A PROPOSAL FOR CHANGING THE RULES OF TENNIS

Discussion in 'General Pro Player Discussion' started by Markus Kaila, Feb 19, 2004.

  1. Markus Kaila

    Markus Kaila Rookie

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    Since the 1980's people have been trying to find a means to diminish the dominating role of the
    serve in tennis. Probably the most frequently heard propositions are: only one ball per serve,
    softer/bigger balls or moving the position of the server further back from the baseline. The option
    of allowing only one ball per service has apparently been mentioned most often. Its greatest
    disadvantage is that at least on club level it would make the game too stressing and you should
    try to avoid a solution where top players and amateurs have different rules. The remaining two of
    the afore-mentioned propositions are rather artificial.

    Especially during the last few years another defect has attracted attention. Not much has been
    said about it and one feels it has actually not been considered a defect. It is the undue benefit the
    left-handers achieve because of their divergence . Perhaps it has been regarded as some kind of
    law of nature in tennis which nothing can be done about. So today every fourth or fifth of the
    world´s top players is a left-hander. The amount of left-handed people is normally around five
    per cent of the population. Left-handers do get undeniable advantage of the fact that the decisive
    point of a game may be played in the second service court at the certainty of over 75 per cent. In
    a way left-handers get their due normal advantage in regular all-court play of the fact that their
    spins are more alien and thus more difficult for right-handers than vice versa.

    Rule change

    The dividing line between service courts will be completely abolished. The area will be divided
    into THREE equally large service courts as opposed to the two of the present-day rules.
    Respective one-third marks will be made on the baseline. A single service will in practice be
    executed quite similarly as today, but the server will be standing between the one-third marks and
    the respective service court will be the one-third court exactly opposite. Accordingly, there will be
    no deuce or advantage courts in a singles match, the service court will remain the same
    throughout the match, only one third narrower than previously. The server will naturally be free
    to choose his serving position between the marks.

    The doubles application would analogically be that the server will always serve from between the
    sideline and the one-third mark, only not diagonally but straight to the opposing service court. It
    is a matter of taste whether the first service will be executed from the left or right side. Western
    thinking would prefer the logic of the first service being served from the left - as seen from the
    server s point of view. In service position the other two players may - for a moment - appear to
    be bystanders as regards the action on the court and certainly there would be some adjustments
    in the tactics, but they might be even more complex than the present ones. Anyway, because of
    the player on guard at the net, a break of serve in doubles is nowadays even harder to achieve
    than in singles, and that would facilitated.

    The new court is here:
    [​IMG]










    Or http://www.helsinki.fi/~jpheikki/3malli/kenttae.htm

    Things worth noticing

    As a point in singles would usually be started nearer the centre and the service court would be
    one third narrower, this would result in aces naturally becoming more rare at least by half and
    serving would in general become more difficult. However, this would not entirely be for the
    benefit of the returner, which is noteworthy. As the ball would more often have to be returned
    from the ( crosswise ) mid-section of the court and never from so far from the side as now, the
    narrower return angle would reduce the returner s benefit from the rules change. If it is not the
    returner who achieves entirely the server s loss of advantage, then who or what gets the
    remainder? The better all-court player and accordingly we as an audience and tennis devotees get
    to see a more versatile and action-packed match.

    Present rules cause the fact that tennis - at least on the top level - is being played in a slightly
    peculiar way, also during the all-court phase ( or what remains of it ). Players are in the
    back-court corners and the ball is being hit cross-court. That is the safest way; after all, the court
    is broader diagonally than crosswise and of course striking the ball back is less risky than to to
    turn the stroke along the line. The player who goes for that first, takes the chance of a) totally
    failing in the stroke or b) having a busy time getting to the other corner and so the opponent can
    easily strike the ball back along the line behind the back of the initiator. The fact that the match
    so often gets settled in the corner-play mould clearly originates mostly in the present diagonal
    serve. Changing the rules in the afore-mentioned way the situation would improve. It is to be
    expected that even then much of the game will be played cross-court from corner to corner, but
    be it so, at least then the situation will have arisen from an iniative of one of the players and not
    predestinated as a starting point, which happens when present rules are being applied.

