Rolling Ball on Sweaty Shirt and Other Nonsense

Discussion in 'Adult League & Tournament Talk' started by TimothyO, May 12, 2013.

  1. TimothyO

    TimothyO Hall of Fame

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    Yesterday I watched ALTA's AA1 city finals. ALTA is Atlanta largest Team doubles rec league and play consists of five lines each match. AA1 is their highest level.

    Watching a line 1 or 2 player getting ready to serve I noticed something weird. At first I thought he was rubbing his stomach before every serve. He was moving his hand in a circular motion over his midsection. But then I realized that he had a ball under his palm and was rolling it against his sweaty T-shirt!

    He did this right before every serve for what felt like an extended period of time. It wasn't just one or two circles. It was several circuits at least and he would then look at the ball and sometimes do some more rolling after inspecting the ball.

    The only thing I could think of was that he wanted to serve "spit balls" which might feel heavier with the extra mass. Or maybe he was trying to tamp down the ball fluff for extra speed by using his sweat.

    Has anyone else seen this thing before? Is it legal?

    The other disappointing thing he would do is conduct a running commentary on opponent's play loud enough to hear. For example, if an opponent made a UE he would make a snide comment about their playing ability just under his breath but loud enough for those watching to hear. His opponents must have heard it too since they were closer
     
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  2. Tamiya

    Tamiya Semi-Pro

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    what about a ball that's been pocketed a game or 3 in sweat soaked shorts? :(
    Fluff would be squashed & could be more bouncy from warmth.
     
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  3. OrangePower

    OrangePower Hall of Fame

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    Mardy Fish used to do this I think. Rub against the chest.
     
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  4. rufus_smith

    rufus_smith Professional

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    A wet ball is slower so it wouldn't favor the server, I would think.
     
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  5. spot

    spot Hall of Fame

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    I think that is probably because there are just 7 AA1 teams and particularly the top 4 teams that make the playoffs rarely change. These guys have played a ton against each other and I'm guessing there was just some bad blood from a previous encounter. (But that is just pure speculation... it could be that the guy is just an ***)
     
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  6. OrangePower

    OrangePower Hall of Fame

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    A little bit of moisture just to slick the fluff down makes the balls faster.
     
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  7. Bdarb

    Bdarb Hall of Fame

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    He's probably killing the fluff. Smaller ball, less air resistance = faster travel.
     
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  8. TimothyO

    TimothyO Hall of Fame

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    Ding ding ding we have a winner!

    Some folks who play at this level know the fellow well and this evening noted that he has a reputation for being, well, an ***. He's extremely good but will also seek out every last advantage possible. Even from courtside he struck me as a jerk the way he was treating his opponents.
     
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  9. Relinquis

    Relinquis Hall of Fame

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    lol... just learn to play tennis properly... you don't need tricks, it's a sign of mental weakness and lack of confidence in one's game.
     
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  10. TimothyO

    TimothyO Hall of Fame

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    Au contraire! This fellow is the antithesis of "mental weakness" or "lack of confidence". He struck me as terribly arrogant.

    These AA1 players were definitely confident. I don't think they could compete at their level without that intensity.

    And with his win record I don't think he lacks confidence in his game.
     
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  11. RogueFLIP

    RogueFLIP Semi-Pro

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    Other nonsense:

    Friend I play weekly has a bad habit of right wiping his sweat off his forehead on the ball. I bought him sweatbands for Xmas and he still does it. Nasty esp in the humid summers. :cry:
     
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  12. omega4

    omega4 Rookie

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    Gotta love tennis players.

    Going to have to remember trying some of these tricks with golf balls later, LOL....
     
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  13. ewcrider

    ewcrider New User

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    From the USTA:
     
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  14. jrs

    jrs Professional

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    What is penalty for not folling this omment

    What is penalty for not following this comment or suggestion?
     
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  15. Rjtennis

    Rjtennis Hall of Fame

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    It almost seems like the guys who pull BS are a type of mentally tough players who just grind out matches. They like to cause disruptions and confrontation because they are so used to it that nothing bothers them. Every match they play they intentionally try to rattle their opponents. I think it is a disgrace but people win by doing this.
     
