Thursday, March 27, 2014

How Would You Rule? A Ball Touching The Net...



Just heard this one and thought you might like it...

SCENARIO

In a doubles match with a chair umpire, Player A hurries to the net to get a short shot.  The extra ball was laying at the bottom of the net and obviously touching the net. 

Player A returned the shot and his foot touched the ball that was touching the net.  The chair umpire was watching closely and the player did not touch the net but did touch the ball. 

Is this a loss of point or nothing???

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

How Would You Rule? An overactive coach.


Over the years we have discovered that collegiate coaches come in many shapes and sizes--and also in many different personality types.  We have all encountered a hyperactive type A coach who simply can't sit still.  That makes this scenario even more interesting...

SCENARIO

In a Division I doubles match, Team A has served a first serve fault.  Just as they are bouncing the ball to serve their second serve, the coach from Team B runs across the court to meet with his players on the adjacent court and disrupts play in doing so.  The official was roving two courts and was not in observation of this incident.

What do you do?

1.  Caution the coach not to do it again.
2.  Give Team B a first serve.
3.  Give the coach a coach's warning for disrupting play.
4.  Award the point to Team B because of interference by the coach of Team A.
5.  Do nothing and hope he learns to be still. 

Be sure to send us your thoughts and comments on this one.

NOTE:  There was not a ruling made in this specific instance because Team A came to the official (who was observing another court) to tell him about the incident after the point had been completed.  The coach however was asked if he had done this and he vehemently denied it.  The coach of Team A said he did and was indignant that the official would not take her word for it.

LESSON TO BE LEARNED:  All officials should develop eyes in the back of their head so they can see two courts at the same time and never, ever, take anyone's word for something that happened on the court unless you personally witness it.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

A Walk Down Memory Lane...


LEE ANN HAURY in action.


The Baylor men in action.


DIEGO BENITEZ--UTA COACH, doing his coaching duties.


JOHN RODDICK & STEVE DENTON
Who says sharing lineups can't be fun?


JOE BUYS enjoying a rain delay. 


Someone must be getting a lecture...


VICKIE WRIGHT, TOM WRIGHT, & CAROL BRUEHLER
A thorn between two roses.


GLEN WHITAKER AND NICK FLENTIE
What a pair!


A blast from the past.


MILLARD COUNTRYMAN
How we miss him! 


Beware the infamous Florida fans.


GINNY JAMES
Not sure what is in those cups but sure hope its coffee!


CHERYL JONES & BROOKIE GREEN
Two of the best!


MYRON KRUEGER in action...


The fearsome foursome.


RICK GABEL doing what he loves best--next to drinking beer.


GARY TOLBERT AND RANDALL EDWARDS
What a pair of dawgs!


MELVIN GABEL & MARY LYNN SATUR
Don't they look great in beautiful burnt orange...


GARY TOLBERT enjoying a cool one in the officials' tent.


The purple fearsome foursome.


MYRON KRUEGER trying to teach MARY LYNN SATUR how to do a scorecard.


Since we don't do doubles, we do take time to watch everyone else doing them.


DEAN RICHARDVILLE trying to find someone who will sit with him.


SARA LAMMERTS & VICKIE WRIGHT
Truly the dynamic duo!


TOM WRIGHT as our personal chef!


And last but not least--VICKIE WRIGHT climbing up into the perch at Collin College.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

#1 Oklahoma Sooners Men's Tennis



Congratulations to the University of Oklahoma men's tennis team for being ranked #1 in the collegiate polls for this week.  Keep up the good work!

Monday, March 03, 2014

We Got Spoiled!


Now that the experimental match format for collegiate matches has disappeared we are discovering that we were truly spoiled with the new format!  Horror tales of long matches from across the country have been coming in and here are just a few Texas examples:

*  The Texas A&M vs Florida men's match took 4 hours and 16 minutes.

*  The SMU vs UTEP women's match took 4 hours and 31 minutes.

The match between TCU and Tulsa men last night took over 6 hours to complete but they were playing indoors on less than 6 courts.

