Even though I got blasted by the unknown Stewart Jackson in the Pelican Bay singles round robin, I had given some thoughts to how you should play a short format match.
For me, these I think are some key pointers in playing a short format like the seven games in the Pelican Bay singles or an eight game pro set:
1) Better to choose to receive serve: Return of serve is one of my strong points; and he may be nervous starting out the match.
2) When serving, get the first serve in: Take the pressure off your own second serve, eliminate the double fault possibility, and don’t give him the opportunity to be the ‘attacker’
3) Consistency is more important than the Big Shot: Go for too much on a couple of shots and throw away a game; better to play Very Controlled Aggressive.
4) Play every point like Nadal: Run for every ball and make him hit one more shot.
A short format match is much like playing a tie-breaker… you can’t get too cautious; but you really need to play every point like it is for the match and hit with controlled aggression.