Playing tennis in limbo

Discussion in 'Adult League & Tournament Talk' started by dizzlmcwizzl, May 18, 2012.

  1. dizzlmcwizzl

    dizzlmcwizzl Hall of Fame

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    I am a 4.0 and have been for a few years. Last year I had my 2nd really strong season in a row and was early-start rated to 4.5. After the year end adjustment I was back to being a 4.0 again, firmly placing me at the top of the 4.0 band in this section.

    So here is the problem ... I am playing on several 4.0 teams and a 4.5 team. Currently I do not feel challenged at 4.0 but I don't feel like I can hang with legitimate 4.5's either. I am in this purgatory of tennis where I cannot get a league match that is competitive. It just seems like my matches are decided before I start.

    2 cases in point ...

    my 4.0 matches have all been lopsided affairs ... the only close match was with a partner that was coming off a knee injury two years earlier against a self rated player that may be a legitimate 4.5.

    my 4.5 match I could not get a return in for the first 60 minutes. The other guys just punished me on the serve. The only redeeming factor was that I was able to hold serve ... but the ball just consistently moved faster than I am used to and they were not bothered by my pace at all.


    Winning at 4.0 is nice ... and I am playing up which is only going to help me long term. However, this no challenge land in which I reside is kind of boring. I really wish there was a 4.25 league to cut my teeth on.
     
    #1
  2. maggmaster

    maggmaster Hall of Fame

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    Apparently in some sections tournament players are slightly weaker at level than league players? Not true in my section but maybe you could try playing a couple tournaments?
     
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  3. josofo

    josofo Semi-Pro

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    solution

    =


    get better
     
    #3
  4. jc4.0

    jc4.0 Professional

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    Move to s. FLorida - we have so many players that we do have 4.2 and 4.3 teams, in addition to 4.0 and 4.5. Not in USTA though.
     
    #4
  5. J_R_B

    J_R_B Hall of Fame

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    Never play 4.0 again. Especially not on 7/1. LOL.

    Seriously, though, you should be able to compete at 4.5, especially in doubles. I was shocked you were rated back down.
     
    #5
  6. leech

    leech Rookie

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    Or get worse :???:
     
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  7. leech

    leech Rookie

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    If there is a tennis ladder in your area, you might be able to give that a shot to find more competitive matches. I've found a half-dozen folks that are about my level that way. But it's easier at my level (3.5) than at yours.
     
    #7
  8. storypeddler

    storypeddler Semi-Pro

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    It sounds like you are playing mid-level or higher 4.5 players. If so, expect to take a lot of beatings for awhile. Top of the level 4.0 players can typically hang with bottom of the level 4.5 players---at least have competitive play. If you can't even get a return in, you are jumping over a lot of people and playing people closer to 2 levels above you.
     
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  9. dizzlmcwizzl

    dizzlmcwizzl Hall of Fame

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    Trying hard
     
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  10. dizzlmcwizzl

    dizzlmcwizzl Hall of Fame

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    I can compete "sort of" ... we won last night for example but honestly I don't know how. They were a lot better than us for the first 90 minutes. But we hung on and caught a break and held on through the match TB. While I know playing up is only going to make me better ... I feel like I am always chasing my tail when I play with real 4.5's. I never have the sense that I control the outcome of any point.
     
    #10
  11. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Embrace post #8.
    Top of the heap 4.5's are cherry pickers who would go a few rounds in 5.5 or Open.
    Bottom of 4.5 would could easily be players that should be strong 3.5's.
     
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  12. J_R_B

    J_R_B Hall of Fame

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    So you won? Then you certainly can compete. You just need to play more 4.5. You wasted too much time this winter playing 7.0 mixed, which is basically 3.5 tennis, and now you're facing 4.5s. There's obvioulsy going to be an adjustment period to get used to the pace.
     
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  13. dizzlmcwizzl

    dizzlmcwizzl Hall of Fame

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    I guess I can compete ... but really is it competing when you feel rushed and out of position on almost every shot?

    and

    7.0 mixed is a tease ... My good friend is the captain and my partner is pretty cute, so I got sucked in ... hopefully not again.
     