    It is also highly likely that serving into one court only at singles play will make the game much
    more easier to adopt for a complete tennis ignoramus; the treshold of starting themselves will be
    lower and it is hardly much more difficult for a beginner to hit at a 4ft6 (137 cm) narrower
    service court than the present one. As an added bonus it is easier to aim lengthwise - or almost
    lengthwise - and having to practise serving into one court only.

    Top-level tennis has developed to the point where the returner has had to try to invent a
    serve-like weapon. Not being so much a retriever - as has been so common - the player has
    become a proper returner in the true sense of the word, not just trying to get the ball back but
    aiming for a straight point with a risky shot, when at all managing to get the racket behind the
    ball. The result is that the server has to take more chances and makes a double fault rather than
    puts the ball safely in play. The absurd effect of the diagonal serve with current equipment is the
    cause of this vicous circle. Tennis today is so fast that if the returner can get hold of the diagonal
    serve, the only chance is to try and hit a straight point because of being outside the court when
    returning. Indeed, the essence of the proposition for the change of the rules is a notable loss in
    the effect of the cross-court serve and, simultaneously, the left-handers will no longer have their
    unearned advantage.

    It is unlikely that serving into the same service court would make the game less interesting to
    watch. On the contrary, the serving player would hardly give the returner the good of hitting all
    the serves from the same spot to the same spot. Even more than now, one could use the entire
    serving area, which the returner would have to take account of. In addition, the spectators would
    no longer have to watch the returner s leisurely movements between first and second service
    courts. This would naturally diminish the amount of dead moments in a match and the rhytm of
    the game on the whole would be quicker. This is also true on club tennis level. There is much
    more actual playing during a one-hour practice session and you can certainly feel it.

    Worth mentioning is that one might also expect fewer injuries ( ankles, knees, back) as the angle
    of the first two or three shots will inevitably be narrower. The constant arguments of what is the
    right surface material would also be of lesser importance, because one would get to grips with
    fast serves and respective returns more easily. The alteration would probably increase the
    birth-rate of tennis personalities, as fighters like Jimmy Connors would get a more even chance.

    The players to suffer from the rules change would of course be those top players whose game is
    mostly based on serve and out of them particularly the left-handers who serve their more
    diagonal diagonal serve into the second service court. They would then have every reason to
    diversify their game in order to hang on to the prize money. Anyway, there will always be
    someone who will suffer from reforms. At least it would not be the audience as has been the case
    in the way tennis has developed lately.

    Conclusion

    This simple and logical change of rules is also relatively easy to put into practice on today s
    courts. You do not even have to know the official court dimensions. It will be sufficient to divide
    the service line into three equal lengths ( 3 yds or 2,74m ) and have two lines parallel to the
    current centre service line marked. During the transition period no one will surely be bothered, if
    the old centre line remains between the two one-third lines. You can use it for aiming purposes
    and in social tennis either rules would be applicable, but competitive matches should be played in
    the above fashion as soon as possible. It is obvious that the rules of such a huge international
    game cannot be changed without thorough consideration and due experimentation, but after this
    change the rules will not have to be tampered with for a hundred years.

    When pondering a little and without prejudice, one in fact starts to wonder why diagonal serving
    was at all taken into use at the dawn of tennis. Maybe it was simply because it was desirable to
    trample the lawn evenly.

    Markus Kaila & Antti Karttinen
    Tampere, Finland
     
    #1
  2. amarone

    amarone Semi-Pro

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    The starting premise is wrong. It is simply not true that
    There is not one left-hander in the men's top 30.
     
    #2
  3. borisboris

    borisboris Semi-Pro

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    This is pathetic! Next you'll say NASCAR should have moving targets to make it more interesting for spectators.
     
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  4. Markus Kaila

    Markus Kaila Rookie

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    You are right. It is not true now. But I liked my discovery when there were many lefties in the top 20 (Rios, Rusedski, Korda, Ivanisevic, Muster, Siemerink...). To my mind it was really unfair. Still my statement suits to the whole context so well that I havn't change that point. Any other mistakes?
     
    #4
  5. juu

    juu New User

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    No equipment or markings change whatsoever. I don't see why amateurs couldn't use it. Only problem: the games (and thus matches) would last quicker and you'd be more likely to be broken then hold your serve. In a way, it also rewards serving consistency even more than right now, thus boosting the importance of service skills.

    Balls wear out anyway with time, so this is also an OK change. I wonder what it means for S&V style of play. Can be implemented gradually, which is good.

