Some people will practice. Others need to â€œkeep score.â€ Here is a great drill that you can have fun with and accomplish several goals.
I call it the â€œDouble Points Drill.â€ It works to help you:
- Reduce double faults,
- Return serve with depth,
- Work hard to get to the ball,
- and Go for the winner.
Like a regular singles set, it is played on a singles court, with one person serving the whole game. The first player to reach 11 points (win by 2) wins the game.
The scoring is designed to â€œpunishâ€ bad behavior and â€œrewardâ€ the extra effort:
- One point given for any point won in a normal manner.
- Two points (to the opponent): for a double fault, or a return of serve into the net.
- Or two points to the player who hits a â€œwinnerâ€ (any serve, return, drop shot, ground stroke, lob, etc) that your opponent doesnâ€™t at least get a racquet on.
When I have played this drill game, I find that my opponent and I are much more aware (especially in critical situations) about:
- Getting the first serve in, so you donâ€™t double fault.
- Getting that return of serve back in play (and over that two-point-penalty net).
- Going for the put away, when it is available.
- And conversely, trying extra hard to get to the ball, so your opponent does NOT get that two points.
In a practice session, Tom McCune did that one against me and not only got to a tough shot; but hit a winner back — which made it a four point swing in the game! That is the kind of psychological â€œbig pointâ€ that sometimes swings a regular tennis match.