Best Chance at Winning USTA League National Championship is....

Discussion in 'Adult League & Tournament Talk' started by Gut4Tennis, Mar 31, 2014.

  1. Gut4Tennis

    Gut4Tennis Hall of Fame

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    Aside from having a few self rated ringers...the best way is for....

    2 or 3 Captains joining to create a super team with lots of depth

    Instead of fighting against each other during the year, just extend the olive branch, join forces, and at the very least win sectionals and go to nationals.

    Think about it captains.
     
    #1
  2. schmke

    schmke Professional

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    This is from almost a year ago now, but I'm sure the analysis is about the same, but the easiest way to go to Nationals is to come out of the Hawaii section! See http://computerratings.blogspot.com/2013/05/the-easiest-way-to-play-tennis-at-usta.html

    This obviously depends on the section, and in some you have to go through many levels of playoffs to get there so they are a lot harder.

    But Gut4Tennis has a point. Although sometimes it is hard to join forces. When there are two good teams, who gets to be on the merged good one? Or do you have a really big roster and then the headaches associated with getting everyone playing time?

    If there are two good teams, sometimes having them fight it out to advance strengthens both so that the winner is better prepared for Districts and Sectionals. Having a cakewalk in local league play isn't always the best way to get ready for playoffs.
     
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  3. sam_p

    sam_p Professional

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    The type of people who captain teams with this as their highest priority are not the type that will band together in the spirit of fraternity...
     
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  4. goober

    goober Legend

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    I agree. Typically captains that want desperately to go to nationals have huge egos. I don't see them merging 2-3 teams together and sharing or giving up control. It would no longer be "their" team.
     
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  5. TennisCJC

    TennisCJC Legend

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    yea, I don't think captains get together and merged teams too often but it has happened. It is more common for a single captain to contact players in the area on other teams and recruit to improve his team.
     
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  6. coyote

    coyote Rookie

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    You need 4 self rated ringers and about 6 of the best players that are not the self rates. Those players need to be the best at their level and actually belong up a level but for whatever reason, the computer missed them. Then you need 4 to 6 flight play players. These are players that will win all flight play matches and could win in the playoffs but not to be relied upon.

    It gets hard when those 4 players that could play on any other playoff team realizes they are role players.

    If you want to win, that usually gets it done. Of course, you might still run into another team that has done the same or brings 8 ringers.
     
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  7. OrangePower

    OrangePower Hall of Fame

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    It depends on the level in question.

    At lower levels, you need self-rated players. No way around that. If you don't have ringers, you will eventually lose to someone who does.

    At the higher levels, having self-rates is not essential. For example, at 5.0, you're not going to find many self-rates who are clearly better than the best computer rated 5.0s.

    In both cases, you need to recruit very selectively and from a large geographic area.

    Having said all that, it's all pretty pointless in the end IMO.
     
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  8. gameboy

    gameboy Hall of Fame

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    You need to be psychotic about achieving something that means absolutely nothing...
     
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  9. J_R_B

    J_R_B Hall of Fame

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    If you're relying on self-rates, you have to be able to win one level lower without the self-rates (or with just a key match here and there). In other words, to win nationals, you have to have a team that can win sectionals without the self-rates, to win sectionals, you have to have a team that can win states without the self-rates, etc. If you have to rely on self-rated ringers to win every match at states or sectionals, they'll get dq'd.
     
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  10. Gut4Tennis

    Gut4Tennis Hall of Fame

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    by that token nobody should ever play any tennis tournament again unless its pro

    its fun to travel and play tennis

    dont be a party pooper and poop at parties
     
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  11. lostinamerica

    lostinamerica Semi-Pro

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    Some captains are better at manipulating the system than others. You could be right but a captain who wants to manipulate the system can get by that.
     
    #11
  12. Gut4Tennis

    Gut4Tennis Hall of Fame

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    By having players lose games, make matches close, or even lose matches?
     
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  13. Brian11785

    Brian11785 Hall of Fame

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    Whaaaat? I play USTA tournaments and leagues to improve, meet people, get exercise and just generally have fun.

    Your statement implies that someone has no motivation to play unless he or she is winning, or, specifically, winning nationals. 95%(?) of USTA captains are satisfied playing for the sake of it, going out there every weekend and dropping it once its over. Sure the "psychotic" ones work/obsess/care the hardest and honestly deserve Nationals. But that doesn't mean the rest of us have to value Nationals or hold these people's achievement (the product of manipulating ratings, scouting underrated self-rates, etc. more than of winning tennis matches) in high esteem.
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2014
    #13
  14. Gut4Tennis

    Gut4Tennis Hall of Fame

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    relax

    to each their own.

    different strokes for different folks.

