Monday, September 29, 2014


                             2014 League Playoffs------->
           Make sure you play your matches on time !
All matches to be completed by Oct 20th !!
If matches are not played winners will be 
decided by points obtained in the League !!!

                       The Lone Rangers
2 beautiful mornings this weekend and no one playing tennis !
Except for the Lone Rangers....
League Player Lisa Carbone and her  husband were the only occupants of the 7 courts at UCCC
The Terminator Greg Tellier(R) and friend were the loners at Forsyth Park

                      The void....
When the pot holes outside the tennis courts were glistening with new gravel and shiny paving material,it had less to do with the town's new found love for tennis but more to do with putting on a happy face for the attendees of the 'Touch a Truck' ( yes that was the name) expo. The tennis courts were empty but that was probably because there was no place to park for tennis players !
Empty courts...

Full parking lot for the truck expo !
             Fall League Begins !!
The Fall Edition (groan....!) of the Mid Hudson Tennis League has begun !
Players in the Spring League are automatically enrolled in the Fall League at no extra charge and retain their points ! New entrants are welcome too. This will give League Players some extra playing time till mid October when the play offs take place.
So don't hang up your racquets and make use of the extended summer weather we are having !!
                     Coach of the Year: Pete Zeeh
Ace Coach Pete Zeeh at his home court
 Pete Zeeh was the dominant tennis player in the area since 1962 when he won the first of his eleven Ulster County Tennis titles. He owned and operated the Ulster Tennis Club and later taught tennis at UCCC and Zena Rec Club.
                                  He now gives private lessons at his home court at Sawkill Road in Kingston in the summer and teaches in Englewood,Florida in the winter.
                  He also gives FREE lessons at Forsyth Park on Saturdays at 10 a.m.
                                  Pete has a very simple yet very effective approach to teaching. He takes the technique used by a player, and simplifies it without modifying it. The result is instant improvement (we have tested and tried it!)
Pete Zeeh can be reached at:
and at 845-331-4355.
We recommend him highly !!
                           Winners !!
Extreme left (back row): Vicky Madonna and Kevin Madonna
 League Players Vicky and Kevin Madonna were honored on Center Court at the New Haven Yale Tennis Center during the Connecticut Open. They reached the finals of the Husband/Wife Division of the New Haven Family Classic.
 Vicky and Kevin won their first three matches on July 20, but lost in the finals played on August 21. Their runner-up trophy was presented to them by James Blake on center court after the conclusion of the women's quarter finals.
                                                       Kevin is also heading to Tuscon,AZ to play for his USTA team at the National Championships. We wish him the best !

Saturday, September 27, 2014


                                  2014 League Play Offs

1.There are 2 Qualifiers and 2 Eliminators
(except in events where there are insufficient number of  players who qualified)
2. Qualifier # 1: Winner goes to the finals and the loser gets another chance in Qualifier #2.
3. Eliminators: Winner of Eliminator # 1 vs Eliminator #2  gets into Qualifier # 2 .
4. Qualifier #2: Winner goes to the finals
5. With the exception of forfeits,all unplayed matches will be ruled in favor of the person with more points.

-->All matches to be completed by October 20th<--

Men's A Singles:
Kevin Dodd(2)  15
Michael McNicholas 12
Ravi Ramaswami(1) 10 
Jihyuk Han 9
Wyatt Sprague 8
Qualifier # 1: Dodd vs McNicholas
Eliminator # 1: Han vs Sprague
Eliminator #2 : Ramaswami vs  Winner E1
Qualifier # 2 : Q1 loser vs E2 winner
Finals: Winner Q1 vs Winner Q2

Men's B Singles Division 1 : 
Mark Murasso 24
Michael McNicholas 20 
 Rains Newton 18
Andrew Lynch 9
Charles Lay 7
Qualifier # 1:Murasso vs McNicholas
Eliminator# 1: Lynch vs Lay
 Eliminator #2: Newton vs
 Qualifier # 2 : Q1 loser vs E2 winner
 Finals: Winner Q1 vs Winner Q2

Men's B Singles Division 2 : 
Mike Hommel(4) 7 
Wally Cook 6
Steve Hajek 5
Larry Arvidson 5
Bob Nicol 4 
Nat Borsky 4

Qualifier # 1: Hommel vs Cook
Eliminator# 1: Hajek vs Arvidson
Eliminator #2: Nicol vs Borsky
 Eliminator #3: Winner E1 vs Winner E2
Qualifier # 2 : Q1 loser vs E3 winner
 Finals: Winner Q1 vs Winner Q2

Women's B Singles:
 Melissa Bamford(1) 10
Amy Keller 9
Donna Viertel 4
Sharon Crego(2) 4
 Lisa Cutten 2

Qualifier # 1:Bamford vs Keller
Eliminator# 1 : Viertel vs Cutten
Eliminator # 2: Crego vs E1 winner
Qualifier # 2 : Q1 loser vs E2 winner
Finals: Winner Q1 vs Winner Q2

C Singles: 
Nicholas Millas 6
Dennis Jones 2
Finals: Millas vs Jones

Super Senior Singles:
Larry Arvidson 12
Ed Biro 7
Bob Nicol 6
Bob Guidubaldi 4
 Bill Roberts 2

Qualifier # 1: Arvidson vs Biro
Eliminator #1 :Roberts vs Guidubaldi
Eliminator #2:Nicol vs E1 winner
Qualifier # 2 : Q1 loser vs E2 winner
Finals: Winner Q1 vs Winner Q2

Super Seniors Doubles
Larry Arvidson/Bruce Sumber 9
Ed Biro/Joe Reilly 2
Finals:  Arvidson/Sumber vs Biro/Reilly

Men's B Doubles:
Firoz Bhamla/Hal Hauck (1) 9
Ed Biro/Joe Reilly 7
Don Guidi/Tony Sarowitz 5
Nick Malvai/Doug Milford 4

Qualifier # 1:Bhamla/Hauck vs Biro Reilly
Eliminator #1 :Guidi/Sarowitz vs Malvai/Milford
Qualifier # 2 :Winner E1 vs Loser Q1
Finals: Winner Q1 vs Winner Q2

Women's C Doubles:
 Francine Wizner/Donna Viertel(1) 2
Tracy Oakes/Gail Bradney 2

Finals: Wizner/Viertel vs Oakes/Bradney

A Mixed Doubles:
Milly Back/Ravi Ramaswami(1) 2
Vicky/Kevin Madonna 1
Finals: Back/Ramaswami vs Vicki/Kevin Madonna

B Mixed Doubles:
 Melissa Bamford/Paul Mushlit (3) 20
Teri Jordan/Nick Malvai (1) 8
Lisa Carbone/Bob Nicol (4) 6 
Lisa Cutten/Steve Hajek 5
Jody/Scott Mallen 5

Qualifier # 1:Bamford/Mushlit vs Jordan/Malvai
 Eliminator #1  :Cutten/Hajek vs Jody/Scott Mallen
 Eliminator #2: Carbone/Nicol vs E1 winner
Qualifier # 2 : Q1 loser vs E2 winner
Finals: Winner Q1 vs Winner Q2

Wednesday, September 3, 2014


Men's A Singles
Kevin Dodd(2)  15
Michael McNicholas 12
Ravi Ramaswami(1) 10 
Jihyuk Han 9
Wyatt Sprague 8
Scott Taylor 6
David White 5
Steve Hack (4) 5
TN Thompson 4
Steve Hack (4) 5
Ed Rogers 5
Rains Newton 4
Mark Murasso 2
Joel Iskowitz 1
Men's B Singles
Mark Murasso 24
Rains Newton 18
Michael McNicholas 20 
Andrew Lynch 9 
Charles Lay 7 
Mike Hommel(4) 7 
Wally Cook 6
Steve Hajek 5
Larry Arvidson 5
Bob Nicol 4 
Nat Borsky 4
Peter Van Loan 2
Bruce Sumber 2
Michael Snow 2
Paul Solis-Cohen(3) 2
John Dorfner 1

Women's B Singles
Melissa Bamford(1) 10
Amy Keller 9
Donna Viertel 4
Sharon Crego(2) 4
Lisa Cutten (3) 2
Mourka Rudnay(4) 2
C Singles
Nicholas Millas 6
Dennis Jones 2

