I Love Doubles

S&V-not_dead_yet

Talk Tennis Guru
The most fun I have playing tennis is with a group of 4 friends when everyone is firing on all cylinders: great shots, great saves, poaching, faking, a little trash talking. That's TU [Tennis Utopia] as far as I'm concerned.

Yes, there is the downside of feeling pressure not to let your partner down. But if you're in TU, it doesn't matter.

I find there is more variation in doubles also: more extreme angles, more amazing volleys [especially when all 4 are at net], more creative lobs, more disguise, more touch, and more Cat & Mouse stratagems.

Finally, I should add that I love singles also but for different reasons.

If my group gets a few plays that even remotely resemble the following, that's a great day:


 

OnTheLine

Hall of Fame
There is nothing like a doubles match where you and your partner are both having Zone days. You feel extra clarity, you and your partner are always exactly where you need to be and executing, fast tempo, angles, set ups ... wonderful.

If you had asked me a year ago, I would have said this could not happen. Then I got coached by a dubs specialist and wow ... so much fun.

You mentioned something I think a lot of folks like me find they enjoy in dubs. I come from a team sport background, and having the support of a team raises my game. I miss that in singles and often become a headcase needing someone who is not there to get me out of it. The teamwork aspect and that support builds a different very positive energy and motivation.
 

S&V-not_dead_yet

Talk Tennis Guru
You mentioned something I think a lot of folks like me find they enjoy in dubs. I come from a team sport background, and having the support of a team raises my game. I miss that in singles and often become a headcase needing someone who is not there to get me out of it. The teamwork aspect and that support builds a different very positive energy and motivation.
In addition to tennis, I've played a lot of VB and the team energy could be amazing.
 

OnTheLine

Hall of Fame
Even better is when all 4 of you are in the Zone and a great play by one raises the level of the other 3: everyone's level keeps ratcheting upwards until you expect people to make great plays. That's a lot of fun.
I'm okay in a league match if the opponents aren't having a Zone day ... :)

But in my Sunday morning pick up matches with friends, absolutely, especially as you rotate partners and the level stays equally high!
 

weelie

Semi-Pro
I am good at doubles against guys who don't play it, but I lose against guys who play it. Anyway, I've always liked it. And as I am not into golf at all... I need something to move to when my body starts getting old an weary. :)
 
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Attila_the_gorilla

Guest
I am good at doubles against guys who don't play it, but I lose against guys who play it. Anyway, I've always liked it. And as I am not into golf at all... I need something to move to when my body starts getting old an weary. :)
Lawn bowls?
 

user92626

G.O.A.T.
Ages ago, like 5 years, I got sick of doubles and needed more challenges so my friend and I joined a local singles league. We did pretty well against others. Plenty of good singles games. But, it didn't work out and I quit. Soon after my friend also quit. I asked him why. He said it's lonely as hell. Two guys alone in a strange place. Good tennis couldn't make up for it. Haha.

Like the OP has pointed out, we kinda need some trash talks (only possible for familiar people), audience, acknowledgment of our good plays.

So, doubles it is for us, most of the time. Lately the guys are excited again since there are a couple new girls joining the group. :)
 

ByeByePoly

G.O.A.T.
To be fair a lot of the I Hate Doubles posts were in defense of doubles. I wonder how many posts an I Hate Singles thread would get?

I'll give doubles another try.
To heck with fair. If life was fair you would never lose doubles to hack :p players with pathetic strokes. I actually don't hate doubles, and eventually became a decent doubles player age 35-55 because that is primarily what you play at clubs and USTA. But my tennis soul is singles on a hot day outside. If you beat me there, it's a legit win. Your doubles wins mean NOTHING. :D
 
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ByeByePoly

G.O.A.T.
Ages ago, like 5 years, I got sick of doubles and needed more challenges so my friend and I joined a local singles league. We did pretty well against others. Plenty of good singles games. But, it didn't work out and I quit. Soon after my friend also quit. I asked him why. He said it's lonely as hell. Two guys alone in a strange place. Good tennis couldn't make up for it. Haha.

