Why do people think underhand serves are disrespectful?

ollinger

G.O.A.T.
One can sort of understand it -- some implication the other guy isn't paying attention, or he's not able to adjust to a surprise.
 
C

Chadalina

Guest
Imagine how much Nadal would be crying if it went in.

After seeing nadal at 6-6 in the tiebreaker i dont think his words should hold any water, dude is crazy as F
 

1H-Backhand

New User
The name of the game is to win the point, underhand serve is within the rules so there is absolutely nothing wrong with it and I am surprised players don't sneak them in more often...
Also, nothing wrong with tweeners. I often find myself playing them and the last thing I have in my mind is to disrespect my opponent. Most of the times I play them is because I don't have enough time to go round the ball and open up for the shot so it's kind of an instinctive reaction...and it's amazing how many times I end up winning the point from that...
 

TheFifthSet

Legend
It’s an absurd thing to complain about when you realize that underhanded serves are talked about being deployed because players are standing 20 feet behind the baseline on a hard court.

If the former makes a mockery of the game for being abnormal, why not the latter?
 
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Pheasant

Hall of Fame
It's 100% legal and I don't consider it cheap play at all. If a returner cheats backwards, then it is a good move. It's the equivalent of a pitcher throwing a change up to a batter standing all the way back in the batter's box waiting for 100 mph heat. By all means, throw a change up, or even an eephus pitch.

I'd rather have somebody lob an underhand serve, than wait 28-30 seconds to serve the stupid ball. Concentrating on the return that long would get quite old.
 

PMChambers

Hall of Fame
Depends how it's done. In club tennis when used it's like super stealth, hit whilst pretending not to be ready, or whilst opponent isn't ready, etc. Tomic's against Kyrios was completely wrong, he was bouncing a ball and hit another into play. Can't have two balls in playing field.
Personally I think all good as long as server gets into serving position and return is set, the quick flick whilst walking to serving position whilst returner is flat footed is not adequate. You don't do that in a normal serve, poor.
 

EloQuent

G.O.A.T.
Against Nadal the idea is to neutralize his strategy of receiving from the stands. He's entitled to stand wherever he wants, but if you serve underhanded he's forced to come up.

After one or two tries he's going to be ready - but by standing closer.
 

Tshooter

G.O.A.T.
Who thinks that ? I never met anyone that thought that.

I think it may be underutilized. You can't bring it out often but once in a blue moon against a guy standing 33 feet behind the baseline like a Ricky Gasquet or a VAMOS.

I've seen it on several occasions when a guy is cramping badly. Is it considered poor form in that situation ?
 

DNShade

Hall of Fame
I’m not arguing whether or not it’s legal or illegal. To me it’s a sucker punch. Just my opinion. Feel free to serve however you all choose.
Like a drop shot is a sucker punch? Or hitting to the area in the court where the opponent isn't?

Or do you think you should call out exactly where you are intending to hit the ball every time and only hit it directly to your opponent at a nice respectful pace and right into their strike zone?

Sheesh.

Underhand/drop serve is a totally legit play and really should be used more - especially against returners who stand that far back.
 

a12345

Semi-Pro
Like a drop shot is a sucker punch? Or hitting to the area in the court where the opponent isn't?

Or do you think you should call out exactly where you are intending to hit the ball every time and only hit it directly to your opponent at a nice respectful pace and right into their strike zone?

Sheesh.

Underhand/drop serve is a totally legit play and really should be used more - especially against returners who stand that far back.
When I stand on one side of the service box and the opponent hits it to the other side I feel its disrespectful.

Drop shots, volleys, are disrespectful and so are lobs. Play the game properly.
 

JMR

Hall of Fame
Because they are a stealthy tactic.
This is actually the reason. I don't agree with it myself, but it's clear that players who get angry at underhand serves think that it's poor sportsmanship to attempt to win a point through, as they see it, pure trickery. Their reasoning seems to be, "Look, you and I both know that I'd have absolutely no problem returning an underhand serve if I knew it was coming. In fact, I'd probably be able to hit a winner. So you're basically lying to me by pretending that you're going to hit an ordinary serve and then sneaking in the underhand variety. You are disrespecting me by making me lose a point with a baby shot."

The problem with this whole line of reasoning is that on all other shots in a point, no player is expected to announce exactly what kind of stroke he will or will not hit. It's not bad sportsmanship to lob when the guy at net expects a screaming passing shot. It's not bad sportsmanship to throw in a dropper when the opponent is well behind the baseline. You don't have to shout "Topspin!" or "Slice this time!" before every groundstroke. And even regular serves don't require an advance disclosure of direction, pace, or type of spin. It's silly to create a special rule of sportsmanship just for one tactic.
 