Super Seniors Singles
Larry Arvidson 12
Ed Biro 7
Bob Nicol 6
Bob Guidubaldi 4
Bill Roberts 2

Super Seniors Doubles
Larry Arvidson/Bruce Sumber 9
Ed Biro/Joe Reilly 2
Men's B Doubles
Firoz Bhamla/Hal Hauck (1) 9
Ed Biro/Joe Reilly 7
Don Guidi/Tony Sarowitz 5
Nick Malvai/Doug Milford 4
Women's B Doubles

Women's C Doubles
Francine Wizner/Donna Viertel(1) 2
Tracy Oakes/Gail Bradney 2

A Mixed Doubles
Milly Back/Ravi Ramaswami(1) 2
Vicky/Kevin Madonna 1
B Mixed Doubles
Melissa Bamford/Paul Mushlit (3) 20
Teri Jordan/Nick Malvai (1) 8
Lisa Carbone/Bob Nicol (4) 6 
Lisa Cutten/Steve Hajek 5
Jody/Scott Mallen 5
Sharon/Randy Crego 4 
Adrianna Kaufman/Firoz Bhamla 3 
Maria DeFranco/Paul Solis-Cohen 2

C Mixed Doubles 
Cindy Kowalewski/Joe Siuta 2

Monday, September 1, 2014


Red denotes challenge matches
STB : 3rd set super tie-break
Men's A Singles
Kevin Dodd d Don Tegeler
Kevin Dodd d Jihyuk Han STB
Kevin Dodd d Joel Iskowitz
Wyatt Sprague d Kevin Dodd (2)
Jihyuk Han d Michael McNicholas
Kevin Dodd(2) d Joel Iskowitz
Michael McNicholas d Rains Newton
Kevin Dodd(2) d Joel Iskowitz
David White d Rains Newton
Rains Newton d Joel Iskowitz
Jihyuk Han d Rains Newton
Kevin Dodd(2) d Joel Iskowitz
 Kevin Dodd(2) d Wyatt Sprague
Kevin Dodd (2) d Joel Iskowitz 
Kevin Dodd (2) d Joel Iskowitz
Steve Hack (4) d Kevin Dodd STB
Kevin Dodd (2) d Joel Iskowitz 
Kevin Dodd (2) d Joel Iskowitz
Michael McNicholas d Wyatt Sprague
Jihyuk Han d Wyatt Sprague
Kevin Ddd(2) d Joel Iskowitz
Wyatt Sprague d Don Tegeler
Scott Taylor d Wyatt Sprague
Kevin Dodd(2) d Joel Iskowitz
Scott Taylor d Jihyuk Han STB
TN Thompson d Jihyuk Han  STB
Ravi Ramaswami (1) d Jihyuk Han
Wyatt Sprague d Ed Rogers  STB
Ravi Ramaswami(1) d Wyatt Sprague
Scott Taylor d Ed Rogers
Ravi Ramaswami (1) d Amy Keller
Steve Hack (4) d Wyatt Sprague
Michael McNicholas d John Dorfner
Ravi Ramaswami(1) d Kevin Dodd (2)
TN Thompson d Don Tegeler
Wyatt Sprague d John Dorfner
Michael McNicholas d David White
Men's B Singles
Andrew Lynch d Mark Murasso
Andrew Lynch d Peter Van Loan
Nat Borsky d Steve Hajek STB
Larry Arvidson d Bruce Sumber
Larry Arvidson d Andrew Lynch STB
Mark Murasso d Mark Snow
Rains Newton d Mark Murasso
 Mark Murasso d Steve Hajek
Mark Murasso d Mark Snow
Mark Murasso d  Peter Van Loan
Mark Murasso d  Nat Borsky
Mark Murasso d  Bob Nicol
Mark Murasso d Andrew Lynch
Rains Newton d Tomasz Andruczyk
Rains Newton d Bill Roberts
Mark Murasso d Bruce Sumber
Rains Newton d Larry Arvidson
Mark Murasso d Steve Hajek
Cary Bayer d Larry Arvidson
Charles Lay d Wally Cook
Michael McNicholas d Charles Lay STB
Steve Hajek d Bruce Sumber
Charles Lay d Steve Hajek
Wally Cook d Nat Borsky
Wally Cook d Steve Hajek
Rains Newton d Larry Arvidson
Charles Lay d Rains Newton
Bruce Sumber d Steve Hajek
Nat Borsky d Steve Hajek
Rains Newton d Mike Hommel (4) STB
Mike Hommel(4) d Steve Hajek
Rains Newton d Steve Hajek
Michael McNicholas d Mark Murasso
Peter Van Loan d Larry Arvidson STB
Wally Cook d Andrew Lynch
Michael McNicholas d  Mike Hommel (4)
Paul Solis-Cohen (3) d Michael McNicholas STB
Mike Hommel (4) d Michael Snow
 Michael McNicholas d Andrew Lynch
Mark Murasso d Larry Arvidson
Steve Hajek d Nat Borsky
Michael Snow d Bruce McPherson
 Rains Newton d Wally Cook
Michael McNicholas d Nat Borsky
Bob Nicol d Steve Hajek
Bob Nicol d Michael Snow
Mark Murasso d Steve Hajek
 Larry Arvidson d Bruce McPherson
Andrew Lynch d Steve Hajek
Michael McNicholas d Peter Van Loan
Larry Arvidson d Steve Hajek
Rains Newton d Bob Nicol
Andrew Lynch d Houston Porter
Mark Murasso d Bruce McPherson
Mike Hommel d Andrew Lynch
Mark Murasso d Mike Hommel (4)
Women's B Singles
Melissa Bamford d Francine Wizner
Donna Viertel d Magda Toro
Melissa Bamford(1)d Lisa Cutten
 Amy Keller d Melissa Bamford (1)
Lisa Cutten(3) d Amy Keller
 Amy Keller d Mourka Rudnay(4)
Mourka Rudnay(4) d Donna Viertel
 Melissa Bamford (1) d Amy Keller STB
Donna Viertel d Bonnie Wagner
Melissa Bamford (1) d Magda Toro
Amy Keller d Magda Toro
Amy Keller d Sarane Connor
Sharon Crego (2) d Magda Toro
Sharon Crego(2) d Sarane Connor
C Singles
 Dennis Jones d Cindy Kowalewski
Dennis Jones d Francine Wizner
Nicholas Millas d Cindy Kowalewski
Nicholas Millas d Mia Roosa
Nicholas Millas w/o Kathleen Grable

Super Seniors Singles
Ed Biro d Bill Roberts
Bob Nicol d Nat Borsky
Bob Nicol d Larry Arvidson
Bob Guidubaldi d Bill Roberts 
Larry Arvidson d  Bob Guidubaldi
Larry Arvidson d Ed Biro  STB
Bob Guidubaldi d Bill Roberts
Ed Biro d Bruce Sumber
Bob Nicol d Brucer Sumber
Larry Arvidson d Bill Roberts
Larry Arvidson d Nat Borsky
Larry Arvidson d Bruce Sumber
Ed Biro d Bill Roberts

Super Senior Doubles
 Larry Arvidson/Bruce Sumber d Bill Roberts/Bob Guidubaldi
Larry Arvidson/Bruce Sumber d Robert Greenwood/ Josh Aronson 
Larry Arvidson/Bruce Sumber d Bill Roberts/Bob Guidubaldi
Ed Biro/Joe Reilly  d Larry Arvidson/Bruce Sumber 
Larry Arvidson/Bruce Sumber d Robert Greenwood/ Josh Aronson
Men's B Doubles
Ed Biro/Joe Reilly d Firoz Bhamla/Hal Hauck(1)
Nick Malvai/Doug Milford d Firoz Bhamla/Hal Hauck(1)
Firoz Bhamla/Hal Hauck(1) d Nick Malvai/Doug Milford
Ed Biro/Joe Reilly d Wally Cook/Tony Matessi
Don Guidi/Tony Sarowitz  d Joe Siuta/Rob Jankowski
Firoz Bhamla/Hal Hauck(1) d Nils Schlebusch/Ernie Enzien
Firoz Bhamla/Hal Hauck (1) d Joe Siuta/Rob Jankowski
Don Guidi/Tony Sarowitz d  Firoz Bhamla/Hal Hauck(1) STB
Firoz Bhamla/Hal Hauck(1) d Don Guidi/Tony Sarowitz STB

