Wednesday, April 2, 2008

4.0 Spring Preview

Flight A
Fall Wild Card Winner-HP/Somabut: They should win this flight even if they aren’t giving 100%. I really like their team but for them it will be hard to stay awake during the regular season and be ready for some tough teams that hope the push them for sectional spots.

I like them as a solid top finisher but right now they have 10 players signed up and that will be tough. But I think they will add a few more and grab the top spot behind High Point.

T Bar: A consistent team that should be able to do well in this flight, I like them to finish right behind HP if Lifetime falters at all

Need some help:
LB Houston: I like this team to be a surprise and possibly push Lifetime and T Bar for a playoff spot.

Flight B
From top to bottom this is a very tough flight on paper OC or Springpark would be the weakest but those are very good rosters.

Lakes: They have to be the favorite since they didn’t lose anyone from the fall and gained Mike Richardson they will be very tough.
Garland: strong up top with Russell, Sierp and Mckinney and solid dubs players Singh and Gervelis should serve them well. Don’t sleep on this team they will be tough.

Brookhaven: With Mattes and Helterbrann at the top they will be tough, it all depends on the rest of the roster to how far they can go.
Village: They have stacked this team 18 players deep and although none are standouts I don’t see any weak links so expect a tough match each time out.

Need some help
HP/Harrison-Combines with Giuhat’s team to form a combo of new 4.0 players and tough veteran players like Taketomi, Schijo and Stevens. They will not go down easy.

Flight C

-hard to go against this team which has become a playoff regular. They did not fair well in the Senior playoffs which they won last year but I think that only gets them more fired up.
Greenhill-John has amassed his best talent back to one big monster team. Pretty deep with talent at the top like Durand, Windham, Ryan, Lynes, Contreras and steady players like Sline and Hagen.

Canyon Creek-Madison and Talluri could lead this team to some good wins if the rest of the group can step up.
Hackberry-Utas and Ellis could do the same for this Hackberry group and they might just mess things up for the big two at the top.

Need some help:
JCC-I saw this team in person last Fall and they were pretty solid and one or two players away from being really strong. Steinberg and Liebermann are a strong team together and Elovitz is a tough player at singles.
Eldorado-Consistent group but not sure they have enough to rise to the top. Jim Jeffcoat on the roster, is that the defensive linemen from the Cowboys super bowl team??? That would be awesome if we had a mini celebrity in our league. Matthew Perry once played in our So. California 4.0 league but he didn’t play that much since he was trying to get into Jennifer Capriati’s pants at the time. (But I digress)

Flight D

Ok so they have been talked about enough there is no way not to list Springpark here at the top and many have them picking up the nationals trophy in September. Davis, Rasor and McGowan along with Lazarine, Walters, Pearson. OK I just list their whole roster which really doesn’t have weaknesses but they do have to show up and actually win these matches.

BH/Pearlman-Burt finds a way to get to the playoffs a lot lately so why bet against him especially since he has the entire Renwick family on the team including 19 yr old Jonathan. Mel Parekh should help them up top as well since they lacked some singles talent in the past. Still waiting to see if Kyle Rhodes pops up on this roster. His addition would make them a real threat to Springpark.

LB Houston: Hicks, Ratana, Allen, Griffin and Burton could push this team to be very good but the remaining players on this roster will have to step up and support that top half of the roster

Need some help
Stonebridge-Perennial playoff team will struggle in this flight I believe due to lack of singles. Rumor has it Ruiz will not return to the team so they are on the hunt for help at the top but still will be a threat every week.

Who knows?
High Point/Bazan-
This team is just awful, they shouldn’t even let them in the league. I will play line 1 singles most of the time and we plan on defaulting at least a match or two each week so please be nice to us.


  1. In regards to Kyle Rhodes coming back to Brookhaven / Pearlman’s team looks like a no go.

    Kyle wants to move up to the 4.5 level and is planning to play on Ken Ratana’s 4.5 LB Houston team.

  2. I did notice he was on that team and his style lends to that level so he should be a 4.5 in no time. Gives us former 3.5s hope since my first league in Dallas he was playing 3.5 in the playoffs against the team I was on at the time.

    Pearlman's team will still be good though, they have this new guy just added named John Kraemer so he should help out.

  3. Cary,
    Does this mean your throwing the season in preparation for your glorious return to 3.5?

  4. yep I like that rumor. Maybe with this new appeal system I can be a 3.5 by May and join a front runner so I can play down at #3 doubles at 3.5 where I belong.

