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-   -   USOpen balls, difference? (http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=438176)

cluckcluck 08-31-2012 04:09 PM

USOpen balls, difference?
 
Watching Roddick's match, he gave the ump a ball and said it was a woman's ball. The chair took it.
Do the women play with a different tennis ball than the men?
If so, what is the difference?

Nostradamus 08-31-2012 04:11 PM

men--hard court heavy duty balls
women-- hard court regular duty balls

rovex 08-31-2012 04:11 PM

I wasn't aware myself until this happened, it's supposedly lighter.

Calor1 09-01-2012 01:10 AM

Is it only at the US Open that the balls differ? Or is it at the other majors too?

Nostradamus 09-01-2012 05:25 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by rovex (Post 6852452)
I wasn't aware myself until this happened, it's supposedly lighter.

Right, they are not as strong as men. so they need lighter balls. it is meant to prevent injuries. but these lighter balls wear out real fast.

BreakPoint 09-01-2012 09:13 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Calor1 (Post 6853549)
On topic: Is it only at the US Open that the balls differ? Or is it at the other majors too?

I believe it's at all women's pro tournaments that they use the different balls.

BreakPoint 09-01-2012 09:18 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Nostradamus (Post 6853745)
Right, they are not as strong as men. so they need lighter balls. it is meant to prevent injuries. but these lighter balls wear out real fast.

That makes no sense. If women are not as strong as men, then they can't hit the heavier ball as hard either. If they can't hit the ball as hard, the same ball won't have as much momentum when it hits their racquets.

I think maybe they use the lighter balls to give viewers the illusion that they're hitting the ball as hard as the men.

cluckcluck 09-01-2012 10:03 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by BreakPoint (Post 6854162)
I think maybe they use the lighter balls to give viewers the illusion that they're hitting the ball as hard as the men.

This could actually be a very true statement. Still, the women's groundstrokes still seem slow...even with a lighter tennis ball.

Nostradamus 09-02-2012 06:36 AM

I think this women's balls would be perfect for clay courts because the felt isn't has heavy so it won't pick up the clay as much.

SystemicAnomaly 09-02-2012 12:21 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Calor1 (Post 6853549)
It's like being worse at your job, working less but getting paid just as much. I'd like to be a female tennis player to, best job in the world!

On topic: Is it only at the US Open that the balls differ? Or is it at the other majors too?

On the Wilson site there is only 1 version of the Wilson AO tennis ball (however it is available in either a 3-ball can or a 4-ball can). OTOH, aside from the 3-ball and 4-ball options, there are at least 5 versions of the US Open tennis ball: regular duty, extra duty, high altitude (extra duty), optic yellow grass court (reg duty), and white grasscourt (reg duty).

Does anyone have evidence that there is more than 1 version of the AO ball? I only see one version currently available for the the Wimbledon ball from the Slazenger site. Not looked at the balls currently used for RG (FO), but I believe that they often use a regular duty ball for many clay tournaments (for both men and women?).

Head/Penn balls are used for many ATP and WTA tournaments. The ATP often uses the Head ATP or Penn ATP ball (the same ball as the Head ball). The WTA often uses the Regular Duty (red label) version of the Penn Championship ball (and probably the Head Championship ball outside of the US).

If the regular duty balls are any lighter that the extra duty ball is slight since all pro balls must follow the strict ITF guidelines. All balls, including high-altitude and slow (oversize/Type 3) balls, must fall in a fairly narrow weight range: 1.975-2.095 ounces.

http://www.itftennis.com/technical/rules/history/index.asp#2006

With the Penn Championship balls, the red label (regular duty) balls, to me, seems to be a bit softer than the extra duty balls (but I could be wrong about that). This could mean the the rubber is not as stiff and/or the internal pressure is slightly less for the regular duty balls.

Regular duty balls appear to be very slightly smaller in diameter due to the reduced felt content. Again, the size range is also confined to a fairly narrow range (see link above). The reduced felt probably causes the ball to encounter less air drag and, therefore, will slow down at a slower rate than extra duty ball. IOW, the regular duty is probably a bit faster than extra duty when flying thru the air. Don't know if the speed change due to the bounce is any different due to differences in the felt -- but the bounce speed change could be different if the rubber composition or internal pressure are different.
.

cluckcluck 09-02-2012 01:15 PM

It's still different, I can't seem to wrap my head around why it's allowed.

