Scott Dunlop: A New Way to Score: “All Four Tennis”

I just returned from Hawaii. It seems wherever one plays there are different ways of keeping score and switching partners. This is because the standard two out of three sets match takes up too much energy and court time and a one set match is not fair if you get off to a bad start.

We played a doubles round robin where each player served once at each end with no ad scoring and partners who won went one way (and could not play together) and partners who lost went another way (and also had to seperate). A tiebreaker was played at 4 all. It worked well. We got in 4 matches in two hours.

I suggest though that its time to agree on another standard way to score for street or recreational tennis.

I have had  success with what I call All Four Tennis. The scoring is the same as regular tennis except that there is no-ad scoring and sets are first to four games with a seven point tiebreaker played at three all and if you split sets. You switch serves and ends the same way as standard sets and tiebreakers except the end switch of the tiebreaker is after the first three points. The last point of a tiebreaker is at 3-3 when it is sudden death, like no-ad, with the receiver choosing the service box to receive.

All Four Tennis matches are exciting and can be easily completed within 30-45 minutes instead of the hour and a half or more of a 2 out of 3 set match. This leaves time for a longer warm up, practice or another set during a one hour play time.

Try it out and let me know what you think….

A deeper dive into second serve statistics

The two most widely reported second serve statistics in professional tennis are the number of double faults a player hit, and their second serve winning percentage. If we’re trying to understand the effectiveness of a particular player’s second serve, relying only on those statistics has significant drawbacks. Article by Michal Kokta.

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