Women's B Doubles

Women's C Doubles
Francine Wizner/Donna Viertel (1) d Cindy Kowalewski/Melissa Mayes
Tracy Oakes/Gail Bradney d Melissa Mayes/Cindy Kowalewski
A Mixed Doubles
Milly Back/Ravi Ramaswami (1) d Vicky/Kevin Madonna STB
B Mixed Doubles
Melissa Bamford/Paul Mushlit(3) d  Amy Keller/ Bob Guidubaldi
Melissa Bamford/Paul Mushlit(3) d  Jodi/Scott Mallen
 Lisa Carbone/Bob Nicol(4) d Mourka/Mick Rudnay
Teri Jordan/Nick Malvai (1) d  Lisa Cutten/Steve Hajek
Teri Jordan/Nick Malvai (1) dSharon/Randy Crego
Melissa Bamford/Paul Mushlit(3) d Sharon/Randy Crego
Lisa Cutten/Steve Hajek d  Mourka/Mick Rudnay
Jody/Scott Mallen d Elizabeth Collins/Joe Siuta
 Lisa Cutten/Steve Hajek d Amy Keller/ Bob Guidubaldi
Melissa Bamford/Paul Mushlit(3) d Lisa Cutten/ Steve Hajek STB
 Lisa Carbone/Bob Nicol(4) d Jody/Scott Mallen  STB
Maria DeFranco/Paul Solis-Cohen d  Melissa Bamford/Paul Mushlit(3)  STB
Melissa Bamford/Paul Mushlit(3) d Amy Keller/ Bob Guidubaldi
Melissa Bamford/Paul Mushlit(3) d Mourka/Mickey Roudnay
Melissa Bamford/Paul Mushlit(3) d Elizabeth Collins /Joe Siuta
Teri Jordan/Nick Malvai (1) d  Elizabeth Collins /Joe Siuta
Melissa Bamford/Paul Mushlit(3) d Vicky/Scott Mallen
Teri Jordan/Nick Malvai (1) d Melissa Bamford/Paul Mushlit(3) STB
Adriana Kaufman/Firoz Bhamla d  Elizabeth Collins/Joe Siuta
Jody/Scott Mallen d  Teri Jordan/Nick Malvai (1)
Melissa Bamford/Paul Mushlit(3) d Adriana Kaufman/Firoz Bhamla STB
Lisa Carbone/Bob Nicol(4) d Elizabeth Collins /Joe Siuta
Sharon/Randy Crego d Mourka/Mick Rudnay
Sharon/Randy Crego w/o Elizabeth Collins/Joe Siuta
C Mixed Doubles 
Cindy Kowalewski/Joe Siuta d Mia/Mark Roosa


We answer your questions about any aspect of tennis !  
Please send your questions to :

Q. How do you resolve a scoring dispute during a game ?
A. The 'easiest' thing to do would be to count the points starting with the most recent point played since this is the freshest in memory. So the conversation on a 30-40 vs 40-30 would go like this: ' The last point was won by Player A (15-0 A),the previous point was one by B (15-15),A had hit an ace (30-15 A) , Player A missed a volley(30-30), no one can remember or agree on the 1st point (still 30-30). So the game resumes at 30-30. The dispute can  also be resolved with a coin toss. At other times,if every point is disputed,then the game resumed with the last point played since that is often undisputed- being the freshest in memory. If all else fails then start the game over.
Q. Who can call a let and when ?
A. Generally ANYONE playing the match can call a service let but lets can also be called at any other time.However there are a few guidelines expected ( but not enforceable) to be followed:
1. It has to potentially interfere with play.
2. It cannot be called from anyone outside the court including players playing on an adjacent court whose ball rolls in.
3. Players generally call lets on their side of the court. ( So if you are at the net finishing off a volley and a ball rolls BEHIND you and your opponents calls a let to 'save' themselves, it does not merit as a let since it did not interfere with your winning shot).
4. If a wrong call is made and corrected,it is NOT a let. The wrong caller loses the point.
5. Outside interference like people yelling or camera flashlights DO NOT merit a let unless very
 dramatic ( like an explosion ).
6.Unless the time between the first and second serves gets very long (more than 20 seconds), it is not required to play a let for mundane actions such as clearing a ball that hit the net or returning a ball to another court.

Q. Why was Serena penalized for hindrance at the US Open while Razzano was given a warning for hindrance at the French Open ?
A. At the 2011 US Open, Serena got a point penalty because it was a deliberate hindrance-her shouting "C'mon" before the point was over.
 At the French Open, it was an involuntary hindrance-Razzano yelping in pain after she hit the ball. That’s why Razzano got a warning first  and a point penalty for a subsequent hindrance.
 Of course the umpire probably got carried away and ended up awarding two more hindrance point penalty.

Q. Is the point over if the ball is hit past the opponent ?
A. The surprising answer is ,'No' ! If the ball is not returned by the opponent, the point is over only AFTER the ball bounces twice or hits anything  after bouncing once. So if your opponent touches the net before this happens the point is yours ! Even if the shot was an obvious winner, it does not matter. For example if your opponent drills an overhead past you and touches the net before the ball bounces twice or hits the fence-you win the point ! The famous Serena hindrance ruling at the U.S. Open ( Serena had shouted 'Come on' after she hit a winner past her opponent but yelled before the ball was dead ) was also based on this.

Q. Can my opponent make calls on my side of the court ?
A. The rule of thumb is that all players make calls on their side of the court with the exception of foot faults which can be called by your opponent. Calls made the players on their side of the court include out calls,touching the net,double bounces and the ball hitting them or their hat or clothing. Technically once the ball bounces all calls are made by the person on whose side the ball bounces till the ball bounces on the other side.

Q. In doubles may the receivers switch positions for a point (i.e.  the person receiving in the deuce side switches to receive in the ad side)  ?
A. USTA Rule 27e states that if an error is discovered, the altered order should continue till that game gets over and the original order  be resumed at the next receiving game.
 Rule 27d states that if the wrong server serves the error should be corrected immediately if discovered before the game gets over. If it is discovered AFTER the game is over,the altered service order continues for the rest of the set.
In either case there is no loss of point. 

Also the order of serve/receiving can be changed at the end of the set.

Q. If my opponent corrects an 'out' call to 'in' do we play a let ?
A. As of 2011, the rules state that if a ball is 'in' but called 'out' and then corrected, the person making the wrong call loses the point. A 'let' is NOT played.

Q. How high is the net supposed to be ?
A. The net is 36" high at the center strap.

Q. Is a let played if a ball strays into the court between the first and second serves ?
A. Unless it interfered with the server i.e. while he was serving or it took a long time to clear the ball a let is not played.

Q. Is it a let if a server completely misses ('whiffs') a serve ?
A. Actually it is a fault.

Q. Where can a receiver's partner stand in doubles ?
A. Anywhere he likes on his side of the court but if the serve hits him on the fly his team loses the point.

Q. In the first point of the serve, if the serve goes down the middle can the receiver's partner return it ?
A. Until 2011 that was a legal shot but now once the players establish where they are going to receive from, the other person cannot return out of turn.

Q. How do you play a tie-break ?
A. This is something that creates confusion even among some experienced tennis players. So here is a primer:
1. A tie-break is played when the score is 6 games all.
2. The person whose serve it is at 6-6 ( it is always the person who STARTED the set) gets to serve once from the deuce court.(Of course, if you miss the first serve you do get a second serve)
3.After this both opponents get  TWO serves serving from the ad court first and then the deuce course.
4.Players change ends at 6-6 in the tie-break and after every 6 points.
5.First one to seven wins or if the tie-break score is 6-6 a difference of 2 is needed to win e.g. 8-6,9-7  etc;

Q.What is a Coman tie-break ?
A. A Coman tie-break is played the same way except the ends are changed every 4 points instead of every 6.
The premise of this is that the sun and wind factor are equally distributed to the players and ,in doubles, the same players serve from the same ends.

