You have a friend who you want to play singles with but he is a lot better and/or younger than you; so he can regularly beat you 1 and 1. It never is really a competitive match for you — or for him; but it can be.
When my good friend Marc VanDam (who is 24 years younger than me) lived in Naples, we used to play singles most every Tuesday. And even though he was as good (if not better than me) and could run TWICE as fast as I could and get to every ball on the court… we would have good, close, competitive and FUN matches using the handicap scoring system.
As we used it…
• You objectively assess what an average set score would be (e.g. 6-2)
• The difference in games is the number of handicap points the underdog gets per set
• He can take one of his four points anytime he wants (for example, his younger opponent serving at 30-40)
• He cannot take two at the same time; but can take up to two in the same game
You would be amazed how having just those four little points can even up a match and put a lot of pressure on the better player… I would remind my young friend, when he was serving at 30-30, “This will be a game point, if I win it (because I will then take a handicap point).”
So when you announce the game score at the start of each new game, you include the number of points remaining (“two serving three… with three points”).
I now do this with my NH/FL friend Bob Wilkie, who is not that much younger than me, but is that much better than me.
Have you ever tried this or a variation of it? It works for me.
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