Is Cheating Rampant in USTA Leagues?

Discussion in 'Adult League & Tournament Talk' started by new_tennis_player, Aug 11, 2010.

  1. Fedace

    Fedace Banned

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2006
    Messages:
    23,292
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    I consider anyone that calls footfault,,,a CHEATER....
     
    #51
  2. r2473

    r2473 Legend

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2006
    Messages:
    7,129
    Why do you think they play lets in college?

    Calling a let is the easiest way to steal an ace from your opponent. And what can you really do when this happens? You can't really argue a let call, so you just lose your ace.

    There are tons of ways to cheat in tennis. There will always be people that take advantage of this fact. It's just the nature of things. The only thing in your control is your own reaction. Are you going to yell and scream? Are you going to call for an official? Are you going to make sarcastic comments? Are you going to tell your friends and family about it (boring them to death)? Are you going to post about it on an internet chat board? Are you just going to let it go and realize that it is just in the nature of the sport and the character of some people?
     
    #52
  3. athiker

    athiker Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2009
    Messages:
    1,656

    Confused...footfaults?
     
    #53
  4. Angle Queen

    Angle Queen Professional

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2010
    Messages:
    839
    Location:
    On the deuce side, looking to come in
    Don't I wish. This past weekend, we were all prepared to show both our USTA card and a photo ID...when the desk person announced over the intercom that they would NOT be checking IDs. Isn't that just an invitation to cheat?

    We were/are POed. Enough so that when we officially complained about it to a different District official (in the same Section) we were told that they used to check them...but then the ringers just went out and got fake IDs. To me that says they know they have a problem but just refuse to do anything about it.

    But c'mon! Fake ID just to play tennis? That's so far out there. If you/your team wants to win that bad...well then you just go right on ahead with your bad self. Leave me and mine to have friendly and competitive matches...then all go out to lunch together afterwards. I want no part of that other kind.

    Line calls this weekend were on the tight-side...but none so egregious that it was worth getting steamed up over.

    Texting/coaching...on the other hand...was out of hand. Or so I'm told. I'm so oblivious to that stuff. Quite frankly, I'm unopposed to match coaching but since it's against The Rules, they shouldn't have been doing it. Oh well.

    On the whole, though, I still believe there are many, many more "good" players...than "cheaters."
     
    #54
  5. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2006
    Messages:
    15,095
    I cannot even wrap my mind around that. I mean, think of how much group dishonesty is involved with something like that. You need the captain to be a blatant cheater, willing to risk a ban or suspension. You need the player who is being impersonated to go along with it. You need teammates on board with the fraud so someone doesn't blurt out, "Hey, he's not Ted!" And you need to find someone who is well above level but who gets their jollies by beating up on weaker players, all for the chance to win a national championship they didn't deserve.

    Still, I don't know what can be done beyond checking ID. I think they still should check ID, though. At least make the cheaters go to the trouble of procuring the fake ID. Maybe that will cause some people to hesitate; that's still a crime, no?
     
    #55
  6. Angle Queen

    Angle Queen Professional

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2010
    Messages:
    839
    Location:
    On the deuce side, looking to come in
    Yep. Just beyond anything I could even fathom. I just walked away shaking my head. Still am...that anyone would conceive, much less execute, such a devious plan...to win. I'm just about as competitive as they come but no way...I want it any way...but honest.
     
    #56
  7. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2006
    Messages:
    15,095
    ^Say you were on a team that was trying to go to Nationals.

    Say you learned that one of the singles players was going to look the other way so that someone else could play at sectionals using that player's name. Captain is aware of it, of course, but feels like getting the win at No. 1 singles is essential.

    What would you do?
     
    #57
  8. r2473

    r2473 Legend

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2006
    Messages:
    7,129
    If this question were abstractly posted on an internet message board, I predict 100% of people would be the ethical equivalent of Christ himself.

    In the real world...............
     
    #58
  9. goober

    goober Legend

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2004
    Messages:
    8,491
    Unbelievable but true. Just a couple years ago at Nationals, a Norcal team did just that. They brought in ringers to pose as members of the regular team. There was outrage and some of the team got 10 year suspensions (which I believe was reduced to 1 to 5 years upon appeal- I can't remember the exact details)
     
    #59
  10. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2006
    Messages:
    15,095
    I don't get that. I really don't.

