My (Brief) Professional Tennis Career
November 7, 2018 1:49 PM   Subscribe

Love this story. Everyone deserves such an undeserved claim to fame. (Me, I've been in the National Enquirer)
posted by victotronics at 2:06 PM on November 7, 2018 [2 favorites]

This is excellent, not least because he did the ridiculous thing without being a dick about it.
posted by parm at 2:17 PM on November 7, 2018 [4 favorites]

Heh, looked up the other fellow and he also has his (7 month) tennis pro career listed on his LinkedIn. Peter should send him the story.
posted by cichlid ceilidh at 2:20 PM on November 7, 2018 [3 favorites]

I was briefly sort-of-famous for being the owner of during the first dot-com era when pretty much anyone could be famous for any stupid reason as long as it was internet-related. I was no Mahir, mind you, but I had the honor of being interviewed & photographed by the Washington Post and also insulted by both TechTV and Mancow In The Morning.

Good times!
posted by grumpybear69 at 2:24 PM on November 7, 2018 [2 favorites]

My uncle and a college friend did something similar, except with the goal of being in the Olympics. They picked the one sport that seemed to have the least competition in the US: handball. They learned the rules, maybe practiced a bit, and were ready for tryouts, sure they'd have a fair chance of getting on the US Olympic handball team.

Except handball is big overseas. Military men serve overseas.

In the first match, my uncle and his friend ran into each-other, which was not intentional, but had the effect of giving them an out before they lost too badly to men who were much more skilled at handball than they were.
posted by filthy light thief at 2:32 PM on November 7, 2018 [5 favorites]

A chuckleworthy piece.

Walking away from the court, despondent after another Josh Graves shellacking, a friend of mine lifted my spirit with some words of encouragement. “Pete, you gotta stop playing these Futures Tournaments. This is getting embarrassing.”
posted by mono blanco at 3:36 PM on November 7, 2018 [1 favorite]

This was delightful. My youngest son placed 4th on skiing half-pipe nationally this past winter. Doesn't seem to matter him too much, but I do tell people he is 4th best skier in the nation. Come tell me otherwise.
posted by zeikka at 4:13 PM on November 7, 2018 [1 favorite]

When I was in high school, I played for a Deck Hockey team that played in a/the National Tournament. We finished in 4th. I played on the 4th best deck hockey team in the nation. All those kids trying to pad their resume for their college application and all I had to do to put "Starting defenseman on nationally ranked (4th) hockey team" was drink a lot of beer and drive to Leominster, MA to get our ass kicked by the Standard (Oil) Rams. (Shots on goal were something like 47-3 against us in one game. We did win two games that weekend.)
posted by AugustWest at 4:42 PM on November 7, 2018 [2 favorites]

I know nothing about tennis. How does this tournament (and/or everyone playing in it) count as "professional"?
posted by jonathanhughes at 6:36 PM on November 7, 2018

They are run by the Association of Tennis Professionals or the International Tennis Federation and umpired by them. There is prize money, and you are also playing for ranking points. Even at this "low" level, these players are unbelievably elite - which is what makes this story so interesting/funny.

A truly fantastic, amateur tennis player would have a similar scoreline. Then consider that the person dishing out 6-0, 6-0 scorelines at a tournament like this gets the same from anyone in the top 100, and then think about what the 98 ranked player gets from the top 5, it gives an idea of how elite professional tennis is.
posted by smoke at 7:29 PM on November 7, 2018 [3 favorites]

How does this tournament (and/or everyone playing in it) count as "professional"?

ITF Men's Circuit
The ITF Men’s Circuit provides the entry level of Professional Tournaments enabling players to eventually reach the higher level tournaments on the ATP World Tour.

The ITF Men’s Circuit offers 600+ tournaments across 70+ countries and incorporates two prize money levels of tournaments known as 'Futures'.

Futures Tournaments are single week tournaments that offer either $15,000 or $25,000 each in prize money.
posted by edeezy at 7:40 PM on November 7, 2018 [1 favorite]

Love the exasperated tournament officials
posted by edeezy at 7:48 PM on November 7, 2018 [1 favorite]

DF Wallace would probably have an opinion about this.
posted by ovvl at 8:00 PM on November 7, 2018 [2 favorites]

My brother has a friend, colleague, former student. One or all of those. A German dude. Got to know him in New Zealand.

This was something well over a decade ago. He would do six month gigs as an SAP consultant to pocket some money and the next six as a tennis pro. He managed to make it into the top 100 but stopped after three or four years. I didn’t believe him at first, but we pulled up the rankings, and there he was. I don’t think he ever played in a major.

It struck me as a really weird thing at the time.
posted by michswiss at 4:31 AM on November 8, 2018 [1 favorite]

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