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Q. What is "Dynamic" NTRP?

A. "Dynamic" NTRP is an enhanced tennis rating system that generates player ratings at regular intervals over the course of a season (unlike the present "static" system that defers all rating calculations to year-end).

Q. What is different?

A. Dynamic NTRP allows players to self-rate instead of attending verification clinics. Disqualifications will be handled directly by the NTRP program.

Q. How will it work?

A. Players will register through TennisLink. If they have a valid computer rating on file in the database it will confirm their eligibility for the team. If they have no rating on file the player will be required to declare a self-rating before completing the registration. After each match, the captain will enter the scores online in TennisLink. These results will be calculated in the dynamic NTRP computer program. USTA will monitor the ratings and inform players if they reach the disqualification level three times based on all adult and senior matches appearing in the system. Remember, Mixed Doubles does not have NTRP disqualification.

Q. Has the way that the computer program calculates ratings been changed?

A. The basic mathematical algorithm has not changed. The computer still looks at your match scores and not whether you won or lost the match. Significant procedural changes apply in Dynamic NTRP, however. Where historically, your final rating was a function exclusively of your results at the highest level of competition entered, under Dynamic NTRP "final" ratings are based 50% on your cumulative dynamic rating entering an event and 50% on the traditional "benchmark" calculation method.

Q. How often are "dynamic" ratings re-calculated? By whom?

A. TennisLink data will automatically be run through a national NTRP database, where the necessary calculations will be made. The Sectional Leagues Coordinator will then use a limited-access feature of TennisLink to obtain report listing any players who accumulated a "third strike" and therefore are disqualified. The national NTRP database will run calculations daily.

Q. Is there a difference between an in-season Dynamic Rating and a year-end Final Rating?

A. Yes, there are several. First, dynamic ratings are not disclosed publicly (neither to the player nor any other league player or administrator below the section level), where final year-end ratings are published annually and displayed on the Section’s website. Second, dynamic ratings are expressed to the one-hundredth of a point, where final ratings are expressed only to the one-half point. Finally, dynamic ratings are updated regularly and based on an average of the previous four dynamic ratings. Year-end ratings are based 50% on one’s cumulative dynamic rating during the season and 50% on the traditional benchmark calculation method.

Q. Will my rating now change in mid-year?

A. Only if you reach the 3rd strike and are disqualified at your present level. Otherwise you will still receive a year-end rating just as in the past.

Q. I want to see my rating during the year. How can I?

A. You will not be able to view the dynamic NTRP ratings during the year. These numbers will be used solely by administration to track play, identify those clearly above level and to finally assist with year-end benchmarking and ratings.

Q. Does Dynamic NTRP treat doubles partners differently?

A. Dynamic NTRP maintains whatever rating differential between doubles partners that existed before a match. For example, if a 3.3 and a 3.5 player are paired together, whatever "spread" between opponents is dictated by the specific match results, the two partners will have ratings only .2 different from one another after the dynamic calculation is completed.

Q. Does Dynamic NTRP apply to Mixed Doubles League play?

A. Yes, for players who participate only in the Mixed Doubles Division. For those who participate in the Adult or Senior Divisions as well, their Mixed Doubles results will not affect their final rating. However, the Mixed Doubles regulations prohibit NTRP disqualification.

Q. This system depends on match results being reported promptly to TennisLink. How will you assure that? What happens if the TennisLink system is "down"?

A. Peer pressure will remain the most effective tool in motivating captains to report local league match results in a timely way. Several sections will be establishing deadlines for reporting scores that will count for advancement.

Q. How will corrections to match scores be made?

A. Team Captains and their players can use TennisLink to review (or dispute and correct) match results in the time allowed by the section.

Q. Why is the validity of a year-end rating being extended to 5 years?

A. Too many players are electing to "sit out" and then re-enter the Leagues program at a lower NTRP level, rather than abide by their results-driven computer rating. Extending the validity period for year-end ratings should minimize this.

Q. Isn’t it unfair to change the validity period for those players who will have sat out two years and were expecting to get re-rated in 2003?

A. No, rules change all the time. Notice has been available since the summer of 2001 that this was the new regulation for 2003. We encourage all players to participate at their established NTRP level rather than sitting out. Many of the sections have waivers to start the 5-year history with the 2001 computer ratings.

Q. How does a player get back into the system without sitting out for five years when their last rating moved them to 5.50 or 5.0 in the case of Senior Division?

A. USTA NTRP Computer Methodology allows an appeal of a non-benchmark player with a year old computer rating if it falls within .10 above the NTRP level IF the next highest approved NTRP level is not available. Seniors may still participate at the Adult 5.0 level. NTRP tournament participation is another way and several of the sections run OPEN Divisions that can also be calculated in the NTRP computer program.

