Originally Posted by cknobman
IDK to be honest I dont really think it matters much if the guy is a 4.0 or a 4.5.
I have been playing in a mixed doubles league for several years now and from my experience the matches are almost always decided by which male can break down/exploit the other teams female the most often.
I am a 4.0 and so is my partner but we have played against every variation of the 3.5-4.5 pairings.
It boils down to every male either overpowering, spinning, or exploiting the opposing teams female player.
I rarely (if ever) see a 4.0 male that cannot easily handle a 4.0 woman and most of the time even the 3.5 men can handle 4.0 women because even if the woman has good strokes her movement is always the deal breaker. Women react slower and are less explosive in their movement so its all too easy to get them deep then hit it short and win the point.
Whether the guy is 4.5 or not really isnt a huge difference unless when his female partner is serving your teams return game isnt good enough to get past him. Usually a 3.5 females serve is "tee time" for the other team and its easy to break her.
I agree. Last time i played 8.0 (3 years ago) my partner and i played 4 matches against a 4.5M/3.5F and we won all 4 matches. I want to mention that i am very considerate and rarely go after the woman, no matter what level she is. Yes, it'll be hard to break the 4.5 guy's serve but remember you're facing a 3.5 woman's serve which, no offense to any 3.5's, is not a very daunting task.
Out of all the 4.5 guys we faced, only one of them had a serve that gave me any trouble. They all gave my partner trouble though. Just gotta tell yourself that you won't likely break the guy's serve so you can't waste your opportunities in breaking the woman. You break the woman you'll put more pressure on the guy to "take over".
But i think it's a lot mental with you guys. Welcome the competition. Bring it on. These 4.5 guys aren't superstars. They'll blast some aces/winners by you, make tough drop/half volleys, but they'll make mistakes, they'll shank some balls. But the more you think about the guy being "too good" for 8.0, the worse you're gonna play. I go into every match having confidence in MY game and that's what you guys should do too.