Doubles partner not cutting it

Moveforwardalways

Hall of Fame
Hey TT family. Just coming to the group for some advice about my doubles partner. We used to be friends, played about the same level, and had fun playing together. But things have gone south lately. I’ve been experimenting with different racquets and string set ups that I learned about here, and my game has really elevated. Finally got my specs dialed in with my RF97A and some lead in the handle and at 12:00 to get it into “swing weight 2” range. Weiss Cannon Ultra Cable at 45 lbs mains with cream in the crosses. Getting wicked power and spin now. I’ve now gotten to the point that I am a threat to hit winners from anywhere on the court and often go for them. They almost all work except for the ones where my partner screws it up by getting in the way or not switching sides or not moving over. I feel like my strategic mental game is just beyond his now. I have tried to get him to see where he is wrong and I give him helpful advice like “stop being weak” or “put some lead tape at 12:00 under the bumper guard” or “quit missing your serve so much”, but he just doesn’t get it. How can I get through to this guy? What have you all done with partners like this? I feel like we are not going to make 3.0 sectionals this year with him playing like this.
 

Jonathyl

New User
I recommend forcing your partner into a serious tennis academy to work on his skills. Explain to him that his playing level is simply unacceptable, and it needs to stop. You could also bring his wife and/or kids into it and they can help explain the shame he is bringing to everyone around him. The unfortunate reality is that if he simply refuses to fix his game, it may be time to ditch him as a partner (and a friend) and move on to someone else.
 

travlerajm

G.O.A.T.
Hey TT family. Just coming to the group for some advice about my doubles partner. We used to be friends, played about the same level, and had fun playing together. But things have gone south lately. I’ve been experimenting with different racquets and string set ups that I learned about here, and my game has really elevated. Finally got my specs dialed in with my RF97A and some lead in the handle and at 12:00 to get it into “swing weight 2” range. Weiss Cannon Ultra Cable at 45 lbs mains with cream in the crosses. Getting wicked power and spin now. I’ve now gotten to the point that I am a threat to hit winners from anywhere on the court and often go for them. They almost all work except for the ones where my partner screws it up by getting in the way or not switching sides or not moving over. I feel like my strategic mental game is just beyond his now. I have tried to get him to see where he is wrong and I give him helpful advice like “stop being weak” or “put some lead tape at 12:00 under the bumper guard” or “quit missing your serve so much”, but he just doesn’t get it. How can I get through to this guy? What have you all done with partners like this? I feel like we are not going to make 3.0 sectionals this year with him playing like this.
Lucky for you, it sounds like your game has reached new heights and you will get bumped up to 3.5 soon. So you won’t have to deal with having a hacker rec player partner anymore after this year.
 

Dartagnan64

G.O.A.T.
Lol nice parody of the standard TW complaints. It's always that weak partner that holds you back.

When will we see the weaker partners rise up and complain that their stronger partner is failing at his job of carrying me to sectionals?

I'm entering a Calcutta tournament this month with a stronger partner, so i'll try to remember to post about how he's letting me down by not covering my wild poaches that get passed DTL. Or being unable to save me when the opponent jumps on my lame second serve. Or being unable to reflex volley the smashes I give to the opponent with my weak floaty sitters.
 

OnTheLine

Hall of Fame
Hey TT family. Just coming to the group for some advice about my doubles partner. We used to be friends, played about the same level, and had fun playing together. But things have gone south lately. I’ve been experimenting with different racquets and string set ups that I learned about here, and my game has really elevated. Finally got my specs dialed in with my RF97A and some lead in the handle and at 12:00 to get it into “swing weight 2” range. Weiss Cannon Ultra Cable at 45 lbs mains with cream in the crosses. Getting wicked power and spin now. I’ve now gotten to the point that I am a threat to hit winners from anywhere on the court and often go for them. They almost all work except for the ones where my partner screws it up by getting in the way or not switching sides or not moving over. I feel like my strategic mental game is just beyond his now. I have tried to get him to see where he is wrong and I give him helpful advice like “stop being weak” or “put some lead tape at 12:00 under the bumper guard” or “quit missing your serve so much”, but he just doesn’t get it. How can I get through to this guy? What have you all done with partners like this? I feel like we are not going to make 3.0 sectionals this year with him playing like this.
Oh man, I feel you!
A partner I used to win with ( a lot!) just doesn't cut it anymore.
I get that she is older but it would really help if she worked on her movement .... just so slow.
I have tried to encourage her to work on her fitness and speed, but after her hip replacement when she turned 70 she just isn't interested the way I think she should be.

I also don't think that anyone who isn't willing to put in a minimum of 5 days a week on the court should be playing on any of my teams. I mean really, we need only players who take the game seriously!
 

J011yroger

Talk Tennis Guru
I was in the same boat but my partner got his hip resurfaced and is now playing at a strong 4.5 level so I should be able to carry him if he is not too tired from singles.

Only problem is that he is playing with the same old Head he used as a kid and it's too flexible to get any sting on the ball.

