what NTRP is this kid?

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by formula16, May 1, 2010.

  1. jrod

    jrod Hall of Fame

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    Hey TB- I went to Newks a few years back with my son and saw Christian play along with some of the other promising juniors there as well. These kids would destroy every 3.5 player in my area and would also straight-set the vast majority of 4.0 level players in my region.

    Watching a video and actually watching these kids play is entirely different. The video does NOT give you a great sense of spin, pace, placement, difficulty of shot, etc. Furthermore, it sure as hell does NOT give you a good indication as to how you would fare in a match against them. I've seen many juniors over the years easily dismantle respectably ranked club players. My son's HS team has a 17-year old junior that can destroy most club pros in my area, and half the varsity team at one of the local Ivy D1 schools.
     
  2. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    As usual, you guys who say this kid can compete with 4.5 don't get it.
    At any level above 4.0, it's not just strokes and movement, skill and technique.
    All sorts of HEAD GAMES come up, whether it's bullying the kid at changeovers, annoying his parents, calling bad calls to see the reaction, hitting the kid deliberately after dropshotting him, drop and lobbing the short tiny tyke repeatedly, topspin lobbing then drop volley angling the kid, there are lots of strategies to take younger, less match experienced players out of their game.
    Pure tennis, just the hitting, setup, and technique, of course the kid can compete at 4.0 levels. NO DOUBT.
    But tennis is more than the above sentence!
     
  3. tennis_balla

    tennis_balla Hall of Fame

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    Ahh see thats too bad because apparently according to TW if you lived in Southern California, or Florida or any of the other supposed hot spots this would NEVER happen...its impossible because those 4.0 players can compete with pros!! ;) /sarcasm
     
  4. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

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    actually, on this board you get this attitude more from California and Atlanta. Especially Cali.
     
  5. jrod

    jrod Hall of Fame

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    ^^^ Actually guys, I think that attitude is not restricted to the hot spots. It seems to me you can find that naivete all over the globe. Just like the mind games LeeD thinks are reserved for NTRP levels of 4.5 and up...yeah right!
     
  6. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    er.... let's see...
    In 1977.
    CeciMartinez, ranked top 50 in Women'sPro 5 years earlier, would come down to DuPont courts (she lived next door), and hit with us.
    Rosie was from SanFrancisco.
    MarcieLouie won the CanadianOpen in '77, and I was hitting with her as a 3.5 before then.
    GregShepard from Oakland was the top ranked NorCal A. He played at GGPark and gave me advice after watching my finals lost in the C's there.
    ChuckWhite was and still is the tennis coach at USF, about 10 blocks from GGPark, and was part of the upper B, lower A crowd that I was just starting to peak into.
    JohnMurio was Bob's kid, a solid upper B whom I hit with lots.
    Pea was a 5.5 womens, won the CanadianOpen ( I don't know why the Louie's have to play well in that tournament either) in '79.
    I dated SusanBrown, a 5.5 woman from Oakland.
    Did you know then, a A or 5.5 would regular enter and be accepted in lower level pro women's events? Yes.
    MikeGee, then a 4.0 but a little kid (look up his USTA 45's ranking) in 10th grade practiced with our crowd. His big brother, Mark, former #1 at Annapolis, played doubles with me in the '78 ChineseNats.
    SanFrancisco has a huge tennis community, but it's tight, and most competitive players knew of and each other.
    Where else in the world can a C player meet and hit with A-Opens?
     
  7. tennis_balla

    tennis_balla Hall of Fame

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    I love listening to old war time stories....
     
  8. HunterST

    HunterST Hall of Fame

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    1. The 4.5 players that I know absolutely DO NOT behave in the manners you described, and they still win lots of matches.

    2. Have you never been to a juniors tournament? The kids trash talk, cuss, throw their rackets, and many of the parents behave just as poorly, if not WORSE.

    Junior tennis tournaments are MUCH more intense than USTA matches.
     
  9. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

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    Totally agree with your post, especially teh last sentence. I string for a junior national event, and the gamesmanship is horrible.
     
  10. jrod

    jrod Hall of Fame

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    No kidding. The junior tournaments are the worst for these kind of antics, hands down. The idea that this kind of gamesmanship is reserved for players rated 4.5 and up is laughable. I can only guess LeeD is too busy hanging with his who's who crowd that he hasn't bothered to check in with the real world as of late.
     
  11. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    You guys are ignorant, as usual.
    Yes, gamesmanship occurs in Junior level.
    NOW FOR ONCE IN YOUR LIFE ... THINK ! Just once is enough.
    Juniors grow older, accumulate more knowledge, and their gamesmanship, when they hit 40, is 5 times better than any 16 year old can conjure.
    YOU ARE LITTLE KIDS!
    Any adult who wants to, can take you out of your game.
    YOU ARE LITTLE KIDS!
    YOU DON"T KNOW GAMESMANSHIP until you play against opponents who have used gamesmanship for 20 years.
    YOU ARE LITTLE KIDS!
     