Like the OP has pointed out, we kinda need some trash talks (only possible for familiar people), audience, acknowledgment of our good plays.

So, doubles it is for us, most of the time. Lately the guys are excited again since there are a couple new girls joining the group. :)
Oh yeah ... some quality doubles trash talk on the doubles court with friends. That said ... a little worried about your singles "in strange places".
 

ByeByePoly

G.O.A.T.
People who hate doubles are usually not very good at it. However even people who aren't so good at doubles enjoy it.

I have yet to meet someone who is good at doubles and says they hate it.

J
The discussion was framed wrong with "hate". I better way would have been a list of 1000 things you can't control in doubles... particularly mixed doubles. :p

Also ... even guys that prefer blondes often like brunettes ... even though they are better at blondes.

"I have yet to meet someone who is good at doubles and says they hate it."

BTW ... this is not sound logic. :cool: You generally have to do something a lot to get good at something. If you hate it, you don't want to do it A LOT. I will never be good at grilling eggplant, for example.
 

J011yroger

Talk Tennis Guru
The discussion was framed wrong with "hate". I better way would have been a list of 1000 things you can't control in doubles... particularly mixed doubles. :p

Also ... even guys that prefer blondes often like brunettes ... even though they are better at blondes.

"I have yet to meet someone who is good at doubles and says they hate it."

BTW ... this is not sound logic. :cool: You generally have to do something a lot to get good at something. If you hate it, you don't want to do it A LOT. I will never be good at grilling eggplant, for example.
I know people who are great piano players and hate it.

J
 

Bender

G.O.A.T.
To be fair a lot of the I Hate Doubles posts were in defense of doubles. I wonder how many posts an I Hate Singles thread would get?

I'll give doubles another try.
You'd get posts from a lot of swingers who care to disagree?
 

MyFearHand

Rookie
The discussion was framed wrong with "hate". I better way would have been a list of 1000 things you can't control in doubles... particularly mixed doubles. :p

Also ... even guys that prefer blondes often like brunettes ... even though they are better at blondes.

"I have yet to meet someone who is good at doubles and says they hate it."

BTW ... this is not sound logic. :cool: You generally have to do something a lot to get good at something. If you hate it, you don't want to do it A LOT. I will never be good at grilling eggplant, for example.
Kyrgios and Tomic hate tennis (;
 

joffa101

New User
I suppose the main reason I play tennis is for fitness/health. I do love it as well - it is a form of exercise that I don't need motivation to do. I like doubles, but you can stand around and not break into too much of a sweat unless you are serving. Where singles makes you run!
 

2good4U

Professional
I hate doubles ... 214 replies
I love doubles ... 10 replies:p
And yet the Tennis establishment keeps trying to ram it down the average fan's throat.

I'd love to see doubles try and go it alone with a separate tour ...... crickets chirping.


I'll celebrate the day when the singles tour separates itself from all that boring S&V.
(& gets rid of those 'old folks' alleys, a Tennis court looks so much better w/o them)


I still remember Patrick McEnroe at the U.S. Open, doing his announcing thing, and
saying how exited all of the fans were, watching a doubles match in a mostly empty
stadium. (it could hold hundreds, but there were, at most, a few dozen)


Doubles belongs on a Pickle ball court!


 

Bluefan75

Professional
Oh yeah ... some quality doubles trash talk on the doubles court with friends. That said ... a little worried about your singles "in strange places".
My partner and I have started playing somewhat regularly against a couple of other buddies. Ironically we all met through the singles league. Anyway, the one guy has mentioned how he has trouble closing down a friend if he gets up on them. So I've been joking around with him, saying "F you" and stuff like that to try to get him to think of an opponent, not a buddy on the other side. Not much success, but I think last night I had it.

