ARE LONG PIPS CHEATING ?
Long pips have always been controversial rubbers. This are some of the
points made by players that complain on long pips, and my comments
on each point:
allow EASY control of spiny balls:
True, but note that EASY control is not BETTER control. Doing
high quality shots is much more difficult than with inverted.
Inverted players have a wide range of rubbers from where to
choose, and they can select one among them that gives all the
control they need too. Choosing a rubber that makes you control
the ball is not cheating. It is a good idea.
are hard to play against if you don't know HOW they work:
True, but this is YOUR fault only. Imagine how would you
complain on inverted if it didn't exist, and you (a hardbat
player, which never faced anything other than hardbat) faced a
new player from another planet using heavy reglued Mark V
rubbers with MAX sponge. If you were facing this player once per
year, you would NEVER learn to play against inverted, since you
need much more practice to get used to it. If you were AVOIDING
this player all the time, the few (unavoidable) times you played
against him, your performance would be even poor. That's what
happen with long pips.
great variation on how long pips play, so LEARNING to play
against them is not easy:
True. Long pips have a lot of parameters (such as pip's height,
width, hardness, density ...) which can be adjusted to get
specific (and very distinct) performances to suit different
styles. Playing against JOOLA Badman (a hitting rubber) has
NOTHING to do with playing against Double Happiness C7 (a
chopping rubber). Also, some long pips are spiny while other are
dead, some are deceptive while some are not, some can do spin
reversal while some eat all spin, and all this types can be
combined among them. But what gives more problems to players is
that they return spin depending on the incoming ball's spin AND
the stroke the long pips player plays. Note that inverted can
somehow have great variation too, but when it comes close to
some extreme behavior, they call it ANTISPIN.
of players use long pips to COVER some weakness:
True. On the other side, lots of players serve & go for 3rd
ball kill with ultra-fast equipment that they can't really
control. In the first case, it's called CHEATING, and in the
late case, it's called EVOLUTION OF THE GAME, but both groups
choose equipment with the same purpose: to boost its
performance. Both groups are likely to have problems to improve
his game. Long pips suit very few players, same as very fast
equipment. Those are not the wisest options, but neither can't
be called cheating.
are some truly DECEPTIVE rubbers:
True. There are some rubbers that have its parameters adjusted
so tricky and extremely that can RANDOMIZE the spin they impart
on the ball. This rubbers allow to push a no spin ball and get
ANY spin (backspin, topspin, sidespin, even corkscrew). Every
push comes different. It's a nightmare when they hit with this
rubbers and you are at the other side. BUT this is not the
purpose of this rubbers: a (highly) skilled played can play
those deceptive long pips in a completely predictable manner.
They choose this equipment since it has incredible capabilities
(i. e.: instead of reversing spin, they can change spin's
direction at his will). There are few legal and deceptive
rubbers since the aspect ratio rule.
pips players take PROFIT of opponents' inability to play against
long pips ON PURPOSE:
True. Lots of players use long pips as it's stated in (1), and
take profit of (2), (3), (4) and (5) to boost their performance,
specially at the lower levels, and SOME do this with the
intention of take profit of opponent's weakness against long
pips. This is cheating at the same level as doing a certain
serve that you know your opponent is weak against (the common
accepted 'way to go' by ALL the players). Some players complain
that the difference is that serves have to be learned, and long
pips just can be purchased. Well using long pips without leaving
exposed his inherent weaknesses is very difficult to learn (and
it is a must to play a SUCCESSFUL long pips game).
have to THINK when facing long pips players:
Not true.You are not FORCED to think. You can play chess without
thinking too. You can play your mindless looping style as usual
and still win, but that will be unlikely if your opponent forces
you to rally. Lots of players complain 'I don't like to think
when I'm playing': That's fine, but they are playing with one
important weapon less than a thinking player, and that could
make the difference.
can be used to play successful chopping TOO:
True. But long pips are a MUCH better option since they provide
better variation, much heavy backspin, and better handling and
ball control to play defense. You can loop with 0.5 mm sponge
too if you want (no, wait, that would be cheating because it's
ATHLETES don't play long pips / defense:
Not true. Some real athletes DO play long pips / defense. Look
at the world ranking and you will see some (yes, there are few)
real athletes playing long pips /defense.
is SUPERIOR to long pips:
True. That's just accurate. This has NOTHING to do with the fact
that long pips are or are not cheating.
the ball without taking CHANCES is very easy with long pips:
Not true. Returning the ball can be easy, but it is EXTREMELY
difficult doing it in such a manner that your opponent can't
attack (don't letting your opponent attack (or at least don't
letting him to attack hard) is the ONLY way of play without
taking chances). At top level, choppers play the riskiest
pips players do NOTHING but wait for opponent's error:
Not true. They have AT LEAST to return ALL the shots. Winning
the point by opponent's error (whatever you think it means) is
100% legal, thus is no cheating.
styles at lower levels are much more EFFECTIVE:
True. At lower levels there are lots of unforced errors, so just
keeping the ball in play, even poorly, and playing for safety
will make you a tough opponent. This has nothing to do with
are little or no chopper TOP players:
True. This is because they are at a HUGE disadvantage when
facing loopers due to 40mm balls, glues, low aspect ratios, max
sponges, carbon blades, etc... Still, there are a few players
that choose this style and can be competitive. Imagine taking
part in an F1 race with a 'street' sports car... and winning:
You wouldn't be called cheater: you would be called HERO.
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