Final conclusion:  If they wanted shortened matches, then the experimental format is the way to go.  If they want long matches, then stay with what we have.

The choice isn't our's but I hope someone makes some changes real soon...


The picture above reminds us of an average day for a collegiate tennis official in which they:

*  Called 21 footfaults.
*  Coded 2 misbehaving players.
*  Warned one disruptive coach.
*  Ate a cold Subway sandwich with no cheese or mayo.
*  Sat in the chair for a four hour women's singles match.
*  Drove for 5 hours getting home after a four hour match.
*  Had to put up with a mean referee.
*  Had to come home to an unhappy spouse.
*  Found out my refrigerator was broken when I got home.
*  Had to go to work on Monday at my real job.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Great New Blog Discovered! Be Sure To Check It Out.



As an avid reader (and writer) of blogs, I very seldom find one that I would promote on this blog but I discovered one this week.  I heard from the blog owner, Lisa Stone, and she shared a link to her blog after reading ours.

After checking out her blog I think we officials would find some really constructive reading and ideas from reading and sharing it.  She shares some great thoughts and ideas from a tennis parent's perspective that I think you would really enjoy.  Be sure to check it out!

Here is the link to her latest post on whether parents are willing to pay more to have more officials in their tournaments:  (Be sure to take the survey and then check out the results.  I think you will find them amazing!)

http://parentingaces.com/having-enough-refs-whats-it-worth-to-you/

Here is the link to her blog's home page:

http://parentingaces.com/

You will also find that we have provided a link to her blog on the right hand side of our blog home page.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Should There Be An Age Limit For Collegiate Officials?



While we have a USTA stipulation that a young official cannot officiate a match of juniors older than himself, do we need a MINIMUM AGE for those wishing to do collegiate officiating?

In this year's officials schools we have already seen a large influx of teenage officials.  They have passed all the required tests and have gotten a waiver on the background check, so now is it time to unleash them on the tennis playing world?

Case in point:  We have a 16 year old young man who is heavily involved in junior tournament officiating and wants to move up to collegiate officiating.  He has already been involved in chair training and was the strongest chair official in his group.  Should there be a minimum age to do collegiate matches and do we tell him to wait until he's 18 or 21?

We have asked other collegiate officials and some feel that 18 should be the minimum age for collegiate matches and some feel they should be at least 21.  My tendency is to think that if we take an 18 year old then they need to be extremely mature and heavily experienced at the junior level and have been involved in intensive chair training.

What do you think???

Does Your Demeanor Really Matter?

We all know that a collegiate tennis team will take on the personality of their coach and children will reflect the personalities of their parents--but does an official's demeanor really matter all that much?  The resounding answer would probably be "yes."

We have all been involved in tense and competitive matches and understand how important the demeanor of officials really is...  If a referee is uptight, tense, and agitated the coaches will usually adopt that same demeanor.  If an official is condescending and uncommunicative, the player will usually respond with anger and contempt.

However we look at it, demeanor is important--but its also really hard to shape, mold, and develop.  Some state associations have even brought in psychologists to help officials develop their on-court demeanor.  Its easy to spot the demeanor of a new official (or an older one for that matter.)  Officials communicate their skill and experience levels by their personalities and the way they carry themselves on a court.  Someone once said, "Its not how high you jump but how far you run when you hit the ground that really matters." That's true in officiating too.  Its not how cool you are or how many rules you can quote that really matters.  Its how you conduct yourself on court and your personal demeanor that really counts.

Here are a few random thoughts about developing a good on-court demeanor:

*  Get enough rest.  A tired official will always be a grumpy official and one who has lots of problems.

*  Learn to relax.  After all, its just a game.

*  Breathe.  A deep breath here and there does wonders for any official.

*  Be friendly and responsive to others.  The coaches and players aren't your enemies.  They just want a fair and balanced official to do their match.

*  Quit trying to emulate Attila the Hun.  There are no prizes for the meanest official on the planet.

*  Learn the rules.  Nothing produces fear in a coach or player like an official who doesn't know the rules.