  5. Don't sell yourself short. You would definitely be a very strong line#2 at 3.5 doubles

  6. Not sure what you mean by a scrimmage match. Are you saying the season really begins on the 20th. Is the scrimmage match against a team from another division?

  7. yep this match does not count towards USTA standings. You will play another team from another flight. You all play LB Houston/Au and then the real season starts on the 20th. You all and the Lakes play in the first match. Easily the best early match of the season. I would love it if you and Runda matched up that would be a great match.

  8. thanks anonymous, line 2 is probably a good estimation of my talent since when I played up at #1I usually lost except for a once or twice.

  9. I was really excited until you said we had to actually show up and win the matches. We have a good team, but remember 9 of our guys are over 50. Only one under 30. All the 4.5 beer drinkers and 5.0 trash talkers went to Joe Doyle's team. This is why we added Mitch McGowan. With his own keg, he adds depth to our beer drinking team. When you come to Spring Park, we will have beer for you.

    I am not sure I like this short season with only 7 matches. One loss could put you in the qualie tournament.

    Jim W (Spring Park)

  10. Jim unfortunately you are coming to High Point to play us so that means no beer. :(

    I did notice some of Doyle's group is pretty good. Clay and I have seperate team and trust me I wish we could have one giant team but with 7 matches as you mentioned it doesn't make sense.

    I hope eventually we can get back to 10-12 matches because you could not be more right you lose one match and forget about it you in in the QT or worse out of the playoffs altogether.

  11. San Antonio typically has 16 matches in the 4.0s and Houston normally gets 8-10 matches. I think the minimum under USTA rules is 3. The more matches the better.

  12. When are the first round of matches scheduled? When are the playoffs?

  13. Playoffs are in late July 18-20 for the QT and the following weekend for the championships.

    4.0s scrimmage this weekend and then start on 4/20.

  14. Kal Rammo. Borderline player to watch playing on Helterbrann's 4.0 team.

    In 2003 Bob Somabut's 4.0 team , which was loaded with ringers, went to Nationals and lost 2-3 in the finals. (In that match they lost both matches in 3rd set tiebreaks or they would have been National Champions.) It is all in TennisLink. And they have done well at Sectionals many times since then.

    Last year they had to play the Sectional finals without their best player (Endress) and lost. But rather than be good sports and congratulate the winners, they cried, whined and complained that Houston was too good. Somabut was the biggest whiner of all. He called the Texas Section office multiple times trying to get the Houston team disqualified. (Their only fault was beating Somabut's team.) That was really low class.

    Houston, by the way, was one of the worst 4.0 teams at Nationals with a 1 - 2 record. They were NOT ringers or sandbaggers.

    Somabut's 2003 team was far, far better than the 2007 Houston team. Apparently it's OK for him to put together teams loaded with sandbaggers _ but Houston (a weaker team) should have been DQed. What a hypocrite!

    Let's all play tennis in 2008 and resist the temptation to cry about "ringers" when we get beat.

  16. I didn't get to see the 4.0 houston team but looking back on their record and subsequent results at 4.5 tourneys Sarosh was the only true ringer and the rest were just very strong players. Bob did happen to play Sarosh in that final so maybe he had that on his mind.

    Freeman's 3.5 crew seemed a lot the same way with Tongol being the only guy we watched and felt was playing out of category.

    I will be curious to see what Jason puts together this time down there but it is seems rather hard to win the Houston league so they have to put together strong teams down there even more so than in Dallas.

    the only thing I have heard Bob complain about is bringing in players from other cities to make an all-star team which I believe there was one or two on each of those teams. I think most agree with that rule being put in place but I have yet to hear anything about it. I guess we can still do that then?

    Any good players from SETX, NETX, Austin, etc we play Sunday afternoons and I have a spare bedroom for you to stay in...

  17. Sounds like someone who gets beaten by Bob's team every year is already crying.

  18. Nice job trying to stir the pot. Except for the fact that your ignoring the main point of the complaint about the Houston team. The main point was just that. They were not a Houston team but an all star state team. Some were missing in Nat's which may explain that showing.

    Anyway the complaint was raised, denied, and everyone moved on. Everyone except you.

    Maybe you are whining about getting beat by Bob's team as well.

  19. High Point player,

    not so fun at the top, huh?