  12. HunterST

    HunterST Hall of Fame

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    Honesty, I've never seen the type of gamesmanship you're describing in a 4.5 match. If gamesmanship is such a crucial part of tennis, why when I watch the local men's futures event and the nearby women's challenger is there virtually no examples of it?

    You're right. If a 40 year old 4.5 pushed the kid down during every changeover it would probably fluster the kid and he would lose, but how realistic is that?

    Guaranteed, if this kid entered a 3.5 tournament, he would win easily. He would have a good shot at winning matches in a 4.5 tourney as well.

    No offense LeeD, you have some great insights on a lot of threads/topics. However, it is okay to be wrong sometimes. It's best just to admit you misjudged at first.
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2010
  13. jrod

    jrod Hall of Fame

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    LeeD- Did you forget to take your lithium again?
     
  14. hector

    hector Rookie

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    This kid would destroy all 3.5s, no question. He will be much more consistent and probably just hit the ball deep without much pace and watch the 3.5 rack up the errors. I think he would beat most 4.0s.

    At 4.5 I think he starts to run into problems. As they can increase the pace while keeping unforced errors down. His serve would also be a bit of a liability.
     
  15. supineAnimation

    supineAnimation Professional

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    I agree. It has nothing to do with the kid's game, which is rock solid. It's purely a matter of weight and size. When I used to hit with national-level kids this age, they could certainly outlast me in some rallies or hit winning angles or pull me off court and hit the hole. But only if I hit at a lower medium pace, which I almost always did. If I hit out to any degree the pace was simply too much for their bodies and the size of their gaits was an issue covering the court. But there is no question that this kid is phenomenal for his age and size (and he looks awfully big for 9, which might mean that he's gonna be tall) and if the strength and gait issues weren't there he'd compete and likely win at 4.5s. But I wouldn't be surprised if this kid was able to beat a lot of legitimate 4.0s at his age right now. 4.5s?... probably not, although I think we all know there is a range of players in each level and if he drew a 4.5 that was a counterpuncher without much power, who knows?
     
  16. Slazenger07

    Slazenger07 Banned

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    Agreed. Ive played with 4.5's and I am a 4.5 and never use gamesmanship in a match. Ive matured as have most people that reach 4.5. We are good enough at this level to beat most people without using cheap gamesmanship to give us an edge. Ive only played one 4.5 in my life that used gamesmanship, needless to say he ruined what could have been a fun experience and a competitive match by cheating. Ill never play with, nor have anything to do with him again.
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2010
  17. supineAnimation

    supineAnimation Professional

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    Yeah. I'm not sure exactly what he consider "gamesmanship", but I rarely run into anything I have a problem with in my 4.5 matches. I never really played 4.0 leagues, but the only times I've ever run into any players that pulled crap that I considered cheap was in college intramurals and non-sanctioned leagues. There was a lot of cheating and payback calls in intramurals and I played a guy in a local non-USTA league a couple of years back that called nearly all of my heavy topspin balls that dropped at the last moment (which I hit a lot) out, and I had to get in face. But from everything I've heard from guys that played national juniors or Futures, the gamesmanship was pretty rare and was mostly stuff that the guys didn't have a big problem with. That Koellerer guy in the pros is supposed to do some really cheap crap, but he's the only one I've ever read anything about in the pros.
     
  18. moist

    moist Rookie

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    I'm a 4.0, and I've played some highly skilled 11-13 year old up-and-comers. Height is just a massive disadvantage. I have a very consistent, if not very fast, top spin serve that kicks reasonably high. It's not a big weapon even at the 4.0 level, but against these kids it's brutal. The same applies for medium pace, loopy, deep topspin ground strokes. Unless they've gotten incredibly good at taking these on the rise I think the height factor is just too much to overcome.

    Their serve is also generally weak again because of height. If you're decent at returning you'll be able to place it and approach and be in total control of the point.

    If I let myself get into rallies against these kids I can get into trouble, but I've found it pretty easy not to. However, once they hit their growth spurt they'll rapidly get better than me.

    With that said, I think this kid beats pretty much all 3.5s and a lot of 4.0s depending on their game style.
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2010
  19. HunterST

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    Highly skilled kids are not what we're discussing. We're talking about WORLD CLASS juniors.

    Unless the kids you're playing are top 50 in the nation, they don't compare.

    5.0s are highly skilled players, yet there are players that are completely on another level. Plenty of players would make 5.0s feel like they'd never picked up a racket before. The 5.0 would send over his most powerful shot and watch in horror as his opponent easily sent it sailing back over the net. Moreover, those players that are far beyond the 5.0's level of skill will get bageled by THOUSANDS of players.