They won the first set, and we're up 5-2, and I'm about to serve. He asked whose serve it was, said it was mine, and he kind of made a face like "we're not going to win this game." So I said, "well we can just call it 6-2 and you guys start serving the third set." Didn't really hear me. So we're up 2-1 the next time my serve comes up, and so I say it again, "do you want to play this out or just call it 3-1 and you guys serve?" That time he heard me, and you could see him not liking that. They ended up breaking me on that one. It was a lot of fun though, and I would never talk like that with strangers.
 

ByeByePoly

G.O.A.T.
My partner and I have started playing somewhat regularly against a couple of other buddies. Ironically we all met through the singles league. Anyway, the one guy has mentioned how he has trouble closing down a friend if he gets up on them. So I've been joking around with him, saying "F you" and stuff like that to try to get him to think of an opponent, not a buddy on the other side. Not much success, but I think last night I had it.

They won the first set, and we're up 5-2, and I'm about to serve. He asked whose serve it was, said it was mine, and he kind of made a face like "we're not going to win this game." So I said, "well we can just call it 6-2 and you guys start serving the third set." Didn't really hear me. So we're up 2-1 the next time my serve comes up, and so I say it again, "do you want to play this out or just call it 3-1 and you guys serve?" That time he heard me, and you could see him not liking that. They ended up breaking me on that one. It was a lot of fun though, and I would never talk like that with strangers.
I played in doubles leagues with friends that had known each other (and played tennis with/against each other) for 20+ years. The chirping started in warmup ... and continued through the match, beer afterwards, and then walk to cars. Sounded like married couples heading for divorce. I actually miss it... club closed and many can't play anymore due to backs, hips, knees, constant injury. I was one of the younger ones in the group.
 

ByeByePoly

G.O.A.T.
And yet the Tennis establishment keeps trying to ram it down the average fan's throat.

I'd love to see doubles try and go it alone with a separate tour ...... crickets chirping.


I'll celebrate the day when the singles tour separates itself from all that boring S&V.
(& gets rid of those 'old folks' alleys, a Tennis court looks so much better w/o them)


I still remember Patrick McEnroe at the U.S. Open, doing his announcing thing, and
saying how exited all of the fans were, watching a doubles match in a mostly empty
stadium. (it could hold hundreds, but there were, at most, a few dozen)


Doubles belongs on a Pickle ball court!

I really don't hate doubles when it's at a good level, but I will always be a singles player at heart. No doubt the pro singles game is the bigger draw, but sadly I see a lot of empty stadiums even for singles.
 

travlerajm

G.O.A.T.
People who hate doubles are usually not very good at it. However even people who aren't so good at doubles enjoy it.

I have yet to meet someone who is good at doubles and says they hate it.

J
I kinda hate doubles. I used to be quite good at it before I decide to neglect serve practice.

I love "unbalanced" mixed, but that's not really the same as doubles if you are doing it right.
 

Dartagnan64

G.O.A.T.
Grew up with singles, gravitated to doubles in my 40's. Liking doubles more every year. Starting to feel singles is a stupid game. You can get away with so much in singles that you can't in doubles. Whereas the only thing you can get away with in doubles is a lack of fitness. In singles you can win with strokes that would get destroyed in dubs.
 

EddieBrock

Professional
Until recently I didn't think much of doubles, but now that I've been playing more I really love it. Growing up I only played singles and thought doubles was for old guys who couldn't move. It didn't help that my high school team put the lowest ranked guys who made the team into doubles.

After playing a lot of doubles in clinics and now in league matches I really do enjoy it, especially if you're playing well and are in sync with your partner.

One thing that shocked me is I went to a professional match on the stadium and after the singles they had doubles. My friend (who doesn't play tennis) enjoyed the singles, but went ballistic about watching doubles. His comments were"why are there 4 people on the court?", "why are they all standing like that?", "what's the point of this". He wanted to leave immediately and I could only keep him for a few change overs before we left despite my best efforts to explain it. It's just a different mindset for spectators.
 