    Last year TWO Collin County team both made the 4.0 City Playoffs. I think Somabut put both those teams together. Arnette's team did not even make the playoffs.

    In 2006, Arnette's guys finished 2nd place behind Somabut.

    This year Arnette's got a team with 21 players. He has got QUANTITY but does he have QUALITY?

    I think Somabut is now first choice among uncommitted players and Arnette is getting the leftovers. What do you think?

  21. Why would anyone want 21 players on one team? That means a lot of guys signing up will not get to play very much.

    Why not add a player or two and put the bottom 10-11 guys on a second team. That way they could actually play a few matches.

    Maybe the captain just can't figure out whose his best players are.

  22. John's team will be solid. He has had two teams in the past but as I have learned that will drain your energy faster than anything. I am mega thankful Clay agreed to help me out. I am not one for big teams either because I know everyone wants to play including myself. With that said it is nice to have options.

    Contreras is one of the top 5 4.0 singles in the our 4.0 league if someone takes him out easy I see DQ in their future. Sline and Durand are tough as well. Ryan/Windham I believe beat out most of Somabut's guys to win the Brookhaven tourney a month ago. They seem like a solid team.

    I am seeing all kinds of names swapping for team to team though, LB/Spagnola has Walker and some older Arnette players that are strong.

  23. Arnette's team is good, but not good enough to win city. He will have to settle for 4th or 5th best team this year. Somabut is still the team to beat. Any of the top 4 or 5 teams are good enough to make it to sectionals. This is the most competitive 4.0 season I've seen in years. It should make for some fun playoffs.

  24. I am familar with both Somabut's 2003 team and Freeman's 2007 team, the Houston team was better 3-2 no matter how the line-ups shake out. However, both teams were awesome. Also, Bill Sander's 2006 National Championship team was good but probably would not have beaten either the 2003 or 2007 Texas teams. In addition, the San Antonio team from 2005 had some great doubles teams but weak singles players. It is hard to get the right mix.

    It would be nice to see these teams lose in local play so that we could get some new blood up at sectionals.

  25. How big an advantage do you think it is at any level to win the fall league? (Fall winners advance directly to the City Playoff regardless of local season record.)

    On one hand you can say that a strong team will make the playoffs anyway so that's little help.

    On the other hand a fall winner has the luxury of playing back-up players, experimenting with different doubles combinations, etc without worrying about getting a win.

    What do you think?

  26. The only real advantage to winning the fall is you can hide your top players until the playoffs. It is also easier to protect your rating if you only have to play twice during the regular season.

  27. Unfortunately I have never had the luxury of winning the fall league although I have tried but I would think it would help for what the previous poster mentioned: Doubles practice. It is hard to get teams together sometimes at practice that you would like to see in a "competitive" match and with our short season knowing one loss puts you into the QT tourney and two losses put you out of the playoffs most likely I would love the luxury of experimenting with lineups.

  28. Not real experienced in this area, but I will say there wasn't much reward for the Garland 3.5 team. Winning the fall cost them several of their top players.

  29. yep the fall can be very tough and cost you players, our 3.5 got so depleted we gave up on forming a team.

    previous anonymous poster, curious to know who you consider the top 5 4.0 teams in our league since Arnette's crew is not included. Springpark and Somabut are a given who are the other three?

    I know my team is in the bottom 5, please roll out your scrubs to play us, if you got any 3.5s or 3.0s they should compete well with my team.

  30. 1.High Point/Somabut
    3.LB Houston
    Like I said Arnett has a very solid team full of good players. He does not have any elite players. Some of the teams above him have a couple of great players, but weak players after that. The top 2 teams would have to have 2 or 3 people playing badly to lose in the playoffs. The other teams would have to have all 5 lines play really well to beat the top 2 teams. Everyone at this level has great days, and horrible days. That is why we play the matches. Everyone in the playoffs has a chance. Some just have a better chance than others.

  31. Interesting choice for top 5. I think the winner that comes out of Flight B will be very tough - my guess would be Garland or the Lakes. I am not sure they can beat Somabut or Springpark, but both Garland and Lakes are extremely deep (both have 17 players with their top 7 to 8 being high end 4.0 guys and the last time I checked we play 8 guys each week).

  32. Your opinion on what a top level 4.0 is must be different than mine. I see maybe 1 or 2 on each team.

  33. Who is the top 4.0 singles player, and doubles team in Dallas this year? There should be alot of different opinions on this.

