Matches are played at the "home court" of one of the players. If a player is scheduled to have the "home court" for a match, it will be shaded in gold on the schedule.
Indoor Court locations on the list are not to be selected for our outdoor seasons. You must choose an outdoor court location for the Spring, Summer, and Fall seasons. If you want to play a match indoors during one of the outdoor seasons, your opponent must agree to this, and you must pay the court costs and any applicable guest fees.
Clay courts are not listed among our Chicagoland court locations. If you want to play at a clay court, you can do so if your opponent agrees, and if you are willing to pay the court costs and any applicable guest fees.
If the facility charges court fees, the "Home" player will cover the fees of both players. If the facility does not have a court reservation system, the "home" player must show up early to secure courts for the match. If a court is not available within 20 min. of the designated time, the "away" player may take a default.
"Home" players should be aware of the following issues when scheduling a Home match:
If the Home Court player is unaware of any of the issues above, and it results in the match being interrupted or not played, the Home Court player can be defaulted if the Away player is unwilling or unable to reschedule the match.
If the Home Court player believes the condition of the courts is suitable for play, but the Away player disagrees, either/both player can submit photos via phone to the League Coordinator who will then arbitrate and come to a decision. Keep in mind that this rarely happens. Almost all players are amenable to cooperating with each other and finding a reasonable solution.
Head off potential problems when scheduling the match: If you are unsure if the courts will be available, or unsure about whether you can play your match before the lights go off, or unsure if your opponent will be comfortable playing with the conditions of the court, please inform your opponent about as much as you can, then agree on a plan. You could suggest coming to the court site, then having an alternate site to go to in case your home court is full, unsuitable, or unplayable in anyway. Make sure your opponent agrees to this when scheduling the match.
If you or your opponent is over 20 minutes late to the match, it is reasonable at that point for the player who showed up to go home and take a default win. But before leaving, the player who showed up should call and/or text the other player to make sure that they communicated correctly about the time and location of the match. Contact the League Coordinator if a player fails to show and either does not follow up, or shows little or no concern about it. No shows are not tolerated in the league and can lead to suspension from league play, subject to the discretion of the League Coordinator. Typically, the League Cooordinator will follow the 3 strikes protocol that is outlined in our Unsportsmanlike Conduct section.
Default Alert: If a player assumes for any reason (e.g. rain) that the match has been canceled, but does not communicate to his points via text or phone call first, he can be defaulted if the other player shows up and believes the conditions are playable. If you think the match should be canceled on the day of the match, you must communicate via text or phone call with your opponent and receive a response before deciding not to go to the match site. Both players must agree that the match is defaulted, otherwise show up to play. DO NOT CANCEL MATCHES VIA EMAIL.
The "home court" player shall provide a new, unopened can of balls. New balls must also be provided if there has been a break in play (see "Incomplete Matches" section).
Players are strongly recommended to use the Wilson US Open ball. It is weighted consistently and properly and doesn't shed right away to nothing. It is made for hard courts and lasts far longer than other balls. These can be hard to find in stores, but you can get them at a discount online at Tennis Warehouse or Midwest Sports.
If there is a score disagreement during the match, players must go back to the last point you both agree on, and continue the match from there.
A conventional, best 2 of 3 sets shall be played, with a 12 point tie break (first player to 7 pts. by two) used at six games all. If you split sets, players may elect to play a Super Tiebreak instead of playing out the third set. However, both players must elect to play a 3rd set Super Tiebreak. If either player wants to play out the third set, it must be played out. Once agreed upon, a player cannot later change his mind. 3rd set "Super Tiebreaks" are a 10 point match tie break (first player to 10 pts. by two). 3rd set "Super Tiebreaks" are an option to prevent unnecessary fatigue to players and eliminate rescheduling and incomplete matches due to time constraints/sundown/weather. 3 hour exception: In the unusual instance when a match will exceed 3 hours, a super-tiebreak must be played, unless both players agree to play it out.
If BOTH PLAYERS AGREE, a Gladiator Tennis version of the Fast 4 format can be played as a quicker alternative. This is helpful especially for matches in the city, where a 1 hour time limit is often imposed because of overcrowded courts. Fast 4 Scoring Format
--If both players do not agree, then the traditional scoring method ahould be followed. If a player wants to use the Fast 4 Format, it is recommended that he/she propose that when scheduling the match, and not suggest it when both players have reached the courts already.
--New Heat Rule - If the temperature is above 90 degrees, the Fast 4 Format will be used unless both players agree to play it out.
Fast 4 Rules, adapted for Gladiator Tennis:
Gladiator deviations from original "Fast 4 format"
The following are standard rules in all organized tennis (Gladiator, ITF, USTA) regarding rest periods and breaks:
Additional Gladiator Tennis rules…
Ensure an enjoyable league with quality opponents! Please report all acts of unsportsmanlike conduct to the league coordinator. If players don't report, no action can be taken. Not reporting problem players means other members will be subjected to the same behavior. Unsportsmanlike behavior includes: Verbal abuse, bad line calls, no response to phone calls, excessive questioning of line calls, and consistently rude or argumentative behavior. Players will receive a verbal warning from the league coordinator after two complaints from different players within a 3 year period. A third complaint within a 3 year period will result in a one calendar year suspension. Behavior that involves immediate expulsion from the league are physical abuse, threats of physical harm, and racial slurs. Do not expect the League Coordinator to expel a player if it is your word vs. his word on the first offense. But if you report an offense, and a pattern of complaints has been established with that player, this protocol will be followed.
Because all league matches are unofficiated, players are responsible for both knowing the rules and enforcing them while on court. The Gladiator Tennis League Coordinator will only overturn matches if you follow the "Disputes and Protests" rules below:
The purpose of issuing an "official protest" is to prevent a player from wrongfully taking a point when their opponent knows they are breaking the rules. The protest provides a means for getting around the impasse and allowing the match to be completed and later ruled on by the League Coordinator. You should never walk off the court during a match. If the League Coordinator does not rule in your favor, you will lose the match. By completing the match under protest, you still have the possibility of winning the match both on the court and through the League Coordinator's ruling.
Issuing A Protest:
A protest should be announced if your opponent agrees on the events that have transpired, but disagrees on what the rules are:
In any dispute, if you claim the point, you should be 100% sure of the rules. If the league coordinator finds that the USTA rules do not support your actions, you will lose the match based on that one infraction. If you are not 100% sure of the rules, it is wise to let your opponent take the point and continue the match under an "official protest" (this will increase your odds of winning the match). If your understanding of the rules is wrong, then the League Coordinator cannot disqualify you based on the infraction. You still leave yourself the possibility of winning the match on court. If you are right, and the League Coordinator supports your protest, then your opponent would be disqualified based on the infraction and you would win the match.
Your opponent touches the net with his racket. You state that per the rules of tennis, if you touch the net with your racket, you lose the point. Your opponent disagrees about the rules and is adamant about taking the point. You state that if he takes the point you are playing the remainder of the match "under protest". Inform him that if the league coordinator rules in your favor he will lose the match based on that one single point. Report the incident to the league coordinator. In this case the coordinator would support the rules of tennis and overturn the match in your favor. You would receive the win and your opponent would only receive points up to the infraction. If you simply disagree about the rules and do not state that you are "protesting the match", the coordinator will not rule on the infraction or overturn the match even if your opponent agrees he touched the net.