4.5 + league lineup observation

Discussion in 'Adult League & Tournament Talk' started by dizzlmcwizzl, Jun 11, 2013.

  1. dizzlmcwizzl

    dizzlmcwizzl Hall of Fame

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    When I was first reading the new rules I wondered how the 4.5 matches would be more interesting when someone brought the 5.0 guy. I felt like the requirement that they play 1st singles or 1st doubles would take away some of that intrigue.

    Well this weekend was the first match of the season where either team brought a 5.0 (we did). The line one thing added a lot of interest into the lineup discussions.

    At first the other team was noticeably concerned when they saw our mighty 5.0 walk up to the courts. Several of their players congregated and were discussing options. They must have assumed we would play our guy at 1st singles because they put out a lineup with their worst player playing line 1 singles.

    We however, put our guy at 1 doubles and our best 4.5 singles player at line 2 singles. Our strategy essentially guaranteed 2nd singles and 1st doubles wins for us. When they moved their worst guy to line 1 singles against our 2nd best 4.5 singles player we had secured the match before it even began.

    We won this match 5-0 ... but we lost the last match to these same guys 4-1. I really think the 5.0 dynamic really changed the outcome.

    Has anyone else out there dealt with the 5.0 in 4.5 + leagues and how have you handled it both for and against you?
     
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  2. Velvet Ga el

    Velvet Ga el Rookie

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    I think your post is incomplete in that it doesn't tell us anything about who they put at #1 doubles and it doesn't tell us which player got the point for you last time. The answer to the last question is pivotal for deciding how the lineup should go.
     
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  3. J_R_B

    J_R_B Hall of Fame

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    This is interesting, and I think it brings to light some potential pitfalls in the + concept. One of the most egregious computer anomalies that happened this year up here is that one of the best 5.0 players in the area who has won our county singles title like 9 times (including last year) got bumped DOWN to 4.5. How? He played 5.0 league last year and won all of his matches, but only played against 4.5s playing up. Therefore, since he didn't win by completely lopsided scores, the computer calculated him as a 4.5 and bumped him down. We all had a good chuckle about that, and he is rightly the most sought after player in the entire area now. But, it seems like there is potential for this to happen a lot, especially if teams are going to stack for the 5.0 and throw out a weak/low DNTRP 4.5 against them. This guy in question is also 40, so he signed up for a 40 4.5+ team and got a couple of his 5.0 rated friends to sign up, so now they essentially get an extra 5.0 in their lineup every match. This team suddenly went from middle of the pack to nationals contenders overnight.
     
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  4. dizzlmcwizzl

    dizzlmcwizzl Hall of Fame

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    The guy that got our point last time played line 2singles this time. They played their dubs straight, I suspect because they thought they were going to lose both singles. So our 5.0 got their best dubs team ... The match was fairly close but he clearly was better on the court.
     
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  5. OrangePower

    OrangePower Hall of Fame

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    Do you have 4.5+ in regular 18+ league, or is this in the 40+ league?

    Just curious, since here in NorCal we have 4.5+ 40+, but our regular 18+ league does not allow 5.0s.
     
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  6. mikeler

    mikeler G.O.A.T.

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    The 5.0 thing does add a strange dimension. Our first match, I scouted the other team pretty hard. It seemed like there was no way to win line 1 doubles against the other team because they had both their 5.0s playing and we only had one 5.0 available for all 4 matches.

    So the captain and I volunteered to be the slaughtered lambs at line 1 dubs but then a funny thing happened. After being down 6-2, 3-1 we were able get the 2nd set into a tiebreak and after saving 4 match points, we went on to win the match tiebreak. No other combination of our 4.5 players was able to beat their 4.5/5.0 team and quite frankly we got pretty lucky. It allowed us to go after lines 2 and 3 in doubles though so it pinpointed matches we thought were must win.
     
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  7. J_R_B

    J_R_B Hall of Fame

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    40+ only. 10char
     
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  8. OrangePower

    OrangePower Hall of Fame

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    Good. Bad enough facing a 40yo 5.0 in singles. Would cringe at the thought of playing a 20yo 5.0.
     