    Not good, makes S&V impossible and requires court markings.

    Your suggestion requires drastically changing the court markings all at once, throws out much of existing serving skills of all current players, and also has the problems of the first solution. I don't see it being implemented.

    P.S. Yes, the fact that most points are pretty much all decided on serve on some surfaces is sad. As is the (unrelated?) issue that there aren't good S&Vers around at this point. But radical solutions may cause even bigger problems or disbalances.

    P.P.S. And we HAVE to do something about these lefties. Perhaps only allow them to make one service, while righties make two as before? :wink:
     
    #5
  6. Camilio Pascual

    Camilio Pascual Hall of Fame

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    I remember when it was widely felt that the serve was becoming too dominant. This does not seem to be true today. The dearth of S&V players today may indicate that you have a solution in search of a problem. There is also a much simpler solution if the serve is too dominating. Why not bring back the rule that does not allow the server to leave the ground on the serve?
     
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  7. Shaolin

    Shaolin Hall of Fame

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    Markus I will give you credit for your effort and persistence!
     
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  8. polakosaur

    polakosaur Rookie

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    theres no need to change the actual playing game its good the way it is

    even the lefties can serve out wide on one side the righties can do it also on the other

    you are addressing the pro game, the pro game will always be the pro's, pro's have the abilities to play at that high level, the game is proportional from the lowest beginners to the pro's theres no need for change
     
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  9. Ariel

    Ariel Rookie

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    What...??? I can't avoid to feel a little bit injuried here, since I'm a left handed person and I don't feel that I have a 'divergence'.

    You've been posting and proposing this change for a long while, my friend, may be it's time to move on.
     
    #9
  10. python

    python Semi-Pro

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    I like tennis the way it currently is. I'm no pro, so none of these complaints really apply to me or to the people I play tennis with.

    I really can't imagine having to repaint the tens of thousands of tennis courts in the US. How impractical.
     
    #10
  11. @wright

    @wright Hall of Fame

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    I agree with Python. A slight rule change would fix the problem and save changing millions of courts worldwide.
     
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  12. jayserinos99

    jayserinos99 Hall of Fame

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    yup.
     
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  13. Matt H.

    Matt H. Professional

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    yeah, i'm left handed and i'm going to have to disagree with the whole advantage thing.

    yes, a lefty can hit the serve out wide on the ad.....big deal.



    an arguement can then be made that the right handed player gets an advantage because he STARTS with being able to hit that wide serve, thus theortically being spotted a point.


    if it bothers people that much, then they either shouldn't play lefties, or learn to become lefty. :lol:
     
    #13
  14. tennisplayer

    tennisplayer Rookie

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    Hi Markus, you have a great proposal - but it has one big problem - it's not tennis... :(
     
    #14
  15. andreh

    andreh Professional

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    The only rule change suggested I've heard so far that I could get behind is what McEnroe suggested a few years ago: Move the service line in an inch or two towards the net. But I remain a skeptic to all changes.

    /André
     
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  16. Markus Kaila

    Markus Kaila Rookie

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    A quotation concerning tennis of today

    Is Technology Ruining Tennis? by Greg Moran

    "There is a feeling among many tennis experts today that the game is not being
    played as well as it was in the 60's and 70's. This is not just the grumbling of a
    few old-timers. Tennis over the past 15-20 years has become more of a
    shot-making contest than a battle of point development, strategy and finesse.

    Points are shorter and tennis today seems to be a race to see who can tee off first
    and end the point quicker. Many observers of the game feel that this has lessened
    the overall quality of the "product." The drop in television ratings would certainly
    seem to bear this theory out.

    This is clearly not what Major Wingfield had in mind when he patented the game
    in 1874. Tennis was designed to be a contest of skill, technique and, what has
    also become somewhat of a lost art, sportsmanship."

    Greg Moran is a much greater authority than me. Is he wrong?

