The Code Violation Registry

Discussion in 'Adult League & Tournament Talk' started by Cindysphinx, Apr 19, 2007.

  1. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

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    But . . . the Code provides for exactly this scenario. Ball bounces on my side of net, I don't see it for whatever reason, I can ask my opponent but must accept her opinion if I choose to ask. How can following the Code in good faith be considered dishonorable?

    In fact, I am trying to remember that it is OK to ask the opponent for times when I can't see whether a ball was out. Perhaps they will often say they didn't see it, but if the main goal in line calling is accuracy, then it is surely OK to ask for help. My tendency is to slump my shoulders and condede the point, but I am trying to be more disciplined and remember there is another option.
     
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  2. AndrewD

    AndrewD Legend

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    Following common sense:

    1) If you walk onto the court wearing a pair of dodgy glasses you should expect that some of your calls might be equally suspect. True, your opponent can't - by the letter of the law- make calls on your side (apart from two exceptions) but you freely admit that you couldn't see clearly so why the fuss? I'd be wondering how many other calls you missed because of your faulty eyewear.

    2) Explain that you're wearing glasses and can't differentiate between your opponents signals - ask her to verbally signfiy out. That's not tough to do.
     
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  3. Raiden.Kaminari

    Raiden.Kaminari Semi-Pro

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    That is why, if it was up to me, I concede the point if I couldn't see the ball and had to ask the opponent and they couldn't see it.

    I have found the following to be true: Players with good sportsmanship will believe others have good sportsmanship. Players that cheat tends to believe others cheat.

    Here are two scenarios when opponents have asked me if I saw my shot:

    1. They were running and focused on hitting the ball. They thought the ball was out, but had doubts about making the call, and believed I had a better viewing angle (since I was on the line in question). I always confirm if the ball was out.

    2. My opponent is advancing to the net, and I hit a topspin drive shot past them. Sometimes they only see the ball bouncing up, and not the impact. I aways confirm if the ball was in or out, since their head is spinning.

    If an opponent calls a ball good that was out in both scenarios, I always tell them my ball was out.

    It is so fun playing against people when it's just about tennis, and not about line games.
     
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  4. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

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    I probably missed a lot of calls and played many out balls believing they were in. I probably would have double-bageled this opponent instead of giving up three games. She certainly has no grounds to complain that I couldn't call more of her balls out.

    My point regarding the hand signals is that a raised hand is not a typical signal for "in." A raised hand isn't anything, at least in this area. "In" is usually a palm facing downward or an umpire's "safe" gesture. I don't mind hand signals (in fact, they are preferable in the noisy indoor places where we play), but they need to make sense.
     
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  5. Serve 'em hard

    Serve 'em hard Banned

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    What do you guys think of this scenario in terms of that "receiver calls the first serve" rule?

    I played a friend of mine who's better than me and serves harder than I'm used to seeing. Several times on his first serve I gave him the benefit of the doubt and played the serve even though I suspected it was out. Sometimes I hit a good if weak return, more often I flubbed the return. But regardless of what I did with my shot, he called his first serve out if he believed it was out, basically overruling the tacit "in" call I made by playing it.

    Now, I guess the code says he has no business making a call on his own first serve, but since he thought it was out, and since I also thought it was out in my heart but played it anyway 'cause it was close, I didn't argue with him and say something like "No, even though you and me both thought that ball looked out, I thought it was close enough, and moving too fast for me to process whether it was in or out in a timely enough fashion, so I gave you the benefit of the doubt and called it in. So it's your point, not second serve". Instead I just followed his lead and prepared to receive his second serve.

    Thoughts?
     
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  6. tennis-n-sc

    tennis-n-sc Professional

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    "Cause it was close" and you "suspect" it was out does not make a ball out. In my opinion, your friend is giving you the benefit of doubt in a friendly match. I seriously doubt he is that generous in tournament or league play.
    "A ball not seen clearly out is deemed good". The key word here is "clearly".
     
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  7. Supernatural_Serve

    Supernatural_Serve Professional

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    Not really in my opinion. I assume you are referring to this:

    Making Calls:

    11. Requesting Opponent's Help: When an opponent's help is requested and the opponent gives a positive opinion, it must be accepted. If neither player has an opinion, the ball is considered good. Aid from an opponent is available only on a ball that ends a point.