    The same holds true for Juniors. The very top juniors are worlds apart from the rest. Even if they seem pretty incredible when compared to local players.
     
  20. hector

    hector Rookie

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    He would beat all 3.5s and most 4.0s

    He would take your kick serve early and handle it with ease. His serve would probably turn out to be a little better then you think. Next thing you know you are stuck on the baseline ....

    Ask yourself this. Why are 4.0s not 4.5s? Then ask yourself how this kid could take advantage of this difference.

    I wish we could put this one to the test.
     
  21. tennis_balla

    tennis_balla Hall of Fame

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    I don't think people here really understand or ever experienced how a true world class junior plays like. Its one thing to see it on video and say yea he can hit, its another thing for a 4.0 to actually hit against one of them. Maybe its an ego thing, having played 20+ years and then getting beat down by someone half their height and weight and age is difficult to accept for some people and thats understandable.
     
  22. Ambivalent

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    I've lost to the top U12 year old in the state when I played at 4.0. I have no doubt in my mind that a world class 9 year old would have beaten me back then.
     
  23. moist

    moist Rookie

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    You agree with me saying he would beat the exact level of players that I also said he would, but then you say I've underestimated him. I think he would fall in the 4.0 range, and it would depend on how well the 4.0s exploited his physical disadvantages. I play frequently with 4.5s and think I have a good handle on the difference.

    One of the kids I've played was top 50 in the national 10s. The matches were quite competitive, but I always felt I could 'cheat' and go for high bouncers that were very difficult for him. Maybe this was his particular fault and doesn't extend to this 9 year old, I don't know. However, I still think being 4 feet something is a really huge disadvantage.
     
  24. jrod

    jrod Hall of Fame

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    Been there, done that. Some of the juniors at Newks just toyed with me. Their consistency was hell, regardless as to how much pace I threw a them. Anyone who has not played a highly ranked junior should be dismissed out of hand.

    Unless you've actually played some ranked juniors, your credibility in this discussion is non-existent. It's called arm chair tennis folks. So saddle up, grab a beer and tell us exactly how you can dismantle this kid. We're all ears.
     
  25. hector

    hector Rookie

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    This kid seems to be a tad better then a "top 50 in the national 10s".

    First you thought it would be your "slow" kick serve that would give him problems. Now it is going to be moonballing? He probably beats you 6-0 6-0. I am impressed by your commitment to a delusion.

    I realize loosing to a kid with no hair on his peaches might bother you but you will need to come to terms with the situation.
     
  26. HunterST

    HunterST Hall of Fame

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    /thread



    10 chars
     
  27. moist

    moist Rookie

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    Wow, so antagonistic. Again you said he'd beat the same players I said he'd beat, so where's the disagreement? I have no delusions of grandeur (or commitment to one, where did that come from), tennis is a hobby. I'd congratulate him, marvel at his skill for that age, and go on with my day. I just thought I'd share what I thought was a relevant experience. You know, anecdotal evidence rather than pure speculation.
     
  28. hector

    hector Rookie

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    While some of what you said I agree with other points as to what you think would give him trouble I disagree with.

    I guess the main point we disagree about is that I dont think many if any 4.0 are going to beat this kid. Moonballing and slow kick serves are not going to get the job done thats for sure.
     
  29. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Kid is tiny. You dropshot him, then lob him inccessantly. He cannot cover court, being so short. Easy to get the lob over a shorties head.
    He doesn't have the pace to bother you with his deep shots. You have the pace to hit winners when he's back and near a sideline.
    You vary your shots, hitting some topspin fores, but also slicing hard low skidders to his forehand. He can play GREAT against consistent shots, but doesn't have the years of experience against wierd and annoying shots.
    If you're a real tournament 3.5, ready to move up to real 4.5, NOT BUMP UP, you have the means to beat this kid.....this spring. He gets better as soon as he can hit a fast mover, and will beat 4.5's by the end of summer.
     
  30. hector

    hector Rookie

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    Sorry not following you. A 3.5 moving up to 4.5?

    I think you would be surprised with his pace. The ball will be deep and he will move it around. It will not be an easy ball to attack. He will be steady no free points.

    This kid will be match tough. He has probably seen just about everything at this point. If you give him pace he can probably feed off of it. Not sure I would want to do that. Maybe a short slice would give him problems but my guess is that if he will have seen this and will probably handle it with ease and might even hit angle winners.


    While he is small his footwork will be very solid, his energy level high, and his anticipation will make up for a "lack of speed"


    The 4.0 recreational player is just that. He may have "tons" of experience, but why is he still a 4.0? The kid will have the tools to exploit the weakness.
     
