Last year, we talked about how to play doubles with a lower ranked partner; but what do you do when YOU are that player?
For the next two Florida Super Senior Grand Prix tournaments in Sarasota, I will be honored to be teamed up with former touring pro Hank Irvine. Nothing against my previous partners, but they didn’t make it to the third round of Wimbledon in 1971.
What To Expect?
I know enough about him to know that Hank will be a very supportive an easy partner to be on the court with; but human nature will surely have some impact.
Once at Newk’s annual camp, Roy Emerson called me over on the last day of competition to discuss the doubles pairings for the final match. He pointed out that I was undefeated playing at #3 doubles; but did I want to risk that record and have him move me up to play with The Big Boys at #1?
Target On My Chest
“Sure!” I told him; so we took the court with three younger 5.0 players and me… with a big target on my chest. I fully expected our opponents to play every shot they could to me and avoid my better partner (for camp followers, it was lefty Jimmy Miller).
I was ready each point; but the trouble (for them) was that they OVER-PLAYED balls to me that should have gone to my partner. End of story: I held my own and we won.
Play Your Game
The lesson for me is that you are who you are and just play your game as best you can. You should neither try too hard nor defer too much; and your superior partner has been in this position enough times to know not to overplay themselves.
Have you been in this position and how did it work out?
The seeds are now out for the next tournament in Payne Park, Sarasota next week and (based on Hank’s record) we are seeded #1 in the 70s doubles; so we will see if I can put the philosophy above to the test.
For the full list of seeds, just click HERE.
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