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smoothtennis
04-13-2008, 03:35 PM
Call me stubborn or dense, but previously, I just couldn't get the ideas of inside and outside shots through my thick skull. It just didn't quite make sense. Then I watched the Chuck Kreisse vids someone posted this week, and FINALLY understood what those terms meant.

I went out this weekend, and hit trying to employ just three of those directionals - Outside balls go crosscourt, inside balls - can change direction - weak shots, I can hit down the line aggresively if I choose. Otherwise, no changing directions on balls, and limit the DTL shots.

Well - I can't believe what a radical improvement this made in my play. Three things happened that surprised me.

1. I had so much less 'noise' in my head. I didn't have to decide on what shot to hit, I already knew, so I just set up and hit it. It was mentally so much more comfortable hitting this way.

2. Consitency was improved, not just because I choose the right shot - but because there was no hesitation as to what shot to hit. I noticed how much quicker I could set up.

3. I put my opponent in way more trouble than I usually do, and I hit with my regular hitting partner, so I know how we hit. I guess simply because the percentage of power in the shots used was greater than single segment shots - even though it seemed much more predictable as to what I was going to do. I thought he would start to groove on me, but the high percentage shot was still just that - the high perentage shot - whether he expected it or not.

It just felt so good kinda knowing exactly what was going on out there for a change. It was mentally relaxing hitting this way, not to mention - it just works.

In fact, I'll be honest here. I am kinda freaked out how great it was hitting this way. I am seriously excited about this.

Bungalo Bill
04-13-2008, 03:50 PM
Call me stubborn or dense, but previously, I just couldn't get the ideas of inside and outside shots through my thick skull. It just didn't quite make sense. Then I watched the Chuck Kreisse vids someone posted this week, and FINALLY understood what those terms meant.

I went out this weekend, and hit trying to employ just three of those directionals - Outside balls go crosscourt, inside balls - can change direction - weak shots, I can hit down the line aggresively if I choose. Otherwise, no changing directions on balls, and limit the DTL shots.

Well - I can't believe what a radical improvement this made in my play. Three things happened that surprised me.

1. I had so much less 'noise' in my head. I didn't have to decide on what shot to hit, I already knew, so I just set up and hit it. It was mentally so much more comfortable hitting this way.

2. Consitency was improved, not just because I choose the right shot - but because there was no hesitation as to what shot to hit. I noticed how much quicker I could set up.

3. I put my opponent in way more trouble than I usually do, and I hit with my regular hitting partner, so I know how we hit. I guess simply because the percentage of power in the shots used was greater than single segment shots - even though it seemed much more predictable as to what I was going to do. I thought he would start to groove on me, but the high percentage shot was still just that - the high perentage shot - whether he expected it or not.

It just felt so good kinda knowing exactly what was going on out there for a change. It was mentally relaxing hitting this way, not to mention - it just works.

In fact, I'll be honest here. I am kinda freaked out how great it was hitting this way. I am seriously excited about this.

Great! Glad they helped.

10sfreak
04-13-2008, 04:24 PM
Huh? "Wardlaw directionals"? What are y'all talking about? Never heard of this before...any links? Thanks!

Moses Man
04-13-2008, 08:36 PM
C'mon man. A 5-second investment in Google returned the following:

http://hoskinsjohn.bizland.com/direc/

fuzz nation
04-14-2008, 02:41 AM
Aside from the directionals encouraging high percentage shots (truly a good thing), you also went out there with a reasonable plan instead of just playing in reaction mode. When I can successfully encourage the kids that I coach to do that, it's not rare to see that same calmness in their game because they already know what to do with the ball. You could even scratch down some highlights of Wardlaw's magic formula and revisit them while you're playing - check them on changeovers or before you start. I've tried it and I've found that it can really chase the garbage out of my head.

smoothtennis
04-14-2008, 06:38 AM
Aside from the directionals encouraging high percentage shots (truly a good thing), you also went out there with a reasonable plan instead of just playing in reaction mode. When I can successfully encourage the kids that I coach to do that, it's not rare to see that same calmness in their game because they already know what to do with the ball. You could even scratch down some highlights of Wardlaw's magic formula and revisit them while you're playing - check them on changeovers or before you start. I've tried it and I've found that it can really chase the garbage out of my head.