*  Learn to communicate.  When someone asks you a question don't be afraid to answer.  A non-response will get you in trouble more often than not.

*  Concentrate on your responses.  Some coaches and players think its their calling in life to torment officials. Learn not to respond in kind.

*  Enjoy your life.  You are a part of the greatest game in the world so learn to enjoy what your getting to do.

Remember--your face tells a lot.  Demeanor is a huge part of an effective official.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Answer To The Question Of A Let Call



Seems that everywhere we go people are discussing the previous post about a let call.  The incident occurred in a men's D1 doubles match this past weekend so that gives you a little background for the three answers to the question.

ALLOW A LET

The ruling  was that "as long as the ball is in play, any player may call a let."  Not sure what all kinds of trouble this invites, but it was/is the ruling in that arena.

DENY A LET

The other school of thought is "once the ball has left the player's racket they may not call a let."  This means that a player cannot simply find a rolling ball to call a let and negate a bad shot or cannot call a let when the opponent has a "sitter."  This also has a lot of ramifications that might seem to cause consternation among players and coaches.

LET THE CHAIR MAKE THE DECISION

This is a bit of a blend of the two previous options.  As one referee said to his officials, "Do your job and use the tools you have."  There seems to be much more comfort with letting the chair official decide if the let call is valid.

These options are valid primarily for chaired matches or one that has a roving official in viewing sight of a match.  With all options there seems to be fertile ground for endless disputes at the USTA level but the one principle that seems to guide us through this quagmire is: players should be good sports and play accordingly.

We will welcome your thoughts and opinions on this matter.

Monday, February 17, 2014

How Would You Rule? Do They Get A Let Or Not?



This one actually happened this past weekend at the men's collegiate national indoor tournament in Houston.
SCENARIO

In a men's DI doubles match, team A hits a return that is obviously going out.  In fact, the ball was just mini-seconds from striking the back wall when a player on Team A turns and sees a ball rolling into the back corner of his court just up against the wall.  He immediately calls a let before his ball strikes the back wall at the other end of the court. 

What would you do?

1.  Deny the let call since his return was in the air when he called a let.
2.  Grant the let because the ball was still in play.

Note:  There are two very strong and opposing sides in this issue.  The resolution will be posted later this week.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Sensationalism Sells Newspapers--And Increases Comments On A Blog


Everyone who reads a newspaper or watches the news on tv or the internet knows that sensationalism is what attracts readers and makes the profits grow.  Its also what seems to encourage people to express their feelings more openly (or anonymously as some do) on a blog comment section.  We can publish a blog about supporting tennis or encouraging officials and we get very few comments but it we post something that is controversial or sensational, the comments flow.

One of the goals of any blog is to encourage discussion and promote comments and thoughts from the readers.  Sensationalism is just another tool that is used in our society to promote interest and participation but it needs to be carefully handled.

Since we get a lot of emails and phone calls with suggestions about various blog topics it is always fun to finally decide on something that might be interesting to our blog partners.  Here are a few that have been suggested:

"A Comparison Of The Pay For NFL Referees And Pro Tennis Officials"

"An Expose Of The Sex Lives Of Women Pro Officials"

"What To Do With An Official Who Shows Up Drunk"

"Should A Fat Official Be Required To Undergo Weight Reduction Training?"

"Is It Time For A New Sectional Chairman of Officials In Texas?"

"Are Gay Officials More Sensitive Than Heterosexual Officials?"

"What Does Diverse Really Mean?"

"Why Do We Freeze Our Kids In A Zat Tournament?"

"Should There Be Stronger Penalties For Devil Children In Our Tournaments?"

"How To Tell If Your Referee Is Demon Possessed"

"How Much Money Does The USTA Really Take In Every Year?"

"What Happens To The Sanctioning Fees That All Tournaments Are Required To Pay?"

"Should Tournament Directors Be Required To Publish A Profit/Loss Statement After Each Tournament?"

"Do Tennis Officials Really Only Work For Money?"

