Advice Needed: What to self rate?

Discussion in 'Adult League & Tournament Talk' started by Ajtat411, May 11, 2009.

  1. Ajtat411

    Ajtat411 Semi-Pro

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    Hi, fellas. I've been out of the game for about 10 years now since playing high school tennis.

    I wanted some advice on self ranking for a NTRP rating. I'm inclined to rate myself at 3.0 and join a league or play flex league at 3.0 but am concerned at getting DQ. I feel like I can play at 3.5 level right now but not sure how the competition will be like and how benificial it would be for my progression back to tennis if I started at 3.5 vs 3.0.

    What happens when you get DQed? Are you restricted from playing in a USTA league/match for a certain amount of time? Is this a really bad thing and will it affect your future potential to play on a team?

    I have not played a single USTA league/tournament/flex match yet so I don't know how this would affect my future and how captains would view a DQ'ed player when considering a new member.

    TIA
    Alex
     
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  2. sphinx780

    sphinx780 Professional

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    Here's what I would suggest if you have the option, get a hold of a captain for each league and see if you can set up a match for fun with someone on the team. That way you can gauge your level.

    Getting DQ'd typically just means you are not allowed to finish that season with the team you played on...sucks for both you and the team, you then have to find a new team in the higher league so it's best to find where you will have even competition and can improve your game without worrying about getting DQ'd.

    Since you know you will be improving, I suggest going into the higher league knowing that it will force you to improve at a quicker level.
     
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  3. JavierLW

    JavierLW Hall of Fame

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    If you feel like you can play at 3.5 then you probably can. No reason to play 3.0.

    Where you good at high school? Did your high school really good at tennis, or was it like my high school? (where we learned how to play tennis on the high school tennis team)

    Getting DQ'ed just means you cant play 3.0 anymore but if you are on a team they can lose all the matches that you've played in. (so if you won 5 matches for them, they will then be 5 losses)
     
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  4. Ajtat411

    Ajtat411 Semi-Pro

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    sphinx, that sounds like good advice. I like challenges so I think 3.5 would be more appropriate since 3.0 may slow my progression like you said plus it would suck for my team if I DQ'd.


    Javier, our high school wasn't the best but we almost made it to our local sectional playoffs. I played #4 singles in high school and was a decent player, not consistent enough to go any higher.
     
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  5. ohplease

    ohplease Professional

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    Contact the captains of 3.0 and 3.5 teams you might be interested in ask to join one of their practices. How much fun you get out of your USTA experience will stem primarily from the captain and your teammates than what level you play. There will be ridiculously weak and strong teams at any level you join - what really matters is whether or not you're strong enough relative to your potential teammates to get playing time. Don't be shy about asking the captains this, either - and avoid being the big dog on a bad team, too.

    USTA league play can often be a player's best or worst tennis experience, lifetime - it really depends on you to do your homework and find the team/group of players that suits you best.
     
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  6. Ajtat411

    Ajtat411 Semi-Pro

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    I think I'll do this. I'll have to do this to prepare for the Summer season since Spring season is almost over.

    What's wrong with being the big dog on a bad team? Asking because I have no idea. At this time I really just want to play competitive tennis and improve my game. The team aspect is great but I would be happy doing flex league and tournaments for now.
     
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  7. JavierLW

    JavierLW Hall of Fame

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    That's probably good enough that you may have some not-so-fun matches at 3.0. You'll find some players there that probably are similar to what you'll find in 3.5 (there is a sort of overlap), but you might find some matches that are really easy as well.

    Although the USTA league is mostly doubles so that always makes things interesting... (typically 6 out of 8 people play doubles)
     
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  8. Ajtat411

    Ajtat411 Semi-Pro

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    I forgot that most people play doubles, usually 2 single spots and 3 doubles spots. I'll probably start off at doubles and see if I can get into singles, depending on how good the people are.

    Yeah, I guess it depends if I want to take it easy or not. I would rather play competitive tennis vs just winning, although anyone's ultimate goal would be to dominate, but what's the fun in that.
     
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  9. Kostas

    Kostas Semi-Pro

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    I would see if you can start with meeting with a 3.5 team captain as a 3.0 captain *may* be inclined to tell you to self-rate as a 3.0 so you can be on his team. :)

    A 3.5 captain will give you a more honest assessment imo.
     
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  10. Ajtat411

    Ajtat411 Semi-Pro

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    Haha, yeah. I'll do that.
     
