumped up.

    In fact, if your 6-1 record at 3.5 was against other 3.0s playing up, and especially if they are weaker ones, that may be why you compiled a gaudy record but weren't bumped up.

    But to your original question, your B rating lasts just a year, so next year you would be eligible to appeal up. That is of course if you don't go to playoffs and become a B again, and also you'd have to be close enough to the bump threshold to qualify to appeal up.

    Read my blog (URL in signature) for more info or to find out about reports I can generate to give you an accurate estimate of how close you really are to being bumped up.

    --
    http://computerratings.blogspot.com/search/label/tennis
     
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  12. schmke

    schmke Professional

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    I believe with a B you can't appeal up either.

    And yes, we'd need to see actual results to understand why a 6-1 record at 3.5 didn't result in a bump up, but as I mentioned a bit ago, perhaps he was playing other 3.0s playing up at 3.5.
     
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  13. MRfStop

    MRfStop Rookie

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    [​IMG]


    Here is my results from the past league. The only match I lost at 3.5 was against a 3.5 that had just gotten bumped down from 4.0 and a strong 3.5. All of the other 3.5 matches were against 3.5 players who have been 3.5 for a while.
     
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  14. Nostradamus

    Nostradamus G.O.A.T.

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    Holy mosese. you are kicking butt at #1 doubles at 3.5. you should definitely play 4.0 division
     
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  15. MRfStop

    MRfStop Rookie

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    [​IMG]

    Here are my results from the spring league earlier this year just so you know it's not a fluke. :???: I've gone undefeated in 3.0 singles in the past two leagues and with a couple of losses at 3.5. All I want to know is is how do I get the "B" (Benchmark) off of my rating so that I can either appeal myself up or get moved by USTA. I am seeing people that I played with a few years back that I went to state with getting bumped up to 3.5 and then to 4.0 after only a season or two.
     
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  16. J_R_B

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    Unfortunately, you can't. The B rating is from playing in the playoffs. If you played in the playoffs, then you are B rated, that's just how it works. Your sectional coordinator has the ability to override your rating if you beg and plead enough, but you won't be able to change the B in the computer in order to appeal up online. Like I said, you should just play 3.5 and not 3.0 this year if you want to be bumped up. If you have results like you did last year, I would be shocked if you weren't bumped.
     
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  17. anubis

    anubis Hall of Fame

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    I absolutely will.
     
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  18. anubis

    anubis Hall of Fame

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    OK, thanks for posting that information, but just to warn you that it's typically frowned upon to post USTA stats containing information of real players (since you don't likely have their consent). Those players probably wouldn't want you to post their results for the TT community to see.

    At any rate, I see one glaring reason why you haven't been bumped: you mostly play doubles. It takes a LONG time to get bumped by playing doubles. Both you and your partner are "sharing" the wins, therefore USTA can't really tell which was the stronger player.

    If you're winning a lot in singles, that's one thing. USTA knows that *you* did it, and no one else.

    Secondly, all of your "singles" wins in "3.5 weren't really 3.5 matches. Both Joshua Keith Hooker and John Thacker are 3.0s, so even though it's in the 3.5 realm, it still counts as a 3.0 match because the dynamic calculation of NTRP is between two NTRP levels in the range of 2.51 - 2.99.

    In other words, the matches that really should have counted the most for your NTRP actually didn't really help you at all.

    Lastly, even though you had a good year with tournaments, most of the time tournaments don't count towards your NTRP. I play them a lot, because I think they are fun, so don't count them out. It's great practice. Just don't count on it propelling you to the next level.
     
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  19. J_R_B

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    This is not true at all. Playing doubles (and winning of course) with a weak/low-rated partner makes it easier to get bumped than playing singles. There are a lot of dynamics to the algorithm and while it's true that it's less straightforward with doubles because you are dealing with four individual ratings instead of two, that doesn't necessarily make it "harder to get bumped", just harder to figure out.
     
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  20. emilyhex

    emilyhex Rookie

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    Play singles in the 3.5 league and see how it goes.