    And you can read the whole article herefrom:

    http://www.tennisserver.com/circlegame/circlegame_02_02.html
     
    #16
  17. Phil

    Phil Hall of Fame

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    Yeah, the Major is wrong-that is when his statements are applied to the game 125 years later. Virtually nothing that is as old or older than tennis stays the same. Things change; technology, society, even the physical size of the players...there will always be reactionaries who want to impose rules on "their" sport-basically ruining something that doesn't need much change. Markus-you got WAY too much time on your hands, writing book-length tones on how tennis needs to change, and how to make it look like the 1950's all over again. Fact is, you're wasting your time, because none of these hare brained ideas of yours will EVER be implemented, either due to cost, their impracticality, or merely because most people enjoy the sport as it is and don't need the b.s.
     
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  18. Markus Kaila

    Markus Kaila Rookie

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    Phil, I am not at all the only one who ponders how tennis needs to change. Even Mark Miles, the chief of ATP thinks that the dimensions of the tennis court are getting smaller.

    The whole quotation:
    "Tennis players will be bigger and so will the courts
    By 2010 most of the top male tennis players in the world will be at
    least 6ft 6in tall, prompting the game's rulers to enlarge the court
    and raise the net.

    So says Mark Miles, chief executive of the ATP Tour, the governing
    body of the international men's tennis circuit. He believes the trend
    towards bigger, taller players - such as Mark Philippoussis and Marat
    Safin, who are both 6ft 4in - will continue, as will the emphasis on
    power and pace in the the modern game.

    'Over a period of time athletes in all sports have been getting
    fitter, faster and stronger and it's common sense that there will a
    time will come when all sports, tennis in particular, have to make
    some adjustments,' Miles says. 'If you are standing on the baseline,
    both the trajectory of the ball and the height of the net look very
    different to a player who's 5ft 6in than they do to one who's a foot
    taller.

    'As players' size has grown, it's as if the net has been lowered and
    the lines of the court have been brought closer together. That will
    eventually impact on both the way we play and the geometry of the
    court, because the dimensions of the court are getting smaller.'"

    But does Mark Miles really mean that there ought to be separate courts
    for women (or children) and men? That would really be expensive and impractical!

    This is suitable for all:
    [​IMG]








    Or this:
    http://www.3malli.net/kenttae.htm
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2007
    #18
  19. Markus Kaila

    Markus Kaila Rookie

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    At least for Camilio Pascual

    Many thanks for your compliment! (But I am not sure if I understood you exactly right.) But as to serve&volley tennis your idea stands in sharp contrast to your aim (and mine, too). For example it would have been impossible for P. Rafter to develop into one of all time best serve&volley players, if he couldn't jump when serving.

    But I really believe in the above court also in helping serve&VOLLEYers in tennis. I mean in this just those players who really (mostly) need their volley after serving to win the point. For example M. Philippoussis (and many many others) is not among´them.
     
    #19
  20. Camilio Pascual

    Camilio Pascual Hall of Fame

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    Markus - Yes, you did misunderstand, I did not state an aim.
     
    #20
  21. adamzwb

    adamzwb Guest

    看不懂,太多了
     
    #21
  22. Markus Kaila

    Markus Kaila Rookie

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    And höpö höpö! (That is Finnish: perhaps in English something like "trash-nonsense"). For the sake of comparison I ask you: Do you really claim that if they want to move the service area to another place in squash they ought to change also the name of game for example to spuash.... Because it is then no more squash.... Think of it over!
     
    #22
  23. jayserinos99

    jayserinos99 Hall of Fame

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    #23
  24. Morpheus

    Morpheus Professional

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    Players evolve to develop strategies and strengths to offset dominance, not unlike nature. Changing the rules would only create a different game for awhile, then new players would emerge and you will eventually be at the same place. In the meantime, you unfairly disadvantage certain populations of the game who were brought up under the old rules.

    I am certain that eventually a new player will emerge that will change the game again.
     
    #24
  25. Markus Kaila

    Markus Kaila Rookie

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    "Howdy Bill, this is George. It's been a while!

    Can you imagine that some crazy Finn claims that making the service
    court in tennis smaller, would make it easier for beginners to serve?
    Otherwise I think this guy's ideas are very well argued but with this he's probably completely on the wrong track. But I must say this story got me interested and I'd like to try it out. Since you've never really been into tennis I was wondering if you could play the beginner's role.

    We could go to the courts from our place. Take a pair of trainers and
    shorts with you. I'll give you my old racket. And take also some masking tape for marking the new service court. I don't think I can find any here in White House but you probably had some in your old cache. I don't know THAT area as well as you do but I guess it was possible for you to use also masking tape in your ancient Monica-games?

