NTRP ratings seem more and more weird to me

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by FiReFTW, Jul 7, 2018.

  1. FiReFTW

    FiReFTW Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2016
    Messages:
    3,183
    The longer I keep watching some tennis youtube videos the more odd these ratings seem.

    Why are the ratings so stuffed together?
    Why don't they have a much bigger range between NTRP 2.0 and 7.0?

    It seems to be that UTR is much more accurate and better way to measure skill, and even that is slightly too much stuffed together.

    For example I was watching these 2 tennis matches on youtube today:

    Both are 4.0 NTRP levels it seems, but the quality difference is absolutely astonishing, those 2nd guys would crush the 1st video guys easily.





    So im genuenly wondering, the person who came up with these ratings, why did they make such a stuffed ratings when you could basically probably make like 4-5 separate ratings out of each of these NTRP 4.0 or 4.5 or whatever?

    Not that I really care a great deal about it, but it does seem extremely weird and odd to me that someone with the same rating is vastly superior to another, hmm... heck the 2nd vid guys even seem better than some 4.5s
     
    #1
  2. StringSnapper

    StringSnapper Professional

    Joined:
    May 15, 2017
    Messages:
    1,308
    Lol the guys in the bottom video really employing the "topspin lob to backhand"

    weird looking forehand techniques they have though

    maybe its cos the bottom one is 4.0 world team? higher level 4.0s?

    i agree with you tho, a bigger scale would be better
     
    FiReFTW likes this.
    #2
  3. ptuanminh

    ptuanminh Professional

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2014
    Messages:
    868
    The bottom 2 guys went nationals 4.0. So they are the higher end of 4.0. Of course, they will crush most 4.0.
     
    #3
  4. FiReFTW

    FiReFTW Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2016
    Messages:
    3,183
    Is that like a championship for the best 4.0 in the USA?

    I guess then it makes sense, but I still think theres a too big gap in a single ranking.
     
    #4
  5. StringSnapper

    StringSnapper Professional

    Joined:
    May 15, 2017
    Messages:
    1,308
    J011y was saying something like the top 20% 4.0s are as good as 4.5s usually, the bell ends of the curve bleed into the next rank

    The bottom guys dont look that good imo, @nytennisaddict says he's a 4.5 and i think he would beat them comfortably from what ive seen of his play
     
    #5
  6. samarai

    samarai Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2011
    Messages:
    473
    4.0 is a recreational player base rating. all it means is that they have won most matches in the 3.5 brackets. The US is huge, so a 4.0 in california, texas, florida ( seems to be tennis hot beds) may play at a higher level than in other states. In our region u start at a 3.0( theres no teams under it) u win enough(doesnt matter what strokes look like) and u start advancing. Just dont equate stoke play to ntrp rating.
     
    #6
  7. Wesley J

    Wesley J Rookie

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2017
    Messages:
    179
    Location:
    Virginia
    Speaking as the guy from the first video, I'd say you just happened to pick poor examples for comparison.

    My video is a 3.5 (me) playing up in a local non-usta 4.0 league that I had a losing record in (I was beaten pretty thoroughly in that video). Most of the players there including my opponent are USTA rated 4.0s though.

    The guys on the bottom are rated USTA 4.5 and 5.0 according to the video.

    I'd say these guys would be a better measuring stick for what a decent 4.0 should look like.

    https://www.youtube.com/user/dynne190
    https://www.youtube.com/user/J3llo3
     
    #7
  8. Steady Eddy

    Steady Eddy Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2007
    Messages:
    3,809
    Location:
    Arizona
    In this area, golf has a big advantage over tennis. A golfer can figure his average score at his club, and then by seeing where his club course is ranked, get a good idea what kind of player he is.

    It's really hard to do this in tennis. When I started in 1979 the NTRP rating system was new. Before that you had Open, A, B, C, and D. For several years after NTRP you still had tournaments calling their divisions Open, A, and B. (It was rare to find one for C players. I never saw one for D players).

    I don' know why the switch was made. Maybe it was because it was felt that calling people C players or D players was insulting?

