It doesn't take much reading in this forum to understand that most tennis players look upon sandbaggers in USTA league play with about the same level of loathing as they would upon a person who steals purses from elderly women. FWIW, I agree with this sentiment. But I've recently discovered that I myself am being viewed as a sandbagger by some in my league, and this has caused me to reconsider this harsh judgement. My background: I've been a 3.5 rated player for about 6 years now. For 5 of these years I have played mostly singles and won probably somewhere around 85-90% of my matches. At the end of every season I think, "Hmmmm, I think I might get bumped up this year," but so far, no go. Several players whom I've beaten have been moved to 4.0 over those years -- sometimes in the year I beat them. My team has made it to Districts every year for the past 5 years. Whereas my winning percentage is probably somewhere around 95% in my town, against the tougher competition at the district level my winning percentage is closer to 50%. I don't try to lose at Districts, these players are simply of a higher quality and I have a more difficult time winning. Here, in my opinion, is the rub ... and the reason we all might want to cut some of these presumed sandbaggers some slack. Several players in my town have been bumped to 4.0 after they had a great winning percentage locally, but their teams did not advance to Districts. It seems that the algorithm used by the USTA to calculate ratings doesn't accurately weight matches, and so my losses at Districts cause me to remain a 3.5, even as I consistently beat players locally who are bumped to 4.0 based on their local record. I'm not saying all sandbaggers are legitimately trying to win and are being kept at a lower rating (perhaps unfairly) by a faulty computer system, but based on my experience it does happen. And to those of you who might ask why I don't just play up, rather than continue beating up on 3.5s my answer is simple ... no one has asked me to play on their 4.0 team. My option appears to be play 3.5 or don't play USTA league tennis at all, which would be a shame because I do enjoy the team aspect of it.