Q. What is a match tie-break ?
A. Fall League players play a match tie-break in lieu of a third set. Even on the pro level many tournaments have this format. A match tie-break is a 10 point tie-break (played either regular or Coman style) where the first one to 10 wins. At 9-9 the winner needs a difference of 2 e.g.  11-9,  14-12  etc;

Q. Why do some players say,"Stay for one" after a set ends ?
A.  There is a misunderstanding whether one should change ends after a set. In reality if the game ends in an even score e.g. 6-2 or 6-4 then there is no change of ends at the start of the next set. If it is an odd score like 6-1 or 7-6 then the player change ends.

Q. Who starts serving after a tie break is completed and do you change ends ?
A. The person who begins the tie-break receives serve at the start of the next set. Another way of looking at it is that the person that started the set  will receive the next set (after the tie-break). Yes there is a change of ends after the tie-break.

Q. In a recent league match, my opponent called my serve out, then corrected the call but returned the serve. She wanted to play a let. Is that the right thing to do ?
A. As per USTA 2011 rules, any corrected calls will result in the point awarded against the person making the wrong call. So if she called the serve out and corrected it- you win the point just based on her wrong call. This rule was instituted to avoid players from calling a good serve out just to be able to neutralize the advantage of the server.

Q. What if a string breaks during play ?
A. Point continues if it happens during a rally. If the receiver breaks a string during a first serve return and needs to replace the racquet, it is a first serve let. If a server breaks a string during a first serve fault, it is second serve.There is no rule saying you cannot play a match with a broken string.So you can play the whole match with a broken string.

Q.What if a ball breaks during play ?
A. If a ball breaks during a rally, a let is played. If it is discovered immediately after a point is completed, a player can request a let and it is usually honored.

Q. Why do some players have strips of lead tape on their racquet frames ?
A. Lead tape is used to alter the balance of the racquet,make it heavier in certain areas or shift the sweet spot. It is generally used by advanced players whose feel for the ball and racquet is 'fine tuned' by placing lead tape at startegic parts of the frame.

Q. What are the choices when I win the toss?
A. You can choose to serve,receive,select a side ...or ask your opponent to choose.

Q. How do I choose grip size while selecting a racquet ?
A. Grip size is very personal. Most racquets come in 41/4 41/2 4 3/8 and 4 5/8 sizes. Average hand size is 41/2. Smaller hand size is 41/4. Having said that a 'large hand' player like Nadal uses a very small 4 1/4 grip which helps him whip the racquet more for topspin. 

Q. Which is the best selling racquet ever made ?
A. The most enduring racquet ever made is the green Prince Graphite which is still made in its original form and is still a best selles. Aside from that, the old wooden Dunlop Maxply and Jack Kramer were the best selling racquets of the time. Among the newer racquets, Wilson Hammer takes the lead. These days companies keep changing names on the racquet so frequently that there has been no dominant racquet.

Q. Is a ball on the court a hindrance ?
A. If the ball was already present when the point began it is considered part of the court and no let is played even if the ball in play hits the ball on the ground. ( The ball is 'out' if it hits a stationary ball was lying outside the lines and 'good' if the stationary ball was inside the court).
If a ball rolls over from another court INTERFERING with play then a let is played.

Q. Is outside interference a hindrance ?
A. Spectator interference is not a hindrance and does not qualify,in most cases for even a let. If there is a loud explosion or something fairly dramatic to interfere with play,then the point is replayed.

Q. Is grunting a hindrance ?
A. Grunting,like Sharapova or Azarenka ( who grunts even when the opponent is getting ready to hit) definitely falls in that category and if the person does not stop it after being requested to,a point can be claimed for hindrance. On the pro tour this is seldom enforced mainly because players don't object to it but if they do ( Lendl vs. Agassi, Navratilova vs. Seles are examples) the umpire can intervene  and a point penalty  awarded.

Q. What is involuntary hindrance?
Involuntary hindrance is when the opponent did not deliberately hinder the opponent as in a ball falling out of the pocket or a hat flying off on the court. A squirrel running on the court during a point is also an example. In all these instances a let is played. Subsequent offences are a loss of point to the offender except ,of course, for the squirrel.

Q. What is hindrance?
 A. As per tennis rules, if a player is prevented from playing the point due to a deliberate act of an opponent,the player wins the point. Recently in the U.S. Open finals,Serena yelled, "C'mon" after hitting an apparent winner but before the point was over and while Samantha Stosur was trying to return it. This is called 'hindrance' since it was distracting to Stosur. ( Of course,since Serena hit what seemed like a clear winner, it could be debated whether a let should have been played-but the rules are clear: if a player's act hinders the opponent the player loses the point). Sometimes a let is played for hindrance like a hat falling or a ball slipping out of the pocket. If it happens a second time a point can be awarded due to hindrance. So the next time you play doubles and your opponent  hits a short lob and yells to his partner ' Get back....get back !'  -you can claim a point for hindrance even if you miss the overhead !
Q. What is the best solution to avoid a slippery grip ?
A. There are several solutions:
1. Frequently changing overgrips( See question below)
2. Wearing a wrist band to absorb sweat from the wrist which flows into the palm.
3. Gamma makes Tacky Towel which is a towel,when applied to the grip makes it sticky.
4. Prince makes a spray for the grip which makes it grip firmer.
5. Ivan Lendl used saw dust to pat his grip with.
6. Frequently toweling off the hands and the grip is another inexpensive method.

Q. Which is the best overgrip ?
A. An overgrip is a thin grip to cover the original grip or the bare wooden handle. It is mainly used to keep the grip surface non-slippery. Many brands are available. The most popular grip used by pros is Tourna Grip. Other brands like the Wilson Pro and Prince Microzorb are also popular.
Mainly it is an individual choice whether it is tacky,sticky,corrugated, or gauze like.

Q.  Is a double touch allowed with a racquet ?
A. A double touch is when the ball hits 2 parts of the racquet before going to the other side. If it is ONE motion i.e. if the ball touches the frame and then the strings but if the swing is one continuous motion, it is legal. However if the ball bounces off the racquet and a SECOND swing is made,it is illegal. By the way the call is made by the person hitting the ball.

Q. My opponent chased my drop shot and lobbed over my head but touched the net after the ball sailed over my head. I claimed the point but he said he had touched the net only after the ball sailed over my head and I had no play on the ball and the point was his. Who is correct ?
A. The point ends only AFTER the ball is 'dead'. It can happen:
 a) If the ball bounces twice ( or thrice in wheelchair tennis)
b) If the ball hits the net and does not cross over to the other side
c) If the ball goes out of the fence/side screens
d) If it touches a fixed structure outside the lines like a ball ,scoreboard or tennis bag.
So in this case the ball was still 'alive' when it sailed over your head and since your opponent touched the net before any of the above happened, the point is yours REGARDLESS of whether you were going to be able to return the ball. Even if your opponent had hit  an overhead past you and touched the net AFTER the ball went past your reach, it is still your point since the ball was still 'live' !

Q. Is it a fault if I 'whiff ' my serve ?
A. Yes it is a fault if you toss the ball and you swing your racquet but completely miss the ball. However if you completely miss when you swing for a ground stroke, you or your partner are allowed to take a second shot at the ball so long as it has not bounced twice

Q. Is gut the best string there is ?
A. Gut is certainly the most EXPENSIVE string there is ! As far as it being the best, it is in the eye of the beholder and your playing style. Very few top 10 pros ( if any) play with a complete gut job. A few like Roger Federer use a mix gut and polyester in the same racquet. There has been a myth associated with gut since it used to be popular with pros during the wood racquet days. It still is a soft string with great feel but most players no longer feel they need gut to play well. Polyester has pretty much replaced gut on the pro tour.

Q. Why do I play better in practice ?
A. Many players do well in practice but as soon as they start playing a set,their game changes radically. One reason is that once a set starts people get result oriented and stop executing. The ability to 'remain in the present' is an acquired skill. Thinking about the past i.e. missed shots,double faults or the future i.e. consequence of failure or 'hope I don't double fault' can lead to too much thinking. A match is when you have to forget about technique and play what you learnt in practice. It is far too late to analyze how to hit a particular shot. However keeping your eye on the ball and moving your feet will help you bring your game up---and NO THINKING ON COURT PLEASE !!