    If you win consistently against 3.5s, you will get bumped no problem. Or if you play competitively against strong 3.5s you will also get bumped. But keep dominating in 3.0 or you will offset the numbers.
     
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  21. schmke

    schmke Professional

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    J_R_B is right. You can get bumped up playing doubles pretty easily.

    But the real reason he wasn't bumped up wasn't shown in any of what he posted and that is he went 0-5 (one was a retirement) in 3.0 playoffs losing badly in most of the matches (most games won in a match was 5). He actually has his rating over 3.0 from his Spring results, but the bad losses dragged his rating down and since these carry extra weight in year-end calculations, couldn't be offset by his good Fall results.
     
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  22. anubis

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    I understand, I just assumed it was harder by playing strictly doubles, as everyone that I know that has been bumped, did so the fastest by playing singles, and playing up. Folks that play mostly doubles tend to stay at their NTRP for twice as long as those who play singles -- in my area, at least.

    Perhaps it's just limited to my area.
     
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  23. schmke

    schmke Professional

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    When looking at trends like these, it is also important to consider if there is a bias on who plays singles vs doubles. In my experience, it is more common for the studs on a team to play singles, so from this alone you'd expect the singles guys to get bumped up more often because that is where the better players are playing.

    Also, you mention "... and playing up". If the singles guys play up more often than the doubles guys, this is going to add to the bias.
     
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  24. J_R_B

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    I think it IS easier to get bumped by playing up in singles than doubles, but only if you're playing doubles with partners at the higher level. Remember, the key in doubles if you're looking to get bumped is to be the higher rated partner. If you're a 3.0 playing 3.5 with a 3.5 partner, then you are the lower rated doubles partner and it's going to be difficult to get bumped, especially if there is a whole level difference in DNTRP. If you play up in doubles with the intention of getting bumped, it's best to play with a partner who is also playing up (and win of course). That may be difficult, though, if you play for a team that is trying to win, too.
     
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  25. MRfStop

    MRfStop Rookie

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    Those weren't 3.5 matches they were 3.0 singles matches. The sad thing is there isn't enough 3.0s in my area to play somebody different during the season. If you notice, I played the same person several times in the spring.

    Would USTA be able to pull the benchmark off my rating if I contacted their rating department?
     
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  26. J_R_B

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    The "rating department"? The ratings are done by computer. If you're going to talk to some IT guy or something, then no. The sectional coordinators can do whatever they want to your rating. They are the only people youhave a chance with.
     
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  27. dizzlmcwizzl

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    This has largely been ignored. If you go 0-5 in 3.0 playoffs, you will not be bumped up .... this is for certain.

    This is an indication of 2 things.

    1) you play in a really weak local league if you went undefeated and then got smashed at sectionals.

    2) you are likely not ready to play in 4.0 leagues. It looks like you will have a team to play exclusively on at 3.5, and you will be bumped next year when presumably you will have better chance to compete at 4.0.
     
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  28. MRfStop

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    Sorry...the "rating" dept. was a term that I picked up by someone else...not my own term.

    So it looks like the consensus of this thread is to:

    1.) Play 3.5 and only 3.5, if I have a similar season like my last I should get bumped.

    2.) Play singles at 3.5.

    3.) Keep playing what I am playing and keep dominating.

    4.) Only play 3.0.

    I do have a few questions about the benchmark rating:

    If I make it to a playoff in combo/mixed does a benchmark go against my rating?

    My team wins every season at 3.0 and 3.5, my 3.5 team went 9-0 this past season. At what point can I go to state and not be benchmarked?

    Does a benchmark rating go on my rating even if I was to not attend state with my team?

    The rating system seems a bit silly, especially when it won't allow a player to move up so that he/she can play more competition and have more "fun". Fun is what amateur recreational tennis is all about right?
     
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  29. dizzlmcwizzl

    dizzlmcwizzl Hall of Fame

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    If you play at sectionals you will be bench marked and you will not be able to appeal your rating through the normal channels. If your team makes it but you do not play, you will not be benchmarcked.

    however, if you play a large number of matches you will not be eligible for appeal (10?) either.

    My Advice ...

