Returning a serve: Do I have any rights?

Discussion in 'Adult League & Tournament Talk' started by Aerial, Jan 20, 2008.

  1. Aerial

    Aerial New User

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    This has happen occasionally when I am playing doubles. I am walking(not jogging) to the baseline to received the next serve after a point. Now here are the scenarios that typically happen:

    1) I turn around and the ball is in the air. I have to get ready to return the ball as soon as I get set.

    2) Standing in the ready position and moving into a crouch (I hope I spelled this right) position, He/She tosses the ball.

    3) The Ball toss goes up, right when I get into a standing position on the baseline.

    Are any of these scenarios illegal...I feel I need to be allow 2 seconds in the crouch position before the toss goes up. Am I wrong?
     
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  2. NoBadMojo

    NoBadMojo G.O.A.T.

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    no..you are right. you have the right to be ready to return serve. the rule is to go at the servers pace, but if the server is 'quick serving' you, you dont have to tolerate it. hold your hand up indicating you arent ready then get ready to return. keep doing this as necessary. if the server doesnt stop talk to him/her about it. some people naturally serve fast with no gamesmanship and others use it in an unsportsmanlike way to get an advantage
     
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  3. WBF

    WBF Hall of Fame

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    You go at a servers *reasonable* pace. If you are wandering around the back of the court delaying, you are the problem. If you are walking to ready position, and they're rushing you, they are the problem. If you face someone who rushes you, hold your hand up or simply do not face them until you are ready. If they start the motion before you are set (i.e. they start right as you turn around), hold up you hand. You might want to point out that you don't like being rushed as well, that might slow them down if they aren't doing it on purpose (and maybe if they are!).

    Personally, if I get someone I sense is doing it on purpose (or stupid enough to do it accidentally), I have no mercy. I'll hold my hand up at the last moment, ensuring they waste energy with a serve. I'll start meandering around the back of the court, slowing them down even more. I would never do this to a reasonable server, but people who rush me get me absolutely furious. It's incredibly rude.
     
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  4. Supernatural_Serve

    Supernatural_Serve Professional

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    You have the right to put a hand up, drop your racquet, anything that establishes that you aren't ready AND make no attempt whatsoever to return the serve.

    Best if you do that before the server makes contact with the ball, but not necessary.
     
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  5. tbini87

    tbini87 Hall of Fame

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    yes, you have "rights" as a returner. you should be able to get ready and comfortable to return. make sure that if you are rushed that you DON'T try to return the serve. if you make an attempt at a return, you no longer have the right to complain or get another serve.
     
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  6. SunDog

    SunDog Rookie

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    Good advice above. Keep in mind that by attempting any sort of return, you are indicating that you and your team are ready for the serve.
     
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  7. Rob_C

    Rob_C Hall of Fame

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    That's an unenforceable "rule". The receiver can take the full 25 secs between pts and there's nothing anyone can do about it.

    He was being quick served and should just hold his hand up, or tell the guy to wait, and make sure not to attempt to return the ball.
     
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  8. fe6250

    fe6250 Semi-Pro

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    Just curious if people see a lot of 'gamesmanship' in use of the quick serve? I have yet to run into anyone that I was unable to slow down simply by politely signaling them to give me a moment to get set (holding hand up, nicely asking, turning back, etc..). I have run into some 'gamers' but none of them were quick servers.
     
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  9. swimntennis

    swimntennis Guest

    A friend I play with does this all too often. I take a little time going from point to point, looking at my strings, etc., but nothing out of the ordinary. I would say I always take less than 10 seconds from the end of the last point. However, I usually beat my friend on a regular basis and he gets very down on himself and starts rushing points. I could just finish walking over to the other side of the court and find him a split second away from hitting it. I usually just deal with it though and play it. However, this has never happened to be in Team Tennis or any other tournament match. If it did I would probably say something on a changeover or hold up my hand.
     
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  10. fe6250

    fe6250 Semi-Pro

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    That's my experience too. Another good technique is to retrieve a ball and send it slow enough back or just enough 'off' to give you time to set. Doesn't even need to look obvious.
     
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  11. kevhen

    kevhen Hall of Fame

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    Hold your arm out to let them know you are not ready (Also you can say 'just a second' and then say 'OK' once you have taken your return stance and put your arm down.
     
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  12. randomname

    randomname Professional

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    while you are entitled to all of those things, getting "a full 2 seconds in the ready position" might be pushing it a bit, if I'm serving, and I see you ready at all, i'm going to assume that you just didnt like the serve (and lets be honest, if you werent ready but the server missed, would you say anything about it?)
     
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  13. origmarm

    origmarm Hall of Fame

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    I agree with this, I don't think its gamesmanship, I think they just don't realise that its a problem and just want to play quickly personally. That said maybe I'm just naive
     
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  14. fe6250

    fe6250 Semi-Pro

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    NOT A WORD!!!
     
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  15. 10sguy

    10sguy Rookie

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    Regarding the reply from "fe6250" to the above post, you have lost ANY right to call a fault by the act of holding up your hand. When I'm receiving in that situation, I make sure the server realizes I wasn't ready - usually because I had JUST then turned around - and I'll say "first serve." I'm trying to imagine a situation where the server could quick-serve me on a second serve . . . perhaps right after I've had to move to clear an errant first serve?

    Anyway, if you consistently refuse (politely) to be quick-served, only a complete idiot server won't clean up his/her act.

    Additional thoughts: I seriously feel that some of the quick-servers are simply caught up in today's sometimes super productivity-oriented culture and possibly are accustomed to multitasking. The other thing which comes to mind is people paying for court time by the hour or otherwise have limited time allocated for a match . . . may tend to rush things.
     
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2008
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  16. tzinc

    tzinc Semi-Pro

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    Hold up your hand if you're not ready!
     
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  17. rasajadad

    rasajadad Hall of Fame

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    In addition to holding up my hand, I have also added one additional procedure:
    When I pick up the third ball, I hold it until I get back to the service line THEN hit it over to my opponent SLOWLY. In the ensuing couple of seconds I am always able to prepare to receive.
     
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  18. tennis-n-sc

    tennis-n-sc Professional

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    I believe you are a bit off on the interpretation of the 25 seconds.
     
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  19. A.Davidson

    A.Davidson Semi-Pro

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    Had a guy try this on a teammate last year during a match at school.

    My match was over, so I was watching. My friend asked me to go get our coach.

    The kid was tossing the ball as soon as he got it out of his pocket, not even bouncing it. Not a crime, but the next serve was coming no more than seven or eight seconds after the previous point was over. Quite unnerving, and it was affecting my teammate's game.

    I got our coach, who got the other team's coach, both of whom told the other kid that our player had to be ready before the serve came.

    That's all I've ever seen live concerning this situation, but both coaches told the guy to stop.
     
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