J
 

TagUrIt

Hall of Fame
I have tried to get him to see where he is wrong and I give him helpful advice like “stop being weak” or “put some lead tape at 12:00 under the bumper guard” or “quit missing your serve so much”, but he just doesn’t get it.
It's great that your game has improved and you've found a racquet that you enjoy. I'm sorry to say this, but do you hear yourself? You are coming across as very selfish and self-centered in this post. A lot of what you wrote was how well you're playing, what you're doing right and how much your partner is doing wrong and refuses to listen to your obvious sound advice. That's a lot of me, me, me, me. The obvious answer is to find a new partner or play singles. You've obviously lost sight of what it means to have a doubles PARTNER. You may think you're helping him or trying to build him up, but you're doing quite the opposite. Playing doubles is about being a team, winning together or losing together. You are being critical and damn near condescending to your partner, quite frankly I wouldn't want to play with an attitude like yours. A 3.0 hitting winners from almost anywhere on the court? Um.......yeah
 

J_R_B

Hall of Fame
Hey TT family. Just coming to the group for some advice about my doubles partner. We used to be friends, played about the same level, and had fun playing together. But things have gone south lately. I’ve been experimenting with different racquets and string set ups that I learned about here, and my game has really elevated. Finally got my specs dialed in with my RF97A and some lead in the handle and at 12:00 to get it into “swing weight 2” range. Weiss Cannon Ultra Cable at 45 lbs mains with cream in the crosses. Getting wicked power and spin now. I’ve now gotten to the point that I am a threat to hit winners from anywhere on the court and often go for them. They almost all work except for the ones where my partner screws it up by getting in the way or not switching sides or not moving over. I feel like my strategic mental game is just beyond his now. I have tried to get him to see where he is wrong and I give him helpful advice like “stop being weak” or “put some lead tape at 12:00 under the bumper guard” or “quit missing your serve so much”, but he just doesn’t get it. How can I get through to this guy? What have you all done with partners like this? I feel like we are not going to make 3.0 sectionals this year with him playing like this.
You should be my partner. Losing is always my partner's fault, too, so it would be a refreshing change of roles for you.
 
It's great that your game has improved and you've found a racquet that you enjoy. I'm sorry to say this, but do you hear yourself? You are coming across as very selfish and self-centered in this post. A lot of what you wrote was how well you're playing, what you're doing right and how much your partner is doing wrong and refuses to listen to your obvious sound advice. That's a lot of me, me, me, me. The obvious answer is to find a new partner or play singles. You've obviously lost sight of what it means to have a doubles PARTNER. You may think you're helping him or trying to build him up, but you're doing quite the opposite. Playing doubles is about being a team, winning together or losing together. You are being critical and damn near condescending to your partner, quite frankly I wouldn't want to play with an attitude like yours. A 3.0 hitting winners from almost anywhere on the court? Um.......yeah
I think you missed the joke. Or am I missing your joke?
I think it’s the first one
 

tomato123

Professional
This is all great but I still think you have some room for improvement if you want to truly achieve tennis greatness. Or maybe you achieved these already and just forgot to mention:

-Do you hit harder than Nadal?
-Do you know the USTA rulebook word for word to win all disputes?
-Have you started a discussion about the merits of pusher strategy, and then fight people IRL because you couldn't agree on what a pusher is?
-Do you use a two handed forehand?
 

zipplock

Hall of Fame
Hey TT family. Just coming to the group for some advice about my doubles partner. We used to be friends, played about the same level, and had fun playing together. But things have gone south lately. I’ve been experimenting with different racquets and string set ups that I learned about here, and my game has really elevated. Finally got my specs dialed in with my RF97A and some lead in the handle and at 12:00 to get it into “swing weight 2” range. Weiss Cannon Ultra Cable at 45 lbs mains with cream in the crosses. Getting wicked power and spin now. I’ve now gotten to the point that I am a threat to hit winners from anywhere on the court and often go for them. They almost all work except for the ones where my partner screws it up by getting in the way or not switching sides or not moving over. I feel like my strategic mental game is just beyond his now. I have tried to get him to see where he is wrong and I give him helpful advice like “stop being weak” or “put some lead tape at 12:00 under the bumper guard” or “quit missing your serve so much”, but he just doesn’t get it. How can I get through to this guy? What have you all done with partners like this? I feel like we are not going to make 3.0 sectionals this year with him playing like this.
This is hilarious, comedic genius!!!
 

Papa Mango

Semi-Pro
Have you considered asking him/her to just sit outside the court after his/her return/serve and taking over the court with your finely tuned SW24 stick.
Once you start hitting the THOPOMO (tm) (Two Handed Open POMO) strokes, I think he/she will be more than happy to have their name engraved on the trophy.
I know I would be.
 

onehandbh

Legend
Only problem is that he is playing with the same old Head he used as a kid and it's too flexible to get any sting on the ball.

J
My doubles partner is also playing with the same old head he had as a kid but it is anything but flexible. He is every bit as hard-headed as he was as a kid and refuses to change his ways.
 

sureshs

Bionic Poster
This is the fourth recent thread whining about doubles partners. You would think these guys were playing with the Bryans before and complaining now because they retired and these guys are forced to play with rec players.
 

sureshs

Bionic Poster
Lucky for you, it sounds like your game has reached new heights and you will get bumped up to 3.5 soon. So you won’t have to deal with having a hacker rec player partner anymore after this year.
@travlerajm I knew you would respond given how OP mentioned SW2.