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  16. tennytive

    tennytive Semi-Pro

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    I don't know anybody who does this, but my first thought was maybe to get the ball to skid on his first serve.

    I think if I was playing against someone and I saw them doing this, I would have to ask them not to (please).
     
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  17. Centryx

    Centryx Semi-Pro

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    is it legal to doctor the ball like that?
     
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  18. The Isomotion31

    The Isomotion31 Semi-Pro

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    So that was what the guy was doing that I played on Saturday. He did it for every serve. He still had little to no pace or spin that really did anything. Had several return winners on him.

    Amazing. I never even thought of that.

    I do however do the baseball thing if I need a breather and take the ball in my hands and start rubbing the ball similar to what you may see a pitcher do on the mound. No, I do not rub my face first or purposely get any sweat on my hands before doing so.
     
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  19. omega4

    omega4 Rookie

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    There has to be some "hygiene" rule violation when someone rubs a tennis ball in their sweat like that.

    If there isn't, then what's to stop someone from spitting on a tennis ball and rubbing it in?
     
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  20. SCRAP IRON

    SCRAP IRON Professional

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    I have a buddy that uses the tennis ball as a headband! We have to replace the balls every set!
     
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  21. Overdrive

    Overdrive Legend

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    Busch... league...
     
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  22. corbind

    corbind Professional

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    Jotta subscribe to this thread to learn what others do. Entertaining for sure.
     
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  23. skiracer55

    skiracer55 Hall of Fame

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    One more reason...

    ...I don't play NTRP...
     
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  24. GlennK

    GlennK Rookie

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    I'd buy him a wristband or two.
     
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  25. Rorsach

    Rorsach Hall of Fame

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    Play on red clay and he'll soon drop that habit.
     
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  26. tennisturtle

    tennisturtle New User

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    Other nonsense too..

    Once when I was playing social, I caught my opponent (who was having a runny nose) wipe his nose using the tennis ball. Needless to say, I stopped playing with him ever after that incident.
     
    #26
  27. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    I like the idea of female players doing this (rolling ball on sweaty shirt)
     
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  28. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    I refused to play with Nadal due to his butt-picking
     
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  29. GlennK

    GlennK Rookie

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    I played him but refused to shake hands at the end of the match.
     
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  30. stapletonj

    stapletonj Semi-Pro

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    I would think that this is largely irrelevant.

    The sweat that you could successfully rub into the ball would be on the very outside surface only (and not be absorbed like the leather over twine on a baseball).

    If you have anything over a 20 mph puffball serve, the force of the contact of your serve is going to knock whatever moisture there is off the ball long before it even gets across the net, thereby negating any effect the moisture would have on the flight of the ball....

    Maybe, maybe, the smooth down the nap argument might carry some weight.

    I dunno, just speculating....
     
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  31. TennisCJC

    TennisCJC Legend

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    I don't think the intent is to get the ball wet. I think you roll it against your body to roll down the fuzz. I have done this and have seen pros and amateurs do it too. I don't think it is a big deal. You actually don't want to wet the ball and slow it down.

    Now, making derogatory remarks about your opponents loud enough for them to hear is just bad sportsmanship and bad manners.
     
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  32. NoChance

    NoChance New User

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    I would expect that an official (if present) would remind the player that under Comment 3.2, he/she may not do that. Further occurrences would then fall under the Code of Conduct (point, game, default).

    In the absence of officials, the best you can do is remind the offender of the above Comment.

    I don't play NTRP, so if I ran into someone who did that, and refused to conform, he would go off my "phone list."
     
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  33. TimothyO

    TimothyO Hall of Fame

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    That's what I sort of thought until this past August while playing some mixed doubles for giggles.

    My partner commented on how wet the balls had become while in my pocket. :oops:

    She was grossed out by them. :cry:

    She has been playing for many years and still s*&#$s so I don't feel too bad. :evil:

    :D
     
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  34. TimothyO

    TimothyO Hall of Fame

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    Out of curiosity I contacted the local league official/top dog (ALTA) and he confirmed that it was illegal to roll the ball on your sweaty shirt.
     
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