Dartagnan64

G.O.A.T.
Until recently I didn't think much of doubles, but now that I've been playing more I really love it. Growing up I only played singles and thought doubles was for old guys who couldn't move. It didn't help that my high school team put the lowest ranked guys who made the team into doubles.

After playing a lot of doubles in clinics and now in league matches I really do enjoy it, especially if you're playing well and are in sync with your partner.

One thing that shocked me is I went to a professional match on the stadium and after the singles they had doubles. My friend (who doesn't play tennis) enjoyed the singles, but went ballistic about watching doubles. His comments were"why are there 4 people on the court?", "why are they all standing like that?", "what's the point of this". He wanted to leave immediately and I could only keep him for a few change overs before we left despite my best efforts to explain it. It's just a different mindset for spectators.
Tennis players watch doubles, casual fans watch singles. Doubles is pretty complicated for non-tennis players. When I go to Indian Wells the doubles matches are full of rec tennis players in the stands really appreciating the artistry of good doubles.
 
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Deleted member 120290

Guest
When I watched a high level pro doubles match in person for the first time at Indian Wells, I couldn't believe how fast their reflexes were at the net.
At the court level, I could barely follow the ball when the netman volleyed the ball. Insane volleying skills.
 
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Deleted member 120290

Guest
Grew up with singles, gravitated to doubles in my 40's. Liking doubles more every year. Starting to feel singles is a stupid game. You can get away with so much in singles that you can't in doubles. Whereas the only thing you can get away with in doubles is a lack of fitness. In singles you can win with strokes that would get destroyed in dubs.
Agreed. Dinkers face a quick death at 4.0+ doubles.
 

mcs1970

Hall of Fame
Edit..nm...didn't realize this thread was a response to the I hate doubles thread.
 
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Deleted member 120290

Guest
I like both singles and doubles. As I get older though, singles becomes a game of diminishing returns whereas I still play 4.5 level doubles.

I don't want to be the King of Over 50 in Singles at my club and lose miserably to a 25 year old pusher.
 

ByeByePoly

G.O.A.T.
Grew up with singles, gravitated to doubles in my 40's. Liking doubles more every year. Starting to feel singles is a stupid game. You can get away with so much in singles that you can't in doubles. Whereas the only thing you can get away with in doubles is a lack of fitness. In singles you can win with strokes that would get destroyed in dubs.
One of our problems here at Hotel TTW is we only define good strokes based on technique. So a good stroke here for example here is an ATP FH with full unit turn, full k chain, full shoulder/hip separation, big pace and spin ... yada yada yada. I would guess 95% of all the 4.5s and 5.0s I ever played in tournaments or USTA would fail that TTW test. Also beat most giving the test ;). If you measure “good strokes” based on winning/results ... the common element is players that don’t miss much ... particularly UEs. Doesn’t matter if it’s a short stroke ... lots of arm, etc if player can 1) not miss 2) hit where they are trying to 3) handle pace (whatever) the opponents at their level is throwing at them ... good results.

So in that context of “good” strokes, and rec singles vs rec doubles (say 5.0 and lower) ... IMO and experience “fuller strokes closer to ttw definitions” are much more important in singles than doubles.

This is what I mean. Singles is a game of point construction ... a game of running your opponent, a game of hitting to alternating corners, hitting behind a fast opponent recovering back to center from corner, etc. A full stroke with topspin simply gives you a higher ceiling. The guy that doesn’t miss with short flat strokes will still kick your butt unless the full stroke topspin player is their equal + more offense (angles, heavy ball, etc).