Q. How will I appeal my year-end rating?

A. The same as in the past. However, be aware the appeal will only be granted based on missing information, permanent disabling injury or if the computer rating is less than .05 over the NTRP level and the request is to move down.

Q. Will there still be verifiers at District/Section/National league championship events? What is their role there?

A. There will be a limited number of verifiers at National championship events. Their focus will be on insuring rating accuracy in same-partner situations and out-of-contention teams. Whether verifiers will be assigned to Sectional or District championship events has not yet been determined. If verifiers do attend, their role will be limited to observing the Dynamic NTRP process and providing feedback to improve that system. Verifiers will not gather or report visual ratings, nor will they initiate any disqualification proceedings.


Q. How do you know that new players will self-rate correctly?

A. Historically, better than 8 out of 10 new players self-rate accurately when attending a rating clinic in anticipation of entering the USA League Tennis presented by Lincoln program. Actual match results will determine whether a player self-rates too high or too low—with the prospect of player disqualification if warranted.

Q. What do I do if I think a self-rated player is too good for the level?

A. Captains may request a "Player Review" by the Leagues Administrator to examine the challenged player’s match results and resulting Dynamic Ratings.

Q. How does Dynamic NTRP work in brand-new leagues where there are no (or very few) computer-rated players?

A. In new leagues, or leagues with very limited player history, League Administrators will assign an "initial rating" for players in those leagues. The precise number is established by national procedures and tends to be at or near the mid-point for the level of the league.

Q. Can I declare a different self-rating for different League Divisions (e.g., 3.5 for Adult and 4.0 for Senior)?

A. No. Once you declare an initial self-rating, you are bound by it for the calendar year or until you generate a final, year-end rating. The only exception to this is in the event of a player disqualification, where one is immediately bound by the higher, "DQ" rating.

Q. What if I have self-rated and played four matches in the Adult Division and then sign up for the Senior Division. Will I use my self-rating or will the system generate a computer rating for me?

A. The system will have a Dynamic NTRP number on you from your adult play. But you will continue with the self-rating you selected until the "year-end computer ratings" are published. Unless of course, you are disqualified and you then must immediately move up.

Q. During the transition year, if a player has a current visual rating, must they abide by the visual

A. Yes. The visual as issued will be placed in the TennisLink system and will be your official self-rating for the transition year. Self-ratings are removed at the end of the calendar year.


Q. Do you expect more/less "DQ’s" using Dynamic NTRP than historically has been the case?

A. Historically, NTRP disqualifications have been rare. There is no reason to believe that will change so long as players are self-rating accurately.

Q. What is a strike and how do I get one?

A. Each time a player’s dynamic rating exceeds the maximum tolerance for the level, he/she automatically earns a "strike." Three strikes—considering all matches in the Adult and Senior Divisions from all sections in the database from Local League up to and including Sectional Championships— and you’re disqualified.

Q. How high can my dynamic rating go before I earn a "strike"?

A. The Dynamic NTRP system allows a certain tolerance for player development—more for lower level players where rapid improvement is more likely; less for higher-level players. The new Dynamic NTRP system uses the same criteria for "strikes" that heretofore were used by verifiers. The new methodology has not changed that standard in any way.

Q. What are the consequences of disqualification?

A. In all cases, the player is disqualified from participation at that NTRP level. Each USTA Section will determine which of two methods the section will follow at the local and the championship level. The effect on Team Standings may vary, depending on when the DQ occurs:

During local league: Either the individual match that produced the disqualification and any subsequent match played by the player OR all previous matches played shall be considered losses.

During Championship play: If the section elects to run the computer ratings following completion of the championship points earned by the DQ player will stand.

Round Robin format: If the section chooses to DQ during the championships any player reaching the DQ criteria will have all matches reversed to 0-6, 0-6.

Single Elimination format: If the section chooses to DQ during the championships the last match played by the player will be reversed to 0-6, 0-6.

Q. Will a player be advised each time that he/she earns a "strike"?

A. No. Notice occurs only after three strikes are accumulated.

Q. Will I be told exactly which matches earned me "three strikes"?

A. Yes, with notification of disqualification you will be provided with a printout of all your matches and the NTRP level generated for each match.

Q. Who is notified in the event of a disqualification? By whom? How quickly?

A. Responsibility for monitoring dynamic ratings lies with the Sectional Leagues Coordinator. When a "third strike" situation arises, the SLC will notify (a) the affected player, by telephone, e-mail or voicemail message; (b) the player’s Team Captain, using the Captain’s e-mail address as reported on TennisLink; and (c) the relevant District and Local League Coordinator. Notification is made within one business day of determination that a third strike has been received. Hard copy will be mailed to player’s address as it appears on the team roster.