Opinion on noisy player.

Discussion in 'Adult League & Tournament Talk' started by hfmf, Jun 3, 2010.

  1. hfmf

    hfmf New User

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    I was playing in a doubles match yesterday, and one of the dudes I was playing against would come towards the net aggressively when his partner served. That's not a problem, but when I'm looking at the ball and concentrating on hitting the hell out of it, I was hearing him GALLOP up to the net just as I made contact.

    I've had a problem before, where I was about to hit a return and the net person just stomped and yelled "YAAAAAH!" like a cowboy as I was about to hit. I wigged out and made them replay it without the ridiculous distraction, and we won the point and the match (it wasn't even close when they DID that, anyways).

    Anyhow, about yesterday's match. Would I have been out of line to ask him to stomp a little less when he was approaching the net? I didn't, and it ended up not making a HUGE difference, but I think that I missed three balls that I can remember because of the THUMPING.

    What's the verdict, talk tennis?
     
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  2. Austinthecity

    Austinthecity Rookie

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    If he's just a loud person then it's fine. If he's doing it to intentionally hinder you then it's a code violation.

    However, it will be hard to prove motive in cases like this. The best thing to do is just focus on your side of the net and not let other players get under your skin.
     
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  3. spot

    spot Hall of Fame

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    yeah- I think you would have been totally out of line.
     
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  4. bcart1991

    bcart1991 Semi-Pro

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    I disagree. When approaching the net, especially from the service line, stomping is completely unnecessary. I'd call it a deliberate hindrance.

    It would take exactly two points for me to figure out if it was intentional or unintentional, just look at how the player moved on the court at other times during the point. If he doesn't stomp then, he's intentionally doing it to disrupt his opponent's play on the ball.
     
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  5. spot

    spot Hall of Fame

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    How is it possible to step so loudly as to constitute hindrance? If the guy isn't wearing tapshoes then I think you are just being overly whiny. Though I'd absolutely love to see someone in a match try and call someone for hindrance when someone else was stepping too loudly on the way to the net.
     
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  6. nickarnold2000

    nickarnold2000 Hall of Fame

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    You should be so focused on that yellow ball that a loud shotgun blast wouldn't bother you! :)
     
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  7. tennis tom

    tennis tom Hall of Fame

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    Agree with the above. I've never seen deliberate "loud feet" called as a distraction though. There's a jerk at my club who does it and I'm almost certain it's deliberate, or, by now it's become so much of an ingrained habit he's is no longer aware of it.

    He's an a-hole in every way, a bully, makes the girls cry, serves with a running foot-fault taking two steps into the court--should be deported but it's a sanctuary city. He's a soccer player so his only weapon on the court are his feet. No BH, weenie second serve. The last time we played he stopped with the foot stomping and I realized it was not his "natural" gait and he stomps his feet loudly on purpose. The corollary to this is a girl at the same club who runs with very loud footwork but knowing her it's not conscious and she would be faster if she were lighter on her feet.

    I guess you could call them out on it, in the fellow's case it would turn into a ruckus and I can beat him either way so it's more amusing to me and a practice in dealing with distractions. Maybe next time we play, I'll do the same to him and see what happens--I'll practice foot-stomping with the ball machine. In an officiated match, I guess you could complain to the umpire and if he thinks it's a deliberate distraction they could be warned on it.
     
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2010
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  8. AR15

    AR15 Professional

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    What level is this player who stomps?

    I had a 3.0 player who would do the same thing. When his partner served, he would start stomping his feet. It was bothering me, but I was concentrating on playing, so I couldn't tell if it was deliberate or not, and I didn't say anything. The next time we played that team, I watched him play on a different court, and it was obvious he was deliberately attempting to distract the receiver, and one of the players called him on it. He said he did not know it was against the rules. He stopped stomping during that match, and I've never seen him do it since.

    So, in this case, asking him to stop was the right thing to do.
     
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  9. Totai

    Totai Professional

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    stop whining and just play.
     