  34. My definition of a top 4.0 player is if you put that player at line 1 singles or doubles, they have a great shot at winning every time out. They may not be a lock, but they have a great shot. I think you are voting more on teams you are familiar with (which is fine). I think you don't know much about the players on some of these other teams so you are leaving them off. I am also surprised not one Brookhaven team made your list, especially Bartlett. I would probably guess you are a tournament player and since alot of these guys dont play tournaments you just don't know about them.

  35. I've been playing 4.0 in Dallas leagues for about 6 years. I may not know all the players, but I know alot of them. I consider someone a top player if they are winning in the playoffs. Playing line 1 doesn't make you a top player.

  36. I'd like to know anonymous's record? I guess Hai and Martin, Pickett and Smith and Ellis and Lance are just average 4.0's. Probably, look at their mediocre 2007 records. Look, when a team get's beat they try to improve but expect nothing short of the goals they aspired to the year before. We wake up wanted nothing but first place and a championship. Why else would we play for anything else, in life or tennis. Anonymous, Houston lost once to Northern Cal who won it all. I guess the Patriots will just keep the status quo for getting 1st place loser. Well for team Somabut we don't take losing well. For anonymous, show me a good loser and I'll show you a loser. I'll give you some klennex's next time I see you. Smith

  37. Top 4.0 singles player would be Davis out of Springpark.

  38. Man these anonymous guys can talk the talk. So winning in playoffs is the sole definition of a top player? This is team tennis and you have lots of good players that just unfortunately are not on good teams and never sniff the playoffs. You also can't go by record. Take a guy playing line 3 doubles and never losing. Is that undefeated player better than the guy playing line 1 doubles and finishing a season 4-3? I doubt it. The fact you continue to post under anonymous tells me your opinion is probably a bit jaded. I guess I will have to be satisfied knowing I am a mediocre player for a few more months until we can make the playoffs and earn our stripes.

  39. Top 5 4.0 Singles Players in no particular order:

    1. Jim Walters
    2. Ken Ratana
    3. Michael Runda
    4. Randy Vaiterra
    5. Donald Allen

    Top doubles:
    1. All of Somabut's crew(Picket, Smith, Nguyen, Martin, Robinson, and 20 others) They are very deep in doubles.
    2. Springpark is stacked at doubles too.(Sweeney, Wildberg, Lazarine, and their 3 new ringers)
    3. Helterbran/Mattes
    4. Ludwig/Kraemer

    Best singles player that I've played against has to be Jim Walters. He is very steady and makes his opponents earn every pts.

    Best Doubles team I've played against is a tie between Hai/Kirby and Ludwig/Kraemer.

    Spring League Predictions -
    Flight A - Somabut. They have serious depth at doubles.
    Sleeper pick - Lifetime Fitness Hill

    Flight B - Lakes Weatherby. Fall runner up. Has solid players and depth. Helterbrans team will give them a run. Sleeper pick - Garland Brueckner, they added some new talent. the addition of Sierp, Russell, and Lacy made Garland a contender.

    Flight C - I like Greenhill in this flight. With Jermoie/Windham playing well at doubles, they will add good depth to their doubles roster moving their formally #1 seed to 2 and so on. Arnette usually has 1 or 2 solid singles players. Bartlett team will make a run in this flight.
    Sleeper Pick - Hackberry Ellis

    D - Springpark. My pick to win the DCC. They may have a problem with depth when City comes. 100+ degree weather, Playing 2-3 matches a day. Will be interesting to see. Sleeper Pick - HP/Bazan. Noaman Azhar will be their ace. He's a solid 4.5 singles players. Chieng Moua/Steven Kent??? Ringers??? Bazan is real competitive and does some good recruiting. Bazan's team gets my vote for newcomer team. To bad they are playing in the toughest flight.

    Let's have a great Spring Season. I'm ready to get out on the courts and play!!!

    -Tennis Junky

  40. I assume the LB Houston team is Spagnola's you are talking about. Yikes that means 3 of our top 5 are in my flight "D" for DEATH I guess. I would kill to be in Flight A since Bob's team doesn't count towards the standings Eddie Hill should send the DTA a gift basket.

