“Just Ok is not OK”

You may have seen the AT&T commercial where the patient asks the nurse about his surgeon and she says, “Oh, he’s OK.”  And the punch line is “OK is not good enough.”  That was the story of our semi-finals doubles match on Friday.

OK was not good enough …

Noble and I played “OK” Saturday vs. the #2 seeded team of Hank Irvine and Evert Jonsson; but OK is not good enough against a world-class doubles team.  While most all the games were deuce/ad games – and Hank said afterwards that winning 6-8 critical points could have swung the match to even – it didn’t.  And they cruised to an easy victory.

So the secret to beating the top players/teams is to play your best … and hope to catch them on a day when they are not.  Otherwise, you will see players like Hank Irvine, Fred Drilling and Jimmy Parker “raise their game” at crunch time to control the match.  Also, consider …

  • In doubles, one partner is normally the superior player; so play as many balls as possible to the other.

  • Even the top players have one shot or side that is weaker than the other; so try to hit there.

  • And, most have a “weapon” you want to try to avoid (e.g. Fred’s forehand, Parker’s drop shot, Hank’s overhead).

Your thoughts on playing the top players?

Saturday Finals

Here are the rest of the results…

With the winners Hank Irvine and Evert Jonsson
  • 65 Doubles: Local friends Howie Ames and Tom McGinnis went three full sets with #1 seeded (and #2 in the country?) Tom Meigs and David Schmeer, but lost 3-6 in the final set.

  • 70 Doubles: Steve Shreiner and Andre Marois bested Dave Wendt and Allen Geraci (who upset Larry Turville and Mas Kimball) 6-2, 6-4.

  • 75 Doubles: Hank Irvine and Evert Jonsson were in good form, winning 6-3, 6-1 over Fred Drilling and Clive Kileff.

  • 80 Doubles: Good friends Dick Valentine and Michael Fenster paired up to win their finals with a beautiful double-bagel job.

For other scores for this week’s tournament, click HERE.

For next week’s World Tennis event draws, click HERE.

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5 thoughts on ““Just Ok is not OK”

  1. Many schools of thought on this, with no absolute correct answer. My thoughts. More so in singles, you can stay “within yourself” and play your best high percentage game and hope that your superior opponent is not at their best OR if as the match progresses, you realize that won’t be good enough, you can go for broke and see if you can catch lightning in a bottle! If playing conservatively will get you a nice 6-3, 6-3 loss, good for you. However, if your best chance to win is to go for broke, what’s the difference if you lose 6-1, 6-1 or 6-3, 6-3. However, if you start playing out of your mind, you just might pull off the upset.
    Doubles is a little different because it’s not just you; you have a partner AND TWO opponents to contend with and you playing great still might not be enough. So much depends on your perspective.
    Great post George!

    Steve, but i think your basic premise is solid … if you play your normal game and they play their normal game, you lose! thanks, george

  2. Just ok is not ok to win if playing great players. Just ok is ok if you have a competitive match you play well you have fun and no one is injured. Good tennis at our age is a privilege and very healthy. Winning is a bonus.

    Phil, can’t argue with that. Thanks. George

  3. Playing against folks as talented as Hank seems to directly *hinder* me from playing any better than “OK”. Just happy to experience the “playing lesson”. 🙂

    Kevin, plus the free after-match lessons! Thanks. George

  4. Totally agree with Phil’s comment above…it’s a privilege just to have the good health to play this great game….”winning” is just a bonus. Scoot

  5. I am an advocate of the old adage…. if you are losing and continue to apply the same game plan… you are going to lose… so change the strategy!

    Allan, i am with you! thanks, george

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