3.5 playing in an Open tournament

Discussion in 'Adult League & Tournament Talk' started by Indy Tennis, Dec 9, 2006.

  1. Indy Tennis

    Indy Tennis Semi-Pro

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    My brother and I are both 3.5 players. We signed up for an open tourney this weekend and I thought I’d just pass along the experience.

    We are solid 3.5, perhaps bordering on 4.0s. We won a 3.5 doubles tournament earlier this year and a dozen years ago we played Div. II college, so we are not without some skill.

    I played the fourth seed in the first round. He’s a 5.0, just out of college and looking to play Futures soon.

    He beat me 6-2, 7-5. I played a really solid match. I think he got a little complacent and played down. Nevertheless, he turned it on when he needed to. Still we had some great rallies and it was 1 hour, 50 min. match. I got some congrats from friends when I came back to the viewing area for how well I played.

    My brother on the other hand, should have won his 1st round match. He actually had a match point before going down in three sets.

    He went on to win a round in the Consi!

    I got spanked 1 and 1 in my Consi and didn’t play well.

    Yes we were a little out of our league, but my brother won a round and had three matches and I gave a seeded player a bit of a scare in the first round.

    Point being, if you are a strong 3.5 don’t shy away from playing some Opens. It will give you an idea of what you need to work on, and who knows; on a good day maybe you could get an upset.

    One thing’s for sure, you’ll go back to 3.5 tournaments with a bit more confidence after banging it with the big boys.
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2006
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  2. KFwinds

    KFwinds Professional

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    All I can say is, if you guys played DII college tennis, you are NOT 3.5's.

    I am a strong 3.5/ weak 4.0 (I win most of my matches against 3.5's and lose most matches against 4.0's) and I never even played on my high school team. I'm guessing from what you described that either of you would probably beat me pretty good - and I'm a true benchmark 3.5. I'm also suggesting that you are probably closer to 4.5's than 3.5's. This is the kind of stuff that really ticks people off about playing USTA.

    Also, I did enter an open level tournament once. My doubles partner (also a 3.5) and I ended up playing a couple of 5.5 level teaching pros in the first round. We lost 2 & 2.
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2006
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  3. tennis-n-sc

    tennis-n-sc Professional

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    Well said.
     
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  4. Hedges

    Hedges Guest

    Div II players who take 12 years off usually start out at 4.5...or maybe 4.0 if they are out of shape or really out of practice. This is true even if you weren't in top 6 on your college team.

    Take a look at USTA's "elite player form"; it details the rules for self-rating ex-college players. I suspect you may have already violated USTA rules by self-rating at 3.5.

    At any rate, time to move up to 4.0, boys. You'll improve quicker if you are challenged.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 10, 2006
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  5. BigJEFF

    BigJEFF New User

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    wow

    are you sure your not from Texas
     
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  6. goober

    goober Legend

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    Former D2 players under the age of 35 are suppose to rate themselves as 4.5 according the experienced players guidelines. Your scores in fact reflect that you are likely only one level below your opponent. A computer rated 3.5 would lose to a 5.0 6-0, 6-0 almost all the time.
     
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  7. tennisguy2121

    tennisguy2121 Rookie

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    I cant stand when people play at a lower level than they are supposed to. I dont know about everywhere else, but most people do it where im from. It's ridiculous. A friend of mine is only concerned with winning, he is obviously a 5.0, but plays 4.5, and besides losing a match or two in districts or nationals, hasnt lost a match (i dont think) in about 3 years!! Im a reasonably good 4.5, and he makes me look silly lol. If I were on the edge of being able to play 5.0s, I would in a heartbeat.
    Why wouldnt you want to challenge yourself, and become a better tennis player????? If you dont, then I think you should quit.
     
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  8. DRtenniS1112

    DRtenniS1112 Semi-Pro

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    One of my good friends from my hometown plays DII college tennis and he is only a 3.5. I hate the generalizations about divisions. I play DIII and am a 4.5 and certainly not even close to the top of DIII tennis.
    As far as the open tournaments go I think it's great you played. We always have a few 3.5's in our open draws and though they may take some beatings it helps them improve faster. In fact I started out my open tournaments with a 3.5 rating.
     
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  9. PBODY99

    PBODY99 Hall of Fame

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    All college programs are not equal. I know that there are Div 1 schools in the Northeast who have players at the 3.5_4.0 level since they don't give scholarships at these schools. I also know 5.0 players who attend Div 3 colleges so while I agree that people should try to play their level , you need to lay eyes on them to say that they are sandbagging.

