My USTA rant

Discussion in 'Adult League & Tournament Talk' started by Volkl warrior, Jul 5, 2010.

  1. Volkl warrior

    Volkl warrior New User

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    While I do believe that the USTA has great intentions and they also do some great things for tennis, There have been a few things about the organization that have bothered me over the years. (Thanks in advance for letting me rant)

    1. The change from 3 full sets to a 10 point tiebreak. When this change occurred a few years ago. I was told by several USTA coordinators and officials that it was completely about time. The on site coordinators were complaining about having to sit there all day and it was getting harder to find people willing to give up a weekend. I understand this but the players were never given a choice in the matter. I have been active in softball, golf and bowling in my earlier years and in each of those leagues, the dues-paying members were recognized as the lifeblood of the organization and it's sole reason for being. Rule changes were never forced upon us without the consent of the league members.

    2. Different rules for different sections. I had a friend who played on a combo team that made it to Sectionals a few years ago at the 7.5 level. In his state, the players on a doubles court had to be within 2 levels of each other, meaning a 4.0 and a 3.5 could play together. One of the states competing at the sectionals allowed any combination as long as it equaled 7.5

    Some teams at this same sectional tournament allowed 20 on a roster while other states forced the teams to cap at a much lower number.
    That always seemed wrong to me.

    3. Turning a blind eye to lying on self-rating form. There have been several (5 or 6) incidences where players with recent college tennis experience have either lied or did not fill out the self rate form at all. One guy played at a D1 level 3 years prior and started at the 3.5 level. He played the minimum local matches with a weaker teammate and played at about 50%. He never lost a set at state at singles.

    4. The ref was right there! In one match I watched a ref was called to the court because of a foot fault complaint. He was watching the match from an elevated position when one of the players called two shots in a row out to win the match. The shots were not even close to being out. One was 2 inches behind the service line with a speed of about 25mph, The second was 3 feet inside the baseline dead center of the court. When the player looked to the ref for help for obvious cheating he simply said "Nothing I can do...You didn't complain about or ask me to watch the lines". Any USTA ref should be allowed to call someone on an obvious repetitive flagrant disregard for the rules.

    Other than that, the USTA is great!

    4.
     
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  2. tennis4josh

    tennis4josh Rookie

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    That is not right. Once a ref is monitoring a court, he/she will watch out for all kind of violations, a foot fault or a bad line call or bad behavior. In fact the ref does not have to be invited to intervene. if they see something wrong they will get involved.

    -Josh
     
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  3. JavierLW

    JavierLW Hall of Fame

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    You need to be careful because #2 is pretty much the opposite of just about any other point.

    In our area we vote every year to still play the 3rd set because each local area has a right to use any valid scoring system. (I believe we are one of the few places that still play the 3rd set)

    But the instance that everyone play the same everywhere leads to all sorts of goofy ideas that infringe on your privilege as a local league to run things in a manner that best satisfies it's participants.

    The playoffs are really not a big consideration when it comes to that, nor should they be. Most teams in any given local area do not even go to the playoffs.

    The goal is to get as many people as possible involved in tennis (and for the USTA to make some $$$), and most of that goes on locally where different areas may have to tweak the rules to accommodate that goal.

    (but when a team from there does go to the playoffs they have to abide by that section or national rule which is fair, it's not like you have a playoff where one team is playing a 2.5 with a 5.0 and one team is only allowed to play a 3.5 and a 4.0)
     
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  4. JavierLW

    JavierLW Hall of Fame

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    I think his real problem is there are just some really bad refs out there especially for the minor events like league championships.
     
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  5. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

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    On No., 2, I think it reasonable to have different rules for different sections. 'Cause different sections face different challenges.

    Spokewench has a tough time getting enough people to fill a roster, whereas I think our roster limits are sometimes too low. Why impose a one-size-fits-all roster limit?
     