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  9. asimple

    asimple Semi-Pro

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    The truth is in our local 40+ league the top 4.5 guys were actually competitive with the 5.0 guys in singles for the most part. The best guy in the league actually turned out to be a 4.5. I split sets with the top 5.0 guy and would have had a good shot with the others. Districts is a slightly different story though as the guys there were a level ahead.
     
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  10. OrangePower

    OrangePower Hall of Fame

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    Don't know about your experience, but mine was that many of the 5.0s in 40+ are predominantly dubs players in 18+ league, and then see the 40+ league as a way to play some singles. But they are not really singles players. So a good 4.5 singles player has a shot.

    The 5.0 who is a dedicated singles player in 18+ 5.0 league is a different animal. These are usually the younger guys.
     
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  11. asimple

    asimple Semi-Pro

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    Actually we had 3 true 5.0 singles players, but I think most of them were pretty close to the 4.5/5.0 border with the possible exception of one guy. We also had some 4.5 singles guys who were very close to this border as well. One of them hadn't played enough to get the proper rating and another recently was bumped down from 5.0.

    This was just our local league though as I did see some guys at districts who were clearly a level ahead.
     
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  12. Yaz

    Yaz Rookie

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    Level of play at 40+ districts and sectionals was pretty amazing...there were several players who had points and/or world rankings, including one dude who was inside the top 150.
     
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  13. asimple

    asimple Semi-Pro

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    Are you talking about NorCal?

    I saw a few good players but I didn't think I saw anyone who ever played at that level.
     
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  14. Z-Man

    Z-Man Professional

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    I've never heard of a 4.5+ league. Is this something new?
     
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  15. dizzlmcwizzl

    dizzlmcwizzl Hall of Fame

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    The USTA, in an effort to give 5.0's a place to play, will let one or two 5.0s play for 4.5 team provided they are limited to either line 1 dubs or line 1 singles.

    Here, they only have 4.5+ in the over 40 division.
     
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  16. sam_p

    sam_p Professional

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    One guy on one of the over 40 4.5+ teams in SF played Davis Cup for Canada and played on tour for a while. His team lost in districts though.

    The team that went to Nationals from Norcal has a former ATP player (now age 50 or so) who was ranked in the mid-300s in the 80's.

    Regarding the point of the OP.

    The presence of 5.0 players at #1 singles or #1 doubles definitely had repercussions on the way lineups were constructed. In Norcal during the season we had only three lines - 1 singles and 2 doubles and it expanded to 5 in the districts/sectionals. In the regular season the presence of 5.0s led to some teams loading up #2 doubles with the best 4.5 players and playing either a 5.0 at singles or a 5.0 + a middle of the road 4.5 at #1 dubs. If the 5.0's weren't on the same court this leads to a lot of unbalanced matches with blowouts in opposite directions at the first two positions and everything coming down to a competitive #2 doubles match. It was definitely odd at times.
     
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  17. asimple

    asimple Semi-Pro

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    Actually I did see the guy 50 year old guy you were talking about beat someone very easily.

    I think in our regular season people actually normally played it pretty straight with 2 doubles normally being much much weaker. The teams in our division were for the most part equal which probably led to this. I also think the gap between our 4.5 and 5.0 level was not as disproportionate as other divisions as well which made the 5.0 advantage slightly less important. There were many 4.5 over 5.0 victories in both singles and doubles. There was even a 8.5 combo team beating a 9.5 combo team.

    I really enjoyed this format though since almost all of the matches were competitive. It might have just been my division but the 1 singles and 1 doubles was always competitive. In the regular season that hasn't been the case.
     
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  18. bruintennis

    bruintennis Semi-Pro

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    It was definitely an interesting season for the new 40+, 4.5+ leagues in Southern Cal. I enjoyed it!

    The local league wasn't too interesting, but it was very interesting over the past weekend at sectionals.
     
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  19. beernutz

    beernutz Hall of Fame

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    I was in the 3.5 southern >40 sectionals this weekend in Mobile and watched a little of the 4.5 men's matches including some of the finals between NC and TN. NC put their 5.0s (aren't Internet cell phones amazing?) on 1 singles who won easily 2 and 0 and on 1 doubles where his team lost to TN who put both 5.0s on 1 doubles. A funny thing though happened as the #2 singles for NC who won his match was later DQed. However according to tennislink the results will appparently stand and NC will advance to nationals with a 3-2 team win. That has to be a bitter pill for Memphis to swallow.
     