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  11. netman

    netman Hall of Fame

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    You are golden. You post indicates you are willing to sandbag if possible (that old DQ not withstanding). These days, USTA is all about gaming the system to get to states, regionals and nationals. You are the unicorn, a borderline 4.0 player who has been out of competition long enough to self-rate wherever. Heck, you can probably put yourself up for the highest bid to all the 3.0 captains in your area that will do anything to get to the nationals.

    Worst case you end up a 3.5 and still carve up most of the pikers stupid enough to rate their true level. Why put yourself through the misery of working your way back to your true level by playing tougher competition? Have fun, cruise for awhile, and get a medal the easy way.
     
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  12. Ajtat411

    Ajtat411 Semi-Pro

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    It's not that I want to sandbag, it's just I don't know much about NTRP ratings and how people really play in their respective ratings. I would think that there are sandbaggers in every team to some extent since a 4.0 team could have a 4.49 player on their team.

    I'm not even thinking about medals and stuff right now, I just want to play some tennis.
     
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  13. netman

    netman Hall of Fame

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    Then self-rate at 4.0. You'll have more fun.
     
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  14. Ajtat411

    Ajtat411 Semi-Pro

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    I'm thinking about playing up to 4.0, but I just don't want to waste my opponents time and get smeared all over the court. Although I will probably improve (lose) faster if I play 4.0.

    I'll probably get some more practice in and hit with the 3.5 players to see where I'm at and go from there.

    I guess it's a good thing I missed Spring season.
     
    #14
  15. OrangePower

    OrangePower Hall of Fame

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    Start at 3.5. I was in the same position as you, except that my layoff from tennis was more like 15 years. And in the area where I live I've met many people with a very similar story, that played when younger, then took time off for career and family, and now finally find themselves able to start playing. Some started at 3.5, some at 4.0, depending on level of fitness etc. Definitely 3.0 will be a letdown after a match or two.

    My other suggestion is to find a team where you will get a lot of playing time. Probably that means finding a team with no depth that sucks :) But getting playing time at this stage is more important than dreams of playoff glory. Plus, it will quieten the skeptics amongst us that are already calling you a sandbagger...
     
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  16. Ajtat411

    Ajtat411 Semi-Pro

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    Without any knowledge from this forums posts I would have self-rated at 3.0 since the NTRP quidelines indicate that I should rate myself at 3.0 since I have high school experience but have not played post-season tennis.

    When I first joined my local club, I made an appointment to hit with the tennis pro and after an hour or so of hitting he told me I should self rate at 3.0 but I would get to 3.5 in a short time if I practiced more. I was very rusty and my forehand wasn't there for some reason. I have since gotten more consistent and back into my rhythm.

    I think I will rate at 3.5 and try to play in the 4.0 league since there is no 3.5 league at my club. If I do well, the system will bump me up and if I don't then I'll be stuck at 3.5 or lowered. Whatever.

    Thanks
     
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  17. OrangePower

    OrangePower Hall of Fame

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    Good plan. Best of luck, and have fun!
     
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  18. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

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    The other thing you could do is self-rate 3.0 but get on a 3.5/4.0 team. If it turns out your really can't handle 3.5/4.0, then you have the option of playing 3.0 to get your bearings.
     
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  19. Ajtat411

    Ajtat411 Semi-Pro

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    I looked through the USTA league directory and my club does not have a 3.0 mens singles league.

    I don't know if I would be allowed to rate 3.0 and play in a 4.0 team.

    I guess I could always try to start a 3.0 men's league team.

    I'm going to try to play some practice matches with a 3.5 and 4.0 player first though.

    Alex
     
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  20. netman

    netman Hall of Fame

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    Unless your high school team was not a 3.5/4.0 level team, you will go insane at 3.0.

    Actually these days the USTA lets you be on two teams at the same time as long as they are within a level of each other. So you could rate at 3.5, then play on both the 3.5 and 4.0 teams. We have a number of our 3.5 players that are really more like 3.75s that do this and get the best of both worlds.

    -k-
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2009
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  21. Ajtat411

    Ajtat411 Semi-Pro

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    That's nice to know.

    thanks.
     
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  22. Jim A

    Jim A Professional

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    depends on the district, my area only allows you to play in one USTA Adult League per season (ie you can't play 3.0 and 3.5) as they are trying to get more people in their actual division

    another option is to just play tournaments this year, self-rate as 3.0 and play a bunch of 3.0 and 3.5 events
    at the end of the year you'll have a T (Tournament Exclusive ) rating
     
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  23. Ajtat411

    Ajtat411 Semi-Pro

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    I was thinking about playing some local tournaments to get my feet wet.
     
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