    Just play ... if getting bumped is the goal then only play 3.5.
     
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  30. anubis

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    Yeah, we have the same problem where I am. Last year as a 3.0, each USTA league had no more than 3 teams in it, so we played the same people over and over again. Luckily this year in 3.5, there's a lot more teams. In my 7.0 mixed league, we already have 9 teams on the roster. seems like 3.5 is the "sweet spot" when it comes to the largest number of players.
     
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  31. dizzlmcwizzl

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    Hold on ... you can play up-to 3.5.

    Trust me, legitimate 4.0 players do not want to play folks who go 0-5 at 3.0 playoffs.

    This is why the USTA caps your upward mobility .... for everyone's enjoyment, not just to allow you to do what you want to do.
     
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  32. MRfStop

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    The main reason why I want to get bumped is not just to be able to say "I am a 3.5". I want to be bumped so I can play 3.5 and 4.0. My father is a 4.0and we have won together in tournaments and combo but we have never played together on a 4.0 simply because I have been a 3.0 for the past several years.

    Here in Middle GA, the sweet spot for players is at the 4.0 level. We only had 4 teams this last season when they usually 5 or 6. The 3.0 level is dying off with only two teams and a lot of the players on the other team were either bumped or they quit playing all together.

    Thank you for everyone's advise.
     
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  33. MRfStop

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    The middle GA area lacks in ability compared to the other areas (Atlanta, North GA, Columbus, Valdosta). The competition in those areas is much higher and the players are a lot better. Their 3.0s in my area would be considered 3.5 or low 4.0. All of the players that won on my 3.0 team at state are now 4.0s that win local matches. I unfortunately got the short end of the stick either playing singles against someone who was much better than or playing doubles with someone who is a lifelong 3.0 and will never be anything higher.
     
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  34. schmke

    schmke Professional

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    NTRP ratings are supposed to be consistent across areas, at least that is what the USTA tries to do. Given that you didn't do well in playoffs against other areas, that would seem to support the notion that the other areas are stronger. That said, 5 of the 6 players you completed matches against in playoffs were bumped to 3.5 so their ratings have been adjusted accordingly.

    But because you didn't do well against players that are now 3.5s, the computer still says that you aren't a 3.5. And if you didn't do well against these "on the verge of being bumped to 3.5" 3.0s from other areas, you probably aren't going to do well against 3.5s or 4.0s from the same areas.

    So because you wouldn't compete well with 3.5s or 4.0s, in an effort to have levels be consistent across areas, it would actually be wrong to have you be a 3.5. Now if you do well against 3.0 and 3.5s in your area, that probably just means they are overrated and the system should get them adjusted down if their matches continue on the same path.
     
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  35. J_R_B

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    Mixed doesn't count toward NTRP C ratings, and I don't think Combo does, either (we don't even have combo in this section, so I don't know that for sure), so neither of those should cause you to get a B rating if you play in states in those leagues.
     
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  36. dizzlmcwizzl

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    Ok ... so the USTA is trying to level the districts. If your districts best 3.0 team is not competitive with other districts best 3.0 players, then you and similar players in your district should not be bumped either.

    If you are not ready to be bumped and move up anyway ... then this only perpetuates the problem ... creating a bigger disparity.

    However, with all this being said I am highly skeptical that within the same section one district's 3.0 s are actually closer to 4.0 s in another. There may be an outlier or two (self rates etc.) but that will not be the rule.

    Generally I don't think this is true when folks compare sections like Norcal to the Northeast ... if it is not true across the land it is likely not true when we are talking about neighboring districts.
     
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  37. MRfStop

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    Ok, I understand what you are saying. Atlanta has one of the largest recreational tennis populations around (from what I've been told).

    Let's just say that if an league Atlanta has too many 3.5s in that league to be able to play, would they overflow into other ratings (3.0 or 4.0)? Middle GA no where near the size of ATL so we do not have that problem. So I assuming that if a city has a large amount of players wouldn't some of those players be overlooked in the rating system?
     