Doubles is none of that. It’s hit to the open side, cc drill, don’t give net guy sitters, no running opponent to corners. The skills are simply different in doubles. So to “pushers getting killed in doubles but not singles”. Here is what I ran into moving to doubles after being a successful singles player (s&v ... avg baseline but not pusher). I ran into veteran doubles players with accurate avg pace serves, moderate pace short strokes that kept the ball low and away from net guy and hardly missed ros, didn’t poach much but did their job (didn’t miss volleys, didn’t miss their overheads, lethal lob if needed but only plan B). These were guys I would beat 6-1, 6-1 in singles, and yet I would lose to them in doubles. Maddening... particularly since I had a quality serve, volley and overhead from s&v singles tournaments. One of the biggest skill deficits was ros. In singles, you are seldom hurt from any low ros ... I 1hbh block/sliced at will. I eventually was successful with that same bh block/slice in doubles, but it took a long time adjusting to the narrowed ros window. I think the volley skills are also much different. Much more reaction volleys in doubles, and in singles I set the volley up before I got their. You can be a top 4.5 singles s&v player by being skilled with first volley (service line) and easy block volley to open court (or short) at the net.

So ... depends how one defines “good strokes” ... I think it’s more about different low UE skills with singles and dubs. To this day, I view doubles less in my control than singles. That’s why I said earlier in the thread ... beat me in singles and you have a win over me. Beat me in doubles ... doesn’t count. 8-B
 

mcs1970

Hall of Fame
. These were guys I would beat 6-1, 6-1 in singles, and yet I would lose to them in doubles.
You beat the guys in singles. In doubles you lose to the TEAM...not the individual players. Every person serves 1 in 4 games, returns less often, moves les...etc. As mentioned on the other thread, it's a team game. Nothing wrong with that as many like the team concept, but it is what it is.

So yes...you are correct, you are the better player until they can beat you 1 on 1 in singles.
 

ByeByePoly

G.O.A.T.
You beat the guys in singles. In doubles you lose to the TEAM...not the individual players. Every person serves 1 in 4 games, returns less often, moves les...etc. As mentioned on the other thread, it's a team game. Nothing wrong with that as many like the team concept, but it is what it is.

So yes...you are correct, you are the better player until they can beat you 1 on 1 in singles.
And that's without even throwing in the trauma ... or is that drama ... of mixed doubles with the wife. I was smart enough to NOT do that much ... but I have witnessed it. :eek:
 

ByeByePoly

G.O.A.T.
You beat the guys in singles. In doubles you lose to the TEAM...not the individual players. Every person serves 1 in 4 games, returns less often, moves les...etc. As mentioned on the other thread, it's a team game. Nothing wrong with that as many like the team concept, but it is what it is.

So yes...you are correct, you are the better player until they can beat you 1 on 1 in singles.
I had some friends who I think came to the opposite conclusion about which counted ... single or doubles. By the time I joined a club, I think I was early 30s, and I was no longer playing singles tournaments. Many of my new friends knew nothing of my prior singles years ... only knew me from USTA doubles and permanent court time doubles. On player in particular (think we have talked about this before ... you are the racquetball player right?) started tennis late in life and became a doubles specialist pretty quick. He was pretty much pro racquetball level when he was young (didn't play the tour, was a lawyer) ... and he had the best hands at net I've ever seen in rec tennis. His strokes were homegrown, and his serve, etc. ... but it just didn't matter because he lived at the net. He figured out how to get his slap-type stroke in all the time ... including ros ... and made it to top 4.5 doubles. He asked me to play singles one day, and I said sure ... sounds fun. His only measure of my tennis was doubles ... he played #1 generally, I played #2 ... therefore he was better than me (probably was at doubles ... but pretty close). I beat him easily in singles, even heavier than singles weight, and not having played much singles in that time frame. Singles for me is like riding a bike... the "automatic stuff" ... point construction, what wins and what loses with my game at the 4.5 level just clicks back in. It's just two separate skill sets ... if you are good at either you are in fact a very good player (even if I won't give you dubs guys credit :p). None of my tennis came easy, so if I achieved a decent level it ALWAYS took a ton of work/hours. F*** those of you where it came easy. :p It was the same with my doubles ... I eventually passed for a real doubles player. The thing of it is, however ... if you come to doubles late from mainly competitive singles, you most likely will be able to pick us out on the court watching doubles. To this day I'm guilty of cc drop shots off my 1hbh ... that's when your doubles partner says "NOOOOO ... then YEEEEES".
 