  31. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

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    [​IMG]
     
  32. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Ha ha, you guys are funny. Pathetic, but funny nonetheless.
    Don't attack me, attack other's.
    I've played and practiced with, as a C or 3.5, players who WON Women's pro tourneys the following year. I've practiced with players who the following year, was #2 singles at Div11 colleges. My regular practice partners were #'s 1 and 2 at CityCollege of SanFrancisco, a Div111 school.
    So I know a little about playing and hitting with juniors.
    I"ve played the #2 junior from Peru. I did lose track of him after that. He was solid 4.5.
    I've played the #4 junior from France, who WON the WimbletonJrs in the mid '80's. When I played him, he was #2 for DominicanCollege in SanRafael. Yes, I lost, but he was probably 5.5 by then.
    Ain't no way a 9 year old can ever take a set off a solid 4.0 player, one who has played at a higher level BEFORE.
     
  33. Kunohara

    Kunohara Professional

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    ^

    Why dont you tell us about your world war II exploits too?
     
  34. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    You beat us, end of story!
     
  35. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

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  36. hector

    hector Rookie

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    Your too funny.

    according to you if you were in the room with Steven Hawkins that would make you a smart man.
     
  37. tennis_balla

    tennis_balla Hall of Fame

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    Exactly! and the funny thing is Newks isn't even where all the top kids are. They have some great players there thats for sure, but comparing it to when I was at Sanchez-Casal Barcelona last spring and the talent there....

    Its just like you said, its arm chair tennis nothing more. People who think they know what they are talking about but have no clue or experience.
    Wait, let me check this thread....

    [​IMG]

    Yup, just as I suspected ;)
     
  38. TearSNFX

    TearSNFX Rookie

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    Just my opinion based on what I've seen at local clubs I would say 4.0 +.

    Recently at upland club there was a 4.0 or 4.5 ( I forget ) tournament and this kid would probably destroy half the people there. Mainly because half those people weren't very consistent.

    This kid is awesome for his age. Give credit where credit is due, and this kid deserves his credits!
     
    Last edited: May 5, 2010
  39. sonicare

    sonicare Hall of Fame

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    WOW...JUST WOW...

    That's all I have to say. :roll::roll::roll:
     
  40. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Whatever...
    Some posters here tell me I haven't played any top level juniors. I think I have, so I listed a few, about half what I'd recall if given more than 1 minute.
    Whenever someone doubts my credentials, I have to list some players I've played in my tennis career.
    Given a day to think about it further, I'd bet I could easily more than double the list.
     
  41. Noaler

    Noaler Semi-Pro

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    Well there ought to be few players that are geniuses at tennis...and you honestly can't be so certain
     
  42. SuperDuy

    SuperDuy Hall of Fame

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    this post made me laugh. :)
     
  43. v205

    v205 Semi-Pro

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    This kid has the modern forehand technique down. He was clearing beating the other 2 kids with it.
     
  44. GuyClinch

    GuyClinch Hall of Fame

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    Kid has a nice forehand 4.0-4.5 IMHO. I have said this before and I will say it again.. Forget about "muscle mass" this is tennis not NBA basketball. Form is 10x more important then big biceps.

    In skill sports golf, tennis, pool etc kids can dominate.. Agassi beat Jim Brown for chrissake..
     
  45. Blee1613

    Blee1613 Semi-Pro

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    This kid is at least a 4.5. Look at is ridiculous control. Right on the lines. Great depth, footwork, anticipation. And I'm pretty sure he has good pace. You don't get to being the #1 Junior just by sitting around, being lazy. I'm pretty sure the #1 would have about a very good well rounded game. And I'm plenty sure he has played a bigger than average junior who he most likely destroyed.
     
  46. Firefist

    Firefist New User

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    Great form and good footwork, I can't judge the NTRP though.
     
  47. v205

    v205 Semi-Pro

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    He will be a 5.0+ when his body allows it.
     
  48. Avles

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  49. Fuji

    Fuji Legend

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    With only seeing a few minutes of his strokes now, he would probably whoop me 6-2, 6-2, only if I were able to out serve him LOL! The kid is really good!

    -Fuji
     
  50. TennisCJC

    TennisCJC Legend

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    Geez, against other 9-10 yr old kids; the kid is an open level player. My opinion, he would compete well against all comers in his age group.

    Against a young adult player, he could lose to a very good 4.0 player and would lose to the vast majority of 4.5 players.

    I currently play 4.0 (earnest ranking, I have won vast majority of usta 4.0 matches), played about 4-5 years of 4.5 and 1 year 5.0 when much, much younger. I beat a junior ranked top 50in nation when I was much younger. He had great technique but did not really know "how" to play and he lacked patience.

    Adults just have strength, court coverage, strategic, and emotional advantages over juniors.

    Too early to tell how high he can go. There are dozens of "next number 1 in the world" juniors for every junior that even makes it as a pro. Look up Al Parker to see what I mean.

    With luck, the kid will continue to play, do well, and love the game. He is off to a great start.
     

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