    At any rate, it's hard to handicap tennis as easily as golf. With the handicap system, two golfers can of different abilities can play for money. How do you do that in tennis? I'm a 3.5. So should a 4.0 spot me 30-0 in every game? Would that make it a fair bet? Tennis just doesn't work well for betting.
     
    #8
  9. Chadillac

    Chadillac Legend

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2015
    Messages:
    9,240
    Location:
    Banned
    Thats the problem, there shouldnt be that much gap between local and national levels.

    It was alot better when pro's rated players, they were accountable for the sandbagging that goes unaccounted for with the new system. Some even lost their ability to rate when they tried to make a nationals team
     
    #9
  10. Steady Eddy

    Steady Eddy Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2007
    Messages:
    3,809
    Location:
    Arizona
    But the blame for sandbagging lies with the player and no one else. Even golf can't prevent this. I knew of a golf club where they had an annual handicap tournament. The same guy won it every year by sandbagging. He'd three putt on purpose, so his handicap was high.

    Cheaters gonna cheat.
     
    #10
  11. Chadillac

    Chadillac Legend

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2015
    Messages:
    9,240
    Location:
    Banned
    The old system held the rating pro accountable. It would actually affect their teaching credentials if busted.
     
    #11
  12. Steady Eddy

    Steady Eddy Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2007
    Messages:
    3,809
    Location:
    Arizona
    Really? Who would want to rate if your career can be ruined by one sandbagger?
     
    #12
  13. WildVolley

    WildVolley Legend

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2007
    Messages:
    6,750
    The ratings cover a range because the number of tennis players is limited and the goal is to create teams in a league that are roughly competitive.

    Any technique of ranking rec players will be imperfect because the data sets are fairly small. Most rec players have limited time to play competitive matches that have officially recorded scores.
     
    #13
  14. ByeByePoly

    ByeByePoly Legend

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2016
    Messages:
    7,367
    Rating and play doesn't matter if you have palm trees in the background ... you already won. :cool:
     
    S&V-not_dead_yet likes this.
    #14
  15. S&V-not_dead_yet

    S&V-not_dead_yet Legend

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2015
    Messages:
    8,759
    As long as they don't fall on you.
     
    ByeByePoly likes this.
    #15
  16. ByeByePoly

    ByeByePoly Legend

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2016
    Messages:
    7,367
    Did you watch the Halep Hsieh match? You could learn a lot about singles watching that match. I did a lot of that rope a dope.
     
    #16
  17. FiReFTW

    FiReFTW Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2016
    Messages:
    3,183
    Ok that makes alot more sense, but how can a 4.5 and 5.0 rated player play in a 4.0 league anyway? That sounds a bit unfair.
     
    #17
  18. S&V-not_dead_yet

    S&V-not_dead_yet Legend

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2015
    Messages:
    8,759
    I did not. What were the highlights?

    I do the "rope a dope" too but usually it's just the "dope" part.
     
    ByeByePoly likes this.
    #18
  19. Wesley J

    Wesley J Rookie

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2017
    Messages:
    179
    Location:
    Virginia
    It's world team tennis. Men and women on the same team and the average of the ratings has to equal out to 4.0...i.e. you can have a 5.0 man/3.0 woman pair (I actually would have to double check on this as I think there might be a rule that says there can't be more than a 1 point rating difference) or a 3.5 woman/4.5 man pair. Usually at nationals/regionals is where you will see the high level man/low level woman pair the most because the high level men can carry the team.
     
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2018
    ChaelAZ likes this.
    #19
  20. ByeByePoly

    ByeByePoly Legend

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2016
    Messages:
    7,367
    - Halep hitting constant body blows
    - Hsieh absorbing them and inviting Halep to do mutual road work while she absorbs them
    - Hsieh hitting her one body blow on the finishing shot after all the running

    It's like if a pusher had the ability to push to corners and lines and extreme angles, and the ability to hit a winner all along but kept it in their pocket until 10 hits into the point. Physical pain inflicted from all the running, and mental pain from your frickin winners always coming back.
     
    ronwest and BounceHitBounceHit like this.
    #20
  21. nytennisaddict

    nytennisaddict Legend

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2007
    Messages:
    8,459
    flex leagues are ALWAYS folks playing up... which is why i stopped playing them
    seems like the 4.0 nationals would be a good indicator of the top level 4.0's who can definitely compete with low 4.5 singles players...
    and can even compete with high level 4.5's, who got their ranking via mostly playing doubles.
    as mentioned in an old thread... NTRP does not distinguish between singles/doubles..
    so a high level 4.0 singles players can definitely crush a high level 4.5 doubles-only players (ie. because the 4.5 dubs player is not mobile, which is not a factor in dubs).
     
