Tennis vs. Golf question -- what do you think of this?

BillyBee

Rookie
Let's say you were trying to explain to someone how the tennis rating system works, and you drew an analogy to golf as a way to make it more understandable. How would you compare the strength levels?

In other words, if you're a 4.5 tennis player, would that equate to a a golfer who shoots in the mid-80s? Low 80s? High 80s?

Here's the only yardstick that came to mind that might help . . . I've heard it said that the majority of tennis players never get beyond the 3.5 level. I've also heard it said that most golfers have never broken 100.

If that's true (and I could be wrong on those; let me know), then here's my guess on how tennis ratings translate into golf handicaps:

3.0 in tennis = has never broken 100
3.5 = golfs around 100
4.0 = golfs in the low 90s
4.5 = golfs in the mid 80s
5.0 = golfs in the upper 70s
5.5 = scratch golfer
6.0 = better than scratch golfer; has a minus-handicap

What do you think??

Keep in mind I am NOT saying that a 4.0 tennis player is also someone who can shoot golf in the low 90s. I'm only trying to compare the two ratings systems on their own to try and come up with a standard that helps people understand the skill level of each tennis rating.

Dumb question, I know, but it really would help explain to non-tennis people how good someone is because everyone seems to understand exactly how good a scratch golfer is, or a golfer who has never broken 100, or a golfer who plays "bogey golf" (around 90), or someone who can "break 80", etc.

joe sch

Legend
BillyBee said:
Let's say you were trying to explain to someone how the tennis rating system works, and you drew an analogy to golf as a way to make it more understandable. How would you compare the strength levels?

In other words, if you're a 4.5 tennis player, would that equate to a a golfer who shoots in the mid-80s? Low 80s? High 80s?

Here's the only yardstick that came to mind that might help . . . I've heard it said that the majority of tennis players never get beyond the 3.5 level. I've also heard it said that most golfers have never broken 100.

If that's true (and I could be wrong on those; let me know), then here's my guess on how tennis ratings translate into golf handicaps:

3.0 in tennis = has never broken 100
3.5 = golfs around 100
4.0 = golfs in the low 90s
4.5 = golfs in the mid 80s
5.0 = golfs in the upper 70s
5.5 = scratch golfer
6.0 = better than scratch golfer; has a minus-handicap

What do you think??

Keep in mind I am NOT saying that a 4.0 tennis player is also someone who can shoot golf in the low 90s. I'm only trying to compare the two ratings systems on their own to try and come up with a standard that helps people understand the skill level of each tennis rating.

Dumb question, I know, but it really would help explain to non-tennis people how good someone is because everyone seems to understand exactly how good a scratch golfer is, or a golfer who has never broken 100, or a golfer who plays "bogey golf" (around 90), or someone who can "break 80", etc.

Sounds reasonable ...

The odd situation with tennis seem to be that soo many lifetime players will endup staying at around the 4.0 to 4.5 level but many golfers may never break 90. I believe this has to do with a rating that does not necessary gaurantee winning at that level during competion in tennis verses and actual scoring in golf.

Very few can master (world class) both golf and tennis like Vines and now Draper. Ivan Lendl was a #1 tennis player but he struggles to compete with the best amateur golfers.

kevhen

Hall of Fame
Looks pretty good to me. I shoot around 100 and can hit 300 yard drives but not always so straight and not too good at the short game. I would say around 3.5 level. My co-worker only hits about 220 yards but is very accurate and shoots are 90. I would say he is 4.0 in golf. In tennis I am 4.0 and he is 3.0.

I would say a 2.5 golfer is like my sister who hits the ball like 100 yards and shoots around 70 on a 9 hole course. 3.0 would be like 60 over 9. 3.5 like 50, 4.0 like 45, 4.5 like 42, 5.0 like 39, 5.5 like 36. Depends on the difficulty of the course too of course.