Q. What is a hybrid string ?
A. The correct term is 'hybrid string bed'. Many pros and recreational players use one type of string-usually polyester in the mains and a softer string like nylon or gut in the crosses for extra feel.This way they can hit hard but maintain feel. It is lso easier on the arm. There are different kinds of hybrids depending on styles of play.
Q. Recently I hit a drop shot and my opponent scrambled and  got to the ball after it bounced twice but he continued playing and I lost the point. Could I have claimed the point ?
 A. The rule of thumb is all calls on your opponent's side have to be made by your opponent. This includes line calls,double hits,two bounces and even if the ball nicked his/her hat. One exception is foot faults which can be called by the receiver. In this instance your opponent did not acknowledge hitting the ball after 2 bounces. So the point continues till the end.
Q. How can I stop double faulting ?
A. This is something that has plagued players from recreational to the pro levels. There is no single answer or magic solution and each player needs to be evaluated separately. However there are some common factors that transcend all levels of play:
1. Learning to serve with spin but using the same amount of force as the first serve. The spin will keep the ball in and the force will give you the distance.
2. One way to learn the spin serve is to get down on your knees
and try to serve the ball: you will have to hit UP for it to clear the net.
3. To  hit UP on the ball on the spin serve while standing : Make believe there is a tall wall  in front of you and you have to clear it to get the ball over the net .
4.Actually you can even practice by standing next to the back fence and trying to serve over the back fence into the court. You will notice how high you have to hit the ball to clear the fence. That is how  you have to hit your second serve !
5. On pressure points,try to take something off your first serve-so you don't have to serve a second serve.
6. In practice, try 'going for your 2nd serve' instead of powder puffing it. This will improve your serve and confidence.

Q. What is a polyester string and why are more pros using it ?
A. Actually polyester strings are the most popular string even among advanced recreational players. The polyester string first gained attention in Europe and soon clay courters started using it. The advantage is durability,spin and power but for recreational players the advantage is that the strings do not move. Hence the rallies are more consistent.
Polyester strings can be hard on the arm and are not for 'touch players'. Some of the popular polyester strings are made by Luxilon, Babolat, Technifiber, Genesis and Volkl.

Q. I always have good used balls in my bag. Is there a way to pressurize the balls ?
A. Actually Gamma makes a container that screws shut with positive pressure. This tends to prevent air from leaking out as well as push air into the balls. This results in used balls becoming bouncy and lively.

Q. What is the ideal tension to string a racquet ?
A. The ideal tension is very individualized. Higher tensions mean better control but you have to hit harder. Looser string tensions means the reverse i.e. less control but less effort is required. Generally hard hitters with topspin benefit with higher tensions while people who hit softly or with touch prefer lower tensions.
For example Bjorn Borg used to string at 70+ pounds while John McEnroe strings his at 40-45 pounds.
Most recreational players string their racquets at 50-55 pounds.

Q. What constitutes a foot fault  and who calls it in a match ?
1.The most obvious cause of a foot fault is the server's  foot stamping on or crossing the line during a serve.
2.It is NOT a foot fault if the foot was in the air during a serve regardless of whether it crossed the line.
3.It IS a foot fault if the server puts his foot on or over the baseline while tossing the ball even if he/she retracts the foot at the moment of impact.
4.It IS a foot fault if the foot crosses an imaginary extension of the center T line at the baseline ( i.e. if the foot is in the left of center while serving from the deuce court and right of center while serving from the ad court).
5. It IS a foot fault if (in singles) one serves from behind the doubles alley area or (in doubles)  from outside the doubles alley-even if serving from behind the baseline.
6..It IS a foot fault if one runs and serves like a volleyball serve.

In an unofficiated match, a foot fault can be called by the receiver or the receiver's partner-generally after the server has been warned by the opponent.

Friday, August 8, 2014



How to make things happen on the tennis court
There are 3 types of tennis players:
Those who don't know what happened,
Those who wait for things to happen,
And those who make things happen.
Even though most matches are won on the number of errors rather than winners, the 'winningest' players turn things around to their advantage. They play a proactive instead of a reactive role in deciding their fate. In other words they take their game to their opponent and challenge them to play better. They do not wait for their opponent to make an error-they force them to.This is especially true in the closing stages of a match or when the match is evenly poised.

1. Go for it : 
Take a chance randomly

 Every now and then try to hit an ace or a winning return. This is a good strategy to tilt the scales. You might just hit the perfect shot and win an important point.
2. Keep your opponent on the move: 
Wear down your opponent

You will be testing his/her conditioning as well as not letting them set up for a shot.
3. Get to the net:
Play the net when you get your opponent on the run

Send the message: "Pass me if you can'. Even if you do get passed it will still put pressure on your opponent to come up with the shot.

4. Don't play defensively : 
Defensive tennis can lose tight matches

Play to win rather than not to lose.
Hit with intent. As you hit more aggressive shots many of them will go in and force errors from your opponent.
5.Body language: 
Bad body language
Good body language
Theories abound regarding how this works but it does. Pumping yourself up on court will keep you playing aggressively.

 Don't wait and hope for your opponent's error. Go and get it !!
Marquee match of the week: Donna Viertel vs Magda Toro ( in the words of Donna Viertel):
Magda had won the first set 6-2, and was up 2-1 in the second. She was totally out playing me. Lobbing me or beating me down the line every time I came to net. She was getting everything back and you know me,I have no patience. I just want to always hit a winner and end the point. Well, we finished our match today. I tied it up 2-2 in the second, but then began to trail again, 4-2 as she began to do the same lob session every time I hit a low deep backhand, she would hit the lob to my backhand. I began to change my game, mixing up forehands and backhands and serving differently; just doing something to throw her off. It worked!!! I got it to 4-4, 4-5, 5-5, and then won 7-5. So we played a ten-point tie break. I found myself trailing again, 2-0, 4-2, but then I said, one point at a time and just kept believing. Got it to 4-4, then she fought back 6-4, 7-4, 8-4, I fought back to 8-8 and won 10-8!!!!! Hard fought, but totally worth the workout. It was hot, but I just believed and it happened!!! So final score, 2-6, 7-5 and tiebreak 10-8 win!

              3 tips to hit the ball on the rise
Agassi made it famous and now virtually every top pro does it 80% of the time. Hitting on the rise means hitting the ball sometime after it bounces and before it starts to fall. The advantages of this are many: since you hit the ball a fraction of a second earlier it also steals time from your opponent,you can use the balls kinetic energy and increase the pace of your shot (since the kinetic energy reduces as the ball starts to fall ) and since you have to  hit the ball with a closed face,you can hit it harder and still keep the ball in.
Heres how to do it:

1. Rhythm: From 'bounce-racquet back -hit' it becomes 'bounce-hit'.
Try saying,'Bounce- hit' to develop the rhythm
2. Closed racquet face: Since the ball is going to scurry off your strings keep a slightly closed racquet face.
Prepare with a closed racquet face
3. Prepare early: As soon as you determine which side the ball is traveling to (forehand or backhand),take your racquet back and wait for the ball. Once it bounces hit the ball before it peaks.
Hit the ball as it travels upward and before it peaks
                          Sunday Funnies

                    And now back to our show...                                     
                                              League Play has resumed !!

When your game goes to the dogs....

      Every League Player has had one of those bad days when they play so poorly that they wish they had not stepped on the tennis court that day. Shots sailing out,double faults, balls hitting the net-in fact everything to make them take a silent vow to take a long break from tennis.Everyone,including the pros, has these slump days and it  seems to happen,curiously enough,without any warning.

Fortunately,here are some dog tricks to help you avoid those dog day afternoons on the tennis court:

1. Eye on the ball :

Try to watch the fuzz on the ball

 This is the day you need to 'hyper-focus -wide- eyed' on the ball. It will make a tremendous difference.Pretty soon your shots will start to go in.

2. Hold your racquet loosely in between points:
Stress plays a big role in how you play. Perhaps you had a bad day at work,maybe a domestic dispute or just plain aggravated at the world. Most players tend to grip their racquet tightly under stress. This makes the muscles very inflexible and the strokes very rigid. For a free flowing stroke making, grip your racquet loosely with your non-dominant hand in between points.