  41. I agree the Lakes and Garland look pretty good and we will see which is better next weekend. Loser is headed to the QT or worse on the edge of staying home in July. The Lakes have solid players like Runda, Jobe, Do, Valteierra, Balan, Richardson, Tran and new addition from Austin Alexander Kramer. This team does go deep. Garland I can't say the same thing: Sierp, Russell and Mckinney are solid. Some bump ups from 3.5 like Corcoran, Sisk, Singh and Oberto. Lacy will help but is he a guarantee??? They have some learning to do first.

  42. I'm ready to get out and play as well. I am even psyched to play our scrimmage this weekend.

    Sleeper pick: Oh no don't start those rumors that we can't live up to. Jim Walters already agreed to spot us a set to make our match more even.

    As much as i would like to keep my team a secret I know I can't so here is the lowdown as I told some of Somabut's group. The core of my team (Trae, myself, Ed and Dennis) played 3.5 last year and we have two 3.5s on the team that are friends of mine that wanted to play up a level. I do have 5 new additions and if they work out we could be a great team but John, Cheing, Eric and Steven haven't played competitive tennis in a long time and if they can snap back into shape we will have a good group if not we will finish the middle of the pack in a strong flight. I was fortunate enough to have some old contacts help out and fill out the rest of our roster with some solid players like Duncan, Burton and Bolden. Then the Azhar Bros are a force to be reckon with but they are not quite the level of the Dibuas. So OK we should be good but I don't think I have ever entered a season where I planned on being bad. As mentioned I am very competitive and I look forward to taking on the 4.0 level with the same energy I gave to 3.5.

  43. Doug bring the kleenex to practice on Thursday. You can give them to me then.

  44. T. Mckinney winning in the playoffs is not the only way to determine a good player. At least in the playoffs you know your playing against good players. You can't look at someone's regular season record and tell if they are a top player. I've had teammates go undefeated in the regular season playing line 1 and 2, and they didn't even make our playoff roster. Tournaments are another way of telling who the top 4.0 players are. It's hard to travel out of town and play 5-7 matches in one weekend. Anyone can play well for 1 match. That's why alot of league only players have too high of an opinion of there abilities.

  45. Donald Allen top 5 singles player? Isn't he the fat guy who lost first round in Houston? I think he almost passed out after the first set.

    Just kidding Don. Your a good player.

    Mr. Anonymous

  46. We are evaluating league play so I don't care if someone can win 20 straight matches in 1 day. What can do they do in one match v. a top player. If they pass out they have a week to recover.

    I think playoffs league tennis is a little different since you do play multiple matches but as many as you would if you advanced to the finals of a big MZ.

    I like that top 5 singles player list though. All those guys are solid although I would be curious to know if Terrell from Springpark could beat Jim. I have only seen Terrell play and he is pretty strong and has done well at the next level where Jim has not.

  47. Hey Anonymous Namecaller,
    Calling Bob Somabut a hipocrite only makes this Dallas tennis blog like the Houston blogs. Every other word they use is a 4 letter word. Let's stay away from the name calling please. Just as in golf handicapping, tennis ntrp levels are not precise. And when you read the about the usta's descriptions of levels, they say that a top 4.0 should beat a bottom 4.0 6-0, 6-0 on any given day. You have to start with something and this is what we have. I am sure it is better than the old system of having a pro rate you. Or having a tournament on-site evaluator. As to the Houston 4.0 team that went to Nat'ls last year. I did have the opportunity to play them and they would have competed and likely would have beat ANY Dallas 4.5 team. They were good, I don't know how they lost two matches at nat'ls. Guess other sections have bigger problems. Can't comment on Somabut's 2003 team, I wasn't there. I have never been to Nat'ls, but I've heard from all that you at least have to be able to compete at one level up.

    To the top 4.0 singles players: you must throw in Noaman Azhar, awesome player, and yes, of course Gene Davis. And I can beat at least 2 of those guys, if the temperature is between 76 and 82 degrees, and it's nighttime, with a 20 plus mph wind. Tournament players for the most part must be young, or able to handle the heat. I admire all those that can play 6 or 7 matches in one weekend!

    Top 4.0 doubles, nothing new to add there, except it seems Tim Newman and Doug Voss quietly avoid getting the mention, so I'll put it in.
    Kirby Martin

  48. Kirby, You miss the point. When Somabut's team lost in the finals at Sectionals many of you guys came off the court whining, crying & complaining. Your teammates called Houston ringers, sandbaggers, cheaters, etc. and accused them of keeping scores close. Somabut repeatedly complained and tried to get them disqualified. The trashy complaining & malicious allegations did nothing but make your team look like poor sports. (And I don't think that is the way you want to be viewed.)