    I interpret this to mean

    a.) if the point ended, and if you did not see it clearly to make a call, then if you ask for help, then you must accept their answer.

    I simply consider this rule (11)

    a.) a violation of the spirit of several other directives in Making Calls:

    5.) Player makes calls on own side of net
    6.) Opponent gets benefit of doubt
    8.) Ball that can not be called out is good

    b.) an opportunity to shift responsibility
    c.) an opportunity to invite gamesmanship
    d.) and provides a subversion of

    13.) Player calls own shots out

    which is the rule that should apply in this scenario.

    The way I play it, I honor rule 5.) 6.) and 8.) by never asking my opponent for help and assuming that they will honor rule 13.) and over rule should they "clearly see it out when I called it in regardless of my clarity of view"

    There is no need for 11.) in this more honorable version of play that more truly adheres to the spirit of the code.

    11.) Seems to be for all those players who can't resist asking someone else's opinion (which is ridiculous in my opinion, 5.), 6.), and 8.) are already in force. It seems to be a rule to address the point that when asking, one must accept their opponents voice as final.

    Rely on 5.) 6.) 8.) and let all important 13.) deal with this scenario and eliminate 11.) from one's game to play a more honorable game.
     
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  8. Islandtennis

    Islandtennis Rookie

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    Super and Serve,

    My opinion on both of your posts boils down to the basic tenant of tennis, good sportsmanship and a desire from all parties to do what is right as opposed to what may give them a strategic advantage. The rules are written on the premise that all tennis players are good sportsmen but also have an innate goal to win. Without the latter, Friend of Court would only have to be one page.

    I see nothing wrong in Serve's friendly match for his friend to help him with the calls on serve. I acknowledge that what his friend did was clearly against ITF and USTA rules, however, his friend was not trying to gain an advantage by calling his own serves out. In a tournament or league match where winning would be more important, then obviously obviously this shouldn't be allowed. A server who was allowed this could easily use this to his advantage, especially in light of a winning return.

    With regards to Super's thoughts, I see nothing wrong (even in a tournament situation) to ask your opponent's opinion on a call. Once again the emphasis on both sides should be for fair play. It should be understood that the opponent will have an inherent bias in his opinion, but he should also want to see the right call. Without a doubt, the opponent saying anything but "the ball was clearly out," should give the point to the opponent. Doing this can lead to more trust between both players in their match and a more enjoyable experience for both.
     
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  9. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

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    Serve, I agree with IslandTennis. You and your friend decided to toss this section of the Code out the window, by mutual and happy agreement. That's always fine, of course.

    In my situation I described in my opening post, I corrected the opponent and informed her of the Code requirements. I didn't want to leave this to chance, as I think it is easier to play if I know for a fact that if she returns the serve and doesn't call it out, then we're playing that point out.

    Most of my "social" matches these days are team practices. In these instances, I always enforce the Code to the letter. My goal is to to educate my teammates about the Code so they will understand it. 'Cause if a player doesn't understand the rule about calling her own serves out, she might get burned on an important point in a match.

    Steve, I think being allowed to ask an opponent for help leads to fairer and more consistent play. I mean, you've given us three objections: It (1) provides an opportunity to shift responsibility; (2) provides opportunity to invite gamesmanship; or (3) provides a subversion of "player calls own shot out."

    Really, if I don't see your good ball and ask you in good faith whether it was good, how is that gamesmanship? If you say you aren't sure, the ball is good. If you say the ball is good, it is good. If you mistakenly call your own shot out, it is because you believe your own shot was "clearly out" and so should have spoken up on your own to call the ball out.

    So how has anyone been harmed if a player can't see a shot and asks the opponent for help? In all instances, the correct call will be made, which is the whole point of this part of the Code.

    That said, you are perfectly free to ignore this part of the Code and decide never to ask for help, of course. So long as you promise on your heart of hearts that you won't think those who do ask for help are doing something sneaky. . . .
     
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  10. Serve 'em hard

    Serve 'em hard Banned

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    Here's something else i wondered about: I hit a ball to end a rally that I'm convinced is out, yet my opponent insists it's in, and since it's on his side, it's his call.