"Why Don't I Get More Assignments?"

"Should There Be A Weight Limit For Officials?"

"What Do You Do If An Official Can't Fit Their Posterior In The Chair?"

"How To Deal With An Official That Has Bad Breath"

"What Do You Do If Your Fellow Official Smells Bad?"

"Why Do Pro Officials Have To Be So Arrogant?"

"What Do You Do When A Collegiate Coach Questions Your Birthright And Ancestry?"

"Why Is Gender Equality Fine For Men's Events But Not For Women's?"

"Should Sexual Preference Be A Determining Factor In Hiring Officials?"

"Should There Be A Required Retirement Age For Officials?"

"Should Myron Krueger Be Required To Annually Attend Defensive Driving?"

"We Demand Monthly Updates On Carol Bruehler's Hip Surgery"

"Should A Tournament Director Also Be A Referee?"

"Should Melvin Gabel Have A Maximum Beer Consumption Limit Placed On His Meals?"

"Should Waco Officials Be Required To Undergo Sleep Regulation Courses?"

"Should The President Of Any Large City's Officials Association Be Required To Be A Woman?"

These are just a few of the suggestions.  I'm sure there are more...


Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Its Time To Get Serious About Recruiting New Officials


Everyone is familiar with this age picture about recruiting--maybe its time we developed some of that same fervor and excitement when it comes to enlisting new tennis officials.  Its no secret that our numbers are declining and we are losing more and more certified officials every year so its time to step up and take some positive steps to change the tide...


We don't have a flag to wave but it might be good to develop a national "Officials Banner" or "Officials Flag" that represents our organizations and inspires others to join our ranks.


We could always show them action shots to inspire them to come and join us...


There is always the lure of money and now that officials are being paid better, it could be a selling point.


Then there's always the thought of using beefcake in our brochures...


Or selecting the prettiest in our sport to do the talking and enlisting...


                                        But then there are some pictures we should never show.

We as officials need to collectively pool our thoughts, resources, and energies to recruit and train new officials so our sport will continue to grow and prosper.  Here are just a few thoughts about how to achieve this purpose:

*  Always be recruiting.  All of us meet new people all the time--why not take a moment and share about what you do and then simply ask if they would like to become an official.  You would be surprised at how many take you up on your offer.

*  Be ready to share an answer.  When someone says they would like to become an official or even might be interested, be ready to share your resources with them.  One of the best ways is to have business cards printed up with your name and contact information and something about your being a tennis official.

*  Use the resources that are ours.  There is a great link to becoming a tennis official on the USTA Texas Section website (http://www.texas.usta.com/Officials/becoming_an_official/?intloc=headernavsub).  The USTA website has a good one but not nearly as complete and as information as the Texas Section.  It might even be good to put this link on your business cards.

*  Talk to people at tournaments.  Your most fertile field will be a bunch of tennis players and spectators at a tennis tournament.  Be friendly and you'll be surprised at how many people will ask you questions about being an official.  Be ready to give an informed and quality response!

*  Start a tennis officials blog.  While this is not for everyone for sure, its a great tool for stimulating interest and can provide tons of informative links to people who might be interested in officiating.  Remember that you have to have really thick skin to have a blog...

*  If you don't know the answer then connect them with someone who does.  All of us know someone who knows the answers, so when you don't know anything, find someone who does...

*  Develop enlistment brochures and posters to put at tournament desks.  This is a fantastic tool that we aren't utilizing nearly enough.

*  Cultivate your certified officials.  There are tons of new officials who are waiting for someone to ask them to work or to encourage them to advance in our field.  Talk to them...  You can always get a list of officials in your state with contact information so learn to work the field.

*  Stay positive in your recruiting!  If all we do is gripe and complain then noone will want to join us.  If you are positive and upbeat, they will be knocking down your door.

*  Don't be afraid to share war stories.  They don't need a 10 minute discourse on your last code violation but people are always interested in what goes on behind the scenes (and sometimes in the forefront) or tennis.