    If someone is impersonating me, then I'll go down too if they are caught. Plus, *I* would want to play the match myself and would have no incentive to help the team win that way.

    If someone on my team does it, I could get in trouble if I knew about it, theoretically.

    The only question in my mind would be whether to blow the whistle openly or to do it as an anonymous tip. It would be far more fun to do it anonymously. Then I could wait for the whole thing to blow up in their faces when they are caught while I sip a frosted drink, secure in the knowledge that I won't be punished.
     
    #60
  11. LuckyR

    LuckyR Legend

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2006
    Messages:
    6,404
    Location:
    The Great NW
    That would depend on the consequences of getting found out. If the consequence was losing that single #1 singles match, I have no problem reporting it if the Captain would not listen to reason.

    If the consequence was the entire team would get disqualified, I would try doubly hard to have the Captain stop it, but if I failed I would report it... after Nationals were over.

    Of course I am never going to Nationals so it is all academic.
     
    #61
  12. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2006
    Messages:
    15,095
    Oh. You'd wait until after Nationals?

    I wouldn't. I wouldn't want someone on the opposing team to have their entire Nationals ruined because I wouldn't step up.

    Remember how Ben Johnson juiced and beat Carl Lewis in the 100 meters at the Olympics? Johnson was stripped of his medal and Lewis got the gold, but Lewis didn't get to stand on the top of that pedestal. That's kinda important.
     
    #62
  13. Angle Queen

    Angle Queen Professional

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2010
    Messages:
    839
    Location:
    On the deuce side, looking to come in
    Squeal like a little pig. I'm too much of a goody-two-shoes. No way am I going down with that ship. First, I'd try try to talk captain and involved players out of it. If they all were insistent, I'd stand there at the check-in desk to make sure no one pulled it off. Then walk off and never play for that captain...or with any of the players that knew about it and wouldn't stand up with me.

    If that sounds heavy-handed and holier-than-thou...well, that's the way I see it. Even if I knew we wouldn't get caught (or even if we did and there weren't going to be any severe recriminations), the "win" would forever be tainted. How would you (incl the team) know if you could have done it straight up?
     
    #63
  14. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2006
    Messages:
    15,095
    +1.

    And I would tell everyone I knew -- everyone -- about it. Gotta shine some light on the roaches if you want them to scurry away.
     
    #64
  15. AR15

    AR15 Professional

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2006
    Messages:
    1,125
    Location:
    Gulf Coast, USA

    Sadly true.:(

    Because today everyone is sooo afraid of offending others, they meekly tolerate such abhorrent behavior.
     
    #65
  16. J_R_B

    J_R_B Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2010
    Messages:
    2,671
    Location:
    Newtown, PA
    I would implore the captain and the players involved to stop the shenanigans. If they didn't, I would quit the team. I don't have the time or energy to get involved in some sort of drama over tennis so I doubt I would go to the effort to report it anywhere, but I would never continue to participate in it, either. I have never known anyone in our area to do anything like that, though, for the record.
     
    #66
  17. 6789

    6789 New User

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2010
    Messages:
    40
    Location:
    In front of computer
    Well said. Again, tennis is just about the only sport I know in which a player constantly during an entire contest judges legality of an opponent's effort, ie, whether a ball landed in or out of the service box. Compare to boxing, swimming, football, baseball, track, weightlifting, etc. All of those other sports have a putatively impartial arbiter of some kind for formal contests.
     
    #67
  18. rainman007

    rainman007 Rookie

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2008
    Messages:
    150
    in MY experience, i faced some consistant bad calls in the lower level especially the 3.0 level.. as i have climbed levels its happens less frequently.. Also, in MY experience i have had more bad line calls playing with or against seniors than in the adult leagues..
     
    #68
  19. catfish

    catfish Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2007
    Messages:
    792
    I have noticed that many lower level players (especially women) make calls before the ball hits the court. They watch the trajectory of the ball and make a call based on where they think it will land. It happens all the time. They don't seem to understand that spin will hold a ball in. I really noticed it this summer when I played 7.5 combo with a 3.0. I had to tell my 3.0 partner several times to wait for the ball to bounce before she made a call.
     