    Houston lost 2 of 3 matches at Nationals. They were a strong 4.0 team but not a great 4.0 team. THERE IS NO WAY THEY COULD COMPETE WITH ANY OF THE TOP 4.5 TEAMS IN DALLAS. That's totally untrue. They followed all the USTA rules and they played hard. Their only fault was that they were a little better than your team. You argue they were too good simply because your team lost.

    Here is my point: If you guys get beat at Sectionals in 2008, have the decency to congratulate the winners and don't call then ringers, sandbaggers, cheaters,etc. just beacuse you lost. Don't charge them with tanking matches, keeping scores close, etc. Because that rarely happens and it cannot be proved or disproved anyway. If you WIN Sectionals this year, then I hope other teams do not make the same type of low-class complaints about your team.

  49. Tanking and keeping scores close happens all the time. It happens from 3.0 all the way up to 5.0. Play up a level in the fall league, and I bet you win 75% of your matches. Everyone will tank to you so they can keep their ratings.

  50. I don't think I can agree with the assessment that a team that loses at Nationals is not a great 4.0 team. I think every captain likes to think they don't have any sandbaggers, just the top players at their level. Then, if they lose, the other team must have had sandbaggers. In my opinion, it is more about the score than the result. When you see scores that are 0-0 or 1-1 in sectionals and/or nationals, those guys are clearly playing above level.

  51. Agreed or even a great team might lose at sectionals like my old 3.5 team. Also there are teams at sectionals and nationals that couldn't win the DCC or the Houston championship.

    I wish I had gone down to watch that match last August between these two teams like I had planned. I actually talked with Kirby an hour or so before and I think they felt overwhelmed before the match even started. They had a smaller roster that was depleted by injuries and exhaustion so that might have played into the lopsided scores.

    I hate to be all cheers and smiles but both teams should feel good about their season as I do about our 3.5 season last year. Only one team can win nats out of hundreds and only 16 can go to nats out of the whole US and only "ONE" from TX.

    personally I hope you all get bumped to 4.5 this summer so I can take over next year.

  52. I won't get bumped because I tank matches and keep all my scores close. At least that is what I tell people when I lose or have a close match.

  53. What are your favorite 3 facilities (public or private) for playing league matches?

    T-Bar ?

    What are your 3 LEAST favorite sites?
    L.B. Houston?
    High Point?

  54. Brookhaven 1 and T-Bar #2, but I must admit I have never played at the Lakes.

    Least favorite is LBH, but mostly because it is in the boonies. HP would be 2nd because of the wind that always seems to be present there.

  55. I still find it hard to understand tanking matches. I guess those people have a lot of time on their hands. I used to get to play 3-4 times a week but now I am reduced to 1 to 2 times a week so the thought of driving 45 minutes to a match to intentionally lose just seems crazy and I have even heard of people signing up for tourneys to lose two matches by double bagels. isn't there better things to do with your money and time, like I don't know......take a tennis lesson to improve your game instead of losing to try and feel good about your sub par ability. Trust me my game isn't pretty and I "win ugly" most all the time but there was times last season when I didn't play well and still won matches somewhat easily and there is no real fun in that. I enjoyed the fall season more when I was playing some good tennis and losing closely to better players.

  56. I like Brookhaven because the courts are fenced in on all four sides so you don't get balls coming at you from other courts.

  57. i am of course partial to High Point and I really do like the courts. I have only played once at T Bar for the fall playoffs and I liked it but don't remember it all that well. Brookhaven has a good feel and the new courts are great, also I hated the indoor at first and now i like them. Also like Stonebridge.

    Garland-only been there once but hope I never go back. Courts were chewed up and after the match I was getting in my car and there was a young couple trying to conceive a child in the car next to me. (WT F***!) I think I saw a drug deal and some random gunfire as well. Ok the last two I didn't see but suspected were happeneing somewhere, but the back seat grinding will never be forgotten. It was a Sunday afternoon for crying out loud. Get a room or at least park in the back of the parking lot!!!

  58. I played at Garland one time with Hillary Clinton. We both had to dodge sniper fire.

  59. Oh the good old days of fornicating in the GTC parking lot. Sorry you had to see that Bazan but I got so many tickets on my window tinting being too dark I finally had to have it removed.