    I lose 1 & 2 at national level 45 + agegroup tournaments as a 3.5, maybe older players are just kinder!:)
     
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  10. goober

    goober Legend

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    I think we can all agree that somebody who loses 6-2, 7-5 to a "a 5.0, just out of college and looking to play Futures soon" is not a 3.5 level player. A 4.0 player may beat a 3.5 by that much but not somebody who is 3 whole levels higher. Would a player 3 levels below a 4.0 (i.e. a 2.5) ever get 5 games in a set?
     
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  11. Indy Tennis

    Indy Tennis Semi-Pro

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    Whoa!

    It seems like I’ve started a bit of a controversy here.

    Allow me to clear some things up.

    I am not a self-rated 3.5, neither is my brother. We are computer rated – and no we don’t try to play below our level to try to earn a lower rating.

    I came back (very out of shape) and played 4.0 two years ago and was bumped down by the computer. Believe me, I was not happy about it, but I figure if they want to rate me a 3.5 fine, I’ll play some 3.5 tournaments.

    Secondly, my brother and I both were not traditional student athletes. We both went back to school as adults and played Div II college tennis. My brother played for one year at 30 years old. I played from two years from age 33 to 35. Incidentally, my first year we had a 38-year-old player on the team who at times played No. 1. Div II did not at the time (and may still not) have an age restriction like Div 1 does. If you were a full-time student in good standing you could play athletics.

    So now we are both in our mid-40s and getting back into playing.

    Did anyone stop to think that the guy I played in the first round might be self-rated at 5.0 and maybe he’s not actually that level? There’s some evidence to this since he was beaten in the second round in spite of being the No. 4 seed.

    I’m trying to move up in the ranks believe me. I’d like to get to a 5.0 level. At my age it might never happen, but the only way I see to do it is play open tournaments and practice, practice, practice. As long as I’m rated a 3.5 (hopefully not much longer) I’ll take advantage and play some of those tournaments. I happen to find some very steady and fit baseliners at that level who give me fits.
     
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  12. goober

    goober Legend

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    Well you were the one who said he was 5.0 and looking to play futures. That was the information you provided. Actually unless you are 5.5 at least I can't imagine why you even comtemplate futures. If he lost in the second round of an open tourney I don't see how he could hope to play futures. Most of the winners of open events realistically don't have a shot at futures other than losing in the early rounds.

    So you are a 3.5 player who lost to a probable 4.0 player in an open event? I know a computer rated 4.0 that lost just last week to a computer rated 5.0 player 6-0, 6-0 in an open event. According to your point "if you are a strong 3.5 don’t shy away from playing some Opens." I guess I don't know if your point is valid. If you draw a weak opponent(for an open event) in the first round of an Open event and you play them close, it may give you a false sense of accomplishment. If you drew a computer rated 5.0 level player you would be lucky to get a single game. If you want a more realistic idea of what it takes to get to the next level- 4.0 in your case, I would just join a 4.0 tourney.
     
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  13. Indy Tennis

    Indy Tennis Semi-Pro

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    Thanks for your input Goober
     
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  14. cmb

    cmb Semi-Pro

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    just lookin through this rubbish cuz I am totally bored...but who is this "5.0 looking to play futures" guy? tell me his name and if I know him I will tell you if he is 5.0 or not
     
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  15. Indy Tennis

    Indy Tennis Semi-Pro

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    Daniel Finn
     
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  16. Vlad

    Vlad Professional

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    I am 3.5, well, I got bumped to 4.0 this year, but still consider myself to be 3.5, until i prove otherwise.


    I played few open tournaments, against 4.5, or 5.0 player and I could hardly win games. Score were 6-0, 6-1, and that 1 game, i won, was because he just probably felt bad.

    Even the difference between 3.5 and 4.5 is huge and most matches won't be competitive.
     
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  17. LttlElvis

    LttlElvis Professional

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    I am a solid 3.5 and have only lost one USTA 3.5 league match this year. Last year I was a 3.5 playing on a 4.0 team. I struggled just to get a couple of games per match against the 4.0 players. Yes, I am in Texas, and there is alot of sandbagging.
     
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  18. cmb

    cmb Semi-Pro

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    Never heard of the guy...
     
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  19. raiden031

    raiden031 Legend

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    I'm curious, do you know any D1 schools in particular playing at that level? So if they join USTA, they would be required to be a minimum of like 5.5 even though they may only be as good as a 3.5? If they suck really bad in the USTA can they be bumped down several levels?
     
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  20. katarddx

    katarddx Semi-Pro

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    too disgusted to even post reply...
     