    Some people have never made it to nationals, or done well at sectionals..so i'm just giving a thought to think about.

    I think most people would rather be on a winning team, but that's just my opinion. I don't have as must fun if my court wins but the rest lose. I want the others to win as well.
     
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  15. Brian11785

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    I'm relaxed. I'm at peace. You're the one that said that, unless you're willing to put in the effort to go to Nationals (which we've established involves some heavy and potentially morally hazardous work), you might as well not even play. :)
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2014
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  16. LuckyR

    LuckyR Legend

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    The OP is correct that to go to Nationals you need to be an outlier team (to be charitable). By definition, if you agree that there are teams that have players who are playing below their true level, either intentionally or unintentionally, then logic serves that your Nationals bound team must win against such teams. Thus your team has to have players who can beat players who are playing below their level. We all know what that means.

    If you want to do that, go for it and enjoy your T shirt and banner.
     
    #16
  17. Gut4Tennis

    Gut4Tennis Hall of Fame

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    Lets not forget at nationals, or any over the weekend event with a team, you get to hang out and party with friends, play tennis during the day, then party at night. Its fun. If you win its even funner.

    The crystal trophy is actually pretty nice, and the tech shirt is not bad, but its about the fun experience that goes along with the travel.
     
    #17
  18. chay337

    chay337 Rookie

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    Let's do it NJ!
     
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  19. J_R_B

    J_R_B Hall of Fame

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    NJ district has been decimated by the move up/split up rule this year.
     
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  20. atatu

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    I think the most successful teams in Texas (Houston) do it this way....
     
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  21. chay337

    chay337 Rookie

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    Understatement.
     
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  22. mikeler

    mikeler G.O.A.T.

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    We had a pretty competitive road through 40+, 4.5 Sectionals to get out to Nationals last year. I wouldn't say we were head and shoulders above the rest. The 18+ teams our guys faced the year before were apparently well above level.
     
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  23. schmke

    schmke Professional

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    It may be that the year-end calculations that try to normalize ratings across sections are what accounts for variance from year to year. The approach the USTA takes to do this makes sense, but if the team that goes to Nationals from your section just has a bad couple days, that could depress the ratings for your section and guys don't get bumped up that perhaps should have and your section is tougher and breezes to Nationals the following year.
     
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  24. mikeler

    mikeler G.O.A.T.

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    The 18+ teams had former D1 college players that inappropriately self rated at 4.5.
     
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  25. schmke

    schmke Professional

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    That will do it too ... :(
     
    #25
  26. g4driver

    g4driver Hall of Fame

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    schmke and jrb,

    Just to give you an update on the Greenville/Spartanburg team that used the self-rated player to tank to his teammate last year.

    I never filed a grievance. I did take a lot of photos of match results that appeared to be tanked, the signing of college scholarships and the record of the self-rated player and the 4.0C who beat the 4.0S 6-0, 6-0 on the Greenville team as the two players advanced to the 4.0 State Championships then to the Southern Sectionals. I forwarded all of this to the local official, who sent it to SC State official. I asked the officials to look at specific matches.

    I told them, "Please don't make any comment to me about what you see. This is for your information to do with it as you like."

    The local grievance lady took all the information and sent it to the South Carolina League Director. I was asked by both of them why I didn't present this information prior to the computer ratings being revealed in December.

    I replied, "Because I knew you would bump him to 4.5. And my goal was to address the loophole in the USTA's system that allows for tanking and teams to setup fake teams like the team from Spartanburg did. This isn't about me, or the local leagues. It is about a flawed USTA system." "I didn't file a grievance for a reason." "I don't want to be treated like the bad guy and this is how the USTA works." "I don't want to see this game destroyed by the players and captains who are intent to win at all cost."

    The SC League Director recently called me and told me the activity of the Spartanburg team is being brought to the attention of the USTA National Office.

    If nothing happens, so be it. I don't need to know what the USTA National Office does with this information. On a side note, I work with two guys who grew up in Rome, GA with Gordan A. Smith. One of them goes to the US Open each year to visit his grade school friend and his daughter works for Stan Smith and sees Mr. Gordan Smith frequently at the each of the Opens.

    http://www.usta.com/About-USTA/Organization/Board-of-Directors/Bio/12729_Gordon_A_Smith/

    Hoping to get a phone call from Mr. Smith also. If I don't, so be it. My coworker called him and gave him my number. Dumb luck to find out my co-workers know Mr. Smith, but the integrity of the game was worth being patience. It the USTA doesn't act, so be it. I did what I could to stop the morons from Spartanburg and their kind.
     
