USTA Nationals start in just two weeks, on October 2nd, for the 18 & over 3.0, 4.0, and 5.0+ levels. In the first of what is hopefully a number of previews, I take a look at the Women's 3.0 flights.
As always, the ratings used in preparing these previews are my Estimated Dynamic NTRP Ratings. And for the purposes of comparing teams, I'm calculating the average of the top-8 players on each National's roster.
There is quite a range of average ratings from 3.27 down to 2.98. Yes, there is a 3.0 team that has 8 players with an average rating of 3.27. In fact, 9 of the 17 teams are at 3.10 or higher. This is somewhat common at the lower levels, and while some may say it means all the players sandbagged or cheated, this usually isn't the case and especially at lower levels, the teams that advance have simply improved a lot during the year.
Flight 1 is the 5-team flight with Florida, Hawaii, Midwest, Middle States, and Southern, and has the highest and lowest rated teams, but it also has the #2, #10, and #13 teams so getting out of that flight will be some work with 4 matches being played and the top-2 rated teams to go through.
Flight 4 with traditional strong sections in Northern Cal, Pacific Northwest, Southern Cal, and Texas is probably the next toughest flight with the #3, #7, #9, and #11 teams so there is no pushover there.
Flight 2 comprising Caribbean, Mid-Atlantic, Missouri Valley, and New England is balanced with #5, #6, #8, and #14 so could be very close at the top and come down to a tie-breaker.
Last, flight 3 with Eastern, Intermountain, Northern, and Southwest is perhaps the weakest with #4, #12, #15, and #16, so you'd think the #4 team would have an easy time into the semis.
If you'd like more details on any of the flights, I can generate a flight report for any of the them that will show the average rating for the roster and the top-8 average.
Or if you want to see details about a team including each player's rating and a summary of their record and courts played on the team through each phase of the season, a team report is a great resource for your team or any opponent as a tool to scout them.
Contact me if you are interested in any reports.
Note: As always, average ratings for a team does not win a team match. Who plays in the match, the line-ups and how they match-up, and how a given player plays on that day are what determine who wins. So the highest rated teams using top-8 average may or may not win, but it is interesting to look at.