    Znak likes this.
    #21
  22. nytennisaddict

    nytennisaddict Legend

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2007
    Messages:
    8,459
    not sure if i'd win... they seem good, but IMO the differences i see:
    * 2nd serve placement leaves the ball mostly in the center of the box...
    * alot of "short" balls (by service line)
    * unwillingness to attack the short ball and come to net (they both seem content to bash until someone misses). i'm surprised they didn't just dink to draw the other to the net.
     
    FiReFTW likes this.
    #22
  23. Wise one

    Wise one Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2017
    Messages:
    704
    The bottom pair seem more advanced, and closer to 4.0. The top two are closer to 3.5.
     
    #23
  24. Wise one

    Wise one Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2017
    Messages:
    704
    That trait seems to be so common today. Very disappointing.
     
    nytennisaddict likes this.
    #24
  25. StringSnapper

    StringSnapper Professional

    Joined:
    May 15, 2017
    Messages:
    1,308
    The song "sit down, be humble" was not intended for you
    Youd crush these 4.0s love and love take a bow man
     
    #25
  26. nytennisaddict

    nytennisaddict Legend

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2007
    Messages:
    8,459
    lol, thx but the problem is that you can't really be sure just by watching someone play.
    i've lost matches to opponents with the worst "modern" strokes, but it worked for them, and they had alot of hustle.
    i've also bagelled guys that crushed the ball (couldn't handle dinks and moonballs).
    and finally i've been bagelled by guys that i "crushed in the warmups", only to realize i was no match for the precision of his shots.
    that said, i would definitely have a plan against these guys, but until i play someone, I can't tell if they hit a ball that particularly bothers me
     
    S&V-not_dead_yet and FiReFTW like this.
    #26
  27. FiReFTW

    FiReFTW Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2016
    Messages:
    3,183
    What would your plan be against guys in video1? and against guys in video2? Just interested in the different aproach you would take :D
     
    #27
  28. nytennisaddict

    nytennisaddict Legend

    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2007
    Messages:
    8,459
    probably the same... get alot of balls back, attack the bh (occasionally go to fh when they start to cheat), until they hit a short ball
    attack the short ball, come to net
    finish with volley/OH

    probably try to draw them into net, if they get too comfortable defendeing deep behind the baseline... force them to beat me with volley/OH (which i'm guessing they don't do well)

    focus primarily on 3/4 pace deep balls... their pace/spin is decent but doesn't seem like anything i can't handle, and because it tends to land short and in the middle, gives me time to setup early, allowing me to dictate play.
     
    FiReFTW likes this.
    #28
  29. ByeByePoly

    ByeByePoly Legend

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2016
    Messages:
    7,367
    I think the white short guy's fh in video 2 is informative for singles. He has some pretty good fh finishing pace, and yet he isn't controlling points with his FH. To go from his nice FH to controlling the point, it takes even a heavier ball or a more accurate (targets) ball. I don't think the guys in video 2 would beat our best 4.0s here mainly because I don't see enough point construction (shots with purpose), and too many errors mixed in with the nice shots. The white shorts guy's strokes would be the prettiest on the court, but he misses and our top 4.0s are more stingy with the UEs, and they know how to construct/win points with their strokes. They definitely would not have won at the 4.5 tournament singles level here years ago, not enough offense to keep guys off the net. That's just an obsevation/guess, because like NYTA said, you never know for sure until the match is played.
     
    #29
  30. gmatheis

    gmatheis Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2010
    Messages:
    2,033
    ROFL the bottom players are 4.5 or 5.0.