These are just a few thoughts and ideas--let's all be creative and become "ENLISTORS" for our officiating family.  It can and will make a difference...

Sunday, February 02, 2014

New ITA Paddles & Saving Time


DEAN RICHARDVILLE of Tulsa, Oklahoma modeling the new "Deciding Point Paddle"

Now that the ITA season is in full swing and everyone is having a great time implementing the new format, its time to stop and evaluate what all these changes mean.

First, it is definitely saving time.  In a recent men's ITA dual match, the #1 doubles match took 16 minutes!  Over the weekend a men's ITA dual match lasted only 1 hour and 52 minutes so if the goal was to shorten the matches--we have succeeded!

One of the most interesting things to note is that the players seem to know the changes better than the coaches.  Last weekend we actually had a DI women's coach say that he didn't know there had even been any new changes implemented...  Such is life in the ITA.

One of the greatest new innovations in collegiate tennis made its debut at Oklahoma State University.  Pictured above (in the hands of the most worthy referee Dean Richardville) is the new DEUCE--DECIDING POINT PADDLE.  This great new invention is to be held in the air by the chair official whenever a match reaches the deciding point.

Such is life in the ITA...

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Its A Miracle! He's Healed...



MADRID (AP) -- Rafael Nadal doesn't expect to miss any tournaments as a result of the back injury that contributed to his loss in the Australian Open final.
A statement from the world's top-ranked player says he will have another medical exam on Monday after doctors in Barcelona examined his back following his return from Australia.
Nadal lost Sunday's final in Melbourne 6-3, 6-2, 3-6, 6-3 to Switzerland's Stan Wawrinka after he injured his back.
Nadal says he still plans to play his next tournaments in Buenos Aires, Rio de Janeiro, Indian Wells and Miami.
Doctors have prescribed anti-inflammatory medication and physical therapy to speed his recovery.

Monday, January 27, 2014

How Would You Rule? Two Interesting Scenarios



SCENARIO ONE

In a men's ITA doubles match team A hits a ball that might be going long.  Team B prepares to hit the ball but their coach shouts, "Let it go!" and they move away and let the ball go out.

Here is the rule:

Penalties when coach interferes with play. The purpose of coaching is to
offer advice to the player. Coaches shall not in any way distract or
annoy the opposing player. If a coach in any way interferes with play or
distracts an opposing player at any time, he shall receive a direct
warning from the Referee or Umpire. For any subsequent violation, his
player, on the court where the violation occurred, shall be assessed a
point penalty. Penalties for coaching are not treated as part of the ITA
Point Penalty System, and they do not accumulate.

Question:  Do you call a hindrance and award the point to team A, give the coach a warning, or do nothing?


SCENARIO TWO

In Federer's loss to Nadal at the Australian Open, he complained to the chair umpire about Nadal's grunting. Everyone is aware of the loud shrieking coming from Azarenka and Sharapova and it has even entered into the collegiate ranks.

Here is the rule:

FAC Comment IV.D-17: What should an official do when a player grunts so
loudly that play on nearby courts is affected? The official may treat loud
grunting as a hindrance. If the official concludes that the grunting affected the
outcome of the point on the court where the grunting occurred, the official
shall order that the point be replayed. The official shall advise the player that
subsequent loud grunting that affects the outcome of a point will be treated as
an intentional hindrance and will result in loss of the point. An official should
not order a point replayed on an adjacent court even if the grunting may have
affected the outcome of a point on that court.

What would you do at the pro level?  At the collegiate level?  At the USTA level?  Should there be a difference in how you deal with the problem?

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Australian Open: A New Winner (Finally!) And A 7 Minute MTO


STANISLAS WAWRINKA
2014 Australian Open Champion


No, he's now bowing.  Just preparing for a 7 minute medical timeout.