    You will be happy to know I have since been married and no longer rub elbows with the locals like I used to, but thanks for bringing up them fond memories.

  60. Interesting that you should mention the gunfire Cary because they actually had a drive by next to Garland Tennis Center one night. The courts have gotten better though. I have to vote for Brookhaven as the best place to play, or Canyon Creek indoors.

  61. What's the deal with the time on the postings? If I post at 9 a.m., it shows 11 a.m. But if I post at 11 p.m., it shows 9 p.m. How is that possible?

  62. Uh, Ludwig and Kraemer? Better go look at the last Brookhaven tournament, Allen and Ratana put a double bagel on them in the semis.

  63. Actually, I am fat, 24% in fact as the fat analyzer just told me, and I did lose in the first round in Houston, but I actually did pass out. Fortunately someone brought me a pizza and I woke right up.


    Fatass (and only top 5 if we held a donut eating contest)

  64. Oh, and Brother Feulle has to be the top 4.0 guy right now, he hasn't lost in some time. In fact, last guy to beat him was a fatass.

  65. Back to the 4.0 sectional finals last year: If Mr anonymous looks up the scores he will realize 4 of the 5 Dallas lines only got 4 games. And the 5th line started 45 min. late, so I got to watch most of it. The Houston partnership were laughing it up, flat footed, and didn't much care, as they had already won, so our Dallas line got a set. I can tell you honestly, I could hit one hundred serves and not serve 1 the way 4 or 5 of those Houston guys served. Whiner or whatever, it wasn't a level playing field. How did we role through our other 5 sectional matches fairly smoothly, and then lose 0-5? It all makes me wonder if an honest player EVER has a chance of getting to nationals ? Also, having played at High Point 22 years now, I know everybody, and someone told me my opponents were told during a bathroom break that you had better give some games, at that point it was 1-6,0-3 in his favour, and we then got the next 2 games.

    And Don, your not that fat. You just like beer as I do - that's what I like about you! I will meet you in a singles tourney THIS year, and as long as our fat arses are depleted about the same amount, it's going to be fun. That Forrest Feuille guy is not the 4.0 guy to beat. I watched him play. He is good, but he isn't esp. a 4.0 "ringer". Wait a min. - I looked up his tournament record, 17-1, okay, he's pretty darn good. At least Don got a set off of him though.
    Good luck everyone this weekend, let's have some good matches!

  66. I don't agree with poster 9:55am who says "tanking and keeping scores close happens all the time".

    Not on my 4.0 team.

    What fun could it possibly be for anyone to intentionally lose games or worse lose an entire match? I think that is very, very rare.

    What happens is that players have an inflated view of their own ability. When they get beat, they think their opponent is too good and should be DQed. When the guy that beat them losses a match _ they claim he must have tanked. When the guy that beat them wins a close match they claim he must have kept the scores close. People say that frequently but I think it rarely occurs.

  67. "I wonder if an HONEST player ever has a chance to make nationals".

    I know you guys were very disappointed to lose in the finals at Sectionals. Maybe losing is easier for you when you say you lost to a bunch of dishonest players. But that is just a cheap shot and shows poor sportsmenship.

    I watched the finals and here are the facts:

    > Houston had a very good team but not a great team. Your team was exhausted when you reached the finals and your best player was injured. Your team did not play their best.

    > EVERY player that played for Houston in the finals was COMPUTER rated based on prior year's play.

    > The two guys you played against, Goldberg has played USTA League since 2001. Trans-Park has played Legaue since 2005. Neither were even close to being the superstars you paint them to be.

    > I don't care what you say you heard 2nd or 3rd hand in the restroom, all indications are that Houston played hard all year long. They beat opponents badly whenever they could (check TennisLink) and they certainly had some lopsided scores against you guys. According to USTA methodology they were playing at an appropriate level.

    > Just because your team lost does NOT mean that the playing field was not level and it certainly does not make the Houston team dishonest. They were simply better than you. (And they were not as good as a lot of 4.0 teams at Nationals.)

    > When you call them cheaters and dishonest, that reflects poorly on YOU and it changes nothing.

  68. The worst tennis facility I know is L.B. Houston.

    LBH is old and run-down. Their courts are rammed closely together so you are constantly chasing balls from other courts. In the evening they have mosquitos bigger than a small car.