    WTT is a team format where some players can be above level as long as they have below level players to balance it out.

    so a 4.0 team might have

    4.5 man
    3.5 man
    4.5 woman
    3.5 woman

    Men's singles played by the 4.5
    Women's singles played by the 4.5
    Men's and women's doubles still end up being a 8.0 combo
    Mixed 1 is the 3.5's (sacrifice)
    mixed 2 is both the 4.5's (this is the line that can make up games if needed)

    And remember this is Nationals, which means the majority of the team probably plays above their NTRP rating. (i.e. the 4.5's play more like 5.0s)
     
    West Coast Ace likes this.
    #30
  31. TimeToPlaySets

    TimeToPlaySets Legend

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2012
    Messages:
    5,107
    Ignore NTRP.
    Focus on being the best tennis player you're capable of.
    The other stuff will fall into place.

    That said, the first video is not 4.0 level tennis.
     
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2018
    #31
  32. The1AndOnly

    The1AndOnly New User

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2017
    Messages:
    67
    OP IS right about NTRPs being relatively "stuffed together". A 0.5 difference on NTRP could literally translate to up to a 2.5 difference on UTR. That is an astonishingly huge difference! More than a 1.0 difference on UTR means that a match between those two players is already likely to not be competitive.

    This is a table that illustrates the relationship between UTR and NTRP: [​IMG]
     
    FiReFTW likes this.
    #32
  33. StringSnapper

    StringSnapper Professional

    Joined:
    May 15, 2017
    Messages:
    1,308
    LOL sounds like the french guy i play with

    Tennis is all about having fun. just have fun

    *its much funner when winning*
     
    #33
  34. West Coast Ace

    West Coast Ace G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2005
    Messages:
    17,634
    Location:
    So Cal
    Golf isn’t a sport; competitive recreation. In tournaments you’re playing the course. But yes the handicap system does lend itself to leveling 1 on 1 play - no way for tennis to emulate.

    4.0 does appear to be the biggest by far - men with some athletic ability, maybe a little tennis instruction. What used to be called intermediate.
     
    #34
  35. fundrazer

    fundrazer Legend

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2010
    Messages:
    5,787
    I don't think he is very offensive minded with his footwork either. Seems content to sit behind baseline (occasionally moving up onto the baseline) and trying to hit forehands with as much spin as possible.

    Would probably beat me, but at a higher level of play I think he sacrifices too much court positioning. But I dunno. I haven't played matches in a long time. My last time playing a 4.0 singles match was against some junk baller who ended up outlasting me. I'm also a bit careless as I tend to stay on on the baseline too much or come forward to net at not so great times.
     
    ByeByePoly likes this.
    #35
  36. ByeByePoly

    ByeByePoly Legend

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2016
    Messages:
    7,367
    I watched the video again, and his doubles match that popped up after. I think both of the singles players are good players ... sometimes that gets lost in the comments.

    This would be the better way to make my comment about white shorts guy (I would use his name instead if I knew it):

    I think he has better strokes than me, but I think I would have made his opponent do more running. That should work the opposite. He has put away pace (both hit a couple) on his fh without much opening, a luxury I never had. Players like me had to construct points, and in my case, force the issue at the net. I play very little net now, so I would think in terms of working the point side to side, lots of dtl, bh slice dtl and short, some drop shots to create the opening (ground stroke or pass, occasional topspin lob off fh side after drawing in with drop shot).

    Man ... life was easier when the net was closer. :D That's the thing, don't waste your net rushing years. :p
     
    #36
  37. ChaelAZ

    ChaelAZ Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2014
    Messages:
    3,740
    Location:
    Arizona
    I wish. I hadn't played Flex in years but need to test out the ol' body, so signed up for what is supposed to be a mix of 3.5 and 4.0ish players. Played my first Tuesday and he was talking about he was a past high school and college player, so I thought he was sandbagging. But yeah...I won 6/0 6/0 in 48 minutes. Kinda disappointed and hoping the next 10 matches will be better! Now this guy was self-rating at 4.0 based on playing a bunch of older guys at his local club, so not really a good indicator overall.