    #69
  20. coloskier

    coloskier Legend

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2007
    Messages:
    5,580
    I watched a 4.0 ladies league match last night a younger woman was making numerous bad calls. It was a very competitive match, and luckily the one making the bad calls lost in the 3rd set, but I have seen it many times. In a 4.5 league match I played last week (since we don't have any 5.0 leagues here), I had a SP and the opponent hit the outside edge of the line and I called it good (because it was), and later in that game I hit a topspin lob that landed 6 inches inside the baseline on another SP and he called it out. I still won the match, but I find it happening a lot more frequently when winning the match means qualifying for Sectionals.
     
    #70
  21. vagabondma

    vagabondma New User

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2009
    Messages:
    17
    I want to add some facts to the above. In the first case, where the captain brought on teaching pros as 3.5 players (now all 5.0s)- she was actually banned from captaining by the initial grievance committee decision. The captain then hired a lawyer and threatened to sue the local tennis association. The appeals committee ended up overturning the decision.

    The same captain was involved in instance 2 above, where the college player self-rated. The college player works with the co-captain of that team. But the college player took full responsibility for the whole thing, so both captains walked away untouched. The college player was banned from USTA play for 2 years and returned to her 4.5 rating.
     
    #71
  22. new_tennis_player

    new_tennis_player Banned

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2009
    Messages:
    954
    Perhaps find a new hitting partner? Those balls were not only in, they didn't even touch the lines.

    I'm calling everything "in" from now on. :)

    I think part of the problem with lines calls for lower level players is that we/they don't know how to call lines properly: .00001% in = 100% in.
     
    #72
  23. rainman007

    rainman007 Rookie

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2008
    Messages:
    150
    a lot of close calls have to do with point of view too,, i mean the driver of a vehichle sees the gas gauge as half full and the passenger sees it at a quarter of a tank i think depending how far over they are..
     
    #73
  24. session404

    session404 Rookie

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2009
    Messages:
    161
    Location:
    USA
    Seriously? Your hitting partner needs glasses. They weren't even close. In the second vid, the ball was inside by around 7 inches. I would keep recording videos when you hit with him and show them to him. Maybe he'll gradually "learn" how to see the ball better or something. Or tell him to get an eye exam.
     
    #74
  25. tennisdad65

    tennisdad65 Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Feb 29, 2008
    Messages:
    3,062
    Location:
    somewhere in calif
    unless the guys in the matches that really count also cheat :)

    But, I have the same attitude as you. In our public courts, everyone knows who the poor line callers and foot faulter's are. I just think of playing against them, as playing with a handicap.

    If you can improve and beat the cheaters, even with them cheating, you are now probably a full level better than them.
     
    #75
  26. r2473

    r2473 Legend

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2006
    Messages:
    7,129
    #76
  27. new_tennis_player

    new_tennis_player Banned

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2009
    Messages:
    954
    Notice how the players who "can't believe" they blew a call when it was in, NEVER blow a call by playing balls that are OUT?

     
    #77
  28. leafscat

    leafscat Rookie

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2009
    Messages:
    129
    Cindy, I agree with what you are saying. However, you need to look for a better example. Turns out Carl was cheating as well!
     
    #78
  29. r2473

    r2473 Legend

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2006
    Messages:
    7,129
    If you are going to create a list of all track athletes that are / were cheating, we are going to be here a while.

    I'd be interested in seeing a list of those that aren't / haven't cheated. That shouldn't take long to compile.
     
    #79
  30. new_tennis_player

    new_tennis_player Banned

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2009
    Messages:
    954
    My (assigned) doubles partner blatantly cheated today. I lost all respect for her, and I didn't have much for her to begin with.

    She serves, the ball is returned easily, and lands right at her feet a couple of inches inside the baseline. She yells "out!"

    How could the ball have been out? She was only standing a couple of inches behind the line and the ball obviously landed in front of her.

    I wish I could slap people like that.
     
    #80
  31. tennis4josh

    tennis4josh Rookie

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2009
    Messages:
    348
    Did you call that ball in? That would be better than slapping her. I don't argue with my partner. I simply say that ball was in, call the "correct" score loudly and continue. I do this all the time in my doubles matches, and I also encourage my partners to correct my "bad" calls.
     