Tennis_Hands

Bionic Poster
This is actually the reason. I don't agree with it myself, but it's clear that players who get angry at underhand serves think that it's poor sportsmanship to attempt to win a point through, as they see it, pure trickery. Their reasoning seems to be, "Look, you and I both know that I'd have absolutely no problem returning an underhand serve if I knew it was coming. In fact, I'd probably be able to hit a winner. So you're basically lying to me by pretending that you're going to hit an ordinary serve and then sneaking in the underhand variety. You are disrespecting me by making me lose a point with a baby shot."

The problem with this whole line of reasoning is that on all other shots in a point, no player is expected to announce exactly what kind of stroke he will or will not hit. It's not bad sportsmanship to lob when the guy at net expects a screaming passing shot. It's not bad sportsmanship to throw in a dropper when the opponent is well behind the baseline. You don't have to shout "Topspin!" or "Slice this time!" before every groundstroke. And even regular serves don't require an advance disclosure of direction, pace, or type of spin. It's silly to create a special rule of sportsmanship just for one tactic.
It would be hilarious if Nick shouts at Nadal "Lob" just before he lobs him next time they play.

The only reason why that won't happen is out of fear that angry Nadal might claim hindrance.

:cool:
 

Knightrider

Hall of Fame
I find nothing wrong with the underhand serve.
It's as fair as a dropshot, for instance.

At the same time, I don't think Rafa alluded to Nick's 'lack of respect' only due to the underhand serve.
 

BHud

Hall of Fame
The name of the game is to win the point, underhand serve is within the rules so there is absolutely nothing wrong with it and I am surprised players don't sneak them in more often...
Also, nothing wrong with tweeners. I often find myself playing them and the last thing I have in my mind is to disrespect my opponent. Most of the times I play them is because I don't have enough time to go round the ball and open up for the shot so it's kind of an instinctive reaction...and it's amazing how many times I end up winning the point from that...
I would like to, but my holster gets in the way...
 

Terenigma

G.O.A.T.
It's not disrespectful to your opponent but i think it's slightly disrespectful to the crowd because it doesn't offer much tactical advantage unless you know for sure you are putting your opponent in an awkward position to return. Like Nadal standing so far back against Kyrgios. However in general, any decent top 100 player would basically have a free shot from it and it might appear to be a lack of effort to observers. I'm personally ok with it bit i could definitely see why some people might find it disrespectful to the sport.
 

Shaolin

G.O.A.T.
It's not disrespectful to your opponent but i think it's slightly disrespectful to the crowd because it doesn't offer much tactical advantage unless you know for sure you are putting your opponent in an awkward position to return. Like Nadal standing so far back against Kyrgios. However in general, any decent top 100 player would basically have a free shot from it and it might appear to be a lack of effort to observers. I'm personally ok with it bit i could definitely see why some people might find it disrespectful to the sport.
It offers a lot of tactical advantages.
 

sbengte

G.O.A.T.
Didn't Chang do it to Lendl in his FO '89 upset win ?
I thought it was considered cheeky but not distespectful.
 

Terenigma

G.O.A.T.
It offers a lot of tactical advantages.
Like what? High margin for error, especially if you tried to add topspin/backspin. It has no pace. For any player who's paying attention it's an easy chase down and depending on the player and quality of the serve, it allows for basically unlimited options on return. You could counter-drop shot. You have either angle to play. You could hit a body shot if your opponent followed the serve in. It's a bad shot that should be used sparingly as a surprise tactic only.
 

Shaolin

G.O.A.T.
Like what?
Off the top of my head....

It makes players that like to stand way back at the fence like Nadal have to move in.

It forces players that suck at transition/net (ie most of WTA tour, ATP bashers like Rublev, Khanchov) to move forward and play from an area they dont prefer.

It keeps opponent guessing more and adds one more possibility they have to consider.

It can get to the opponent mentally if you win a point or two with it. Looks embarassing to lose a point to an underhanded serve.

I personally use the serve myself occasionally and have won the point and even aced D1 college level players with it. One or two drop serves a set is perfect IMO.
 

Tshooter

G.O.A.T.
...but it's clear that players who get angry at underhand serves think that it's poor sportsmanship to attempt to win a point through, as they see it, pure trickery. Their reasoning seems to be,"Look, you and I both know that I'd have absolutely no problem returning an underhand serve if I knew it was coming...
:oops::unsure:

So I guess it follows that hitting any serve that the opponent doesn't know is coming is disrespectful to some extent.

 
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