    Oh, there's still one thing. I'm going to get so damn busy soon.
    You've probably heard about that Kerry. I'm afraid he's really going to fight back in those elections so would a test mach already next weekend be okay?
    Great!
    See you then! Say hi to Hillary!"


    (Hm...interesting...)
    [​IMG]
     
    #25
  26. @wright

    @wright Hall of Fame

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    #26
  27. NoBadMojo

    NoBadMojo G.O.A.T.

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    I dont think the serve is at issue..it's the return of serve. if the serve were so much of an advantage there would be many pros playing serve AND volley rather than a small handful. when rcquetheads were smaller and the returner didnt have an advantage there was much much more all court and s/v play because the percentages were balanced better for that sort of play. now you get dudes that can use extreme western because the headsize supports it and just rip from the baseline and win that way and get many many more returns back in play more effectively w. the larger head. they wouldnt be able to do that (w. maybe only a few small exceptions) with a smaller headed frame, and the game at the pro level would be sweet once again.Ed.
     
    #27
  28. emcee

    emcee Semi-Pro

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    You think Roger Federer needs any more help returning serve?
     
    #28
  29. Markus Kaila

    Markus Kaila Rookie

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    (=Laughing Out Loud)

    Fine that I succeeded in making you laugh. It is easy for me to write that kind of short humorous chats but only with my own language. Still it is a pity that you don't probably understand Finnish. Then it would be much better and you could laugh more loud. I can send the orginal text for you if you want!

    PS. This is a better translation:

    Hi Bill, long time no see…

    It´s George here. Could you believe, that some looney finnish claims that the tennis service court could be smaller and that makes the serve easier for the beginner.

    Otherwise this fin-fellow seems to be all right, but this have to be a load of grab!

    Anyhow I get a bit curious about it.

    You haven´t been any great tennis player yourself, but would you like to be a test rabbit in this.

    Let´s go to the tennis court and take just sneakers and shorts along, you may use my old racket.

    Oh yeah, and take some tape along also in order to mark up the smaller service court. I suppose we don't have it in the White House, but maybe you have some tape left, as you maybe have needed it in your good old Monica-games, but how I know, I´m not real expert in THIS field. You know, I´m just the President of the United States!

    And one more thing, I´m going to have a hell of the time soon, as you might have heard of this Kerry fellow. Seem to be that he wants to play some hard ball, fine for me! So maybe we could have the test game already next weekend.
    See you later and my best regards to Hillary!
     
    #29
  30. Markus Kaila

    Markus Kaila Rookie

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    Yes, and Andre Agassi, too. But of course Goran Ivanisevic needs more!

    The point is that now even the 500th player in the world can probably still hold his serve against Federer. After the renewal it couldn't be possible any more (maybe sometimes)!
     
    #30
  31. jayserinos99

    jayserinos99 Hall of Fame

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    ^^ I'm glad that you find the picture funny.
     
    #31
  32. NoBadMojo

    NoBadMojo G.O.A.T.

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    of course fed doesnt need the help.. that is why he doesnt use a larger frame. you can always name an exception. besides he would proably serve worse w. a larger headed frame. i am telling you..if the headsize was limited to 80 or so the cream would rise to the top..fed would dominate much in the way that tiger had in golf, there would be more all court and s/v players. thats what the game needs. the bigger headed frames do not benefit the server..they benefit the returner and the baseliner..have you noticed the straight baseliners are more prone to use larger headed racquets? pls dont give me exceptions..there are always exceptions. golf is a joke..14 year old girls are now hitting the ball nearly 300....nicklas says the same thing in golf...make the sweetspot harder to hit and only those capable of hitting a smaller sweetspot consistantly will excel....the best athletes. Ed
     
    #32
  33. NoBadMojo

    NoBadMojo G.O.A.T.