Too true. I look forward to developing more with these. At first glance, you know...it looks like a physical shot selection thing. When I started going with it, and allowing it to be part of my point play, it became a mental thing with much more 'time' on my side. Hard to set your feet up well, when you haven't made a final decision on what shot to hit.

I remember being out wide on some forehands, hitting an deep aggressively spun shot back cross court, and *right there* thinking - "ahhhh - this is where you always scramble back hard to the center to cover the DTL!" Only this time, I didn't recover all the way - I let him have a shot at it if he was willing to take the high risk low percentage shot. It not only worked, but I saved a lot of energy not scrambling all over to cover low percentage possibilities.

It was a big 'AH-HA' moment for me.

10sfreak
04-14-2008, 06:40 PM
C'mon man. A 5-second investment in Google returned the following:

http://hoskinsjohn.bizland.com/direc/
Thanks, Moses Man! You've led me out of the wilderness!:)
Actually, I thought that maybe this issue had been discussed before on this board, and I wanted to read through it...BUT, you made a great point - I should have googled it.

Bungalo Bill
04-15-2008, 08:27 AM
Call me stubborn or dense, but previously, I just couldn't get the ideas of inside and outside shots through my thick skull. It just didn't quite make sense. Then I watched the Chuck Kreisse vids someone posted this week, and FINALLY understood what those terms meant.

I went out this weekend, and hit trying to employ just three of those directionals - Outside balls go crosscourt, inside balls - can change direction - weak shots, I can hit down the line aggresively if I choose. Otherwise, no changing directions on balls, and limit the DTL shots.

Well - I can't believe what a radical improvement this made in my play. Three things happened that surprised me.

1. I had so much less 'noise' in my head. I didn't have to decide on what shot to hit, I already knew, so I just set up and hit it. It was mentally so much more comfortable hitting this way.

2. Consitency was improved, not just because I choose the right shot - but because there was no hesitation as to what shot to hit. I noticed how much quicker I could set up.

3. I put my opponent in way more trouble than I usually do, and I hit with my regular hitting partner, so I know how we hit. I guess simply because the percentage of power in the shots used was greater than single segment shots - even though it seemed much more predictable as to what I was going to do. I thought he would start to groove on me, but the high percentage shot was still just that - the high perentage shot - whether he expected it or not.

It just felt so good kinda knowing exactly what was going on out there for a change. It was mentally relaxing hitting this way, not to mention - it just works.

In fact, I'll be honest here. I am kinda freaked out how great it was hitting this way. I am seriously excited about this.

Just wait till you watch a pros match. Try and watch the strategies and how they try to move the ball around. Obviously the pros can defy the Directionals somewhat but you will see them in use often.

Take note when a player goes for a very risky shot to change direction and get a better matchup. Makes watching tennis much more interesting. Also note the serves and the returns and how the players try to position themselves for the rallies in the point.

When you mix in the Directionals, matchup tactics, you will really enjoy watching tennis. :)

LuckyR
04-15-2008, 10:26 AM
The Directionals are the entryway for understanding strategy in tennis as they take the dimensions of the court and net into consideration.

Tennis_Monk
04-15-2008, 04:43 PM
The take away i see is that "one should be deterministic about their shot and not be guessing where to hit".

The wardlaw directionals look very basic to me and may help certain players.

There are several different strategies in tennis game and thats why i love it. I play it a little different. To me at a high level there are two deterministic strategies

1) attack opponents weakness
eg:Weak backhand. Apply pressure consistently attacking the opponents backhand and try breaking it down. I take it to extreme sometimes and repeatedly hit to opponents backhand regardless of where they hit to me.

2) Play to your strengths
eg:Strong forehand. Play as many forehands as possible and dictate the play.


As to when to change the direction of the ball, my strategy is simple. Whenever i feel i have an open court or an opponent is out of position I pull the trigger.

Cindysphinx
04-16-2008, 09:45 AM
SmoothTennis,

If I watch the videos and play on Sunday, do you think I can employ the directionals to good advantage? Or would it be better to do it in a practice situation first?

LuckyR
04-16-2008, 09:48 AM
SmoothTennis,

If I watch the videos and play on Sunday, do you think I can employ the directionals to good advantage? Or would it be better to do it in a practice situation first?


The key to the Directionals is gone over in detail in the book, Pressure Tennis. This is not necessarily the "direction" you hit the ball but more important for singles, is aiming out the back of the baseline, instead of for the sideline, ie deeper, more penetrating shots vs wider, shallower shots.