    Last edited: Apr 5, 2014
    #26
  27. J_R_B

    J_R_B Hall of Fame

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    Good job, you handled this the best you could. I hope something comes of it. As I've said many times, cheating isn't rampant in the USTA (at least not around here), but where there are people doing it, they should be dealt with appropriately.
     
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  28. g4driver

    g4driver Hall of Fame

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    Thanks JRB.

    I took the comments from you and others back when I first wrote about this and just thought about for while then stepped away, and left it alone.

    One day I just felt the need to put all of it on paper and wrote a local lady on the SC grievance committee who forwarded the comments back in Dec or Jan. I was actually surprised from the phone call from the SC Director of League Tennis. Evidently it was sent to the Southern Section first.

    Hopefully the USTA looks at it and acts silently so none of us know what they did to address it.

    I truly appreciate your feedback and that of others.

    Best Wishes for a repeat return to the 40+ Nationals.
     
    #28
  29. J_R_B

    J_R_B Hall of Fame

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    Thanks. No 40+ nationals run for me this year. I couldn't get enough guys for a team at 4.0 due to the move up/split up rule. We're playing 4.5, but if a bunch of 4.0s go to nationals at 4.5, something's wrong. LOL.
     
    #29
  30. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

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    To field a team that will win nationals, you have to take everything to the next level.

    First, you need a coach who will pair players and run effective practices.

    Then you need to have try-outs for the team. Nobody gets on it unless they earn their spot. You will lose a lot of players this way, however. Many folks will not submit to a tryout for a silly old league team. Others will not be happy when their BFF doesn't make the cut.

    At 4.0, you don't take any self-rates, and you don't need them. You need 4.5 move-downs. You don't want self-rates who might get DQ'd at just the wrong moment.

    Then when the team is formed at the beginning of the season, you need to collect the cost of traveling to nationals (say, $750) up front from every player. This is a deposit. Anyone who drops out mid-season for a non-tennis reason loses the money. This way, you won't make it to nationals to find out folks can't afford it or have other priorities.

    Now, that's one way to do it.

    Another way to do it is be wildly lucky and fall bass ackward. That's what happened to me, and it was a blast.
     
    #30
  31. Gut4Tennis

    Gut4Tennis Hall of Fame

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    the collecting 750 before any matches are played is brilliant.
     
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  32. OrangePower

    OrangePower Hall of Fame

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    Cindy is right though.

    Nothing more frustrating to the would-be-nationals-bound captain than finding out that your star players just don't have the ambition and drive that you justly expect them to have.

    Making nationals should be the top priority for every player on the team. No excuses. No missing a critical match because your wife is in labor, or husband is hospitalized, or any such silliness.

    Personally I would require a larger sum, maybe $5,000. It needs to be sufficient to cover travel and accommodation expenses through all levels of playoffs, with some left over to contribute towards the team's travelling coach and physio.
     
    #32
  33. mikeler

    mikeler G.O.A.T.

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    I had to go from 4.5, 40+ and being a sub player to the captain of a 5.0, 18+ team this year. Let the course correction back to 4.5 begin in a few weeks! The way I look at it, I get to play some really good players for a pretty small league fee.
     
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  34. Gut4Tennis

    Gut4Tennis Hall of Fame

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    who the hell has an extra 5k just sitting around??
     
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  35. West Coast Ace

    West Coast Ace G.O.A.T.

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    Remember you don't have to win every line.
     
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  36. J_R_B

    J_R_B Hall of Fame

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    I'm certainly looking forward to playing up. I'm just being realistic about expectations, although I expect to get bumped up, not down, after this year.
     
    #36
  37. sam_p

    sam_p Professional

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    Any team preparing for a nationals run needs to start a kickstarter campaign. It's the only way to show you're serious...:twisted:
     
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  38. OrangePower

    OrangePower Hall of Fame

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    As a nationals captain I have no patience for players who are not in it to win it. Putting 5k in the pot shows you are serious. Otherwise, don't waste my time. And if you want it bad enough, you will find a way to raise the 5k. So if you balk at this I'd have to question your commitment and how badly you really want it.
     