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  10. spaceman_spiff

    spaceman_spiff Hall of Fame

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    I played against a guy who would intentionally scrape his feet on the court while his partner was about to return, trying to throw off my partner and me as we served. It was obviously intentional because he never made the same movements when his partner was serving or when he himself was about to return, and he was scraping in a way that would make a screeching noise rather than just light movements of his feet. If it had really been bothering us, we would have called him on it, seeing as how it was the final of a tournament. But, it didn't bother us and only highlighted what an idiot he was, so we never said anything.

    Still, it's something that the non-serving partner had to watch in order to determine the intent. You should have had your partner watch while you were returning to see if it was intended to distract you or if it was simply the uncoordinated movements of a clumsy person.

    If it's really meant to distract you, then you have every right to call it if you want to, though it's not really worth it unless the match really means something.

    You probably could have stopped him just by making fun of him. Something like "Wow, I haven't heard that much stomping since Lyndsay Davenport retired."
     
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  11. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Talk to your partner.
    If he makes noise when he moves forward only, LOB OVER HIS HEAD!
    He can be giving away his positioning, so use it to your advantage.
     
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  12. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

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    I have to say, that's my view on these things also.

    As I sit here, I can only think of one situation where a noise will cause me to miss my shot: When something sounds like "Let" or "Out." Even then, I am trying to train my brain to play the ball anyway, just in case I'm hearing something from another court.

    Stomping feet? Nope, not a problem.
     
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  13. WBF

    WBF Hall of Fame

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    Cindy,

    It's nice to say these things. Unfortunately, that's not the way the brain works. You can certainly get better at minimizing the effect these things have, but if they are sensually perceptible, they can impact your attention, concentration, etc.
     
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  14. BMC9670

    BMC9670 Hall of Fame

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    I disagree. I know the rules are different in tennis, but I've played competitive basketball all my life and players as well as spectators throw everything at you to distract you. It's possible to "get in the tunnel" and not hear it. I once had a situation where, in a tight college game, there were girls standing up in Bikini tops behind the basket and players saying "things" about my sister, if you know what I mean. I made the free-throws and a teammate asked me if it bothered me, I didn't know what he was talking about. Didn't see it or hear it.

    There are techniques you can practice to focus your mind and tune out distractions. Granted, in tennis it's a bit harder because single noises stand out, whereas in other sports they become part of the noise.
     
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  15. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

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    Mmmm . . . think about all the things you tune out already. Squeaking shoes. Sounds from other courts. Sharapova grunts. People falling into the net on the other court. Bursts of applause for action on another court. Facility horns.

    I guess I'm sensitive because I get frustrated with players who claim they miss shots because of "distractions." After a while, everything becomes a distraction.
     
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  16. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    Must be a weird group of people you play with.
     
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  17. gameboy

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    Personally, I am more annoyed by players with hyper-sensitivity (bothered by any type of noise or movement that they do not like) than players who are moving too much or making too much noise.
     
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  18. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

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    Nope. Just indoor courts with narrow side areas between doubles sideline and curtain. For those in this area, Fairland Tennis Center. Probably the narrowest sidelines I have seen anywhere.

    I fell into the curtain twice in my match last night. But I sent my opponent into the curtain three times, so it's all good. :)
     
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  19. jigar

    jigar Professional

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    Hit it to him as hard as you can, 3 times in one game and he will be quite.
     
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  20. tennis tom

    tennis tom Hall of Fame

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    Stop posting about whining and just play.
     
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  21. dizzlmcwizzl

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    The code says the player is allowed to move around as much as (s)he wants as long as it is not intended to distract you. And there is no way you could prove that by moving his feet a distraction was the intended purpose.

    I have known many players that "pitter-patter" their feet as the ball is tossed for timing purposes and sometimes the shoes squeek so this is not all that unusual.

    I think you just need to man up (or woman up) and not worry about it.
     
