Underhand serving: poor sportsmanship?

Discussion in 'Adult League & Tournament Talk' started by lendl1986, Apr 24, 2012.

?

Underhand serving (entire tournament). Poor sportsmanship?

  1. Yes

    22 vote(s)
    13.4%
  2. No

    142 vote(s)
    86.6%
  1. volleygirl

    volleygirl Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2011
    Messages:
    404


    Blake, you are just a brute. Are you telling me that you dont warn your opponent when youre going for a monster serve down the T? Its just not fair to serve real hard or underhand unless you warn your opponent. (rolls eyes)
     
  2. jk175d

    jk175d Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2009
    Messages:
    647
    nice. well the time I mentioned was hitting with a good friend. I thought it courteous, it didn't occur to me that it was stupid. No I don't warn about serving out wide etc.. but return positioning for an underhand serve is completely different than the positioning for the normal range of serves. I was interested in playing good tennis not going for cheap points. The conditions dictated that I reluctantly serve underhanded so I gave him fair warning, sort of like "here are the terms by we're going to play this service game". Stupid to you I guess, sporting to me. Had it been a real match of any consequence I wouldn't give warning and probably wouldn't serve underhand to begin with.
     
  3. blakesq

    blakesq Professional

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2006
    Messages:
    1,319
    Location:
    Connecticut
    "Stupid" may have been a little harsh. But I hate it when people say or imply that serving underhand is bad sportsmanship. Playing according to the rules, is GOOD SPORTSMANSHIP, and there is nothing against the rules in serving underhand. Making up your own personal tennis rules, is weird, and edging towards poor sportsmanship, imho.

     
  4. woodrow1029

    woodrow1029 Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2012
    Messages:
    2,648
    should I warn players not to come to the net, because I will try to hit a topspin lob for a winner? Should I warn players not to play too far behind the baseline because I am going to hit a dropshot?

    Blake is right. 100%
     
  5. OrangePower

    OrangePower Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2007
    Messages:
    4,047
    Location:
    NorCal Bay Area
    ^^^^^

    I don't think that serving underhand is in itself bad sportsmanship.

    However, when someone does pull out the underhand serve, it's often to attempt a "quick-serve", hoping to catch the opponent before he/she is fully ready to receive. This is what I find sneaky and unsportsmanlike.

    If I am ready to receive and my opponent throws in an underhand serve, I have no problem with that.
     
  6. blakesq

    blakesq Professional

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2006
    Messages:
    1,319
    Location:
    Connecticut
    Quickserving is always bad sportsmanship whether linked with an underhand serve or not.

     
  7. OrangePower

    OrangePower Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2007
    Messages:
    4,047
    Location:
    NorCal Bay Area
    Of course. But because underhand serving is often linked to a quick-serving attempt, it gets a bad rap by association.
     
  8. blakesq

    blakesq Professional

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2006
    Messages:
    1,319
    Location:
    Connecticut
    I wonder if it is more linked with receivers who were ready for a normal serve, then want to claim they became undready when the server switched to an underhand serve.

     
  9. Mike Y

    Mike Y Rookie

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2011
    Messages:
    182
    Location:
    Bay Area
    While I have never done it since I feel it is ineffective as compared to my regular serve, I have been served underhanded occasionally to try to throw me off or just as a change of pace. It usually doesn't work unless it is hit perfectly, which is rare. I don't regard it as unsportsmanlike, it is a strategy that is allowed within the rules. If you are ready and prepared for anything, then you can handle it. If not, then it is your fault that it is effective and/or frustrates you.
     
  10. blakesq

    blakesq Professional

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2006
    Messages:
    1,319
    Location:
    Connecticut
    I will do an underhand serve when I notice the receiver is starting to move further and further back to return my first serves.

     
  11. floridatennisdude

    floridatennisdude Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2012
    Messages:
    1,965
    I was getting beat soundly by a buddy of mine last week in a friendly match. I lined up to serve, some time during the second set, and hit an underhander. It went in for an ace. He looked at me and told me to stop being a pansy. We replayed the serve since I did feel like a pansy.

    So, when in doubt, call your opponent a pansy. It could guilt them into a free replay. It worked on me.
     
  12. CaldwellYSR

    CaldwellYSR Rookie

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2012
    Messages:
    179
    Location:
    Shelbyville, TN
    Screw that... I would have told my buddy to get his butt in gear and return the serve... then I would have done it again ;)
     
  13. Mike Y

    Mike Y Rookie

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2011
    Messages:
    182
    Location:
    Bay Area
    You don't win friends with salad, and you don't win tennis hitting partners with underhand serves :)
     
  14. jk175d

    jk175d Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2009
    Messages:
    647
    Well I niether implied or said that serving underhand is poor sportsmanship, because I don't think it is. (Except of course the guy who was pump faking a normal serve before an underhand quick serve.)

    I've been on the recieving end of some underhand quickserves. And it doesn't bother me because I'm quick so it's ineffective. That's kind of how I feel about the underhand serve, it's not unsporting, but usually ineffective. The only time it's effective is when the reciever is either out of position, out of shape, or out to lunch. I won't pass judgement on others who want to use it in those scenarios, but for myself, if the reciever is the kind of guy with whom an underhand serve is going to be effective, then I already know I won't need such tactics to beat him.
     
  15. blakesq

    blakesq Professional

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2006
    Messages:
    1,319
    Location:
    Connecticut
    You said "I was interested in playing good tennis not going for cheap points".

    I think the implication is clear, "cheap points" means a type of tennis that "good players" don't play, in other words, cheap points are the results of poor sportsmanship.


     
  16. blakesq

    blakesq Professional

    Joined:
    Dec 11, 2006
    Messages:
    1,319
    Location:
    Connecticut
    If a hitting partner gets upset with an underhand serve, he can go to *#$$ for all I care!

     
  17. jk175d

    jk175d Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2009
    Messages:
    647
    to clarify this apparent contradiction, if someone uses an underhand serve against me or anyone else I don't consider it bad sportsmanship. As I said, imo it's usually an ineffective serve against a good player. That being said, it is kind of gimmicky and not what I think of as the tennis I aspire to play. So yes, while not in itself unsporting, and I can't speak for anyone esle, the few times I've used it for fun or nececity it still feels to me like going for a cheap point.
     
  18. floridatennisdude

    floridatennisdude Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2012
    Messages:
    1,965
    You did catch the part where I mentioned that it was my "buddy". I generally don't tell my friends to go to *#$$.

    Sorry, thought it was a funny story. Feel free not to giggle.
     
  19. Woolybugger

    Woolybugger Rookie

    Joined:
    Apr 17, 2012
    Messages:
    225
    Location:
    Texas
    if a disguised dropshot is not poor sportsmanship, I don't see why a short underhand serve would be.
     
  20. stapletonj

    stapletonj Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2009
    Messages:
    449
    I actually had to serve underhand one game the other day b/c the sun was so bad......
     
  21. TeflonTom

    TeflonTom Banned

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2012
    Messages:
    920
    not bad sportsmanship. more like training wheels on a bike. ppl who do it to win a point are a bit sad n desperate.
     

Share This Page