  3. Exaggerate your shoulder turn on both your ground strokes and exaggerate your service toss:
This tip works very well on 'bad days'. Exaggerate your shoulder turn on ground strokes and exaggerate your toss on your serve. This will make the strokes more fluid and your muscle memory will start to kick in.
Exaggerate your shoulder turn...but don't forget to keep your eyes on the ball !!

4. Don't wait for your opponent to make a mistake:

Even when things are not working for you, try to take the game to your opponent rather than waiting for your opponent to make errors.Sooner rather than later,your strokes are going to click.

5. Enjoy holding the tennis ball and racquet:

Even if you feel like walking out of the court on a bad tennis day, think of what tennis means to you. Think of how much you enjoy  and love the game. Take pleasure in the fact that you have the opportunity to play this great game and that a bad day on the tennis court is better than a good day at work !

                "Mardona es mas grande que Pele"*
                    (3 Lessons for League Players from the
                          2014 FIFA World Cup Soccer)

 1. A good defense puts pressure on the opponent:
Lothar Matthaus, the most decorated soccer player from Germany put it simply: "Defence is not attractive nor beautiful but there is a saying in Germany that the attackers get all the glory but defence wins titles." (This was said before Germany won the 2014 World Cup). So get that extra ball back.

2. It ain't over no matter who is singing:
It was a shot heard around the world and though it did not provoke a world war, it was one of the most shocking moments of the tournament.With less than 30 seconds left in the game,Portugal came from nowhere and scored a goal against the USA to ruin its prospect for advancing to the quarter finals. At least in tennis there is no time limit. So don't give up,keep fighting till the last point.

3.*"Mardona es mas grande que Pele": "Mardona (Argentinian soccer legend) is better than Pele(Brazilian soccer legend)":

Let's hand it to the Argentinians. They came to their neighbor and fierce rival's territory and started taunting the Brazilians with this anthem set to the tune of yesteryear rockband,Credence Clearwater Revival hit, "Bad Moon Rising". 
And they backed it up by getting to the finals.What does it mean to League Players ? Never get intimidated by your opponent. Believe in yourself and play your game. Of course,we don't want you to taunt and shake your fist at your opponent,but let your racquet do the talking. And you can sing along,if you want:

Embedded image permalink
And if you want to sing along:
Match tips:                
       The 'Penultimate Shot'  strategy
The 'Penultimate Shot' strategy can be incorporated successfully by League Players and it can have a positive impact on the match.
It can reduce errors,avoid rash shots and tire out your opponent. 
                            A good time to use this strategy is on important points like 30-40 or 30-30 or the first point in a game or as you are trying to close out the set or trying to save the set.
                                                   The premise is very simple : keep the ball in play and make each shot set you up for the next one. In other words you keep postponing hitting a winner by one rally. So if your opponent gives you an easy opening for a cross court winner,you hit a firm cross court shot but not a put away shot. When your opponent replies with a short ball you hit it to the open court but postpone hitting a winner off that. In other words you keep telling yourself : "I will hit a winner off the next the next the next ball" .
                                               Thus each ball is the penultimate ball until you finally decide to go for it. Chances are your opponent would have lost the point long before that. 
Here is an example of that from the pro tour. The players featured here do not go for a winner despite having an opportunity to do so. They just wait  for the penultimate ball.
The 30-30 score can change the outcome of a match
 The most frequent score in a match is 30-30.This is also the most important point in a game. One more point and it is either game point or break point-with pressure on the trailing player.
Yet many players do not attach due significance to 30-30.
Your strategy at 30-30 is not to take unnecessary risks,not go for the lines and not try to hit shots you don't own.
You should play the percentages,keep the ball well within the lines and play to your strength i.e. if your forehand is stronger try to hit all forehands. If you are serving,take something off your serve and get the ball in. If you are returning,just try to get the ball in play. When the rally starts try to hit one more ball in instead of trying to end the point . The 'rule of 4' applies here: hit the ball 4 feet inside the baseline and 4 feet inside the sidelines with a 4 feet net clearance. 
30-30 can change the course of a game but you need to get to 40-30 first !
                    Welcome Back,Bob !!
Ulster County's premiere tennis player Bob Cook
Bob Cook,the un-lobbable, un-passable-at-the-net, and multiple title holder of the Ulster County Tennis Tournament is back on the tennis court after a hiatus of several years during which he became a golfer and gradually evolved into becoming a school principal.
                                                 Bob is now back to playing tennis and can be spotted regularly on Saturday mornings at his alma mater Kingston High School's tennis courts.

         Lost tennis racquet !!
One of our League Players lost his 
Wilson Hammer 6.2  racquet at Forsyth Park. Any info on the racquet please email to
Reward :
2 points added to your Leader board score !! 

           The Terminators together !!
David White and Greg Tellier
In a show of solidarity, The Terminators Part 1 and 2 came together to promote the 2014 Ulster County Tennis Tournament. (Early Bird Deadline expires June 25th).


"Keep your feet on the ground and reach for the stars"
                                                            -Casey Kasem

Casey Kasem 1932-2014
Re-run : Past article on this website that had a high viewership around the world    
                                 as per Google stats 

                 The 4 ball drill

Famous tennis coach explaining how to use the 4 ball drill 
The commonest mistake on the ground stroke is not hitting through the ball. By abruptly coming off the ball without hitting through it,  the ball does not have the same trajectory and depth. One way of visualizing hitting through the ball is to imagine that you are hitting 4 balls instead of one and in order to hit all four balls over the net you need to follow through all 4 balls. Another way is to imagine there are 4 balls on a table and in order to sweep all four off the table you have to hit through all 4 balls.
                                            Next time you practice or when your shots lack depth during a match,think '4 balls' and your strokes will be doggone good.
Check out tennis at Zena Recreation Park !

Zena Recreation Park was established over 40 years ago to provide wholesome recreation activities for both adults and children.  Situated on 27 acres in the Zena-Highwoods area, the Park has a five-lane swimming pool, bathrooms with showers, a snack bar, a large open air pavilion, and four recently rejuvenated tennis courts.  These courts, resurfaced for the 2013 season in the colors of the US Open Courts, are the pride of the Park.  The courts are illuminated, so tennis can be played from 8:00 a.m. till midnight.

Various tennis and general memberships are available.  A popular option for adult tennis players is the annual singles tennis membership with a fee of $365 for unlimited use of the courts.  Junior single tennis memberships are also available for $250 annually.  During the summer season, tennis lessons are offered for children of all ages five days a week for six weeks.  Group adult lessons are free; for the 2014 season they will be offered Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays from 11:00 to 11:45 a.m. and on Saturdays from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m.  The tennis shed is combination locked for members and contains balls, hoppers, and a ball machine.  Additional types of membership are available for those seeking the whole family experience of tennis, basketball, and pool as well as numerous other activities including swim team and swim lessons for children, water aerobics for adults, and a variety of  social events.  The Park offers a free trial day to anyone considering membership.

For more information, you may contact the Membership Chair at or leave at message at Zena’s regular number, 679-9665. 


                                 UP !!

In the recent French Open,after missing a serve in the net,
Andy Murray exclaimed,"Up!" What he was referring to is valid  for players in  the League as well as in the French Open.
When you hit a serve make sure you hit upwards. If you do it with your arms fully extended the ball will not go to the back fence-it will land in the service box. Many servers hit the ball down and towards the net because the intended target is the service box. Research has shown that unless you are 6'6", you need to hit up to clear the net. While serving make believe you need  to clear the back fence.This will force you to hit up but your serve will land in most of the time.

What does 'hitting deep' mean?
The term 'hitting with depth'  generally signifies the ball landing just inside or a foot or two inside the baseline. Hitting the ball deep in the baseline area has a lot of advantages:
1. It is very difficult to hit winners off a deep ball.
2. It increases the distance the opponent has to return the ball.
3.It gives you time to set up for the next shot.
4. It might even increase the chances of your opponent hitting a short ball thereby giving you an easy ball to put away.
5. It keeps your opponent pinned to the baseline.

