Umm, this age division thing is really strange!

Discussion in 'Adult League & Tournament Talk' started by holaturtle, Oct 20, 2011.

  1. holaturtle

    holaturtle New User

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    Ok, so I'm reg'd for a tourney that uses age based divisions. They only have 25, 35, 45.. I'm 36, hence I'm now in the 35 men's draw (singles). I'm a decent 4.0, but here's my rub.. My first match is playing a mid-3.0. Might be quite boring. And my second match is with a 5.0 teaching pro! I just don't understand why they have these age-based divisions in tennis..

    Anyway, I've never played a 5.0, so I'm curious how to handle this guy. He's about 40. I suppose my goal is to not get bagelled, that's all. :D I have about a 4.5 serve and volley and 4.0 at best groundies/movement (I'm 6'6" and 270lbs). Any suggestions on how to play in this situation? playing someone 2 levels more than yourself? (In my opinion 4.0 vs 5.0 has more of a gap than 3.0 vs 4.0) but that's just opinion
     
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  2. JRstriker12

    JRstriker12 Hall of Fame

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    I guess the idea is to play people who are your same age and supposedly in about the same physical shape, but that doesn't take account for skill.

    Anyway, if you are playing a true 5.0 in the second round, just be prepared for a beating. By definition a 4.5 should beat a 4.0 by an 0-0 or 1-1 score, so a 5.0 playing his game should be a guaranteed 0-0.

    Generally the only strategy is to go for your shots and go for more on your serve and returns. At 5.0, he's not going to make many errors if you just keep the ball in play if he's paying attention and playing 100%. If he plays around, plays lazy, or is just having an off day he may gift a game or two to you.
     
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  3. jdubbs

    jdubbs Hall of Fame

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    You'll have to try to get him out of his comfort level. When I play my 5.0 teaching pro, the points I win are:

    1-2 punch of a big serve and a hard, angled FH followed by a trip to the net for a putaway volley
    A drop shot to bring him to net followed by a lob or a pass.
    A surprise serve and volley (works after a few points of staying back)

    If you try to grind it out from the baseline, he's going to get everything back.
    You've got to test his fitness, and try to work on yours. You're going to be on the run a lot.

    Good luck!
     
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  4. Larrysümmers

    Larrysümmers Hall of Fame

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    dont lose to the 3.0
     
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  5. wings56

    wings56 Professional

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    age divisions are most similar to open divisions. youre basically playing in the open division but for people 35 and older. many times the competition in the lower age divisions (25s, 35s) can be just as fierce as the regular open
     
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  6. holaturtle

    holaturtle New User

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    Great explanation! That's really what it is now that I look at the lineups.
     
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  7. holaturtle

    holaturtle New User

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    YES, my first goal is to not lose to the 3.0. ;)

    Will post back with my results of tourny (no matter how devistating they are) :D

    Thanks again for the advice guys
     
    #7
  8. fleabitten

    fleabitten Semi-Pro

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    This. Sounds like you are already looking right past him. :)
     
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  9. nickarnold2000

    nickarnold2000 Hall of Fame

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    Don't assume anything! I've played with teaching pros before who spend most of their time teaching and not playing enough singles. His 5.0 ranking might not be current but, in the end, keep him out there as long as possible and see what happens. I'm sure either way you'll learn some new things. :)
     
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2011
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  10. J_R_B

    J_R_B Hall of Fame

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    Just don't be intimidated. I am a 4.0 and I played a 5.0 teaching pro to 6-1 7-6 in a tournament this summer in what was one of the most fun matches of my life. The biggest thing that I noticed during the first set is that I could not give him anything resembling a sitter or it would be blasted right past me. Therefore, in the second set, I concentrated on hitting out and hitting towards lines, and I really got in a groove and played a competitive set.
     
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  11. d wayne

    d wayne Rookie

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    Age group tournaments are far more honest than NTRP events- don't have to be concerned with sandbaggers. However, you will see a wide range of players.
    I am a solid 4.0- when I play these I hope for a 1st round match against someone like me that works a regular job- hope to steal a round before running into the big boys(high level players & teaching pros). However, you will see 4.0 & 4.5 level players that do some things well, but most have some flaws

    It is rare to see anyone below 4.0 level enter these tourneys.

    I look at them as a chance to play higher level guys that I would not normally get a chance to play, and to gauge what I do well and what needs work(any flaws will show up quickly against these guys)

    Played a computer rated 5.0 in my last 50 & over tourney, lost 6-2, 6-2 but felt good about the way I played and realized what needed work

    Enjoy the opportunity to compete
     
    #11
  12. holaturtle

    holaturtle New User

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    Thanks again for the advice..

    Here's the latest..

    I played poorly against the 3.0, but finally got my groove beating him 6-3, 6-1.

    The 5.0 teaching pro barely got beat by the 4.5. And then the 5.0 WO'd the rest of the weekend due to a back injury and my match got cancelled today.

    So I'm technically 2-0 in this round-robin. :) Playing the 4.5 tomorrow morning. This will determine the division winner. :twisted:
     
    #12
  13. holaturtle

    holaturtle New User

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    Got beat by the 4.5 with score of 6-2, 6-0. He was very good, but had I had more stamina I would've made it much closer. Learned a good bit.. and was a fun tourney. They gave me a shirt for being a finalist. Kinda funny. Thanks for the advice everyone. ;)
     
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