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  38. schmke

    schmke Professional

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    In general, I'm not aware of anything the USTA does to bump players up or down because there is "too many" players at a given level. If there are "too many" 3.5s, they just create more sub-flights to accommodate all the teams that wish to form and then just have to whittle that number down as part of local or district playoffs.

    Having said that, at the end of 2009, the USTA did do the "big bump" to try to deal with the glut of players at a few levels to even things out. But this was done nationally such that players of similar ability were all bumped together.

    I'm not sure what you mean by players being overlooked? The system will rate any player that plays matches according to their results.
     
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  39. Orange

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    I have captained a bunch of USTA teams, learned all I could about NTRP and understand your situation, as I have had players in similar situations. I have several comments:

    1. In the Southen Section, the only matches that count toward your year-end rating are spring USTA league matches, including related post-season play. Mixed, Combo, Summer Singles and Tournament matches do not count toward year-end ratings.

    2. You should play only 3.5 (not 3.0) spring USTA league matches in order to increase your chances of being bumped up, but you can play any tournaments or any level the USTA will let you play during the other seasons. Therefore, you could challenge yourself by playing both 6.5 and 7.5 combo doubles (but my local regs would allow a 3.0 to play with a 4.0, not a 4.5, in a 7.5 league; I have no idea about what your local regs would allow).

    3. A benchmark rating means you participated in at least one match of post-season play, whether in local playoffs, at State, or beyond. I understand that it appears to be a "benchmark against" your rating because it is preventing you from doing what you want to do, but it is really a benchmark rating (as opposed to a computer rating, for example). The word "against" doesn't belong in the term.
     
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  40. Orange

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    I thought of a few more comments:

    4. As others have pointed out, it is possible to be bumped based on doubles results. The challenge is that the USTA will maintain the difference in dynamic rating between partners. You can know the range of your partner's dynamic rating, but it is difficult to determine where you and your partner fall within that range. For example, if your dynamic rating is 2.51 and your partner's is 2.91 (resulting in a 3.0 NTRP rating for each of you), beating higher-rated opponents convincingly is unlikely to propel you into 3.5 range because the .4 difference between you and your partner will be maintained in the resulting dynamic rating.

    5. Schmke offers both individual and team dynamic rating calculations, and his numbers seem to be fairly accurate. You might find it interesting to get a team analysis once your spring 3.5 team is formed. I might have done so had I had better cash flow prospects!
     
    #40
  41. schmke

    schmke Professional

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    Thanks for the mention.

    And excellent point about the doubles, and this is one of the things that can lead to what look like odd bumps. Players that play doubles regularly with the same partner will have the gap maintained between them, even if one partner improves a lot and is the reason the team is doing well. The lower rated partner improving effectively pushes the rating up of the higher rated partner.

    The lower rated partner's rating will improve too, but may not reach bump level resulting in what may be the better player not being bumped up and the worse player being bumped.

    So if you are perhaps lower rated for your level but improving, if you want your rating to be fairly calculated, don't play doubles with the same partner all the time. You need to play with different players or play singles to have your actual ability get noticed.
     
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  42. MRfStop

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  43. Orange

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    It has no significance, for several reasons.

    1. TLS has no official connection to the dynamic NTRP system. TLS provides estimates of dynamic NTRPs based on publicly available information and its own algorithm.

    2. Much of the information it contains is information you already know--your match results and your 3.0 NTRP rating and type of rating, for example. The advantage of TLS is that it gathers all the information in one place (and it is free).

    3. Its estimate of dynamic ratings does not include playoff results (whereas Schmke does). In your case, it appears that your disappointing results in playoffs kept you at 3.0, so excluding playoff results makes the TLS estimates useless for you. My limited experience with TLS is that its estimates tend to be inaccurate for those participating in playoffs. One of my teams won local playoffs and did well at State, and four out of the 15 of us were moved up. TLS did not predict any of the promotions. To its credit, the four who moved up were the four it listed highest among us--but then, I predicted three of the four promotions without doing any computations. Score: TLS--0/4, me--3/4.
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2014
    #43
  44. g4driver

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    You aren't a 3.5. You didn't come close to winning a single match at 3.0 at the Georgia 3.0 State Championships. You didn't even manage to win one set at 3.0 at State against other 3.0s.