However hitting deep does not mean hitting just to the baseline area. Rather it signifies hitting 'deep' relative to  the position of your opponent. So the effect of hitting to the baseline can also be achieved if you hit close to where the opponent is standing. If he/she is standing at the service line then hitting to the service line or slightly beyond will produce the same effect as if the opponent were standing at the baseline and your shot lands on the baseline.
                                              Therefore 'hitting deep' is the same as hitting to an imaginary line drawn across the width of the court where your opponents' feet are situated.
                                                  As long as you hit near this line or just beyond it  
( not beyond the baseline,of course) your opponent will not be able to take a full swing and you will either win the point outright or get an easy ball to put away
             How to to hit a  one-handed backhand
Rick Lange ( Singles A) demonstrates the right way to hit a one-handed back hand

   One of the common errors in the backhand is to 'open up' too soon.So your racquet ends up travelling across the body rather than forward towards your target. As Rick demonstrates above,make a concerted effort to stay sideways through the hit.Some teachers tell you to hold on to your left hip pocket ( for right-handers) as you hit. This will prevent you from over rotating and you will have a strong backhand like Rick !

          Go Mano-a-Mano with Germano !
Ernie Germano is back after a hiatus from tennis !
 Ernie Germano used to be much feared on the tennis court. He went into tennis exile and now has stormed back to the B League scene ! Granted he's gained a few pounds, but if you think his footwork ain't what it used to be: Ernie is a competitive ballroom dancer.
Besides he's loads of fun. So give him a call,challenge him for a match and watch his nimble movement on the tennis court.
        Players seen playing matches this week:
Amy Keller challenged Ravi Ramaswami
TN Thompson squeaked out a win in a super tie-break against Jihyuk Han

Melissa Bamford(above) d Magda Toro
Ed Rogers lost in a super tie-break to Wyatt Sprague
                             On to Sectionals !

The 8.0 Mixed Doubles USTA team captained by League Players,Vicki and Kevin Madonna won their regional match at Westchester and are bound for Schenectady for the sectionals. A win there will take them to the Nationals. Good luck from all of us !

DOCTOR Brand Ambassador !!!
2014 League Brand Ambassador is now a full fledged PhD
Congratulations to our Brand Ambassador Francine Wizner who,last week, successfully presented her dissertation to get her doctorate degree.
                       Dr. Wizner stated,"Playing hard,long matches in the Mid Hudson Tennis League made me so mentally tough that defending my dissertation was a walk in the park !"

We are all so proud of  our Brand Ambassador !
                  The Tie-Break Champs

Paul Mushlit/Melissa Bamford ( B Mixed Doubles)
Melissa Bamford and Paul Mushlit have been in 3 super tie-breaks this season. Melissa and Paul also play B singles when they take a break from being a terror on the B Mixed Doubles circuit.
When the sun shines,the stars come out to play  !

Some of the League Players spotted on court recently playing their matches:
Rick Lange ( Singles A)

Jihyuk Han ( A Singles)

Wyatt Sprague ( A Singles)
Steve Hack (A Singles)

Sharon Crego (B Singles)


Remember the windy weekend last week? Even the pros have a tough time in windy conditions. When the wind starts to pick up you have to adjust your playing to counteract the ball movement:
1. Keep your feet moving. This will help you reach the ball as it drifts around.

2. Figure out: which side is the wind blowing ?
 Do you feel it on your face or your back ? Which direction is your hair blowing ?
Hair on a bad hair day can act as a windsock !!
                  3.When playing with the wind(breeze blowing on your back) keep the ball low over the net and hit softer.

4. When playing against the wind (breeze blowing on your face), hit harder and higher over the net.     

5. Lob cautiously when playing with the wind (breeze behind you).

6. Lob deep when playing against the wind (breeze on your face)-otherwise the ball might stall giving your opponent an easy over head.

7. This is one time you HAVE to overdo keeping your eyes on the ball.

Playing on a windy day can be frustrating but with a little ingenuity you can work it to your advantage !



It's been a long first set and your opponent has won it. It's time for Plan B except you don't have one. Here are a few tips that will help tip the scales in your favor.

1. Analyze the match thus far
 Have you been going for too much ? Has your opponent been hitting winners ? How close has the match been?

2. Start the first game of the second set by trying to see how many strokes in each rally you can hit. Count softly how many shots you hit in a rally.

3. Go cross court and high over the net with every shot to give you a bigger margin of error. 

4. Hit your first serve like a second serve to minimize double faults.

5. Exaggerate your feet movement by moving your feet or hopping deliberately before during and after hitting the ball.  Do this even in between points- before you start to serve or receive.

You will be amazed how these simple things can change the balance of the match
        Brand Ambassador takes to the court !
2014 Mid Hudson Tennis League Brand Ambassador,Francine Wizner,with partner Bruce at the practice courts
                The Cregos are in the lead !
Sharon and Randy Crego
 Despite being sidelined by an injury last year,Sharon Crego has bounced back this year by winning both her matches in the singles and mixed doubles (with husband, Randy). More matches are expected to be played this week as warm weather finally takes hold !
Latest results can be viewed by clicking the Leader Board and Score Board links on the right----------->

                  League Tennis underway !!

Don Tegler (Singles A) relaxes after a practice session with Jihyuk Han

 League matches have started and League Players who have not begun play have been testing the waters with intense practice sessions and lessons. League Players take the League 
seriously ! Which tennis enthusiast wouldn't ?
Click on Leader Board and Score Board on the right of this screen for details !
'Mystery Coach'  giving match preparatory lesson to League Player

                   HVIT team in USTA regionals !
The HVIT tennis team led by  League Players Vicki and Kevin Madonna outplayed every team in the Hudson Valley and reached the USTA regional finals to be held in Harrison,NY next month. The HVIT won almost all their matches against a bunch of teams from other clubs. These matches were held throughout the winter.

         Affordable Tennis Court Act 2014

Well it's that time of the year and it is our civic duty to enlighten League Players regarding court availability.
So here goes:
1.First of all, nets are up at Forsyth Park/ MJM Kingston High School/ Saugerties High School/UCCC.
2.The courts are a bit warped at MJM due to moisture getting under the surface. So expect a few areas where the ball makes a flat sound and does not bounce high.
3.The courts at Saugerties have not been re-surfaced for over 20 years and are worn down.
4.UCCC courts are well surfaced but windy.
5.Forsyth courts are,well....Forsyth courts (even though there are plans to renovate them soon).

1.All courts have scholastic practice till 5 pm until June except on match days on the dates indicated below.
2.Home games indicated in red and generally no courts will be available on these days after 3 p.m.
3.Note: Courts are available all day on away dates.
4. Loughran Park/Rosendale have no scholastic games.
5. MJM (Kingston High School) has scholastic practice till 5 even on away days.
6. All courts available all day on weekends.

In case the above was too complicated,here is the Cliff's Notes version: 
1.On the days marked 'HOME' no courts available after 3 pm.
2. On days marked 'AWAY' courts will be available all day -except for Kingston High School courts.
3. All courts available on weekends.
1. Forsyth Park


















2. Saugerties






































4. Kingston (MJM) :





























              Get INSTANT with CONSTANT !

Andrew with dad Bill Constant

     Ulster County Tennis Champion.Andrew Constant, who teaches tennis at Bard College and Rhinebeck Tennis Club is now planning to teach League Players to get them to the next level instantly !
Low low rates !!!
$15.00 for an hour of group lessons
$35.00 for an hour of private lesson 
Now that is a steal especially if you can steal a few extra points from your opponent due to your new and improved tennis skills !

and say you want to get


2014 Mid Hudson Tennis League
Francine Wizner has been appointed Brand Ambassador for the
 2014 Mid Hudson Tennis League

Spring is here (see below).  Mid Hudson Tennis draws are out !
 This year we have a new Super Seniors Division for the 60 + age group.  We will also have a 'draw' format with ability to challenge up. 
2 points for winner,1 for loser in super tie-break and 1 bonus point for challenging up and accepting a challenge and 1 bonus point for letting opponent start with a 3-0 lead in each set.

A/B/C levels in Men's/Women's/Mixed.

One fee of $20.00 can get you into unlimited events !

Checks can be sent to:

48, Dewitt Mills Road
Hurley,NY 12443

 Registration ends  3/20/14

Enter now by emailing

Our simple rules:
1. Both opponents bring a can of new or good used balls. Winner keeps unused can.