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    but..having said this, the racquet manufacturers would never go for this. they want to give the illusion that hackers can use the same racquet as the pros.....tennis needs to sell current players more stuff..if they can get us to experiment/buy new racquets, most of them will go out of business. there just isnt growth in tennis (tennis ball sales were off again last year), and there isnt a very large number of people that play on any sort of regular basis
     
    #33
  34. Markus Kaila

    Markus Kaila Rookie

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    You can say so because he is the best one without that help, but
    I can think he needs.... According to the statistics he has won 31 % of his return games (10 matches in 2004). He then has won only 4 return games per match on an avarage. To my mind it is quite little from the tennis player who is still the best tennis player just now!


    http://www.atptennis.com/en/players/matchfacts/default.asp

    (later) More Federer statistics: Just now he lost to Nadal in Miami 3-6, 3-6. Nadal didn't give him even a single break-point possibility. On the whole Federer won 46 points but only 10 he won by returning (+ Nadal's two double faults) . Because both the players served 9 times, we can say that Federer won only one point on an avarage per Nadal's serving game by playing tennis. It is quite obvious that even the best player needs help when returning (trying to return)!
     
    #34
  35. krbo

    krbo New User

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    For now I'll change only two things:

    1. one serve only

    2. The net is true obstacle.Any contact of the ball with the net is fault anytime in the game.
     
    #35
  36. jcm876

    jcm876 Guest

    What about making pros go back to using wood racquets. Kind of like professional baseball. On the college and amateur level people use all sorts of bats, but once you move up to the pros it's wood only.
     
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  37. Markus Kaila

    Markus Kaila Rookie

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    1. The taller player the bigger present you are giving to him.

    2. ???? Perhaps you like Spanish top-spin tennis very much....
     
    #37
  38. Markus Kaila

    Markus Kaila Rookie

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    Probably breaking would be even more difficult than now! I mean that it would be probable that returning would suffer more than serving. These days we cannot help the server in tennis even in minor degree!
     
    #38
  39. krbo

    krbo New User

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    [quote="Markus Kaila]

    1. The taller player the bigger present you are giving to him.

    2. ???? Perhaps you like Spanish top-spin tennis very much....[/quote]

    1. so ? Aren't they in advance right now? Is it fair ? No, it isn't but you can imagine what will left of their game with only one serve and no let.

    2. ??? You think every ball with forward rotation must clear the net few meters high ? Not true.
     
    #39
  40. Markus Kaila

    Markus Kaila Rookie

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    OK. I take my last comment back, but.... I really don't understand what you have in your mind. Why?
     
    #40
  41. krbo

    krbo New User

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    Simply , I would like to remove "duality" of the net.Once it's a problem (service - let's do it again) , other time it's legal (pig shots during a game) - too much luck in a game of skill.

    (Probably many of you didn't see a crazy shot Dupuis made against Ancic in Milan ATP.

    Dupuis missed court a big one but the ball hits top of the single stick and bounce like crazy to the other side of the net almost parallel with it right near line inside Ancic's side who was helpless - point to Dupuis who almost shot down umpire :))) )


    but anyway nothing will change for a long time until money(audience) drops down .

    The proof that something can be changed is a table tennis starting from service , volley ball with idiotic "advance" etc.

    We agree on one , most important thing , something should be changed in a tennis rules.
     
    #41
  42. Markus Kaila

    Markus Kaila Rookie

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    "We agree on one , most important thing , something should be changed in a tennis rules."

    That is fine! By the way it is not difficult for you to guess who (besides Rusedski) was in my mind when I wrote this....:

    "The players to suffer from the rules change would of course be those top players whose game is
    mostly based on serve and out of them particularly the left-handers who serve their more diagonal
    diagonal serve into the second service court. They would then have every reason to diversify their
    game in order to hang on to the prize money. Anyway, there will always be someone who will
    suffer from reforms. At least it would not be the audience as has been the case in the way tennis
    has developed lately."

    The whole article is here:

    http://www.3malli.net/index.html

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2007
    #42
  43. WW Volley

    WW Volley Rookie

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    Why do you push so hard for this new court? You're radically changing the game. It would force everybody to completely reinvent the style they have been playing.

    In other words, it's not going to happen.

    As of now, the big servers aren't even dominating. Hewitt, without a big serve, was #1 in the world 2 years in a row. If serving is such a problem as many claim it is, then there's no way he should have accomplished this feat. Agassi is also absent of a huge serve. Federer lacks high speeds.

    Reviewing the top players of last year, only Roddick holds a giant cannon. Agassi, Federer, and Ferrero do not win on their serve. And Roddick, while a big server, backed up his serving with plenty of OTHER skill.

    Seeing as the top players are a mixture of all styles, I just don't see the problem.
     