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  22. tennis tom

    tennis tom Hall of Fame

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    We're not talking about movement, it's about loud, noisy, deliberate, foot stomping meant to distract and get into opponent's heads. You can't make utterances while your opponent is hitting the ball or wave your arms wildly. Stomping your feet deliberately as your opponent is hitting the ball, with the intent to distract and make them miss, would be the same thing.
     
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  23. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

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    Yes, you're right.

    I can tell you, however, that you will hear a lot of foot noise out of me in certain situations when you're hitting. Say you have a sitter when we are both at net and you are winding up for a groundstroke. There is going to be some serious hopping and squeaking going on, all of intended to be as ready as possible to reach your shot. Maybe someone else's shoes don't squeak and they are heavier so it sounds like stomping?

    Just hit your shot and win the point, foot noise or no foot noise.
     
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  24. WBF

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    Squeeking borders on unsportsmanlike behavior IMHO. There is a reason it is rarely done at higher levels, and only at specific points where you are at a disadvantage (i.e. as opponent serves, goes for a sitter, etc.). Does anyone care to explain how shuffling your feet in a squeeky manner at these points can actually help (remember, we are talking before a ball is struck by opponent, not the small steps to set up for *your* stroke)?

    It is far more defensible than stomping feet though. I don't buy that squeeky-feet can help, but I do buy that some people might *think* it actually helps their preparation. Stomping feet? Call them on it.
     
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  25. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

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    Simply put, if you are moving your feet while opponent is lining up his shot, you cannot be flat-footed.

    If you are moving your feet, your shoes might squeak.

    And if your shoes don't squeak like mine do, it probably sounds like a stomp.

    Cindy -- who once had a partner comment on her squeaking, but the issue seemed to be more the squeaking coming from her insoles rather than just foot movement
     
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  26. WBF

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    It seems like shuffling your feet before your opponents shot would delay your reaction to the shot. You are taught to split step and be ready to move to either side. Not split step and then shuffle.

    I could be wrong. I'm certainly not an expert on the topic :)

    Also, to avoid confusion, I am talking about the many tiny, loud, squeeky steps right before the opponent serves, goes for a sitter, etc. I think Ivanovic does or did do this very often when returning.
     
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  27. a10best

    a10best Semi-Pro

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    shoe scuffles, squeaks are part of the game, as-is someone who constantly slips. you'll need better concentration, but someone talking between the point is not acceptable or a real player.
    I have never seen that unless it is a very fun match among friends.
    I used to play on the beach with passers by, skate boarders, barking dogs, etc. so nothing distracts me nowadays.
     
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  28. tennis tom

    tennis tom Hall of Fame

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    Just before your opponent hits his shot you should almost always be STILL. This doesn't mean you are flat-footed, you should be up on your toes. This is called the SET position or the split-step. Not only should your feet be still but your head also should be still because that's where your eyes are.

    You want to focus on the ball coming off your opponent's strings so you can move your butt as quickly as possible to where the ball will be. This is called ANTICIPATION but is just intent focusing of the vision. That's why you shouldn't chew gum and play tennis at the same time. When you're jaw is moving or jaw-boning, your eyes can't be still. Most in-experienced players do not start moving to the ball until it comes over the net. Those with so-called good anticipation are watching the ball come off their opponent's strings and sub-consciously the swing of the arm.

    An exception to being still, as your opponent is hitting, is if you put up a dead duck setter and your only hope is to "guess" where it's going and run for the hills. This may cause your opponent to take his eye off the ball and flub. But, deliberate foot-stomping with the intent to distract your opponent into missing is UN-SPORTSMANLIKE CONDUCT. In an officiated match, they could call it. Otherwise it's like the not-up rule or when you're grazed by a ball going out, the honor system.
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2010
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  29. Totai

    Totai Professional

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    That doesn't make any sense.
     
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  30. spot

    spot Hall of Fame

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    I still don't get how someone could make enough noise by stepping loudly that it could come anywhere close to being a hindrance. I mean if thats enough to distract you I can't imagine how bad it must be for you people playing next to a couple more courts of people playing or to people in the stands cheering different courts on.
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2010
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  31. beernutz

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    It does if you understand English.
     
