Underspin Backhand – Rosewall then Federer

“Muscles” – the famous Ken Rosewall – with the best underpin backhand in his era.  Ken drove the ball heavily, but always with underpin.  And for you and I the versatility comes with varying the amount of spin, height and or pace. Underspin keeps the ball low after the bounce – if you hit it…

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ETI 047 | Will Staying Sideways help you hit up on the serve?

The common problem I see at the club, as well as on television, is where the server flexes at the waist at the hit – more or less jackknifing to create a little more ball speed.

And this action creates both forward and downward forces – and is generally associated with netted serves.

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Martina Navratilova Doubles at Any Age – and the Whistler

Martina Navratilova – Doubles at Any Age If you’re a doubles player, you won’t want to miss this free video from Will Hamilton where she shows you her “Newt Ball” volley, which is a type of volley she hits from no man’s land, when she’s coming from the baseline to the net… But it was…

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Doubles Specialist

Partnering Questionnaire – Example You are under attack after your own poor second serve, and the receiver has returned the ball cross court deep into your corner and taken the net – among your options – what is the percentage play that you should select and that your partner should anticipate? Drive it up the line…

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The Classic Duel – Serve vs. Return – Deconstructing Djokovic

The full context of this is article is written up on the original post.

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Mac the Knife – Wall to the Ball – Part 2

John McEnroe – 78 atp doubles titles, and 77 tap singles titles – could this record be greater than any accumulation of doubles titles only (the Brian Brothers) or singles titles (Federer, Sampras, Nadal) But through it all there was and is a simplicity to McEnroe’s game – highlighted, as usual, with his on court…

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The Opportunity Ball

  I ask this questions of our adult and junior players ……  “What is the shortest most attackable you consistently receive from the opponent?” When stumped I ask, “Why do players try to keep the ball deep??” My final cue, “If you hit a ground stroke in the service box would the coach commend or…

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BNP – Djokovic, Dolgopolov, and American Tennis

First off – Alexandr Dolgopolov. PMac and I were luck enough to watch the riveting match between “the Dog” and Nadal.  A packed house on Monday for an evening match.  Incredibly contrasting styles, and an entire Rafa cheering squad with pom pons and more directly in front of us.  Rafa had mentioned earlier in the…

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McEnroe, Courier and Sampras

Power Shares Champions Shootout.  Great event.     Let me repeat – great event. The format is brief, two one set semifinal singles followed by a one set final between the two semi winners.  In this case Mac played Courier, Sampras played Blake – and then in the final the younger man beat the oldest man…

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5 Keys to Playing (and competing against) the Pusher

Every club has one of these, a player who moves very well, makes darn few errors, often hits the ball softly or with unusual form, but over and over again this is a player who wins, and more than that this is a player that most dread. The term “pusher” is somehow derogatory, implying that…

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How Basic Can it Get?

Here is a short list of tasks required to hit simply one ball over the net: turn to the side early move your feet to position for the hit get their quickly in time with the ball prepare the racquet in time with the bounce use your legs to drive the hips allow the torso…

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Returning the Kicker

We have positioned the camera at eye level, on the baseline, as though returning serve in the ad court. I nearly hit Antony on one of these serves, but no worries Mate, he is an Aussie. That said I think this camera angle gives you the feel for how this serve jumps up and away…

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The Tradition Continues – Segura – Connors – Djokovic

  Novak Djokovic captured his third consecutive Australian Open title.  Crushing David Ferrer 62 62 61 in the semifinals, and wearing down and then beating back the challenge of Andy Murray 67 76 63 62.  The end the fourth set of the men’s final showcased a dominant and domineering Novak Djokovic and a dispirited but…

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Andy Murray’s New Attitude – you read it here first

Ours is a wonderful, but equally ours is a very difficult game. We have all had days when we played great, sometimes unexpectedly great. And we have all had days when we played far far below our best level, said another way far below our expectations. When some say the game is 95% mental, I…

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Drop Hit One Handed Backhands – a hidden practice gem!!

Start a rally; deliver a ball to the adjacent court when responding to “ball please.” In nearly every instance the swing is a drop hit forehand. Sometimes those forehands are deliberate and practiced (that is good). Other times those forehands are wristy, in poor form, somehow not acknowledged as genuine practice opportunities. Truly – practice…

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Andy Murray Takes the Next Step – what comes after the gold?

Nadal is recuperating from his recurring sore knee(s).  Djokovic appears somehow listless. Federer played out of sorts – what’s up with that.  And Andy Murray is breaking through.  Big time. He was ahead in the Wimbledon finals until the roof closed and Roger found his winning form.  The match was close, the roof closure did…

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SloMo Analysis of Sam Stosur’s Kick Serve

I had a chance to be courtside at a WTA tournament in Stanford California, marveling at as well as filming  Sam’s incredible serve. With an impressive run at Roland Garros to reach the finals in 2010 and her US Open title in 2011 over Serena Williams, Sam Stosur has played at the highest level of…

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Sam Stosur – you are the best – in more ways than one!

Sam Stosur was fantastic on Sunday.  She outplayed, out hustled, out served, and definitely out – composured Serena. And where so many players are reactive if not passive against Serena, Sam took the game to her with attacking returns, excellent serving, and overall superlative play.  I would imagine that is the best Sam has ever…

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US Open – Labor Day Weekend Results and Forecasts

Note, just like forecasting the weather, with a certain amount of (acceptable) error, the same goes for this picking of winners and more.  That said there are some darn interesting matchups in the next few days, as well as some excellent tennis that was played over the weekend. Caroline Wozniacki.  Somehow I think the press…

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Nike Clash of Champions Eugene Oregon February 8, 2011

I have been lucky enough to have seen professional tennis at Wimbledon (first row center court), the US Open, and Davis Cup in Portland and in Birmingham, the SAP Open and more. The combination of talent, venue, atmosphere, crowd participation, energy and noise made this the most remarkable tennis experience I have ever had –…

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Taming your Toss

The toss is the most misunderstood aspect of the serve – misunderstood by players and teachers alike. In order to serve tall – you don’t necessarily have to jump, or even be on your tip toes, but contact should be as high above you as is comfortable and as high as allows you to feel…

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Bring em’ In

Two cardinal rules of the game – keep the ball in play, and always be ready for the opponent’s reply. This really is not an oversimplification.  Points are decided more often from errors than winners (unless you are one of Nike’s marquee men’s players) and observance of these two rules really does clean up one’s…

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Playing the Pusher – and Winning with the Lag

Pushers give everyone nightmares. They are “walking” bad losses. Everyone expects us to beat them, but these pushers know the game and are darn hard to beat. They scoot around the court, slow the ball down and rarely miss. Finally, their hitting the ball softly thing and the attendant lack of pace often ruins our timing…

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Andy Roddick – John McEnroe – Vic Braden – and Trey Waltke

I like Andy Roddick.  I admire his work ethic, his committment to Davis Cup, and his willingness to put it all out there and on the line (though who could forget the misguided “Lost the Mojo” ad stream that ran during the US Open some years ago that presaged his own early demise).  He is a…

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Sam Stosur – the best kicker in the women’s game

I had a chance to be courtside at the recent WTA tournament in Stanford California, marveling at as well as filming this incredible serve. Following her impressive run at Roland Garros in 2010 Sam is ranked 5th on the WTA tour. A fluent all court player, previously a doubles specialist, she owns the best kick…

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