View Full Version : Opponent with a crazy slice serve

08-28-2004, 12:00 AM
I once played against a person who could hit a slice serve 2 feet inside the service line and curve all the way to my right(Opponent right handed). The serve never passed the service line because the ball curves and stays really low. Basicly a 90 degree turn. The height of the first bounce is about 14 cm, and the second bounce occurs around the doubles ally. If I were to stand at the baseline or no-man's land the serve would never reach me or pass by me. The only way I know how to return it is to be standing on the service line, but if I stand there he would just hit a flat serve and would easily ace me. In other words I need to commit to a position. Also that person can hit this serve from both sides of the court anytime he wants. The brand of balls used in the doubles match was Penn. The ones with 3 tones of color.

Is there anyway to break this guys service game?

(Sounds like something right out of Prince Of Tennis; however, I played against someone who could do that.)

James Brown
08-28-2004, 04:04 AM
i do that too (if im reading your description right,im not a big/great server by any means, but i do hit with a shitload of slice on many of my serves :>) however he cant be hitting the ball that hard with all that slice, you just gotta run and get it or at the very least read his toss, he must have tendancies heh.

08-28-2004, 06:39 AM
I don't think you have to commit to a position before he serves. Start out behind the baseline and watch his toss carefully. If he is tossing it out wide he is going to slice it. Move quickly to come in at an angle to cutoff the serve. If he is going straight up with this toss he is likely going flat. Stay back and wait for his return. 8)

Big D
08-28-2004, 12:10 PM
How good is your opponent? Little trick with most 4.5's and under. If that's his best shot, step in a bit, and hit forehands all day long. give him the T a little more. See how well he adjusts when you take away his best shot

08-29-2004, 12:10 PM
This persons slice is way different from any other peoples slice and including pros that I've seen(Never seen McEnroes before). Normaly I would cut the slice off by moving in a angle. However this one is different. Its as short as a drop shot and never bases the service line. Also it skids on the ground like a backhand slice. If I were to stand at the baseline I wouldn't reach it in time, feels like chasing a drop shot. After I make 2 steps the ball is already out of the tennis court passed the doubles ally. All this happens before the ball passes the service line. It is basicly a 90 degree turn. A pure clean right angle. Cutting off something like this will be tough.

So my only hope is to read that ball toss and then run like mad up the court to chase that slice serve right?

Don't remember the other parts with his game, but I can deal with it. I just need to effectivly return that serve.

08-29-2004, 03:41 PM
Skuludo, my father is a leftie and can hit exactly the serve you're describing, so I grew up returning it. Goober is on to something. Stand a couple of steps inside the baseline and read the toss. If it's not way out to the side, back up to return a normal serve. If the toss is way to the side (as it must be for this type of serve), sprint in to the service line about 5 feet to the right of where the ball is going bounce. Thus will allow for the curve and put you in position to hit the return. You should have plenty of time since this type of slice serve is very slow. Your return will most likely have to be a slice. Chip and charge, putting the ball deep to the server's backhand corner. After you've easily won a few points in a row, he'll give up on the slicer.

08-29-2004, 03:47 PM
Skuludo, I forgot to mention one other thing, although it's pretty obvious. Since the spin can make the ball do crazy things on the bounce, it's very important to keep your eye on the ball all the way to your racquet and use your feet to adjust to the bounce.

08-30-2004, 08:10 AM
Move inside the baseline to deal with the slow wide slice and then block the hard flat T serve back.

Against a hard slice you can also move inside the baseline and take the ball before it moves too far away after the bounce or move back behind the baseline to give yourself some time to adjust to the bounce. I usually move back against a hard lefty slice but if they place it well enough, you have to move in and take away the big angles.

09-26-2004, 09:04 PM
while you work on prefecting your toss reading, try getting inside his head by *changing* your return location during his toss!

decide which serve you want him to hit as he takes his stance to serve, then set up for your return in a spot perfect for him to *ace* you with that serve- in other words, tempt him into hitting his big slicer!

in your case, in deuce court take your stance fairly near the T (or where he is used to seeing you take your stance, but exagerrated just a bit to make that sideline seem wide open to him), then just as he begins the toss, and begins to watch it float upward (his eye and his concentration are no longer on you or on the service court, but on the ball, and he has basically committed to a serve type and placement) cheat toward the net and out to the doubles line so that you are more than ready as the serve comes to you to easily place the ball with pace either down the line to the ad court corner, or on a sharp cross-court angle behind him.... sounds like you're a righty, so it should be a cinch to set your forehand up.

as a leftie with a twister serve that my right handed oppenents hate, and having used this technique on others, i'll bet you that after a few put aways on your returns your opponent will either lose confidence in his serve all together, getting a little mental, or will stop tyring to peg the corners every time and conecntrate on his rally strokes.

09-29-2004, 07:01 AM
Last night I used a similar style crazy slice serve on the deuce court with much success. I took some pace off my normal hard slice serve and aimed for the center T but the spin would curve it to the outside singles line and then it would bounce a second time outside the doubles alley but not very deep so the returner have to run diagonally up to get to this and since he was respecting my hard flat serve up the T, he often couldn't get to this one. I plan to keep working on this shot. I use to hit it too slow and with not enough spin so that the returner would get to it, but last night with all the spin it was moving away and then not bouncing very far after the first bounce as well as it stayed very low. I was starting to toss more to the right like a typical slice serve and was swinging hard but most of the energy was going into the spin. I had about 5 aces with this serve against a pretty quick opponent in about 15 tries. The other balls he got to were usually to my advantage since he was off the court but he did win a few very sharp-angled rallies.

I was able to hit an ace on the ad side as well since the bounce was so short but was much harder to hit effectively on that side since it curves back into the returner.

09-30-2004, 10:07 AM
Drop shot this serve.