8 Responses

  1. Andrew Burton
    Andrew Burton March 24, 2013 at 5:45 pm |

    I don’t think UFEs, in and of themselves, tell you very much about a match. They’re a bit like the first serve percentage, probably the single most quoted statistic. The amount of times a player gets the ball into play on their first serve doesn’t tell you how effective the first serve is, and it also doesn’t tell you how effectively a player is serving in advantaged, neutral and disadvantaged positions in a game.

    For example, how often does a player win a point BP down or 0-30 down after getting their first serve into play? Seems to me that that counts for more than getting a cheap point when 40-0 or 40-15 up.

    So, back to UFEs: what’s actually happening in the match? Does a play commit UFEs attempting to keep a neutral ball rally going, or while attempting to force the play? How much risk is appropriate (eg for a player ranked 50 playing one of the top 5?) If I’m a coach, I think I worry about whether a player is executing a game plan and hitting the right shots under pressure, not a raw total.

  2. tclairel
    tclairel March 24, 2013 at 6:39 pm |

    Yes, agree with comments above. Plus, I’ve got to think that that if Sam is sat watching Vika play he is pretty clued into what is working and what is not during her matches. UFE is only one way of explaining what happens during a match and although interesting and potentially valuable, most of us watching a match have a pretty good idea of whats going on too without seeing the stats. They tend to confirm for me what I have been seeing rather than illuminate something new.

  3. Ilija
    Ilija March 24, 2013 at 6:57 pm |

    UFE is generally a useless stat. Almost every error is somewhat forced; almost every error is somewhat unforced. Also, it doesn’t take into account how many times the player missed relative to the amount of times the player hit the ball in. Thar’a more important imo. It’s strange that there’s no ‘percentage of shots which were errors (forced or unforced)’ stat.

  4. Jewell
    Jewell March 25, 2013 at 10:38 am |

    Is a DF always objective? Aren’t there times when the returner puts so much pressure on the serve that it gives the server the heeby-jeebies, and along comes a double?

    Enjoyed the read and the comments. Hope you will do one of these for Wimbledon – wasn’t there a lot of talk last year about how the UFE count was artificially low?

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