    #81
  32. tennis4josh

    tennis4josh Rookie

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2009
    Messages:
    348
    I am surprised that people are so charged up about bad line calls. My experience (or may be how I think) is quite different from most of the posters here.

    1. The number of times I have benefited from "benefit of doubt" on part of my opponent is far more than the number of times I have been burned by a "bad" call. So overall my experience is positive.

    2. From 3.5/4.0 level players 90 out of 100 are very honest and call lines fairly. Out of remaining 10 folks, about 8 call a ball out because they "honestly" think it was out. Some of these are seniors who have poor eye sight or don't see properly under certain conditions. The last 2 are basically "jerks" and poor sports. I handle them just the same way I handle other jerks in my life (friends, family and co-workers). I ignore them as far as I can, and if I can not tolerate it any more, I confront them. But I would not generalize that experience to conclude that there is rampant cheating in USTA league play.

    3. The opponents appreciate and reciprocate if you are generous with your line calls. If my opponent hits an ace which lands couple of inches out, I just call it in and compliment the server. In all honesty I could very well call it out, but the chances are high that next time I hit an ace my opponents will call it out. This is simply human nature. When I am the server I badly want that ace. It may not have any effect on the outcome of the match, but it does boost my ego.

    4. When I see a match turn into a competition of who calls more balls out, generally the both sides are to be blamed. What differentiates them is "who started it first".

    5. I am competitive and want to win every single match, but what I really enjoy is "playing". I don't remember matches I played more than 3-4 weeks ago, but I do remember all the people I have met over the years and some of them have become good friends over the years. Ultimately my "reputation" among the "tennis community" matters more than my winning record on the USTA website.

    Just my 2 cents...

    -Josh
     
    #82
  33. beernutz

    beernutz Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Messages:
    4,430
    Location:
    Make TT better, use the Ignore List!
    Here's a screen shot from second video *after* the ball bounced and was on the way back up. Pretty LOL out call.

    [​IMG]
     
    #83
  34. BobFL

    BobFL Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2007
    Messages:
    3,692
    Location:
    Orlando
    Wow, this is beyond cheating. This is for instant K.O.
     
    #84
  35. hrstrat57

    hrstrat57 Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2007
    Messages:
    1,722
    Location:
    RI
    my strategy

    A non confrontational strategy for singles play that I have used with notorious squeezers and recommend trying is this:

    Call a clearly out ball(or balls) in.... has to be a shot in clear view of the squeezer usually a short ball on the sideline is best.

    The squeezer will eventually ask if you are sure about that it looked
    clearly out.

    Advise the opponent, sorry I couldn't see clear space between the line and the ball so I played it good.

    This usually stops the squeezing. If not you can choose to play avoiding the lines or just tell the opponent you have a pressing matter and have to retire...while shaking their hand.

    I will leave it up to you whether or not you chose to rip a winner off of your generous call or not......

    Both of my youngsters who played HS and D III tennis employed this strategy with great success.

    Personally I never call a ball out unless I see a lot of clear space.....I would rather keep a good rally going. I am sure this applies to most of us on the forum.

    I have also found that a lot of casual or new players do not realize that the lines are in play....this is true more than you might think at the HS level(remember the line is out of bounds in basketball).....the above strategy works in teaching proper etiquette there as well vs. confrontation.

    Confrontation and tennis don't mix well IMHO.
     
    #85
  36. goober

    goober Legend

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2004
    Messages:
    8,491
    Yah but these balls were so far in that this shouldn't come into play. Plus he should have an excellent view looking straight down on the ball and the line. The only person who would be handicapped from point of view would be his opponent on the other side of court. The only exception may be if the ball came in so fast and he didn't have time to see where the ball landed because it was right by his feet and didn't look down fast enough. But in that case he should give his opponent the benefit of doubt. These were really bad misses IMO.
     
    #86
  37. BobFL

    BobFL Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2007
    Messages:
    3,692
    Location:
    Orlando
    The gas gauge doesn't move as fast as the balls imho :) Seriously, this is just painful to watch....
     