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) -- Stan Wawrinka added a win over Rafael Nadal to his list of firsts in a stunning run to his maiden Grand Slam title, extending his rival's injury-cursed run at the Australian Open with a 6-3, 6-2, 3-6, 6-3 upset in Sunday's final.
The 28-year-old Wawrinka had never taken a set off Nadal in 12 previous meetings, but attacked from the start against the 13-time major winner and regained his nerve after dropping the third set against the injured Spaniard.
Nadal appeared to be on the verge of retiring in the second set, when he hurt his back and needed a medical time out, but he refused to quit.
''It's really not the way you want to win a tennis match, but in a Grand Slam final I'll take it,'' said Wawrinka, the first man in 21 years to beat the No. 1 and No. 2 ranked players en route to a Grand Slam title.
Nadal was a hot favorite to win at Melbourne Park and become the first man to win each of the four Grand Slam tournaments twice in the Open era - instead, his injury curse struck again. It remains the only major he's hasn't won at least two times.
''Rafa, I'm really sorry for you, I hope your back is going to be fine, you're a really great guy, good friend and really amazing champion,'' Wawrinka said as he accepted his first major trophy. ''Last year I had a crazy match, I lost it. I was crying a lot after the match. But in one year a lot happened - I still don't know if I'm dreaming or not but we'll see tomorrow morning.''
Warwinka lost in five sets to Novak Djokovic in the fourth round of the 2013 Australian Open, in the longest Grand Slam match of the season. Djokovic went on to win his third consecutive title at Melbourne Park, and then beat Wawrinka again in five sets in the U.S. Open semifinals.
But Wawrinka avenged those losses this time, beating Djokovic in five sets in the quarterfinals - ending a run of 14 straight losses to the Serbian player.
Now he'll move from No. 8 to No. 3. In doing so, he'll surpass Federer, a 17-time Grand Slam winner who lost to Nadal in the semifinals - to become the highest-ranked Swiss player for the first time in his career.
Wawrinka also broke up a sequence of wins for the Big Four - with 34 of the previous 35 majors going to either Nadal, Djokovic, Roger Federer or Andy Murray.
''Stan, you really deserve it,'' Nadal said. ''Luck was against me today but you really deserve it.
''Last thing that I wanted to do was retire. I hate to do that, especially in a final. Same time, is tough to see yourself during the whole year you are working for a moment like this, and arrives the moment and you feel that you are not able to play at your best. ''
Nadal has had a terrible stretch with injuries at the Australian Open, and has described it as his unluckiest Grand Slam. He won the title in 2009, and lost an epic five-set final to Djokovic in 2012. But he missed the 2013 edition during a seven-month layoff with knee injuries and illness, and his quarterfinal losses in 2010 and 2011 were affected by injuries.
''It has been a very emotional two weeks - I'm sorry to finish this way,'' he told the Rod Laver Arena crowd. ''I tried very, very hard - this year was one of the more emotional tournaments in my career.''
A possible retirement was looming when Nadal was serving at 0-2 in the second set. He bent over at the waist to stretch his back and then grabbed his lower back with his hand and grimaced in pain. His serve immediately dipped to 141 kph (87 mph).
When Nadal took a medical timeout after falling behind a set and a break, and returned to a chorus of boos without a shirt after 7 minutes, it seemed that an early finish was on the cards.
Wawrinka was aggravated during the time out, demanding that officials tell him why Nadal needed the break. And he came out aggressively to finish off the second set.
Nadal's serve speed dipped even further to 125 kph (77 mph) and then 114 kph (70 mph). The support in the stadium gradually shifted as the crowd saw the Spaniard battling to stay on the court.
His service speed improved in the beginning of the third set, prompting a fan to yell advice to Wawrinka: ''C'mon Stan, no sympathy!''
By the end of the set, Nadal's serve was back up to 174 kph (108 mph) and Wawrinka's error count was escalating.
Wawrinka composed himself after an exchange of breaks in the fourth set to serve it out in 2 hours, 21 minutes. After a muted celebration, he consoled Nadal in the courtside chairs before getting a chance to hold up and kiss his first big trophy.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

