Playing to the speed of the server - what ARE the rules?

Discussion in 'Adult League & Tournament Talk' started by GameSetMatch, Sep 25, 2010.

  1. GameSetMatch

    GameSetMatch Banned

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    This seriously pissed me off today.

    Played a regional singles match and the idiot on the other side kept on stalling on my serve - walking back really slowly from the net, adjusting his strings, adjusting his shorts, sometimes going to pick up a ball (when I already have two) and on one occasion, even putting his hand in the air to indicate 'wait' etc.

    He was doing this so much that it got me to the stage where I was going to serve irrespective of whether he was ready or not.

    What exactly are the rules on this?
     
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  2. Ultra2HolyGrail

    Ultra2HolyGrail Hall of Fame

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    Don't know exactly the rules, but some chump tried to fast serve me when i wasnt ready getting all mad thinking i was stalling, but i was just adjusting my strings everytime. People are funny. Anything to win.. Even if they have to resort to trying to hurry up just because they might think you will get some wind or something. Myself, i don't really care how long it takes the other player if i'm serving to be ready if it is reasonable. Either way, if they are suffering so much they need to stall, i'm not going to be angry.
     
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  3. Steady Eddy

    Steady Eddy Hall of Fame

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    I've interpreted this as meaning that the one who sets the tempo ought to be the one serving. I don't know about what should be done to enforce it. Your opponent should be aware that he's being rude by not following your tempo.

    It's tempting to quick serve them, but I don't think they'd accept that or understand why you did it.
     
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  4. Ultra2HolyGrail

    Ultra2HolyGrail Hall of Fame

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    Whats rude is when that tempo is just a desperation of a weak serve and hoping your opponent is tired and you want to serve as fast as possible..
     
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  5. GameSetMatch

    GameSetMatch Banned

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    Sounds like you need a restring....fast.

    This idiot was taking about half a minute or so to supposedly 'get ready'. I would serve, he'd net the return, dawdle to the net, knock the ball over, dawdle back, do a twirl, look at his racquet, walk along the baseline etc etc

    What a dooche.
     
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2010
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  6. Steady Eddy

    Steady Eddy Hall of Fame

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    So did you win? Or did his slow play pay off?
     
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  7. mikeler

    mikeler G.O.A.T.

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    Yell out, "I got two" a few times. If that does not work hit a few serves when they are not ready.
     
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  8. tennis tom

    tennis tom Hall of Fame

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    The server has 20 seconds between points to serve, play is at the pace of the server, if the opponent is causing more than 20 seconds between serves he should be warned and then penalized.

    If there's no official, report it to the governing body for the league and don't play this guy again. There's a lot of whack jobs crawling the planet today and some of them manage to make their way onto tennis courts.
     
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  9. Z-Man

    Z-Man Professional

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    The returner is supposed to play to the pace of the server, but if someone is determined to stall, it's very hard to stop them. If you let them know it's bothering you, you're only going to encourage them. The best thing to do is stay cool and totally ignore what's happening.
     
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  10. Ultra2HolyGrail

    Ultra2HolyGrail Hall of Fame

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    Nah, i was using full nxt and those strings move alot. I wasn't stalling at all. He was jsut trying to hurry up as fast as possible. It was a long 3 set match that i was winning. He couldn't handle it.

    Sounds like it. I'm just saying there are those that should be allowed to quickly adjust their strings.. And i know there are players who try to rush things because they are losing and hoping to try to get the other player tired.. Those are dooches too.
     
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  11. Bedrock

    Bedrock Semi-Pro

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    This is normal.
     
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  12. Ultra2HolyGrail

    Ultra2HolyGrail Hall of Fame

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    I had a guy start cramping up in the 3rd. He was acting dumbfounded and went to sit down for about a minute. Poor guy, i just waited for him when he was ready knowing i had it anyway.
     
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  13. polski

    polski Semi-Pro

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    The server dictates the pace. The returner has 20 seconds to get ready for the serve. That is as much as the rules state.
     
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  14. Bedrock

    Bedrock Semi-Pro

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    It is another good joke :)
     
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  15. Winky

    Winky Guest

    ick, why would anybody play competitively when there isn't an official to referee the match? Even in 12 year old junior golf there was always a scorekeeper that walked the course with us.

    There's no way I'd play a serious match with somebody calling his own lines and such.
     
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  16. sphinx780

    sphinx780 Professional

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    Most of our matches are indoors in league here and they are stacked on top of each other so I have rarely seen someone wasting that kind of time in between points being that we don't get the option to finish the match if our time runs short (it's to be scheduled at another time that both players can make work).

    Back in H.S., we ran into this crap a lot and now I think it's best to just ignore it and not let them get in your head. I do remember a match where it was excessive so I decided I'd get my point across by sitting down at the service line until he got his lazy butt in ready position. I repeatedly did it between every point and wouldn't stand up until he was ready. Didn't speed him up any but it sure did make him as annoyed with me as I was with him...in conclusion, we both were idiots.
     
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  17. polski

    polski Semi-Pro

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    It's a gentleman's game. What are you?
     
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  18. LuckyR

    LuckyR Legend

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    Those 20 (or 30) second "rules" are for courts with ballboys and an umpire to do the timing. 30 seconds is a long time, likely much longer than a pi55ed off, impatient server thinks it is. It can obviously take way longer than 30 seconds if the ball has rolled onto a court where a point is going on.

    My rule is as long as the slower player is getting ready (walking to his spot, picking up a ball etc) however long it takes, is how long it takes. If he is just standing there looking into space or talking to himself, that is stalling.

    By the same token, if the faster server does not allow the returner to get ready, then that is obviously too fast.
     
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  19. Bedrock

    Bedrock Semi-Pro

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    ***
    The server should lose a point automatically if he did not serve within 20 seconds.:rolleyes:
     
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  20. LuckyR

    LuckyR Legend

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    Yeah and I should have a full head of hair...
     
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  21. heninfan99

    heninfan99 Legend

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    I take a lot of time serving --probably 20 to 30 seconds.
    I admit I also have to stall when returning after long points to regain my breath. I know talented players don't care. Its the fit players with weaker strokes that win via attrition that are annoyed by this. Basically pushers. And I have zero regret about annoying a pusher. :)
     
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  22. tennis tom

    tennis tom Hall of Fame

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    If there is no umpire to call to observe the match, give him a verbal warning on the first instance. If the slow play continues, serve and take the point. If they don't get ready in the allotted 20 seconds continue serving and taking points. They will get the idea eventually. If they object, inform them of the rule that play is at the speed of the server and the server has 20 seconds between serves. Pull out a watch and count down the seconds for fair warning.

    Personally, I don't mind slow play, I like as much time between points as my opponent allows. This doesn't get into my head at all if that is the intent of my opponent. It gives me more time to prepare for my serve and try to remember everything I've learned about serving. Or, to enjoy the scenery, look up at the sky for interesting cloud formations, or to look at girls.
     
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