Originally Posted by SystemicAnomaly
This is fallacious thinking and is a very common misconception. The person closest to the ball very often does not have the best view of the ball with respect to the line. If a player is very close to the bounce point, their ability to make an accurate call on a ball on the line or close to the line is very poor.
The problem in this situation is that the player in question is usually trying to track the ball rather than focusing on the line. Certified linesman are taught not to watch the ball when it approaches close to a line of interest. If it appears that a ball will bounce close to a line, they stop watching the ball and focus on the line instead -- keeping their head & eyes very still before and after the bounce event.
This is not the case with the player who is trying to to return a ball. They are tracking the ball and their head and/or eyes are usually moving. Studies have shown that our ability to make an accurate ball when the head/eyes are moving is extremely poor.
In addition, even when the head/eyes are still, the ball is usually traversing the field of vision much too quickly when it is in close proximity for the smooth pursuit (visual) system to track accurately. Quite often, the ball essentially becomes "invisible" for a short period of time when it is in close proximity. How often do you really seen the ball as it comes into contact with your strings? It is impossible most of the time. This is a similar situation for balls that bounce very close to us.
SA, are you talking about having both players back (other than ROS)? Cuz, I am talking about having both players up 1/2 of the time or more, or one up one back.
If both players are up - balls that goes wide cannot be easily called by the partner further away. First you got the other partner in the way, second, it goes parallel to the line, which is harder to call. If you get a deep lob and that means only one guy is chasing it, turning 180 facing the fence, the net should be moving to cover, should not be 180 ball watching. Therefore the guy chasing the ball should have the best view of the bounce.
If playing one up one back - I can see the situation you described, but only when the baseline guy is standing very close to the baseline hitting a ball on the rise. perhaps? I play singles and have no problem calling a baseline ball out unless it is super fast going right at my feet, AND I am standing a couple inches from the baseline. I mean I have to stand my ground and not move back at all to let happen. IF the ball is bouncing on the far side, over the net guy wide, or long, the net guy should switch to the other side while the baseline guy goes after that ball. The net guy is going away from the ball, it would be difficult to call the baseline ball out.
Only a person who is in line with the baseline like a line judge can call it better. But the net person is never in line with the baseline at any given time. So this only works on calling a serve or when both guys are back. I am no expert doubles player but I never play both back. My coach pushes us to play both up. And when we play one up one back the net guy is too busy cover the net and doesn't look back long enough to make over rule calls.