Djokovicfan4life
04-16-2008, 09:51 AM
These directionals help a lot, but I have to say, you've got to be careful not to be too predictable. I've played doubles against some people who returned cross-court NO MATTER WHAT, no matter how obvious my poaching was. Gotta try to put me in my place SOMETIMES.

Bungalo Bill
04-16-2008, 10:06 AM
These directionals help a lot, but I have to say, you've got to be careful not to be too predictable. I've played doubles against some people who returned cross-court NO MATTER WHAT, no matter how obvious my poaching was. Gotta try to put me in my place SOMETIMES.

Use the Directionals as your basic foundation on how to move the ball around. As you get better and stronger, you will be able to defy the Directionals and take more risk. However, even at the pro level you can see the Directionals in use even though they are not consciously thinking about it.

LuckyR
04-16-2008, 10:06 AM
These directionals help a lot, but I have to say, you've got to be careful not to be too predictable. I've played doubles against some people who returned cross-court NO MATTER WHAT, no matter how obvious my poaching was. Gotta try to put me in my place SOMETIMES.


The Directionals can be using in doubles but IMO they are best used there for single strokes (like a tough volley), not for whole points (or a rally).

Djokovicfan4life
04-16-2008, 10:34 AM
Ha, I'm imagining an all down the line shot rally now, that would be one ugly sight to see!

God I'm bored today, can't stop posting!

smoothtennis
04-17-2008, 08:46 AM
SmoothTennis,

If I watch the videos and play on Sunday, do you think I can employ the directionals to good advantage? Or would it be better to do it in a practice situation first?

Hmmmm...depends. What I did was to watch those youtube vids from Chuck K., then get my head around it by thinking through points for a few day, until I sort of though I had it, at least a few rules.

So I then went out a few day later, and practiced them while hitting with my partner on groundies, and I quickly got the hang of it.

Then in my next match a few days later, without thinking about it too much, I was seeing it. ie, "Oh, thats an outside forehand coming...crosscourt - np"

Just pick take the crosscourt rule for outside balls, and stick with that. When you get an inside ball, you have options. Don't get too complicated with it, just have fun recognizing inside, outside, or weak ball.

Good luck - have fun with it Cindy - this takes repitition. But let me say - it helped me a lot just doing them a little bit, being aware of what was going on. Funny thing too---most of the errors I saw from my partner, where when he clearly violated one of those rules!

anchorage
04-18-2008, 05:33 AM
I hadn't come across this prior to reading this thread. But, hasn't one important element been left out, namely that an outside ball has to be returned to your opponent's outside (actually, shouldn't you always hit to your opponent's outside unless you've gone straight down the middle?).

Seems to me if you hit cross court but to his inside, you're dead meat. Also, are you meant to adapt if your opponent just stands there anticipating where you will hit?

LuckyR
04-18-2008, 07:30 AM
I hadn't come across this prior to reading this thread. But, hasn't one important element been left out, namely that an outside ball has to be returned to your opponent's outside (actually, shouldn't you always hit to your opponent's outside unless you've gone straight down the middle?).

Seems to me if you hit cross court but to his inside, you're dead meat. Also, are you meant to adapt if your opponent just stands there anticipating where you will hit?


The Directionals tell you where on the court to hit the ball, where your opponent is standing is not addressed. However considering that the target area for CC balls is the outer third of the opposite side, it would be the unusual situation where the other guy would get an inside out shot off of it.

GPB
04-18-2008, 07:39 AM
After reading up on them a bit (I haven't bought the book or anything yet) I used this thinking yesterday in a match, and it was pretty common-sensical and came naturally to me. Lovely.

origmarm
04-18-2008, 07:46 AM
Coincidentally I have recently bought the book. I'm going to read it and see how it works out but I reckon I will try and implement slowly over the next month or so

tennisdad65
04-18-2008, 09:37 AM
C'mon man. A 5-second investment in Google returned the following:

http://hoskinsjohn.bizland.com/direc/

from above link, at the bottom it says:
This is just a basic idea on the Wardlaw directionals, the same principles apply to Volleys, approach shots etc.,


Not sure this applies to volleys or approach shots..
If I am at the net and someone hits a cross court passing shot from the corner, and the ball goes across my body, why would I volley cross court back to him all the time.

Similarly, for an approach shot, most of the time I want to go down the line on a short cross court hit ball, even if the ball goes across my body.