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  6. raiden031

    raiden031 Legend

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    The only real pet peeve I have with USTA is they are cowards when it comes to dealing with sandbaggers. When I played at 6.0 mixed Nationals, one of our opponents was a former college player who had been DQ'd from 3.0 earlier in the season as a result of a self-rate grievance, only to be placed at the 3.5 level! He was easily the best player in the tournament (and we had 2 of our own players moved straight up to 4.0 the next month). My captain complained but they said since his section had already dealt with it and determined he could play at 3.5, so there was nothing anyone could do.

    And my captains' antics for recruiting under-rated players is another matter, but at least the USTA itself wasn't placing them at 3.5 with college experience when they were clearly above that level.
     
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  7. Rabbit

    Rabbit G.O.A.T.

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    And then you create an unlevel playing field.
     
    Last edited: Jul 6, 2010
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  8. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

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    That doesn't make sense to me.

    I never said there should be different standards for different rating levels. I am saying there should be wide latitude among the various leagues regarding match administration.

    Javier's section plays three full sets and has matches for certain flights on the same day of the week. Those rules would severely impact tennis in my league, where we don't have the court capacity for those things.
     
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  9. J_R_B

    J_R_B Hall of Fame

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    For what? Sectionals and nationals? The teams that make it to these playoffs are good at creating unlevel playing fields for themselves anyway.
     
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  10. Z-Man

    Z-Man Professional

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    If you ever have to play 6 singles matches in 3 days on hard courts in Macon Georgia in May, you'll appreciate the 10pt tiebreaker. I've actually played in one league that has a tiebreaker and one that plays it out. I agree that people should not be allowed to play together if they are more than one level apart. Regarding self-rating, I think someone at the USTA should be required to spend 30 seconds on a Google search to see if these guys recently played college tennis. Some consistency in DQs would be nice too.
     
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  11. lonux

    lonux Hall of Fame

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    Hmmm, weird. I live in Belgium, and we have the 10-point tiebreak too, as a replacement of the third set. One difference, though: this is only for doubles.

    And I'm happy with that. Let's look at the way things went one of my last matches.

    2-6, 6-4

    Third set starting.
    2-6, 6-4, 0-3
    2-6, 6-4, 6-3

    If the 10 point tiebreak also was used for singles, I would've been screwed up heavily. I really think things should stay this way: 3 sets, not 2 sets and a stupid 10 point tiebreak.
     
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  12. Z-Man

    Z-Man Professional

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    Very strange that you guys play a third set in singles, but a tiebreaker in doubles. If anything I'd think it would be the other way around. Singles is so much more physically demanding than doubles.
     
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  13. cll30

    cll30 Rookie

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    Here in Central Texas few tournaments offer consolation for doubles although they charge each doubles player almost as much as a singles player.

    Also, if it sprinkles even just a little bit, sets start at 2-all with no ad scoring. Singles consolation may then be scrapped or perhaps changed to pro set no ad scoring with tiebreaker at 7-all.

    The USTA people who run the tournaments don't really seem to care about tennis, they just want to get the matches played regardless of format.
     
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  14. Commando Tennis Shorts

    Commando Tennis Shorts Hall of Fame

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    The manager of my club invented the match tie-break (or claims to have). And I hate it.

    He's no ball of sunshine, either. Unless someone on here knows him, in which case---no, you know what? He's still a jerk.

    Thanks for letting me vent as well.
     
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  15. Sherlock

    Sherlock Rookie

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    The USTA people who run tournaments want to get the tournament done in the timeframe they say on the website. If it rains and there is a 2-hour stop in play, this can make it very difficult to finish a tournament on time. A lot more people would be complaining if the tournament didn't finish on Sunday and some makeup plan had to be implemented like finishing the following weekend. And what if that weekend was completely rained out...
     
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  16. West Coast Ace

    West Coast Ace G.O.A.T.