    #38
  39. Gut4Tennis

    Gut4Tennis Hall of Fame

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    anyone being smart and frugal would not need to spend but 1k for a nationals trip ... does the rest go to your pocket or do they get a refund for unused funds?

    haha 5k what a joke

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2014
    #39
  40. Nostradamus

    Nostradamus G.O.A.T.

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    when do you have time to play league tennis with all the string testing going on ???????
     
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  41. Nostradamus

    Nostradamus G.O.A.T.

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    with 5K, you can just bribe all the league officials to get you to the championships, don't need good players at all...
     
    #41
  42. coyote

    coyote Rookie

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    1K is tough to stay under. Depends on where you live and where Nationals is held. 5K is way too high. If he really had his players throwi that in, he would have exactly ZERO players on his roster.
     
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  43. maggmaster

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    Yea I don't care how good we are there is no way that I am putting up that much. There is a 9.0 mixed team out of a club near me that has been to nationals a few times. The Roster has 2 former d1 players who are still under 40, the teaching pros from 2 local clubs(4 pros in all) two of whom took shots on the futures tour and one of whom was a top level junior and has won some local money tournaments. Sounds tough to me.
     
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  44. Brian11785

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    I feel like at $5,000 a person, you could hire a bunch of actors/college players to create a "Nationals" illusion, buy really fancy banners/t-shirts, and have money left over for everyone to go our for ice cream sundaes afterwards.

    The college players could give you a good fifteen or twenty "competitive" matches. Would have exactly the amount of prestige as an actual 3.5/4.0 Nationals title, but with a guaranteed win and no sore negative Nancy losers complaining about your sandbagging or gamesmanship!
     
    #44
  45. OrangePower

    OrangePower Hall of Fame

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    You guys are not all that perceptive when it comes to tongue-in-cheek humor now are you.

    Silly thread gets silly response.

    Anyway, if going to nationals is really that important to you, what's a few grand here and there?
     
    #45
  46. OrangePower

    OrangePower Hall of Fame

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    Actually, for whatever it really does cost to get to nationals, which is probably less than the 5k I threw out in jest, but really not that much less when you consider travel to and accommodation for state, same for nationals, and then some areas also have a round before state...

    Anyway, for less that that, for sure you could hire a D1 player to play 20 matches against you and coach you during that time to boot.

    Much better for your tennis and just as meaningful... but without the artificial ego-stroke of being the best darn 3.5 mixed player in the nation or whatever.
     
    #46
  47. mikeler

    mikeler G.O.A.T.

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    I know I spent around 5K on Sectionals and Nationals. I like to travel with the family and of course play more tennis, so that was always my motivation.
     
    #47
  48. dcdoorknob

    dcdoorknob Hall of Fame

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    How did so many people respond to OrangePower like he was serious?

    Seemed to me like he did a good job of making it clearly sarcasm. :confused:

    There are a lot of people who aren't in financial position to even drop 1k on a nationals trip even if they wanted to though.
     
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2014
    #48
  49. lostinamerica

    lostinamerica Semi-Pro

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    I've been following this thread and thought I would chime back in. I am not sure how many people thought OrangePower was serious.

    As someone who has been to Nationals multiple times, I can tell the experience is great. It is addictive. With that said, Coyote nailed it early in this thread. That is how it is done. Let your self rates lose in matches you should easily get three lines. Let your high rated Computer rates win the matches necessary and try not to use the self rates against the top teams unless absolutely necessary.

    The difficult part is finding 4 self rate ringers and manage to attract all of the top Computer rates to one team. Even if you are fortunate to find this group, they need to coexist and are willing to 'play the game' as well as show up to sectionals and nationals. It is extremely hard to build a winner even if you are the type of captain willing to skirt the rules. I would wager most can't do it even if they are willing to manipulate the system.

    Since so many people think everyone is tanking, I am surprised you think a smart captain would get his players DQ'd. I agree with JRB that the amount of manipulation is minimal. I know it occurs but it is minimal. Also, many of the manipulators do well. There is no question. Yet, most complainers are people who think they should do well and are beat by the teams they perceive as cheating (whether they are or are not).
     
    #49
  50. Arsnlrob

    Arsnlrob Rookie

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    My wife's 4.0 team did this last year and went to Nationals. 2 years ago they won regionals but lost at sectionals. They combined with the #2 team in their region and then won sectionals the following year. Nobody was a self-rated player, they just had good depth to the squad so they were fielding 5 solid lines every match.
     
    #50

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