    And topping everyhting off, they are right next to a gun range. You can frequently heard the sweet sounds of gun fire in the background as you serve.

    Also the viewing is horrible. It's a disgrace that they play Sectional matches there every year.

  69. yep I agree LBH was not the most pleasant place to have sectionals especially for viewing purposes but Brookhaven gives up their courts so often I can't imagine them hosting everything.

    Not sure how Greenhill worked out as a secondary location since we played all our matches at LBH.

    Forgot about the gunfire range, that sucks too. Nice note Corey about the garland gunshots. I do remember when Garland was actually a nice town. I know there are still good parts hopefully they will build some other courts someday.

  70. Best place to play:
    St. Stephens in Austin
    Westwood CC in Austin
    Dominion CC in San Antonio
    HollyTree CC in Tyler

    Dallas and Houston venues......not that great buddy.

    Worst places ever:
    Lee Leclear in Houston
    Memorial in Houston
    Quail Valley in Houston
    LB Houston in Dallas
    Samuel Grand in Dallas
    and anyplace in Abilene, Lubbock, Amarillo, Corpus, or Beaumont.

    Even Beaumont might be insulted to be lumped into a group that has Houston in it.

  71. Kingwood was nice but I guess technically that isn't "Houston"

    TCU was nice when I played there in HS. Also the other night when I was recrui.. I mean when I was hitting with an old friend the courts are still awesome.

  72. hey now, 3:25 am anonymous, when you say > "When you call them cheaters and dishonest, that reflects poorly on YOU and it changes nothing." -- you are kind of putting words in my mouth now, I didn't call anybody cheaters. I did say I thought they could beat any Dallas 4.5 team though, and that may or may not be true. It does appear that many of that Houston team are doing quite well at 4.5 this year. I have played enough tournaments to know that when you go through a field of say 32, and get to the finals, your opponents are pretty darn close to the same level as you. Sectionals is about 20 teams I believe, and for Finals to be that lop-sided to me it doesn't imply equality. Sure, if you want me to say it, they were better players. Another thing, as to the number of years that a player has been playing USTA, I don't see much relevance. True, 4.0 self-rated players can have a large swing from 3.0 to 5.0. But computer rated players doesn't mean a lot to me. When you read the Houston blog the word "tanking" does come up quite a bit. I am not implying any guys on the Houston team tank. I'm just saying years in league isn't that good of an indicator.


  73. Anybody notice that the DTA does a piss poor job with their Leagues portion of their website?

    Results information looks to be more than a year old. Spring schedules are not posted so that we can see when other teams play.

    Why have a web site if all the information is as old as the hills?

  74. last year and the year before it was up to date but not sure what is happening with it now.

  75. Worst in Dallas- LB Houston
    Worst in Texas- the old place they used to play tourneys in Waco. that place had about 18 courst side-by-side-by side. Always hot and windy so your ball could blow acros 8 courts. You had to interupt 8 matches just to get the ball back. Also the surfaced of that place sucked. You didn't really know where to parking lot ended and the courts start except for the fence. What was the name of that place?

    Best in DFW- TCU

  76. Charlie McLeary in Waco. If I'm the McLeary family, I get his name removed.

  77. You are right. That is the name of that tennis dump. Funny comment. I agree. Charlie McCleary or his family must sue someone over that "honor." I forgot to mention the wind screens that flap in the wind and are so thin you can see right through them. Not sure which is worse. Those courts or the Waco nightlife.

  78. Hey...why the negativity? We should be thankful that we have public courts to play on and that this sport is just not available to the wealthy elite. Look at players like Djokovic and Ivanovic and Jankovic all from war torn Serbia. They had to practice in swimming pools converted into tennis courts. We are so lucky to have all that we have and all the places to play. I would rather learn to adapt to the surroundings that worry about issues other than how can I play better each time I step out onto a court. Regardless and even if I have to dodge gunfire and open displays of affection in the parking lots. At least they are loving rather than hating!

  79. not being negative, the subject came up. I don't like to watch backseat action unless I am somehow involved and as far as the gunfire I guess the same rule goes for that as well.

    I appreciate there are courts down that way I used to live in N. Dallas but to be honest I wouldn't be caught dead there. Unless it was to pick up my bag from my dealer. Call me elitest (don't call me wealthy because that would be far from the truth) or what you will but I enjoy nice facilities and all that comes with it.