While watching the clay court tournament final from Rome, I noticed that when Maria Sharapova hit a (rare) drop shot, she rushed to the net behind her ball. That got me thinking …
What do you do when…
• You hit a drop shot? Too many times, too many of us just stand and watch it. But if we do as Maria did and charge the net, we not only put much more pressure on the opponent who gets to the ball; but gives us a much better chance of cutting off his down the line or cross court reply.
• Your doubles partner is taken off the court on a serve or angled groundstroke? We have to recognize that a) he is in a weak/defensive position and b) the next shot will probably ours to try to get. So the answer is to IMMEDIATELY go to the middle of the court (as if there is a rope attached to your partner and he is dragging you to the middle as he goes wide).
• You hit a good lob over your opponent and they turn to run back and take it on the bounce? The two wrong answers, according to the Legends at Newk’s camp are: stay on the baseline and rush tight to the net. They advise that your opponent is most likely going to throw a lob back up to you; so you (and your doubles partner) should have come in, but just inside the service line.
What other good court position scenarios have you faced?
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