SystemicAnomaly 09-02-2012 03:18 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by cluckcluck (Post 6858142)
It's still different, I can't seem to wrap my head around why it's allowed.

Are you talking about the ball differences? Why should it not be allowed? As I indicated, the balls used by the WTA and the ATP must all meet ITF requirements. The ITF specs (see link in my previous post) are fairly narrow in range for the 4 ball types shown. These specs include weight, size, rebound height (percentage), forward deformation, return deformation and ball color. It the balls meet the fairly tight ITF requirements, they are legal.

I believe that the slight differences between the men's ball and the women's ball is more of an attempt to slow down the men's game rather than artificially boost the women's game. Many of us still recall how boring the men's game was on faster surfaces in the early/mid 90s. Very few rallies -- it was all about a big serve and a big return. The women's game was often considered much more entertaining for part of the 80s and 90s than the no-rally men's game. The larger type 3 ball was introduced as a failed attempt to slow down the prom men's game. With that as a widely unpopular solution, pro balls were made brighter and courts were slowed down.

Here is a picture that shows the slight difference in size between the extra duty ball (on the left) and the regular duty ball:

http://i173.photobucket.com/albums/w50/vsbabolat/IMG_0462.jpg

cluckcluck 09-02-2012 03:40 PM

I can't wrap my head around why there are two different balls when the "level playing field" has been a topic since the late 70's. If the WTA wants equality, then truly make it equal, don't be selective.

Overheadsmash 09-02-2012 04:46 PM

At cinci, the men use heavy duty penn ATP and the women use regular duty penn ATP.

TennisMaestro 09-03-2012 12:42 AM

Wonder what they use in mixed dubs?

SystemicAnomaly 09-03-2012 04:03 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by woodrow1029 (Post 6853791)
They don't get different balls at every tournament. There's no on court coaching at the grand slams. There's no difference in the time between points or changeovers at the grand slams. The time between points at WTA events is actually SHORTER than at ATP events...

Excellent feedback from a knowledgeable source. This guy has officiated at numerous professional tennis events, often as a chair umpire.


Quote:

Originally Posted by cluckcluck (Post 6858470)
I can't wrap my head around why there are two different balls when the "level playing field" has been a topic since the late 70's. If the WTA wants equality, then truly make it equal, don't be selective.

Nitpick much? I don't see why you are making such a big fuss about this particular point. I can't see any compelling reason why the ball used should have any bearing on the equity question of prize money. Women are not deriving an unfair benefit over male players by using a different ITF-approved ball.

Should we also insist that women wear men's shoes, men's clothes and use manly 12+ oz racquets in order to receive equal pay? Are women gaining an unfair advantage with higher iron levels in their diets and higher estrogen levels in their blood stream?

If you want to make an issue about prize money for events where men play best of 5 while women only play best of 3, then I'm with you on that point. However, denying equity because the WTA uses a slightly different ball is pure folly.

mikeler 09-03-2012 04:09 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Nostradamus (Post 6856827)
I think this women's balls would be perfect for clay courts because the felt isn't has heavy so it won't pick up the clay as much.


Regular duty felt US Open balls are what most of us at my club use on clay now.

NikeWilson 09-03-2012 04:20 PM

Blame Billie Jean King. :D

cluckcluck 09-03-2012 06:43 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by SystemicAnomaly (Post 6859749)
Nitpick much? I don't see why you are making such a big fuss about this particular point. I can't see any compelling reason why the ball used should have any bearing on the equity question of prize money. Women are not deriving an unfair benefit over male players by using a different ITF-approved ball.

I'm sorry for having an opinion and questions. I'm ashamed that I'm the only person on this public forum that questions professional tennis.

Hankenstein 09-04-2012 06:49 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by TennisMaestro (Post 6859565)
Wonder what they use in mixed dubs?

They use the Regular Duty balls.

Here in Sweden we only have Extra Duty US Open balls. I tried the Regular Duty ball last week in New York and that regular duty ball is harder and faster then the extra duty ball.


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