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  20. 2ndServe

    2ndServe Professional

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    did they win 5-0 or 4-1 thus making a DQ inconsequential.
     
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  21. beernutz

    beernutz Hall of Fame

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    According to tennislink NC won 3-2 then later their #2 singles player was DQed, however the match result was not reversed and the win was not awarded to TN. Take a look for yourself: http://tennislink.usta.com/leagues/...389049C57C29424A19086F7E0D0C&par2=2013&par3=0

    I didn't see the end of the matches but it looks like NC retired from the matches in progress once they had secured 3 wins which is understandable given how far they had to travel that day. However, in the future they and other teams might not be so quick to do this if anyone who had secured a win had the potential to later be DQed.
     
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2013
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  22. schmke

    schmke Professional

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    Something strange seems to be going on here. Is it the Southern section's policy that DQs not change the match result? It appears so as the footer for the match in question has two "DQ" footers. The one used says:

    (DQ)- This player has been disqualified on this team

    And then there is one with an asterisk that wasn't used that says:

    (DQ)* - This player has been disqualified and the match awarded to opposing team by default in current standing

    I wonder what criteria they use to determine which DQ it is? Since this was a 3-2 win, using the "second" DQ would have changed the team result.

    But what is also odd is that I believe the player in question's rating when you looked it up earlier in the year was a "5.0D" indicating a dynamic DQ as early as 6/21 which was after their Districts. But if you look today, it lists 8/26 as the date. I suppose the DQ may have happened and been appealed somehow, but then happened again?
     
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  23. schmke

    schmke Professional

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    I wrote this back in June, but forgot to post it here. I expand a bit on the effect of the plus leagues on plus players, notably that it is very easy for these guys to get bumped down like happened in this case.

    http://computerratings.blogspot.com/2013/06/how-usta-is-inadvertently-bumping-50.html
     
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  24. J_R_B

    J_R_B Hall of Fame

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    #24
  25. emilyhex

    emilyhex Rookie

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    Our team played in the 4.5+ leagues and we didn't have any 5.0s on our team but played against a few. They varied in ability from borderline 5.0 to potentially 5.5. As someone else pointed out, you can use the sacrificial lamb tactic as the 5.0s are forced to play#1 singles or #1 doubles. The other teams have gotten used to this and will sometimes not pair their strong 4.5s with their 5.0s, but spread out the talent.

    But, I don't know what else you could do really, it also depends on the rest of the lineup and what they throw out there. Me personally, I just go out there and swing away and try to take as many games as I can regardless of NTRP. It's important not to be intimidated by these silly numbers or start to generalize what is a 5.0 or what is a 4.5. Then you introduce preconceptions and you are behind before you step on the court.
     
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  26. Angle Queen

    Angle Queen Professional

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    I think the two designations you see at the bottom of the match reports are strictly for "informational" purposes, kind of a legend. If you want to know/see what actually happened, refer to the actual designation behind the player's name in the match details. I believe it to be a confusing aspect of tennislink and am unsure if it's every where or just in the sections that operate as we do.

    Check out this flight's standings from two years ago. The second place team had a player DQ'd...apparently at Districts, and in the last match played that was the breaking straw, you'll see the full DQ*...and, in fact, the entire team match was awarded to the opponents by default (even though they'd already won the match with three other lines prevailing). All his prior matches, however, carry only the DQ (sic, no asterisk) and thus didn't effect the overall team match results.

    What I'm uncertain of, though, is the timing of everything. I can't imagine that his -4 and -5 win is what got him his third strike. I also can't imagine his captain knowingly playing him, even though he'd already been DQ'd.

    What's sad is...most of the local teams knew this kid was out-of-level...and...had his lines/matches been DQ'd sooner...a different team would have gone to Districts.

    What I don't know or can confirm is under what circumstances a DQ becomes retroactive and actually changes overall team results and standings.

    This example is another one of those case studies on why self-rates should not be allowed to participate in post-season play.
     
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