VolklVenom

Semi-Pro
in tennis, you could say you are a 4.0 and magically, you are.

in golf, you can say you hit in the high 80's, but you need to back that fact up with the goods.

That's the difference.
It's so hard to put a figure value on a tennis player.

kevhen

Hall of Fame
You have to win alot at the 3.5 level in tennis to get a 4.0 rating. But alot of people just do claim they are 4.0 when they don't have a real rating from actual match play so I see what you are saying.

joe sch

Legend
kevhen said:
You have to win alot at the 3.5 level in tennis to get a 4.0 rating. But alot of people just do claim they are 4.0 when they don't have a real rating from actual match play so I see what you are saying.
A 4.5 player could actually play 5.5's or opens and claim he/she is a higher level player.
Even NTRP raters are not that consistent, especially since its not base on match playing capability. Maybe ratings should just be at what level you can beat opponents, even if you get more loses ? It would still be regionally biased. Golf scores are also biased by the difficulty of the courses you play but atleast they are based on actual results.

Puma

Rookie
Golf Handicaps

Guys,

I have often thought of this comparison myself. I don't disagree with your ideas, but I would like to point out a couple of things.

-I have seen many players claim they are scratch. I would bet 9.5 of 10 arent'. If a player is scratch that means they average par golf. That is a stretch for most all amateurs excluding the best college players and elite amateurs. I also personally feel it is your tournament play that establishes your true handicap. However, many club players will play the same course over and over again, turn their scores, the USGA Handicap index will crunch out a number, and next thing you know you have a player who claims to be a 4 handicap. And, that is true on that course from the middle tees.

-The Vardon Trophy is given to the Pro player who has the lowest stroke average in a given season. I think, I may be wrong, but the stroke average usually hovers around 68.3 or 4. This means he is a +3 on a handicapped scale. So, a player who has an established handicap of 0, could claim to be within 4 shots of a good tour player? That is wacky!

-The point here is the NTRP rating system and the USGA Handicap Index is not perfect. And some Golfers just like some Tennis players will "adjust" their rating to suit them. There is nothing like a tournament to shake things out.

-One thing that is very different about Golf and Tennis is in Golf there isn't as many tournaments where handicapped amateurs can play. Here in Texas, a tennis player from 3.0 to whatever can play a different tournament almost every week of the year. To my knowledge, this isn't true in Golf.

-Also, I like the idea of the DNTRP rating thing. I think this is a huge step toward fairness for the guys who play tournaments on a yearly basis. To me, there is no better way to judge a player than tournament results.

If I were to change your comparison, I think I would say a 3.0 is a high handicapper and a 3.5 is average. I really don't know what average is. The 4.0 to 4.5 would be a low to mid handicapper like a 9 or 10. 5.0 to 6.0 would be closer to scratch. 6.0's would be competitive NCAA Div. 1 golfers. If a player has a true + handicap he needs to be playing for money somewhere.

My .02's worth.....

tom-selleck

Professional
not really sure but tons of people have never broken 100 (counting all the strokes)... i'd say 3.5 basically never breaking 100, and then it goes up pretty fast from there.

i find the difference between 3.5 and 4.5 is huge...

and i think the differences are bigger than golf. i think a 20 handicapper can snap off a great round, but i don't think tennis lends itself to that as much.

maybe put another way: i used to have 6-7 hole stretches where i could shoot two over even though then i'd have complete other rounds where i would never break 100 (alot due to penalty strokes)... i just think your golf game can get away from you so much more easily and the margin for error is really tiny.

bsandy

Hall of Fame
With all this time on your hands, shouldn't you be inventing an internet virus or something ?

Geezer Guy

Hall of Fame
I would just tell them that a professional golfer is a 6.5 or 7.0.

A good college player may be between 4.5 and 6.0.

A "very good" recreational golfer would be about 4.0 or 4.5.

The majority of all golfers fall somewhere in the 3.0 or 3.5 range.

Someone just starting out would be between 1.0 and 2.5.

Mattle

Rookie
don't compare it.

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