It’s OK To Cheat

will hamiltonThanks to Will Hamilton from for this interesting perspective on “cheating” in tennis. Here is why he says it is ok…

“There’s nothing wrong with cheating.
In fact, I HIGHLY encourage it.
I cheat all the time because cheating is the best way to win.
Especially in doubles.
Now let’s clear the air…
I haven’t gone coo coo 🙂
Because I don’t mean *that* kind of cheating. I mean this kind:
Cheating to the middle…
Cheating to your forehand…
Cheating in one direction or another…
Because you’re anticipating where your opponent is going to hit the ball.
So for example:
When you’re at net and your partner is at the baseline…
If you cheat to the middle (at the right time!) you’ll be able to hit an easy put away volley…
Instead of watching that “poachable” ball go by you and thinking:
“Oops! I should have gone on that one!”
Know the feeling?
So to be a good doubles player you have to be a good Cheater!”

I agree with Will: when you play against the top players in singles or doubles (like Fred D.) you can see how well they anticipate where you will “probably hit the ball”… and they are there to make the shot. Frustrating, but impressive.

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1 thought on “It’s OK To Cheat

  1. George, about a week ago, I decided to purchase Will Hamilton’s video offer with the Bryan Brothers entitled New Partner, No Problem. This was my first tennis video purchase over the internet so I was not sure what to expect.

    While there was a lot in the videos that I already knew, there was a lot that I did not know — or maybe had once known but forgot over the years. Anyway, I do recommend the videos to those who have interest in improving their doubles skills. What I found most useful were the sequences that emphasize movement, especially by the net player, which is mainly what Will’s teaser is talking about with the concept of “cheating.” As the Bryans demonstrate it, with one player up and one back, the net player is very active, constantly moving to different locations to be able to best intercept the ball depending on the type of shot that his partner has hit, whether that is a serve, a service return, or a ground stroke. This is not merely poaching, as it is also moving to better be able to anticipate and field defensive shots, as well as passing shots up the line. However, as the Bryans are all about aggressive doubles, certainly poaching is the primary emphasis of all of this movement.

    Anyway, this past weekend, I played in a USTA mixed doubles district playoff, and I had occasion to use some of the Bryans’ suggestions as I wound up getting paired with two different female partners with whom I had not played during the previous season. Therefore, it was truly a “New Partner, No Problem” scenario. Both new partners presented challenges for me, because they play a different kind of doubles than you or I or most men, and both of my partners were quite different from each other in style and ability as well. However, I managed to just focus on my own game and movement, as the Bryans videos show, and I must say I was impressed with how their suggestions improved both my own play and also the results that I would have predicted for each team.

    The bottom line is I found the videos to be quite useful and I would recommend them to others. Now, if only I could get into my head a few of the movement patterns that I seem to screw up on the most and I will be winning Grand Slams by mid summer, I am sure. 🙂

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