Bungalo Bill
04-18-2008, 10:25 AM
from above link, at the bottom it says:
This is just a basic idea on the Wardlaw directionals, the same principles apply to Volleys, approach shots etc.,


Not sure this applies to volleys or approach shots..
If I am at the net and someone hits a cross court passing shot from the corner, and the ball goes across my body, why would I volley cross court back to him all the time.

Similarly, for an approach shot, most of the time I want to go down the line on a short cross court hit ball, even if the ball goes across my body.

For volleys not so much. However, with volleys you want to use a different approach and that is defensive or offensive. Balls that are volleyed from a low position are more defensive in nature (defensive does not mean hitting a sitting duck back). A ball that is above the net can be hit more offensively.

Again, these a general rules to build consistency, placement, and depth. It helps with shot selection and should be incorporated into your risk tolerance. Obviously, if you take risk on and blow it, you need to rethink if you are ready for that kind of shot and realize when to back down or what your limitations are.

tennisdad65
04-18-2008, 10:34 AM
For volleys not so much. However, with volleys you want to use a different approach and that is defensive or offensive.

You are right. I did not think of that. Thats why you are a teaching pro and I am not :grin:

Fay
04-19-2008, 06:46 AM
Similarly, for an approach shot, most of the time I want to go down the line on a short cross court hit ball, even if the ball goes across my body.

I realize that I am not at all y'all's level, but I had two coaches I like tell me the same thing. Always hit down the line on short balls so that I can be at the net to cut off their angles. If they could be so accurate as to pass me in that situation to just keep practicing and acknowledge that they are better players.

I was told to try to hit deep to the corners and either pull someone off wide so I could come to the net on a weak high return or by hitting deep corners to try to force a short ball for me to come to the next. I was told to hit down the line on a short ball with gusto so that they couldn't get to it.

If I was pulled off court to try to hit a very sharp cross court ball short in the hopes that they couldn't get to it ... or if they came to the net anticipating that to hit behind them.

I was also told to use a down the line response to a ball hit to my BH to set up an exchange back to cross court back to my FH which is stronger.

Now obviously this is a rather simplistic strategy but I am not an advanced player ....

is my strategy going to conflict with the Directionals at some point? This is a bit confusing for me.

tennisdad65
04-19-2008, 09:34 PM
is my strategy going to conflict with the Directionals at some point? This is a bit confusing for me.

Thats where Bungalo Bills explanation comes in (offensive or defensive). If it is a high short ball across your body you can go down the line. If it is a low short ball across your body then you have the option of going back cross court.

This would apply to both volleys and approaches on short balls.

I know that for approaches off low short balls which cross my body I often tend to hit the ball into the doubles alley if I try to go down the line. Thats either Directionals at play, or I am just rusty, or not skilled enough :)

Fay
04-19-2008, 09:41 PM
If one hits a short ball cross court, doesn't that leave a huge area for opponent to make a passing shot to the open court?

Sentinel
04-19-2008, 10:16 PM
(wardlaw) Makes a lot of sense. I can immediately see how my partner changes directions when i hit to his inside (during a CC forehand rally). I think he has been employing this on me all this while without letting me in on this !

Does the same hold true for return of serve, too ?

tennisdad65
04-21-2008, 12:45 PM
Does the same hold true for return of serve, too ?

I would think so, but it also depends on the quality of the serve.

1) If it is a great serve the high percentage play is to try and get it back into the court. So, it is safest to return to the center baseline on great serves.

2) If it is an average first serve, or a second serve, I would apply the laws.
a) Serve out wide: return cross court kinda to where the ball came from..i.e. close to the middle or a little farther crosscourt.
b) Serve down the T: return down the middle, though the law says that you can change directions a bit here since the ball has not gone across your body.
c) Serve between body and T: return in a range from down the middle to down the line.

Am I correctly applying the laws on a,b,c ? :neutral:

If it is a serve and volleyer, the same laws hold but the priority then is on getting the ball low.

Bungalo Bill
04-21-2008, 12:49 PM
You are right. I did not think of that. Thats why you are a teaching pro and I am not :grin:

Well thanks for the compliment, I appreciate it.

Bungalo Bill
04-21-2008, 12:50 PM
(wardlaw) Makes a lot of sense. I can immediately see how my partner changes directions when i hit to his inside (during a CC forehand rally). I think he has been employing this on me all this while without letting me in on this !