Does OP know you invented the SW2 concept and changed tennis forever?
 

eelhc

Hall of Fame
When I captained teams I always made this announcement before the season:

"Anyone who has issues with their regular doubles partner if they have one, or a doubles partner I pair them up with, let me know ASAP and I will make sure that you only play singles".
 

tomato123

Professional
Not to mention, he got hit in the groin twice recently, and both times from behind the baseline. I told him a little TW tungsten puddly in the handle would make that swing weight 2 racquet more maneuverable to stop that. But he never listens.
Yes, more specifically, tungsten will have to go at the handle of the groin if it's going to win the collision with the ball.
 

MathGeek

Hall of Fame
I've been on both sides of this issue. When I'm the weaker player, I'm just honest about my weaknesses and the level of effort I'm willing to put in to get better. I play for recreation, and neither my schedule not my aging joints will allow enough practice to significantly improve my overall game. I can pick a few targeted areas - say volleying or overheads - but the more things a partner wants me to "fix" the less attention each is going to get.

When I'm the stronger partner, usually the most glaring weakness in my partner is footwork - which often comes down to cardio deficiencies leading to lazy footwork 15 minutes into a match. Short of an extensive cardio program, it's not likely to improve much in most recreational doubles partners. Instead, I prefer to discuss a simple strategy to work with the weakness rather than to eliminate. We play the hand we are dealt.

Just because someone's your doubles partner does not mean you get to load them up with lots of stuff to do. If they don't meet your standards with the level of effort they are willing to expend, find another partner. Lots of doubles partners will never say "enough" regarding demands for improvements that take lots of time and effort.
 

J_R_B

Hall of Fame
That seems unnecessarily bitchy.
I always send out a similar note, just without the snarky singles comment at the end, but I always ask people to tell me what style they play, what kind of people they prefer to play with, whether they prefer ad or deuce, and whether there are specific people they either want to or don't want to play with. I want to know if there was some altercation between people in the past that I don't know about so I can avoid it before it becomes an issue because you never know. Since I captain a men's team, in ten years, I've never had anyone say they can't stand to play with someone, although occasionally I have had people tell me they've played with certain people in the past and they don't mesh well as a team. That's not bltching or a being a diva or whatever. To a captain, that's useful information.
 

Gazelle

G.O.A.T.
It's great that your game has improved and you've found a racquet that you enjoy. I'm sorry to say this, but do you hear yourself? You are coming across as very selfish and self-centered in this post. A lot of what you wrote was how well you're playing, what you're doing right and how much your partner is doing wrong and refuses to listen to your obvious sound advice. That's a lot of me, me, me, me. The obvious answer is to find a new partner or play singles. You've obviously lost sight of what it means to have a doubles PARTNER. You may think you're helping him or trying to build him up, but you're doing quite the opposite. Playing doubles is about being a team, winning together or losing together. You are being critical and damn near condescending to your partner, quite frankly I wouldn't want to play with an attitude like yours. A 3.0 hitting winners from almost anywhere on the court? Um.......yeah
It's clearly a troll thread, he's parodying other threads.
 

FuzzyYellowBalls

Hall of Fame
You need to dominate your partner into listening to you, may I suggest sharing a sensual massage with him, book one for him and you as a surprise for after your next match. If you live in a town with traditional Korean spas, LA, Dallas, NY city, the fully nude ones, go there together.
 

Jono123

New User
I have the same issue with singles game lately. My opponents are playing an inferior style of tennis which is dragging me down to their level. If I was to play a better class of player , I'd win easy.
 

Dartagnan64

G.O.A.T.
I have the same issue with singles game lately. My opponents are playing an inferior style of tennis which is dragging me down to their level. If I was to play a better class of player , I'd win easy.

Yeah darn those dinkers and lobbers, chop shotters and pushers. I'd beat them easily if i could be bothered to learn how, but I'd rather just lose and get back to playing real tennis players.
 

Nostradamus

Bionic Poster
Of all the years i have been playing doubles,, when i was paired up with bad doubles player,,,, it just seem like 99 % of the time,, most COMMON theme seem to be that they are very Poor net players,, meaning missing easy volleys at net and trying too much on a very tough volley instead of putting it in play deep and setting up the next shot..

Notice here that i didn't say put away volleys,,,,, i said missing routine volleys and trying to kill the volleys that they shouldn't
 

OnTheLine

Hall of Fame
I am serious about this
Because I am avoiding doing housework I will entertain you for a moment.

One can have a team that is both "serious" and social.

First a definition: an adult recreational player can never be actually serious. We will never earn a living playing a tennis match. (with the exception of some odd circles with heavy gambling involved)

I have a team of 12 people with lives and family and careers. Most play 3X a week, some more often. They all look to win. But are satisfied with a well-fought loss.

And they bring snacks.

Balance dude.
 
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