Originally Posted by Dags
I think this viewpoint will alienate a number of recreational players. If you're playing tournaments, and to a lesser extent league, then it's possibly true. However, if the biggest 'match' you play is with recreational hitting partners or a ladder match at your local club, then a winning at all costs attitude is less prevalent.
It's important to remember that the reason we play is because we enjoy the game. Some people enjoy winning so much, that will be their focus. Others look elsewhere. Nowadays I measure success not on the scoreline, but on how well I feel I've played: and for me, that's about striking the ball cleanly, and moving well. I don't have that killer attitude any more. I'd far rather come off court feeling I've played well and losing, than having a stinker but grinding out a win.
Hmmmm, I'm not into winning at all costs in social situations and I'm the "playing tournaments" type, BUT...winning is the only relevant improvement measurement in the end.
Winning against guys who used to beat you...etc.
With regards to your bolded statement...if you are striking the ball cleanly and moving well...you should win also...unless you are playing a vastly superior player in which case yes...just playing against him would be a priviledge.
I somehow agree with the attitude that one should feel good about himself if playing well ... regardless of the result, but that only applies when playing superior players IMO.
If I'm playing somebody at my level...and playing well...playing well...quite frankly should mean winning the match.
Hitting a few clean winners, playing a few gorgeous points but making a ton of unforced errors or making some stupid tactical decisions and losing...does NOT mean playing well in my book.