    #87
  38. rainman007

    rainman007 Rookie

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2008
    Messages:
    150
    yeah i said that without watching the video first i watched it later and was thinking wow especially since that ball wasn't crushed and it was in front of him
     
    #88
  39. Commando Tennis Shorts

    Commando Tennis Shorts Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2007
    Messages:
    1,708
    I'm sorry to say it, but I really believe this guy's partner is cheating him and doing it intentionally. I don't buy the "glasses" argument. You would have to have some horrible vision to not see that those were clearly in. And if his vision is that bad, he wouldn't be able to hit the ball...or see it.
     
    #89
  40. new_tennis_player

    new_tennis_player Banned

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2009
    Messages:
    954
    No, I was in disbelief that she called it in. She was looking right at it, too. Obvious cheat.

    It turns out a lot of people in my tennis classes are making blatant cheat calls.

    One guy told us they were going to call a ball out because he couldn't see it, and also because his doubles partner was a girl. His big nose, grew even bigger like pinochio's.

    A couple of extremely heavy guys playing doubles against us decided to call every ball that landed on the baseline out. Easier than running to the ball and trying to hit it, right?

    Another doubles team questioned our calls when the shot was out by half a foot.

    The list goes on and on.

    I want to think well of my classmates, but there are at least a half dozen or more confirmed cheats so far, and this is starting to irritate me.
     
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2010
    #90
  41. new_tennis_player

    new_tennis_player Banned

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2009
    Messages:
    954
    This won't work on cheaters who not only cheat on line calls but cheat on game scores, as well as set scores.

    One dude who should never be allowed on a tennis court again tried to call a 2-1 set 3-1. When his opponents asked 'what?' He tried to take yet another game and called it 4-1!!!!! This knucklehead tried to steal 2 games just because his opponents asked for a game count!

    He also tries to steal as many points as possible by adding points in games as well. Strangely, this doesn't seem to be bothering his regular hitting partners.

     
    #91
  42. MomentumGT

    MomentumGT Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2007
    Messages:
    637
    Location:
    Riverside/Stockton CA
    From my experience the higher in level you go, generally, the more generous the line calling is. . .in league play anyways. Today playing a 4.5 league match I got a few "benefit of the doubt" calls and for the most part I did the same if my opponents shots landed close to the lines. All 4 guys in the dubs match were smoking the ball and having a good time at it so it wasn't such a big deal. Beers all around after the match :)

    -Jon
     
    #92
  43. beststringer

    beststringer Rookie

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2010
    Messages:
    252
    Location:
    Northern Cal
    it all depends on whether you are trying to be competitive. beers after a match?? must be a private club. in public CA courses, one has to pay over 100 usd for insurance for a quick beer after matches.
     
    #93
  44. vandre

    vandre Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2007
    Messages:
    1,777
    Location:
    no man's land
    only if the people show up!!!
     
    #94
  45. MomentumGT

    MomentumGT Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Aug 4, 2007
    Messages:
    637
    Location:
    Riverside/Stockton CA
    It was in a public park and beers were provided by the home team. :twisted: Not us. We were definitely being competitive but it just wasn't as if our life depended on it. . .like I've seen on quite a few 3.5 league matches. LOL. Not to say some guys won't take it overly seriously as some teams in our league have a reputation of doing that.

    -Jon
     
    #95
  46. beststringer

    beststringer Rookie

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2010
    Messages:
    252
    Location:
    Northern Cal
    you may wanna check with the city before you take out the beers after your home matches. if one of your players get drunk and runs over someone, they may sue you.
     
    #96
  47. new_tennis_player

    new_tennis_player Banned

    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2009
    Messages:
    954
    Here's some more b.s. I'm being subjected to.

    We're playing a doubles team. Both guys are at least 60-80 lbs. overweight.

    One of them mis hits a ball right into the net. This piece of lard declared the point his because he said the ball was going to go out anyway!

    Un friggin believable!
     
    #97
  48. bcart1991

    bcart1991 Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    May 11, 2010
    Messages:
    762
    Location:
    Douglasville, GA
    I would have laughed him off the court.
     
    #98
  49. Fedace

    Fedace Banned

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2006
    Messages:
    23,292
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    NEVER over-rule your partner. It is their call, you don't have the right.
     
    #99
  50. Fedace

    Fedace Banned

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2006
    Messages:
    23,292
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    Remember that ball on or just inside the Baseline with player standing just behind it is the MOST difficult to see. This is the call that most honest mistakes are made. Maybe your partner just honestly saw it OUT.
     

Share This Page