    But what if I'm so sure it's out that I don't want to take the point? And what if he's so sure it's in that he refuses to take the point? basically, you'd have two dudes arguing that the other guy deserves the point.

    I guess you could play a let. Any other option in this scenario?
     
    #60
  11. Serve 'em hard

    Serve 'em hard Banned

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    here's another situation that annoys me. When I play against my gf, she often takes a long look at close shots of mine before saying something like "I'm not sure and can't really tell, so I guess I have to call it good..."

    I find this hemming and hawing irritating. If it ain't clearly out, it's in, so stop this acting like you're doing me some big favor by giving me the benefit of the doubt... Make the call either way, but make it quickly and without commentary, ya know?
     
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  12. cghipp

    cghipp Professional

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    So it was really out, huh? (Just kidding!)
     
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  13. N23

    N23 Rookie

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    I agree. But decide quick if you wanna keep her as a GF cause you comment back, she won't be such.
     
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  14. Islandtennis

    Islandtennis Rookie

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    Serve,

    After being married 20 years, your best bet is to just say "that was a good call dear" no matter what it happens to be.
     
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  15. Raiden.Kaminari

    Raiden.Kaminari Semi-Pro

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    I have to agree with the other posters. If you find this hemming and hawing irritating, wait until you get married. Then the real stuff comes out (including the indecisiveness, the feeling she did you a favor, etc.)
     
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  16. Cindysphinx

    Cindysphinx G.O.A.T.

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    She *is* doing you a favor.

    She's playing tennis with you, isn't she? :)

    Heh, heh. I also hate that "Well, I dunno, so I guess I have to give you that one."

    Me, I just give the "in" signal with no words. On account of how I can't manage a cheerful "Good shot!" when I secretly think the ball was probably out . . . .
     
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  17. Serve 'em hard

    Serve 'em hard Banned

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    Yeah, but I don't charge her for all the free schooling I'm giving her.:p

    I'm liking the comments by Raiden and others this anecdote brought out. Keep 'em coming...
     
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2007
    #67
  18. Raiden.Kaminari

    Raiden.Kaminari Semi-Pro

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    No, I meant she will literally tell you she did you a favor by marrying you ;)

    Not sure what you're planning to school her in, but avoid the fall from the sky kama sutra move.
     
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  19. skiracer55

    skiracer55 Hall of Fame

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    This is all kind of weird to me...

    ...because it seems to be cycling back to my original points which were:

    - We have rules, they should be enough.

    - If we also need The Code, it ought to be a part of the rules and not some other body of judicial opinion.

    - What the Code says and what we think it means appears to be less than unambiguous. Go back to the part of this thread that talks about whether or not I can call balls on the other side of the net, and what happens if your opponent doesn't see (or says he/she didn't see) the shot in question. Doesn't sound like we have a clear consensus, Code or no Code, of what the right thing is in these instances.

    - As I said, I've never gotten into these kind of issues in 40 years of tournament tennis, and from what y'all say, 99 times out of a 100, we just play tennis and everybody does the right thing...right? So what's the issue?
    The 1%? Or just making sure we know what to do when and if a questionable situation occurs?
     
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  20. Raiden.Kaminari

    Raiden.Kaminari Semi-Pro

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    No, if he insists it was in, it was your point. He was giving you the benefit of the doubt, even though you did the right thing and called your own ball out.

    The greatest form of sportsmanship is the ability to concede a point. The worst form of sportsmanship is when people are demanding a point when they lack knowledge of the rules (and The Code).
     
    #70
  21. Raiden.Kaminari

    Raiden.Kaminari Semi-Pro

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    They still have the wrong link up on the website.

    The 2007 Friend at court had the ITF version
     
    #71
  22. Raiden.Kaminari

    Raiden.Kaminari Semi-Pro

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    Funny thing about common sense ... it turns out that it's not common at all.

    While we both may play the game fairly, there are the unfortunate players who try everything in their might to win points. Which in turn makes playing tennis not enjoyable at times.

    I do think they need to highlight the portion of the introduction I outlined. I think a lot of people skip it.
     
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