If you never miss a return of serve, is that a good thing? Never double fault, a good thing? Maybe NOT.
For my 15 years of going to Newk’s camp and being coached by the great Roy Emerson, it has been pounded into my head to “never miss a return of serve.” But I found myself being too conservative and not really going for enough on my returns and emailed Roy…
Dear Roy, I played a doubles match yesterday in which I did NOT miss one return of serve … but I am now questioning if that is a good goal!
I have adopted that mantra and objective (and have gotten the reputation as The Guy Who Never Misses a Return of Serve); but I fear that in striving for that, my returns (while in) are not aggressive enough. What do you think? Thanks,
The great Aussie legend called me to discuss the topic; but essentially said, “Yes, depending on the score of the game, you should go for more on your return … but still get it in!”
Putting that last phrase aside, I do now think being too conservative can be a negative; and sometimes you have to “go for it.”
Double Fault More
This is also true on the serve. How many players do you know who blast that first serve (with a very low % of balls in play) and then just poke that second serve over the net? That blooper serve just sits there asking to be crushed back for a winner.
Better to do two things…
- Take something off the first serve, in order to get a higher percentage in, and
- Hit the second serve with more pace … and accept an occasional double fault.
What do you think?
This week’s tournament (which I am NOT playing in) is at the Palm Aire CC in Sarasota. Full draws and results, click HERE
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