Does the same hold true for return of serve, too ?

The return of serve does work similarily. You should get the video as they have return of serve in there as well.

Sentinel
04-21-2008, 08:50 PM
Today, again I applied wardlaw and found it great to keep the ball in play (against a better player), and a few times when i went down the line, my opp was surprised - he had run to cover crosscourt (realizing I was playing cross-court largely).

tennisdad65
04-22-2008, 07:53 AM
If one hits a short ball cross court, doesn't that leave a huge area for opponent to make a passing shot to the open court?

You are right. I would not go cross court to the baseline, if it was a short ball near the sideline. The would leave the huge area for the opponents passing shot.

This discussion was for a low short ball cross court (defensive one for you)

If you change the direction and go down the line , the opponent still has lots of area cross court before you can cover the center.

You could do a very sharp cross court where the ball crosses the opponents sideline around the service line, taking him off the court. This way you do not violate wardlaw's law in terms of you getting the ball cross court. Also, gives you time to cover the center angle, and gives the opponent a really small area to hit into from outside the sideline.

smoothtennis
04-22-2008, 10:49 AM
Good job Sentinel! Glad those are working for you.

Last night I won 11-3 using Wardlaw almost exclusively as a goal, along with not overhitting. The result was just amazing because, this man was a tried and true solid good 3.5 tournament player. I knew the pace would be slower than normal, and I was tempted to do the ol' overpower him with big shots, he'll crack and make errors thing. Using that approach, I would have lost at least 2-3 more games.

This took faith because there were many balls when he hit back to me crosscourt off one of my good corner shots, clearly a blatant outside ball, that I had almost the entire court open! My brain said - down the line!!! My Wardlaw thinking said - cross court - you have the percentage play here.

So even when I had a huge open court on an ouside balls, I would semi -aggressively roll it back cross court with plenty of spin. It worked! It just works. First of all, he is trying to adjust and cover that HUGE open court, so he had to constanly reverse his weight to cover the cross court shot. This almost always forced some kind of error or weaker ball.

I did go DTL on all short mid court balls or very weak baseline shots.

Anyway - I was thinking during the match, nah, this is too slow for Wardlaw to work, but the pace didn't seem to impact the percentages or the footwork much. The rules still worked. Cool. And oh yeah - almost all of his errors occured violating a rule. That was the other cool thing about those rules.

Tennis_Monk
04-22-2008, 05:11 PM
Seeing the positive feedback I tried to use wardlaw's just as a sanity check. I take great pride in my ability to read the play and coming up with tactics or strategies and then execution of it (sometimes it doesnt work --ofcourse).

My results are mixed at the best. I would rather trust my instincts and adjust as i play the game. Not get too carried away on whether should i hit cross court or DTL.

I would use wardlaw's as a beginners guideline. At advanced levels (or if i play better players) i need to take risks to win.

What chance does carlos moya have in engaging cross court backhand rallies against Blake or Gasquet. On the other hand if moya runs around and take a big forehand DTL or etc, now he has a good chance.

Bungalo Bill
04-22-2008, 05:24 PM
Seeing the positive feedback I tried to use wardlaw's just as a sanity check. I take great pride in my ability to read the play and coming up with tactics or strategies and then execution of it (sometimes it doesnt work --ofcourse).

My results are mixed at the best. I would rather trust my instincts and adjust as i play the game. Not get too carried away on whether should i hit cross court or DTL.

I would use wardlaw's as a beginners guideline. At advanced levels (or if i play better players) i need to take risks to win.

What chance does carlos moya have in engaging cross court backhand rallies against Blake or Gasquet. On the other hand if moya runs around and take a big forehand DTL or etc, now he has a good chance.

I think you are missing the point on the Directionals.

The Directionals simplifies rallies and allows you to focus on your strategy and not make dumb shot choices. You have indicated that you are not always right in the risk you take. So that means you are probably not making good shot choices and using risk as an excuse to do whatever you want.

Also, the Directionals are not for beginners. I can't imagine you being so good that they are beneath you.

Further, once you recognize how to reply to your opponents shot, matchups begin to take effect. Which means strategy and tactics start coming into play. Risk is taken when you have a weapon that can, in a way, defy the recommended reply.

However, the risk you take is calculated and can be managed. The Directionals are not the end to tennis strategy and tactics. It is only a part of it.

