The Definition of "Choking" in a Tennis match - MensTennisForums.com
View Poll Results: what's the definition of a "choke"?
losing after having match points 13 7.07%
being in a winning situation and ending up losing 51 27.72%
squandering a lead 17 9.24%
all of the above qualifies as chocking, it's an "umbrella" term 73 39.67%
none of the above "post your definition" 30 16.30%
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post #1 of 153 (permalink) Old 01-25-2009, 01:45 PM Thread Starter
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The Definition of "Choking" in a Tennis match

after Berdych's loss against Federer, there was a long discussion with members arguing if it was a choke or not, seeing as this term is used almost on a daily basis in MTF, I think there needs to be some sort of consensus on the meaning of this term, I've suggested some definitions in the poll, let's try making a final definition that makes the usage clear and everyone can refer to in their discussions.

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post #2 of 153 (permalink) Old 01-25-2009, 01:50 PM
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Re: The Definition of "Choking" in a Tennis match

He had a breakdown in his game in the period where he missed those 2 volleys and overhead. I wouldn't say he choked though. Federer made adjustments and served lights out when he had to. Something he has done time and time again. Berdych didn't completely fall apart, Fed took it from him. So no he didn't choke.
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post #3 of 153 (permalink) Old 01-25-2009, 01:51 PM
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Re: The Definition of "Choking" in a Tennis match

None of the above. My definition? Birdick against Federer.
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post #4 of 153 (permalink) Old 01-25-2009, 01:54 PM
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Re: The Definition of "Choking" in a Tennis match

Berdych didn't choke. Neither did Gasquet. For Berdych, it was a simple case of loss of concentration. For Gasquet, after he lost the 3rd set AND getting the injury, momentum swung against him totally.

Choking is a fairly stereotypical term IMO. IMO, only squandering leads FREQUENTLY, or frequently being broken when serving for sets / matches can be considered choking. Which I don't think many players in the top 50 do.

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post #5 of 153 (permalink) Old 01-25-2009, 01:54 PM
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Re: The Definition of "Choking" in a Tennis match

Choking is none of the above and is an overused term. What Berdych did in the 7th game of the 3rd set was a choke.

'Nous nous tournons vers l’Écosse pour trouver toutes nos idées sur la civilisation' - Voltaire
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post #6 of 153 (permalink) Old 01-25-2009, 01:54 PM Thread Starter
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Re: The Definition of "Choking" in a Tennis match

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Originally Posted by LleytonMonfils View Post
He had a breakdown in his game in the period where he missed those 2 volleys and overhead. I wouldn't say he choked though. Federer made adjustments and served lights out when he had to. Something he has done time and time again. Berdych didn't completely fall apart, Fed took it from him. So no he didn't choke.
so what is a choke then? getting tight after being relaxed? increased UE count? or any of this and all of this?

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post #7 of 153 (permalink) Old 01-25-2009, 01:55 PM
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Re: The Definition of "Choking" in a Tennis match

Beeing in a winning position and losing the winning position because of bad errors. Not what Berdych did, he was not in a winning position serving at 3-3 in the 3rd set, he was in a position where he could lose the set, not win the set. Not in any of the 3 last sets was Berdych ever in a winning position, he was always behind chasing Federer.
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post #8 of 153 (permalink) Old 01-25-2009, 01:56 PM Thread Starter
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Re: The Definition of "Choking" in a Tennis match

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Originally Posted by Clydey View Post
Choking is none of the above and is an overused term. What Berdych did in the 7th game of the 3rd set was a choke.
everyone who says it's none of the above please state your suggested definition, maybe all MTFers will agree on one definition as the most accurate at the end of this thread.

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Originally Posted by Roger Federer View Post
If I can help the game of tennis with the image or with making it more popular, that’s enough for me really. I want to leave the game better off than when I came into this great game
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post #9 of 153 (permalink) Old 01-25-2009, 01:57 PM
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Re: The Definition of "Choking" in a Tennis match

Anyone who thinks Birdick didnt choke against Fed should start watching women's tennis.
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post #10 of 153 (permalink) Old 01-25-2009, 01:57 PM
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Re: The Definition of "Choking" in a Tennis match

I don't think all MTF-ers can agree on a standard definition. At the end of the day, it's all personal opinion. If someone just wants to say "so and so is a choker" for the sake of blasting a certain player, there's nothing to say. To each his own.

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post #11 of 153 (permalink) Old 01-25-2009, 01:58 PM
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Re: The Definition of "Choking" in a Tennis match

Missing those volleys was a choke end of discussion. If he had only missed ONE it could have been a simple mistake. He missed about 3 or 4 easy putaways and should have held that service game to LOVE.
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post #12 of 153 (permalink) Old 01-25-2009, 01:59 PM
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Re: The Definition of "Choking" in a Tennis match

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Originally Posted by ruanz33 View Post
Anyone who thinks Birdick didnt choke against Fed should start watching women's tennis.
For once i agree with you
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post #13 of 153 (permalink) Old 01-25-2009, 01:59 PM
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Re: The Definition of "Choking" in a Tennis match

Correction, anyone who thinks Birdick didnt choke against Fed should stop watching tennis. Period.
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post #14 of 153 (permalink) Old 01-25-2009, 02:00 PM
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Re: The Definition of "Choking" in a Tennis match

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For once i agree with you
Its not that hard to agree with me, just use common sense
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post #15 of 153 (permalink) Old 01-25-2009, 02:02 PM
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Re: The Definition of "Choking" in a Tennis match

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Originally Posted by habibko View Post
everyone who says it's none of the above please state your suggested definition, maybe all MTFers will agree on one definition as the most accurate at the end of this thread.
Buckling under the pressure. It isn't simply blowing a lead or losing serve while serving out a set/match. You can lose serve for a variety of reasons when serving out a set/match and it rarely has anything to do with choking. Choking is simply not dealing with pressure, missing shots that you normally wouldn't miss, throwing in a series of double faults etc. You can tell when someone is choking by their body language when they start missing. Berdych, for example, looked like a beaten man from the middle of the third set onwards even though he had a 2 set lead.

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