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2006
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  21. TheGreatestAudia

    TheGreatestAudia Rookie

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    How can I enter into one of these "Opens"? I just started playing tennis about 4 months ago. I started out at 2.5 (K-Swiss) because I had never played organized tennis before. However, I went undefeated and finished with a rating that barred me from playing in the playoffs because I was underrated. Believe me, I wasn't trying to do this. I have always been really athletic and in this league I didn't have much competition at all. I am moving two spots up to 3.0+. (In K-Swiss there's a 3.0- and 3.0+.)
     
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  22. Rabbit

    Rabbit G.O.A.T.

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    Depending on the tournament, all that is required to enter the Open division is $$ for an entry fee.

    Good luck. :)
     
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  23. TheGreatestAudia

    TheGreatestAudia Rookie

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    Where can I find out about one in my area? Thanks Rabbit.
     
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  24. Rabbit

    Rabbit G.O.A.T.

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    There should be a local USTA office. You're in Georgia? They probably have tourneys going on all the time. This time of year will probably be slower though. Google Georgia Tennis and see what the returns.
     
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  25. TheGreatestAudia

    TheGreatestAudia Rookie

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    Thanks again. Do you think there are any out there that wouldn't require me to join USTA and pay the $40 membership fee?
     
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  26. raiden031

    raiden031 Legend

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    If you are athletic, you are supposed to self-rate at 3.0 even if you've never picked up a racquet. The reason being that you will quickly get to the point where you will crush 2.5 players.

    Why do you want to play open? It will be a waste of money because you will get stomped. You are at best a strong 3.0 after 4 months of playing, unless you have alot of coaching.
     
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  27. TheGreatestAudia

    TheGreatestAudia Rookie

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    I do not care if I get stomped. Experience is what I'm going for. I don't neccessarily have time for joining another league and I don't want to pay for a year's worth of membership fees if I'm not going to join the league that they are offering. Once again, I am VERY new to this and didn't think that I would be able to beat these guys that bad, especially right of the bat...or racquet. Hindsight is 20/20. If I could go back, I would say I'm a 3.0.
     
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  28. Rabbit

    Rabbit G.O.A.T.

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    My advice would be to go to a local tennis facility, a public one. Ask the pro if there is someone really good you could hit with. A 4.5 ought to do it. You'll see the difference between your game and his pretty quickly. The problem with trying to hit with an Open player is they seldom want to hit with begginers, it's not any fun for them. Matter of fact, hitting with a 4.5 isn't much fun for them either.

    If you do get a chance and the Open player doesn't hold back, it won't be much fun for you either. The only way to guarantee that you're getting his all is to enter a tournament. If you really want to see how good they are compared to you, enter a tournament that has some prize money. You'll get an eye opener. Some other advice would be: don't go to net.

    If you're dead set on playing an Open player, you're going to have to join the USTA. If you intend on conintuing in tennis, you're going to have to join anyway. It's not a bad deal, you get Tennis magazine.
     
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  29. TheGreatestAudia

    TheGreatestAudia Rookie

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    So basically, the only "Open" tourneys are offered by USTA? I plan to eventually join but I can't just yet. It's not that I am dead-set on playing an Open player. I want to take part in the excitement that is an Open tournament. I want to test myself because I don't have much competition readily available either. This could be my benchmark. Does that make sense? Don't Opens have prize money? If not, which ones do? Also, would I get a couple face-smashes if I charge the net?
     
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  30. Indy Tennis

    Indy Tennis Semi-Pro

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    Last edited: Jan 18, 2007
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  31. jamn73

    jamn73 New User

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    i play 3.5 in texas, and there is sandbagging, BUT almost all of the sandbaggers I saw got bumped by the computer at the end of this year. They all appealed and lost, except for the old guys. maybe tx will get a shakeup. i only know about 3.5 though.
     
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  32. Geezer Guy

    Geezer Guy Hall of Fame

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    I don't know about Georgia, but around here there are PLENTY of tournaments that do not require USTA membership. If you want to play in a USTA tournament, you have to be a USTA member. However, many cities have tournaments in the summer that are open to anyone. Also, many tennis facilities have tournaments. With some you need to be a member of the facility, but with many others you do not. Often the tournaments are not listed on the Internet. Call the Parks and Rec departments of cities around you. Call public and private tennis facilities around you. Heck, if you're close to Atlanta I'm sure you'd have plenty of tournaments to choose from.

    Most tournament don't have prize MONEY, but they do have prizes of some sort for the winner. Also, try to find one that has consolation rounds.
     
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  33. TheGreatestAudia

    TheGreatestAudia Rookie

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    I appreciate the help, Geezer. (No offense.)
     
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