Thread: Stalling
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Old 11-18-2013, 01:18 PM   #11
Sakkijarvi
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Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 500
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I am with the OP on this, and am down on gamesmanship across the board. Stalling is treated in Gilbert's "Winning Ugly", IIRC he speaks to what he called the 'turtle' play by Ivan Lendl. While I understand there are times to 'slow things down' ... same should be conducted within the rules and code of the sport. Anything way beyond that puts you into a gamesmanship type, aka 'weenie' and sadly for you, outside the realm of 'sportsman'.

I have seen stalling conducted, and the handful of 'worst of' types I have every encountered, were users of this charlatan's tool. One example is a guy that runs after all balls like a deer, a true golden retriever. But has to sit forever at changeovers, and will never, ever rise until you have already walked back on the court and are standing there waiting. You can't help but get sucked into this charade, a if you address him on it ... boom, distraction. Call an umpire (which I did in one USTA match -- in which the guy erupted in anger and started yelling that the owner of the club) -- and risk disrupting the match. Even think of how annoying it is ... and again, distraction. So the weenie that embraces this approach puts winning above everything and does not care if the sporting experience is ruined. So you beat the weenie ... still less than a good time.

Another one is 'the long walk'. I have seen this one a few times. One guy I called on it, it was ridiculous. I hit a first serve ... he heads off to fetch the ball 40 yards away on an adjacent court. I said, "whatcha doin'....' Same guy didn't hit the ball back to me during warmups ... my brain goes 'yawn' when I come across these people ... usually ensconced in USTA (perhaps because they can't create a tennis network of buddies due to their 'issues'...) Then there is the stall where the guy doesn't hit the ball to you when he needs to send you a ball .. wanders in to pick up balls literally touching the net, 'I once saw a guy break an ankle...' And so on.

We also have the bathroom-break guys. Zen-like trance during changeover guys. All subsets of stalling.

Look, the rules limit the time for changeovers and such. A little extra factored in for age, fitness and club tennis atmosphere is fine. But if you are a staller, you know it, and thus look in the mirror and mouth the word 'weeeeenie'. Mustard, a bun and a hungry, half-starved Grizzly Bear is all you deserve :0
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