    What in the world thinks you would be competitive at 4.0 ?

    The majority of 3.0s and 3.5 in Macon / Perry are clearly not at the same skill level as the 3.0s and 3.5s in Atlanta/Columbus/Athens and other parts of the state. You came to the same conclusion and your playoff results prove this at least for your case. I played out of John Drew for three years. I have also played USTA in Atlanta, Southern California, and now South Carolina.

    TLS has a 4.0 on my team rated 3.27- this 4.0 self rated at 3.0 last year during combo then only played 3.5 this year. He was winning 0&0, 0&1 every match at 3.0 - He got a letter from the USTA this spring bumping him up to 3.5. - he didn't DQ any 3.0 matches this spring, as he only played 3.5 - he was bumped after a few matches to 3.5. Then at the end of this year he was bumped to 4.0 - why? Because he has the skills to actually win decisively at 3.5, not because he played up at 4.0 or wanted to play up.

    So many 3.0s and 3.5s want play up-and be one level higher than they belong- :(

    I see a few players play up on 4.0 teams one year, and they either get bumped up and then back down the next year, or they get beat down after beat down week after week.

    What ever happened to play at your level, dominate at your level and then get bumped ? Oh that makes too much sense - play at the level you are competitive . Why is this so tough to comprehend?
     
    #44
  45. Orange

    Orange Rookie

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2011
    Messages:
    209
    I think that's a little harsh. The whole purpose of this forum is to allow players to ask questions. This player has an excellent reason for wanting to play at higher levels; he isn't bragging about his skills or fixating on a number--there are only two teams at his level, so playing at a higher level will give him more opponents.

    It is appropriate to castigate posters who are insulting or brag about unsportsmanlike behavior. On the other hand, we should encourage those who write because they honestly have questions. If you want to criticize someone, how about ignoring this guy and weighing in on those people who serve from the service line, move other players' bags off benches or serve bombs into hammies.
     
    #45
  46. g4driver

    g4driver Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2009
    Messages:
    1,887
    Orange,

    Your point is well taken.

    To Andrew, I apologize to you for being harsh.

    Maybe I am just jaded from so many 3.5s around me who want to play up at 4.0, yet some win less than half their matches at 3.5. Some flat out don't get it. Two 3.5s on a friend's 3.5 team refused to play 3.5 this spring- the team already lost one guy to a bump, two guys moved out if state and now, seven guys have no 3.5 team to play on, because two 3.5s said "I am only playing 4.0"- one of the 3.5s lost more than half of his 3.5 matches last year.

    The icing on the cake was a 3.5/3.0 that somehow registered on a 4.0 team. They didn't win a set all season

    There is a balance between sandbagging and playing up in levels where people don't belong - unfortunately there is a little of both going on, but far more of the latter.

    My advice is to go play tournaments in Atlanta against better 3.5 players. If the competition in Macon is too weak, play against 4.0s in non USTA
     
    #46
  47. Nostradamus

    Nostradamus G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2011
    Messages:
    13,245
    Location:
    In the future
    Strange. why do you want Benchmark taken off ??????? it is a GOOD thing, not a bad thing
     
    #47
  48. anubis

    anubis Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2012
    Messages:
    3,036
    3.5 is a strange middle ground. You feel like you're better than most beginners, but you're not quite yet a journeyman. There are many 3.5s who start off as 3.0s, wanting to be 4.0s. So they'd like to skip over 3.5 altogether.

    Then again, I know many 3.5s who like it there and want to stay.

    To each their own, I guess.
     
    #48
  49. IA-SteveB

    IA-SteveB Professional

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2012
    Messages:
    1,087
    Location:
    Iowa
    I like the way you worded that. Makes sense.
     
    #49
  50. loosegroove

    loosegroove Professional

    Joined:
    May 18, 2010
    Messages:
    1,013
    How is this a problem? All this information is available to everyone via the USTA website, or even just searching in Google. And it's not like he's posting ALL the results of another player for others to critique/analyze. He's just posting his own results.
     
    #50

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