    #43
  44. Markus Kaila

    Markus Kaila Rookie

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    I don't understand, because all the other strokes but the service remain the same. Baseliners will be baseliners (although the amount of serve&vollyers may increase) and big servers will really need their volley more often than nowadays.

    Nobody doesn't need to "completely reinvent the style they have been playing", but they can do it if they want. What is wrong with it?

    I am even sure that the most pro-players would enjoy their tennis more in the new sitation because holding their serve wouldn't be as important as now because respectively breaking would be much easier than today.
     
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  45. jayserinos99

    jayserinos99 Hall of Fame

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    Prove that last statement. It can go both ways. Holding serve is just as important as returning serve. What you're saying is that you want to "even the odds" and to give players more of a chance to break serve. Do they really need the help? At the professional levels of tennis, players are relatively even strokewise (except for the mental part of the game) and players that have that mental edge can be better in those pressure situations whether or not they return or hold serve.
     
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  46. Markus Kaila

    Markus Kaila Rookie

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    Meanwhile we are waiting for the results of Bill's and George's test match I can tell what was Ray Bowers' ( www.tennisserver.com ) opinion of this:......."the treshold of starting themselves will be
    lower and it is hardly much more difficult for a beginner to hit at a
    4ft6 (137 cm) narrower service court than the present one. As an added
    bonus it is easier to aim lengthwise - or almost lengthwise - and
    having to practise serving into one court only."

    His feedback:"Would it make the game more difficult for beginners and unskilled
    players? An analogy in the U.S. would be the shrinking of the strike
    zone in baseball."

    I don't know nothing about American baseball, but when he had read "A Proposal" carefully, he answered: "Your
    comments on a beginner's difficulty are interesting and plausible."


    Now I would like add that also the net is at its lowest in
    the middle and theoritically even the serving distance is a little bit
    smaller.

    I have had also two (very adult and motivated) real beginners as tennis pupils and of course I told about the idea of the narrower service court in the middle. And they experimented....and now I am rather sure that it is even easier to serve and of course easier to return for "beginners and unskilled players".
     
    #46
  47. jayserinos99

    jayserinos99 Hall of Fame

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    So let's say that we shrink the service court much like the strike zone in baseball. Your claim would mean it would lead to better points because both server and returner would start on an even keel. But as I've said before, players adjust to the current surroundings and in this case the returner has a far greater advantage because the area they have to cover is very small. It would be giving someone like Barry Bonds/Alex Rodriguez/any other slugger more of a chance to hit the ball out of the park since the pitcher can only pitch fastballs down the middle of the plate and waist-high to get a strike.

    You still haven't proven anything. You said your beginners 'experimented' but then you are completely sure it's easier to serve and return? I don't buy this at all. There has to be evidence (detailed reports from tests, numerous opinions from ATP/WTA/ITF officials, etc.) that prove your court is better. And let's say that you don't get that kind of support from tennis authorities, at least demonstrate and show that your findings support your theory.
     
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  48. Markus Kaila

    Markus Kaila Rookie

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    Last autumn Kuerten and Philippoussis played a historical match in Paris. Three sets, every set ended with a tie-break. None breaks, not even possibilities! I didn't see it but the returner's best achievement was winning three points in only one game. Besides it probably was the 1st match in the whole tennis history where were more aces than return points?

    It included 50 aces and only 47 return points (points together 223). Besides 11 from those 47 were double faults (=only one real return point per game on an avarage). To my mind this is a very simple example to prove that serving is nowadays too easy and returning too difficult. Of course this is only an extreme example but no doubt it tells something about the future of tennis if we don't help the returner.

    Another point is that I don't think that it would be good for a public picture of tennis as an athletic sport if for example M. Rosset could win still at the age of 40 (or 50!) those players who are best then with so simple " I do nothing else but hold my serve without running even one meter" - strategy!

    I believe that at the latest then Walter C. Wingfield would turn in his grave: "What have they done to my sport!"
     
    #48
  49. polakosaur

    polakosaur Rookie

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    can we kill this topic somehow, please
     
    #49
  50. Markus Kaila

    Markus Kaila Rookie

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    It sounds like you are afraid of something... Perhaps you are a lefty, but don't worry I can comfort you: If you are not a pro-player your lefty advantage in serving (because of two service courts!) is insignificant.
     
    #50

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