Tennis_Monk
04-22-2008, 06:08 PM
I think you are missing the point on the Directionals.

The Directionals simplifies rallies and allows you to focus on your strategy and not make dumb shot choices. You have indicated that you are not always right in the risk you take. So that means you are probably not making good shot choices and using risk as an excuse to do whatever you want.

Also, the Directionals are not for beginners. I can't imagine you being so good that they are beneath you.

However, the risk you take is calculated and can be managed. The Directionals are not the end to tennis strategy and tactics. It is only a part of it.

I agree only in parts. I definitely dont agree with the part of not making good shot choices. I am very comfortable with my shot selection and believe in them. Just because i made a good shot choice doesnt always result in good execution. Wardlaws or not i dont have that consistency to be perfect every time on every single shot .

I strongly opine that wardlaw's are not for advanced players. I dont belive in hitting a ball cross court or DTL because it crossed or didnt cross a path.That may help the early learners. My approach relies on what options i have available and i am comfortable doing and what gives my opponent most trouble. You have better perspective of coaching players and your knowledge on tennis is well known. So i respect your opinion on Wardlaws but i cant rationalize it myself.

Bungalo Bill
04-22-2008, 06:16 PM
I agree only in parts. I definitely dont agree with the part of not making good shot choices. I am very comfortable with my shot selection and believe in them. Just because i made a good shot choice doesnt always result in good execution. Wardlaws or not i dont have that consistency to be perfect every time on every single shot.

Yeah, whatever.

I strongly opine that wardlaw's are not for advanced players. I dont belive in hitting a ball cross court or DTL because it crossed or didnt cross a path.That may help the early learners.

LOL, are you kidding? Did you even read what I wrote? The Directionals are the foundation to shot selection, risk taking, and matchup strategies and tactics. Hello? This is not beginner level! lol

My approach relies on what options i have available and i am comfortable doing and what gives my opponent most trouble. You have better perspective of coaching players and your knowledge on tennis is well known. So i respect your opinion on Wardlaws but i cant rationalize it myself.

That is because you dont understand them and only want to do it your way. You try it once and have a melt down. If you have a melt down using them, why would they be for beginners? You can't even handle it! lol

I can guarentee you make more mistakes on shot selection choices then you know about. In other words, I would probably say "that was a dumb choice" more often then you would think you made a dumb choice.

Bottom-line, you aren't above them.

Tennis_Monk
04-22-2008, 07:36 PM
Yeah, whatever.


LOL, are you kidding? Did you even read what I wrote? The Directionals are the foundation to shot selection, risk taking, and matchup strategies and tactics. Hello? This is not beginner level! lol



Sorry i dont read just about every crap message that is out there. i try to weed out as much as i can and only read useful stuff.


That is because you dont understand them and only want to do it your way. You try it once and have a melt down. If you have a melt down using them, why would they be for beginners? You can't even handle it! lol

You seem to have a vivid imagination to assume information that wasnt provided.



I can guarentee you make more mistakes on shot selection choices then you know about. In other words, I would probably say "that was a dumb choice" more often then you would think you made a dumb choice.

Bottom-line, you aren't above them.

LOL. now thats funny..guarantee on internet...thanks.
May be you say "that was a dumb choice". Not me. I am happy with my shot selection and dont need any unsolicited advise.

On your bottom line. Give it to someone who values it.

GPB
04-22-2008, 08:40 PM
Well you're always taught that crosscourt is a "safe" shot and down-the-line is a "risky" shot, blah blah blah.

I think, mainly, the Wardlaw Directionals are just another way to look at this. It's an easy-to-remember guideline of how to remember where the safe shot is, and when it's a good idea to go for the risky winner.

I've been keeping them in mind these past few weeks and been having lots of success.

"It's only once you know the rules that you know when to break them..."

Sentinel
04-22-2008, 09:19 PM
Guys, .... relax. As a beginner I think Wardlaw really helps. As for pros, I would assume they and their coaches know best. No comment.

However, I have watched GS matches for years and never understood why they had long cc rallies, until I started playing recently and understood the logic behind it.

We beginners watch matches on TV, and start going for shots. We do not truly understand shot selection and point construction. We need guidelines to keep our game simple, keep in play, let the other guy make an error. Yes, as we improve, or as we build a lead, or once in a while we can also take risks.