    But yeah, the way people state their own rating is wierd, but NTRP stats are usually a decent indicator of things, save for injuries, people's first season or two and such.
     
    #37
  38. rogerroger917

    rogerroger917 Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2017
    Messages:
    1,718
    This chart is not even close to being correct. Utr has a chart that is similar to my personal experience with adult players and all the junior players my son and I know.

    4.5-5.0 adult singles ntrp is similar to junior utr 8 to 9.x The chart on utr website is best for comparison.
     
    The1AndOnly likes this.
    #38
  39. The1AndOnly

    The1AndOnly New User

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2017
    Messages:
    67

    You're completely right - just checked the UTR website and a 4.0 NTRP is a 5.0-7.5 UTR, a 5.0 NTRP is a 8.0-10.0 UTR, and a 5.5 NTRP is a 9.0-11.0 UTR (all male NTRPs).

    My point still stands though, that's a huge range for each of those NTRP rantings
     
    #39
  40. S&V-not_dead_yet

    S&V-not_dead_yet Legend

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2015
    Messages:
    8,759
    But doesn't that make sense from the viewpoint that the expected outcome between someone at the top of an NTRP and someone at the bottom is a lopsided victory? So at least UTR of 7.5 vs 5.0 gives an indication of who the better player is. You wouldn't have that info if you only had NTRP [ie no TLS, TR, @schmke, etc]. And it exactly addresses the complaint that NTRP is too broad.

    One follow-up question though: how would one arrange a tournament based on UTR? Would you only put UTR 5.0s together, for example, and not 5.0 - 7.5 [ie NTRP 4.0]? Would you get a large enough bracket to have a meaningful tournament [ie not just 3-4 players]?
     
    #40
  41. The1AndOnly

    The1AndOnly New User

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2017
    Messages:
    67
    My point was that I agree with the OP in that NTRP rankings are simply not good enough for finding competitive matches so yep you are exactly right.

    UTR tournaments I've heard often split players into groups of about 4 based on UTR so that every player in each group has similar UTR's to one another. Those groups play round robin and that's about it. Since there's no points or money at stake, just the potential impact on each players' UTR, the format is simply to give players 3 good, close matches that are worth their time and effort. In ITAs, players are split up into different brackets, with each bracket grouping players together in a certain UTR range (for example, the top flight might have players UTRs 11.5 and above, the second flight with players with UTRs of 10.5-11.5, and so on).
     
    #41
  42. schmke

    schmke Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2010
    Messages:
    2,764
    NTRP is 2.5 to 7.0 or a range of 4.5. UTR is 1 to 16 or a range of 15. So just by the nature of the scale/range, you'd expect a given NTRP level to have 3 corresponding UTR levels (if you are using half point on each scale). Now, UTR's conversion chart seems to have much broader ranges than that which seems to be a statement that NTRP is too stagnant and players don't move enough and that players at a given NTRP level actually represent a far wider range. Or it is just that UTR's algorithm focuses far more on what you've done lately and so has more variation by design.

    Pros and cons to each approach. If you are running tournaments and want the most accurate representation of where a player is right now, UTR probably has benefits. But if you are running leagues over the course of a year (plus with early start) and don't want to wreak havoc with players moving up and down and becoming (in)eligible, NTRP probably has benefits.
     
    #42
  43. S&V-not_dead_yet

    S&V-not_dead_yet Legend

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2015
    Messages:
    8,759
    Exactly: I was thinking of the logistical nightmare of running leagues where a good chunk of players are constantly moving among UTR; makes it hard to plan. For tournaments, I see it being a good alternative.
     
    #43
  44. BounceHitBounceHit

    BounceHitBounceHit Legend

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2005
    Messages:
    8,313
    Location:
    In the moment.
    Spanish tennis summarized. Inflict pain.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
     
    ByeByePoly likes this.
    #44
  45. Topspin Shot

    Topspin Shot Legend

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2009
    Messages:
    7,021
    That's too far in the other direction. It's more like 7-9 is 4.5, 9-11 is 5.0 and 11+ is 5.5.
     
    #45

Share This Page