ByeByePoly

G.O.A.T.
@TenFanLA speaks the truth here when it comes to level of play. I “think” I would still be a decent 4.5 doubles player at 61 if I played competitive double three times a week rather than 3 times a summer. But ... 4.5 singles ... that ship sails with sprinting ... whenever that hits you. If you find a 60 year old winning a 4.5 singles tournament, most likely they are ex-D1 coupled with rare ability to sprint for 2 hour matches at 60.

If your USTA rating post 50 is most important to you ... be a doubles specialist.
 

Off The Wall

Semi-Pro
This is what I mean. Singles is a game of point construction ... a game of running your opponent, a game of hitting to alternating corners, hitting behind a fast opponent recovering back to center from corner, etc. A full stroke with topspin simply gives you a higher ceiling. The guy that doesn’t miss with short flat strokes will still kick your butt unless the full stroke topspin player is their equal + more offense (angles, heavy ball, etc).

Doubles is none of that. It’s hit to the open side, cc drill, don’t give net guy sitters, no running opponent to corners. The skills are simply different in doubles. So to “pushers getting killed in doubles but not singles”. Here is what I ran into moving to doubles after being a successful singles player (s&v ... avg baseline but not pusher). I ran into veteran doubles players with accurate avg pace serves, moderate pace short strokes that kept the ball low and away from net guy and hardly missed ros, didn’t poach much but did their job (didn’t miss volleys, didn’t miss their overheads, lethal lob if needed but only plan B). These were guys I would beat 6-1, 6-1 in singles, and yet I would lose to them in doubles. Maddening... particularly since I had a quality serve, volley and overhead from s&v singles tournaments. One of the biggest skill deficits was ros. In singles, you are seldom hurt from any low ros ... I 1hbh block/sliced at will. I eventually was successful with that same bh block/slice in doubles, but it took a long time adjusting to the narrowed ros window. I think the volley skills are also much different. Much more reaction volleys in doubles, and in singles I set the volley up before I got their. You can be a top 4.5 singles s&v player by being skilled with first volley (service line) and easy block volley to open court (or short) at the net.
Doubles is nothing but point construction. If you are just hitting cc, you are playing singles with obstacles. A veteran doubles team will manipulate you into making a mistake.

I agree that doubles volleys require more efficiency. They’re against two players, and frequently reflexive.

You have the shot-making skills to be a good doubles player. You do not yet see the subtleties of doubles offense, defense, team coordination, and shot selection. That entails a learning curve. It comes. Good luck.
 

ByeByePoly

G.O.A.T.
Doubles is nothing but point construction. If you are just hitting cc, you are playing singles with obstacles. A veteran doubles team will manipulate you into making a mistake.

I agree that doubles volleys require more efficiency. They’re against two players, and frequently reflexive.

You have the shot-making skills to be a good doubles player. You do not yet see the subtleties of doubles offense, defense, team coordination, and shot selection. That entails a learning curve. It comes. Good luck.
fyi ... won a couple of 4.5 doubles tournaments, played #1 doubles on USTA team depending on team that year. I do know how to play doubles ... had weekly doubles drills with our head pro for years.

I expected more “complaint” 8-B on my comment about “no point construction in doubles”. I would say in doubles (at least rec doubles ... pro doubles is almost a different game) you typically have “hit contruction”, not point construction. If you communicate with your partner, they know what you are about to serve, and maybe a planned poach ... two hits, end of plan. And yes ... cc drill is plan A, B and C. Hit dtl ros occasionally to keep net guy honest, and if net guy is leaving it open.

I listed some elements of singles point construction above ... singles is chess, doubles is checkers. :D

That said ... the most unbelievable skills I see on a pro tennis court is doubles. I have no concept how anyone gets that good at handling that pace at net.
 
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