You Have To Love This Underdog! Stanislas Wawrinka


STANISLAS WAWRINKA

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) -- Stanislas Wawrinka backed up his upset of four-time champion Novak Djokovic by reaching his first Grand Slam final with a 6-3, 7-6 (1), 6-7 (3), 7-6 (4) win over Tomas Berdych in the Australian Open semifinals on Thursday.
Wawrinka ended a 14-match losing streak against Djokovic with a dramatic five-set, four-hour win in the quarterfinals, then followed that with a dominating performance against Berdych, the 2010 Wimbledon finalist.
''I don't know what to say. I'm speechless,'' he said. ''I didn't expect to make a final in a Grand Slam - tonight it's happening.''
Wawrinka will meet the winner of Friday's semifinal showdown between Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer, the 33rd installment of their rivalry and the first at a Grand Slam since Nadal knocked Federer out of the Australian Open at the same stage in 2012.
Whoever he plays, Wawrinka will go into the final as an underdog. He has never beaten Nadal in 12 meetings, and has lost all but one of his 14 matches against his countryman, Federer.
Wawrinka has long been in Federer's shadow as Switzerland's less-heralded No. 2, but he's been slowly gaining confidence in his game since narrowly losing a heartbreaking marathon match to Djokovic in Melbourne last year.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

What To Expect From Your Referee.

Since there are a lot of new officials (and a bunch of older ones) who regularly read the blog, it might be good to enumerate those things that an official working a USTA event in the Metroplex can expect.

Here are just a few of the things an official should expect from their referee:

*   A timely commitment to their assignment.  No official should have to be put on hold for days and days and then told the day before a tournament that they aren't needed.  If a referee has this reputation (and believe me, they do) and they ask you to work--run.

*   The referee should be forthcoming about the finish time for your shift.  Don't let them tell you that you will be working a 6 hour shift and they keep you there for 12 hours.  Again--check their reputation.

*   The referee should be providing you with a lunch (or supper if you work past 6:00 p.m.) or a MTOA approved alternative.  That means if there is no lunch provided then you are entitled to leave your site to go get your own lunch.  Never, ever, let a referee talk you into bringing your own lunch and then sitting at the site during the lunch time.  They know the rules and should abide by them.

*   The referee should pay you for time worked.  That means that if the referee asks you to report at 6:30 a.m. then they should pay you from that time.  Don't let them ask you to report "early" for your shift and not pay you.  That also means that you get paid for checking the nets, cleaning the courts, and preparing for the start of play.  If the referee is pulling this unethical stunt and only paying you from the time that play starts then don't show up until play starts.  They'll change their tune pretty quickly...  Again, if this is being done, report it to the President of the MTOA.

*   The referee should pay you in hourly increments.  That means that if you work over an 6.75 hours then you should be paid for 7 hours.  We do not pay in 15 minute increments and don't let anyone do that to you.

*   The referee should "have your back" when there is a dispute with players and/or parents.  Even if you have made an error in judgment or knowledge of the rules there is no excuse for a referee embarrassing an official publicly.  Those are discussions that need to be held in private.

*   The referee should know the rules.  Believe it or not, there are some that don't.

*   The referee should be on site or easily reachable by phone.  Do not ever work for a referee that is "out of town" during the tournament because you're only asking to be set  up to fail.  If a referee does this, report them to the President of the MTOA and appropriate action will be taken.

*   If the referee is on site then he/she always need to be available to assist you if there is a problem of any kind.  They are the ultimate authority and need to make their presence visible.  Most problems will disappear when they are around.

*   The referee should be respectful to those who are working for him/her.  We are all officials and need to be treated with respect when we are working together.


The Evolution of the Tennis Officials Chair


The beginning edition.


The bare essentials.


The new sun protector.


For the shorter and smaller official.


For the studious official who is still learning the rules.


Keeping Mama happy!


Higher is always better.


The new 2014 model.


The chair designed with a Waco official in mind.


Home Depot model.


Higher yet still modern.


The contour shape is in this year.


Built with the executive in mind.


Compact and probably uncomfortable.

 Just imagine how high you really are!


Designed for those who fear heights.


The ultimate in chair officiating.  Probably built with the "elite" programs in mind.