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  32. tennis tom

    tennis tom Hall of Fame

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    Stop trying to make sense and just play.
     
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  33. Sakkijarvi

    Sakkijarvi Semi-Pro

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    Hmmm. With all the people in the world playing tennis without doing things like the 'stomper' ... I dare say it wouldn't hurt to pipe up. But then again, the one time I mentioned to a massive, step and a half into the court foot faulter ... that he was foot-faulting ... I ended up with a petulant baby on my hands that insisted on doing it "his way" after burying a few serves in the bottom of the net.
     
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  34. PushyPushster

    PushyPushster Rookie

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    I took group lessons with a tennis pro who insisted you make your sneakers squeek on the way to the net. It was part of the drill and he mentioned it several times. It was his opinion that the noise would let your opponent know you were in position and place extra pressure on them to come up with a passing shot. I guess it's a bit of a head-game, but I don't see anything wrong with that.
     
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  35. tennis tom

    tennis tom Hall of Fame

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    Was his name Ilie Nastase? Maybe ask for your money back. Very strange, maybe he should stick with teaching the fundamentals like how to volley proprerly.
     
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  36. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

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    Take the Bryan Brothers. When both are at net, their feet are in constant motion. Lots of little hops and adjustment steps and positioning movements. This could, I imagine, generate some noise. Then as opponent is striking the ball, they both split at the same time.
     
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  37. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

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    Yeah, kinda weird, Pushy. I would actually prefer that my opponent not know I have moved in to net. If I can literally time my approach when my opponent isn't looking, I can get an easy put-away.

    I have been in clinics where the pro complimented someone on their squeaking shoes. The idea was that this person was doing actual footwork of some sort, which was rather unusual in this particular clinic! :)
     
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  38. jc4.0

    jc4.0 Professional

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    Yo' opponent wears Army boots?

    What was he wearing, Army boots? People are allowed to move around after the serve is hit, and if this movement distracts you then maybe you're not focusing on your shot and your own feet - not to mention the ball.

    In terms of someone yelling out during a point, if it's a clear distraction then you're right to stop and ask for a replay. Grunting as you hit, and yelling out brief instructions to your partner are acceptable - like "mine!" "go!" "no!" or the occasional curse word, if you shank the ball. I won't list those here, to be polite.
     
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  39. jswinf

    jswinf Professional

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    It's hard for me to imagine stomping on a tennis court, in tennis shoes, hard enough to be noisy (with the exception of squeaking, that can be surprisingly loud) without it really hurting. Maybe the guy will be nursing some heel or ball-of-the-foot bruises, or a nice case of plantar fascitis for his troubles.

    Or was he maybe a clown by profession and just happens to have size 24 slappy feet?
     
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  40. gameboy

    gameboy Hall of Fame

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    If the sneaker sounds bother you, go play on clay, or better yet, natural grass.

    Seriously, you are just projecting your insecurities on others. Just concentrate on your own shot and pretty much everything else disappears into the background. You need to get in the proverbial "zone" and block everything out.
     
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  41. PushyPushster

    PushyPushster Rookie

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    No, he was actually a very nice older gentleman. He obviously didn't think squeaky sneakers were hindrance-worthy, though. I've got to agree with him on that one.

    You may be correct. The net is my personal kryptonite so I try to stay as far away as possible. On the very rare occasions I venture forward, though, I'm always sure to make my sneakers squeak because of all of his comments. And then I dump my easy volley into the net. Maybe tennis tom was right ... I should have concentrated more on the 'How To Hit A Volley' part of the lessons and less on the 'Be Sure To Make Your Sneakers Squeak' portion of the drill. Too late now.
     
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  42. Edward DFW

    Edward DFW Rookie

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    Apparently there was a loud bang tonight from an accident that took place a few hundred yards from the court we were on but I didn't hear it. I did hear the sirens after though.
     
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