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  14. Maui19

    Maui19 Hall of Fame

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    dzzl I think there is no substitute for playing against superior pace and spin. I believe you just need to get out there and get some miles under your belt. I play with some 4.5s fairly regularly, and they kill me but I learn a ton by watching them play. They are very consistent, have potent strokes, have no trouble returning pace and spin, and serve well (not just pace/spin, but they work on figuring out your return weaknesses then bludgeon you with it).

    4.0 is a dead end for you. If I were you, I would devote my time to 4.5 and take my lumps. That's how you are going to improve the fastest IMO.
     
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  15. J_R_B

    J_R_B Hall of Fame

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    Hell yeah, that's the best kind of competing where you're being pushed to the absolute limit of what you can handle and winning nonetheless. And I'm sure you had good reasons to play 7.0, but I'm sure that seems like tennis in slow motion in comparison, too.
     
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  16. yonexpurestorm

    yonexpurestorm Rookie

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    i am in the same boat as you dzzmzzl. i play 4.5 and opens, but in 4.5 i dont think it is very much fun and in open i lose the first and second round. i have chosen to play the open tournaments if there is a choice because it is more fun, even if i do lose. and you will only get better and used to the faster pace and game by seeing it more often. after playing a season of 4.5 you will get used to how much faster the game is and find it to be normal after a while. after some practice and time you will be a legitimate 4.5 and will never want to play 4.0 again.
     
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  17. Loose Cannon

    Loose Cannon Rookie

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    Enjoy 4.0.......If you can't even compete with decent 4.5's.......you aren't a 4.5
     
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  18. floridatennisdude

    floridatennisdude Hall of Fame

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    Dizzle, I think I am in the opposite place as you. I am rated 4.5, but I don't win a lot at 4.5 and im probably in the lower rung of the level. I am mostly a singles player and if I had to play doubles at 4.5, I'd get smoked. I wouldn't be crushed if I got bumped back, but I don't think I will since I went 2-5 with 3 matches decided in TBs. if I did get bumped back, I'd play more doubles and work on that stuff. Maybe you could try the opposite...play singles at 4.0 and doubles when playing up?
     
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  19. J_R_B

    J_R_B Hall of Fame

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    Yeah, listen to this guy. Play singles and stay away from my court.
     
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  20. dizzlmcwizzl

    dizzlmcwizzl Hall of Fame

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    Yea I hear you ... I can get better competition at singles mostly because I am not built for that. I do really enjoy doubles more ... when I can get a good game.
     
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  21. dizzlmcwizzl

    dizzlmcwizzl Hall of Fame

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    I am definitely not a 4.5 ... but I want to be able to get to the point where I feel like I belong on the court with any legitimate 4.5.
     
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  22. Loose Cannon

    Loose Cannon Rookie

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    Didnt mean for that to come off as cold......


    I am in the same boat......do fairly well @ 4.0........and I know for sure, I can hang in there with lower end 4.5's....could beat some of the dubs 4.5 guys for sure........but against the top tier 4.5 guys....I was humbled in quick order. Just way too strong
     
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  23. rkelley

    rkelley Hall of Fame

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    Can you go out and just hit/practice with some of these 4.5 guys? It's really, really hard to improve if you're always playing matches.

    I've been hitting with a 5.0 guy for about a year and a half. The first time I played him I felt like I was on the wrong end of a tennis bazooka. The guy was just pounding me off the court. I was rushed, never had time to set-up, and unless I really ripped a forehand not much I did bothered him. It became my mission to get up to his level.

    I changed to a modern forehand, spent lots of time at the wall, watched my form in the mirror, and hit with him a lot. I started hitting with another guy about six months ago whose at about the same level, so the variety of two good players to hit with helped too. Long story short, I can hang with him now. I'd say he's still better than me, but on a good day I can hurt him with both consistency and pace.
     
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