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Hardscrabble Scramble
October 2002 Article

Hardscrabble Scramble Archive

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Make No Ad Your Ad

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Mike Whittington

Do you ever play no ad tennis? Many people do because of time constraints or because it is used as the format for certain tournaments. For those of you that are not familiar with no-ad scoring, it features a sudden death point played at deuce. Rather than having a game that can stretch into countless points, when the score gets to deuce the next point wins. Points are usually counted as 1, 2 and 3 rather than 15, 30, and 40.

A rule for no ad scoring that many people are not aware of is that on the sudden death point, or 3-3 as it is called, the receiver has the option to receive serve from the service court of their choice.

If you are receiving serve on a no ad point, this is your chance to break. You should definitely take advantage of this rule. At 3-2 you received serve in the ad service court so it is logical that you would go to the deuce side for the next point. But what if your opponent has just double faulted to make it 3-3? I would suggest going back to the ad court to receive serve again. I think it is always a good idea to make the server see the same court on which he or she just made the mistake.

If your opponent is serving well, you have to decide which side you feel most comfortable in making a return. The 3-3 point is crucial and not a time to take big chances unless you have a comfortable lead. I would recommend choosing your most consistent receiving court or, in doubles, allowing the partner that feels they can get the ball back in play.

Obviously there things you have to take into consideration like the lefty serving wide on the ad court. If you are left handed player you might like the opportunity for hitting your forehand.

Whatever the situation, be aware that you have options as the receiver at 3-3 in no ad scoring. A little strategy about where you will receive serve can make a big difference at this critical part of the game.

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Hardscrabble Scramble Archive

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This column is copyrighted by Mike Whittington, all rights reserved.

At the time at which he wrote this column, Mike Whittington was a USPTA pro in Fort Smith, Arkansas, where he served as director of tennis at the Hardscrabble Country Club.


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