2. All rounds played within a 2 week window unless BOTH teams agree to arrange an alternate date.

3. Reports scores to

4. All matches are best of 3 sets with a 10 point super tie-break in lieu of the 3rd set. ( Please play a super tie break even if you have time to play a 3rd set).

5. 2 points for winner/1 point for super tie-break loser/1 additional point for challenging up or accepting challenge from below
 ( e.g. C challenging A or B and B challenging A).

(Additional bonus point for the higher ranked player if  he/she allows a 3-0 lead per set for the lower ranked player).

6. And the most important rule:
        Have fun !!
********************************************************************************      Tennis Health: A series of articles on health and  nutrition for tennis players

                                 The eyes have it

 Ever heard of brain-derived neurotrophic factor, or B.D.N.F ? Now you do ! That is a substance that promotes eye health and increased quantities in your system prevents conditions that cause poor eye sight and degenerative conditions of the eye called 'macular degeneration' ( one of the commonest cause of visual impairment in the elderly). In a recent study,it was found that exercise protects the eyes from this condition and increases levels of B.D.N.F.  Another study from 2009 involving 40,000 runners showed they had healthier eyes.
                            Tennis is a great form of exercise and since it involves a lot of visual exercising ( keeping eyes on the ball, making line calls, constant eye movements etc;) as well as physical exercising,it stands to reason that tennis players' eyes stand to benefit. Think about this as you prepare 
to play in the 2014 League !!

                        Slice 3.0

If you scroll below , you will see 2 different variations of the slice by Rosewall and Federer.  The 3rd version by Andy Roddick is a hybrid of the two. 

"Shoulder turn--straight arm--high hand finish"
Roddick's racquet faces only partially skyward and he drives through and across his body  but for League players,there are just 3 things to observe that will revolutionize your slice :
1. STRAIGHT ARM while hitting.
2. High finish.
3. The 3rd thing -not shown in the picture is AIM LOW.
By aiming for the net cord or just an inch above the net you will avoid the risk of a floating slice sailing out.

                    The Eastern Phoebe
The Eastern Phoebe is a tiny,nondescript brown bird that heralds the start of Spring. "The Eastern Phoebe, known as one of the season’s first harbingers, is flitting in the trees", said Harry Maas, president of  New York City Audbon.
                      What does this signify for League Players ?
1. Spring is here !
2. The groundhog was right.
3. 2014 Mid Hudson Tennis League will start soon !

And in case League Players want to spot the Eastern Phoebe,here is what the birdie looks like:

                    Got (chocolate) Milk ?
More tennis players are drinking chocolate milk after a strenuous work out
 Chocolate milk is now considered a great recovery drink. When you play a long match the tissues get parched and depleted. Several studies have shown that chocolate milk has the right blend of proteins,carbs and calcium and gets absorbed quickly. The muscle proteins and glycogen gets replenished and recovery is faster. The tissues essentially absorb chocolate milk like a sponge and the muscles are able to process the ingredients of chocolate milk quickly.So all the carbs and protein lost during a match is replaced and the muscle recovers. This also reduces injury subsequently. 
Of course, it is important to recharge as soon after exercise as possible,preferably within 30 minutes.
Older players tend to benefit more from calcium and protein replacement

World tennis champions and sponsored Nesquik-athletes Bob and Mike Bryan, along with the Nesquik Bunny, enjoy the great taste of chocolate milk and have since they were kids
The world's # 1 doubles team,the Bryan Brothers, use and endorse chocolate milk for recovery
Chocolate milk containers also have the advantage of  being compact enough to fit in your tennis bag. 

Finally (and our favorite reason),after a tough tennis match loss: what better way to deal with your depression than reaching for something chocolatey ?


Zen Tennis :a series of articles to help League Players reach tennis Nirvana

This week on Zen Tennis: Playing with heart
"You can have my name,you can have my number ...but you can never have my heart"
                                                      -Theme song from the Bond movie,'Skyfall'.

Even when your opponent is outplaying you can still create a significant impact if you have 'heart'.
Playing with 'heart' means playing  with the intention of winning. The thought of losing is not even an option. Think Jimmy Connors. He played every match like he was going to win.-giving it his 110%.

In order to play with 'heart'. you need to :

1. Get back to back to basics: watch the ball,move your feet,and avoid risky shots.

2. Play each point as if it were match point.

3. Focus on the moment not the aches,the heat or the result.

These 3 things will make you change the fulcrum point of the match and you might even come from behind to win
-again think Jimmy Connors !


                         Slice Backhand 2.0
2 of the best slicers in the game : Ken Rosewall and Roger Federer show you how to do it:

 What is common: 
First move: big shoulder turn ? That's what we've been taught but that is deceptive.  Notice  how the front (right) leg has crossed over to turn the body sideways. THAT (foot cross over) is what creates the shoulder turn and not by actually turning the shoulder first.

What is different:

1. Take back: Rosewall's is below shoulder level with the racquet facing the sky...Federer's is above the shoulder with the racquet facing the net.

2. Impact: Rosewall's racquet goes from facing the sky to facing the net at the point of impact...Federer's racquet stays facing the net.

3.Follow through : Rosewall hits through the ball and finishes high...Federer hits across his body and finishes low.
                     Love is............
....getting as close as possible to improve your tennis game !

     The best stringer in town !!
Greg Tellier a.k.a.The Terminator has a firm grasp on racquets and stringing
When you want to re-string your racquet as you begin the 2014 League or want advice on racquets and strings, who you gonna call ? String buster !  The Terminator,of course !! 
  League (Singles A) player Greg Tellier a.k.a. The Terminator busts strings every other day due to his killer forehand but he is also a very popular stringer in the area. Why is he so much in demand ? Because he is very knowledgeable regarding strings and racquets and his rates are very competitive and affordable. 
                                                 The Terminator strings racquets based on players' tennis skills and discusses with them which strings would be best for their game. "I like to help players customize their racquet through weight,balance and strings", he says," and every player is different as they have different playing styles". 
 So the next time you pop a string, don't fret--just contact :
The Terminator at !!


            Pussy Riot ...and League Players
Pussy Riot is a Russian punk band that made headlines recently after they were arrested and thrown in jail for their public protests against the government's heavy handed authoritarian ways.
                                                   Though,their music consists
 of shrill ,Grammy unworthy material and their faces are always hidden under balaclavas , their philosophy of standing up to perceived injustice is laudable.
                                                  What does this have to do with League Players ? We recently received a letter from a fellow tennis player in neighboring Orange County lamenting the fact that the authorities have decided to close the Orange County Park  tennis courts because they were 'underutilized' and divert tax dollars elsewhere. This may be a sign of  shape of things to come and we cannot afford to have our public courts abandoned while money is freely granted for other sports like baseball and skateboard parks.
                                                     So let us take a page out of  Pussy Riot's book and join in, letting the authorities know that we will stand up as one tennis fraternity, if our freedom to play tennis is threatened.
Senator John Bonacic ( an ardent tennis player ) is spearheading this effort to save those courts. So write him and other county officials listed below and help our fellow tennis players in Orange County.

Let us be the local Pussy Riot !!
                                         2014 Mid Hudson Tennis League

1. Sign ups start March 1st  and ends March 20th.                                                                                      
2. Play begins April 1st and ends November 1st                                                                                          
3.Events are men's/women's A/B/C singles/doubles/mixed                                                                           
and New Super senior division ( 60 years and above)                     4. A draw will be made and you will have 2 weeks to finish  your match. 
( Exceptions can be made if your opponent agrees-and you need to finish all your matches by November)                                                   
5. You will still be able to challenge 10 places above your level for bonus points                                           
6. Matches are best of 3 tie-break sets with a super tie-break in lieu of 3rd set                                            
7. Points: 
 2 for winner/1 for STB loser/1 for challenging or accepting challenge                                                                 Finally:                                                                                                
   8. Registration fees : $ 20.00    sent to                                                                                                                       
Mid Hudson Valley Tennis Association                                    
 48, Dewitt Mills Road, Hurley,
 NY 12443                                             

Draws will be posted at the end of March
You call your opponent and play your match within a 2 week window. It's that simple !!