Not Up, Not Up!

big mouthTournament player Dave Wendt provides another situation where on-court talking comes into question for a hindrance or not…

In our semi-finals match at Colonial, we had a questionable call. We hit a drop shot which our opponents attempted to return. I thought it bounced twice so after our opponents hit the ball, I said out loud “not up, not up” while the ball was heading to my partner.

My partner played the ball into their court and our opponents stopped play and claimed they stopped play because of my call and also claimed their shot was a good shot. Who should get the point?

Fortunately, there was an official at the court who ruled that the ball was not up and we got the point. I know that I can talk to my partner when the ball is heading in our direction and that I cannot make a call on the other side of the court but did I hinder my opponents from continuing play?

Thanks, Dave Wendt

Dave, I believe you are correct in that the ball being hit correctly or not was their call, not yours.

But I would have to think that your shouting “Not up, not up!” would constitute a hindrance; because you are essentially speaking to your opponents and not to your partner. And that distraction would allow them to call you on a verbal hindrance.

What is your opinion?

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7 thoughts on “Not Up, Not Up!

  1. It’s a gentleman’s game at the end of the day. Do you call “not up” on yourself or your partner if you are genuinely not sure? If it’s clearly “not up” it should be a no brainer.

  2. Not ups are tough because they require the person hitting the ball to make the call. While you may think there was a not up you have to continue play and try to win the point if no call is made. I think your yelling “not up, not up” would be a distraction, but then if you were yelling at your partner then maybe that doesn’t count. The best thing is to continue play and try to win it.

  3. Point to Dave’s team since you had an official to make the call that it was not up. If there had been no official on the court, a Referee could have been called over who would only rule on the point of law (the rule), not the point of fact (whether the ball was up or not). And the point of law is that Dave caused an intentional hindrance by talking to all 4 players during play. It is the players call who the ball is moving toward whether it is up or not, and once the opponents played the ball back it must be assumed by Dave’s team that play continued. Last year, a University of Denver team stopped playing a point when they said their opponents did not get the ball up on one bounce. The opponents appealed to me in the chair, and I awarded the point to the opponents as I saw the ball “up.” The Denver coach rushed over and told his players to always keep playing in such a stuation. In USTA matches the official can make such calls on a not up, if s/he clearly sees it, and they are on the court. D1 college tennis (ITA) requires verbal appeal from a player for the Official on court to overrule. (Colorado Umpire)

  4. Quite correct on both issues. I once hit a short lob and as the ball was rising toward my opponents I yelled to my partner “short”. They rightly called a hinder. Lesson learned.
    Ball not up is like questioning an out call. “Are you sure” is probably appropriate but in the end it is their call.

  5. I think in that case our opponents had no play on the next ball. No hindrance!

    Chuck, but according to Dave, they did. George

  6. An interesting issue here – everyone agrees it is the call of the player (or his partner) hitting the ball to call not up or not. We all know the guidelines for calling an opponents shot out, 100% sure; What is the standard for calling “not up” on yourself (or partner)?
    If you are not 100% sure you got it on one bounce but think you probably did, what are you supposed to call? If I am calling my own shot out (down the line maybe when my opponent is running and cannot see it 100%, I call it out for him but ONLY if I am 100% sure it is out. Do I need to be 100% sure it was not up on a ball I hit to call it not up?

    Winder, I would say “probably got it” doesn’t do it. thanks, george

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