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    Played in a flex league. Played a match that was one set each after two hours - it's nighttime on a weekday and we have to get up early for work, we're about to get kicked off the court - we agree to play a 10 point tiebreak to decide it. Finish and go home and enter the score. Get an email from the 'coordinator' - "you have to play out the 3rd set." Unbelievable.
     
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  17. J_R_B

    J_R_B Hall of Fame

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    OK, so just make up a score for the third set.
     
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  18. JoelDali

    JoelDali G.O.A.T.

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    I spoke to the NTRP legal team in White Plains and they said that would be acceptable.

    Keep in mind this won't affect anyone's dynamic ratings.
     
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  19. West Coast Ace

    West Coast Ace G.O.A.T.

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    That's what happened. Just thought it was idiotic that Betty the Coordinator would care. 'Flex' being short for flexible. As opposed to more rigid team league play where deviating could be seen as being done for some competitive advantage.
     
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  20. JavierLW

    JavierLW Hall of Fame

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    While it may not fit in the context of what Tennislink accepts in your league and while it's perfectly acceptable for her to say that your matchs shall be 2 out of 3 sets....

    Otherwise she's likely wrong in the context of that actual match. All points played in good faith stand and you both agreed to play a match tiebreak, so that match is over. And if you want to rectify the Tennislink issue you put in 7-6 so at least there is only a game difference.

    The rule would apply stronger if for example you were playing ME and I refuse to simply play a match tiebreaker and care enough about the match to play it out. (which means either we go somewhere with lights and play on, or continue on another date)

    Perhaps someone would be a weenie and cry about that because they dont really care much about the match, but that would be well within my right.

    The big difference otherwise though between the flex league a team situation is you and I may have a disagreement and it only involves us, versus a team situation where it affects the team as well.
     
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  21. Matt H.

    Matt H. Professional

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    I completely disagree. Combo league needs a unified roster rule so states is fair.

    A 4.5/3.0 or 5.0/2.5 will simply destroy the standard 4.0/3.5 combo team.

    The key to winning the combo matches is having a self-rated lower level guy...because they are typically the same level of play as the higher ranked guy.
     
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  22. Topaz

    Topaz Legend

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    ^^^If combo league were to ever advance past a local championship, then there would be such a rule. But, because it does not, each locality can implement the rule regarding differences in level as they see fit.
     
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  23. Matt H.

    Matt H. Professional

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    Combo DOES advance past local in Florida.

    There's a state tournament.
     
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  24. Topaz

    Topaz Legend

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    Yes, that is still really local. Not sectional (though, yes, I know some sections are states, but others are not), not national. Point still stands...that's why different areas can have different rules for combo.
     
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  25. polski

    polski Semi-Pro

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    10 point tiebreaks favor the unfit players. I wish we played out 3rd's so that their is more reward to being physically fit & able to grind out a 3rd set.

    If you disagree, spend time getting in better shape & then re-visit your post.
     
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  26. polski

    polski Semi-Pro

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    I don't agree with your theory of 4.5/3.0 & 5.0/2.5 being an advantage. The only advantage is when one of them is mis-representing their rating.
     
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  27. J_R_B

    J_R_B Hall of Fame

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    I always thought the optimal strategy was to have a self-rated sandbagging female to get the strongest male player possible on the court. If you have a 9.0 combo with a 5.0 male and a 4.0 self-rate female who is actually 4.5, you'll get a D1-caliber male playing with a female that is not a liability even at the 5.0 level. That's the championship formula.
     
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  28. BustedString

    BustedString Rookie

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    I always thought it was awkward at 7.5 when playing a 3.0/4.5 pair because of the skill level disparity. You could never really get some great points. It was either the 3.5/4.0 attacking the 3.0 or the 4.5 attacking the 3.5/4.0.

    With that said, I'm a 4.0 who is going to play 6.5 combo with a 2.5 this fall. He is my best friend and is new to league tennis (1-6 at 3.0 so far) and I'm doing it just to hang out and have some fun with him. I hope I hold it together!
     
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