South Bay Grand Prix
South Bay Grand Prix
Ask The Official

Discourteous opponents
by Anonymous

Q: The disappearance of etiquette and courtesy in tennis competition is troubling. In many matches, the opponents will engage in trash-talk and gamesmanship. As a practical matter, what can be done?

A: "Trash-talk" and "gamesmanship" fall under the category of a "judgement call" for an official, but could warrant a code violation for "unsportsmanlike conduct". A player who has to resort to trash talk or gamesmanship is probably LOSING. They are definitely LOSERS! If an official is not available, don't stoop to your opponents level. Just understand their motivation, play confidently, and you will be the REAL WINNER!

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Jim Flood Jim Flood has been a USTA Professional Tennis Official for many years and has officiated at many of the biggest and most prestigious USTA professional tournaments, including the U.S. Open. He is also a computer instructor and multimedia specialist and also fills his spare time as a commercial actor and voiceover artist. Jim's motto is: "Play by the rules."

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