One of the simplest/easiest winners I hit against far superior guys, is just hit behind them ! No need to go for a perfect shot. These simple guidelines are great for us !

zapvor
04-22-2008, 10:19 PM
The key to the Directionals is gone over in detail in the book, Pressure Tennis. This is not necessarily the "direction" you hit the ball but more important for singles, is aiming out the back of the baseline, instead of for the sideline, ie deeper, more penetrating shots vs wider, shallower shots.

this is such a good point for me-i find it much easier to find angles, but i cant manage to get depth. its frustrating me.

Cindysphinx
04-23-2008, 03:27 AM
this is such a good point for me-i find it much easier to find angles, but i cant manage to get depth. its frustrating me.

I have trouble with depth too, Zap. First ball deep, Second ball a little shorter, Third ball a sitter at the T.

OK, I'm playing again today for practice. I'll trot out the directionals again and see what happens.

ARNICOLINI
04-23-2008, 07:20 AM
I have never really understood tactics, so this is a great help to my beginning to understand. Even in other sports I watch and enjoy but never grasp the xs and os of the game.

I again going to start implementing this ASAP, I think it can help me greatly in smarter shot selection.

Cindysphinx
04-23-2008, 07:37 AM
OK, I tried it again.

It's really hard to know if Wardlaw helps or not. I mean, I make so many bloody unforced errors that I don't know whether to blame Wardlaw or not. For instance, I have trouble taking my FH crosscourt. Inside out feels more comfortable. Wardlaw makes me take it crosscourt a lot. I miss. Is that Wardlaw's fault?

Probably not.

I will say this, though. I had an ephiphany today. I always figured you needed to hit corner to corner to wear your opponent out. Not true. Having an extended rally crosscourt also seems to wear out the opponent, as they keep recovering and you keep going behind them. I won many points by just keeping a FH crosscourt rally going. In other words, when I did my job (keep it in play), the crosscourt rally with increasingly severe angles was an excellent strategy.

LuckyR
04-23-2008, 07:53 AM
OK, I tried it again.

It's really hard to know if Wardlaw helps or not. I mean, I make so many bloody unforced errors that I don't know whether to blame Wardlaw or not. For instance, I have trouble taking my FH crosscourt. Inside out feels more comfortable. Wardlaw makes me take it crosscourt a lot. I miss. Is that Wardlaw's fault?

Probably not.

I will say this, though. I had an ephiphany today. I always figured you needed to hit corner to corner to wear your opponent out. Not true. Having an extended rally crosscourt also seems to wear out the opponent, as they keep recovering and you keep going behind them. I won many points by just keeping a FH crosscourt rally going. In other words, when I did my job (keep it in play), the crosscourt rally with increasingly severe angles was an excellent strategy.


The Directionals actually are the starting point and help with UE's more than generate winners. It is the Pro's, with their higher accuracy who can do well by "breaking the rules" of the Directionals.

BTW, the Directionals do not advocate severe angles, rather penetrating and deep shots with less angle.

smoothtennis
04-23-2008, 09:46 AM
I will say this, though. I had an ephiphany today. I always figured you needed to hit corner to corner to wear your opponent out. Not true. Having an extended rally crosscourt also seems to wear out the opponent, as they keep recovering and you keep going behind them. I won many points by just keeping a FH crosscourt rally going. In other words, when I did my job (keep it in play), the crosscourt rally with increasingly severe angles was an excellent strategy.

Ok Cindy - this is what I am seeing using the directionals myself. These cross court rallies...seem simple, but they are obviously not because the other guy is trying so very hard to keep recovering, while I am only partially recovering, knowing already where I am hitting my next shot.

As I mentioned in my last post - my last opponent, would whiff a weak shot back or give a short ball after about the third crosscourt when he didn't fully recover and get back well. Most of the time, he felt in trouble, and hit up the line wide - I swear 10 times at least, violating the rules.

Think about it this way. YOU know you are going cross court. YOU will set up faster and better for it. YOU will hit a pretty solid ball back. THEY may not be so sure what they are hitting back. THEY will over recover and get behind. THEY will usually set up their feet weak. THEY will usually give you a weak ball or an outright error.

It is sound strategy.

split-step
04-23-2008, 09:49 AM
Or they will rip a forehand down the line off your cross court and make the shot.

smoothtennis
04-23-2008, 09:49 AM
Seeing the positive feedback I tried to use wardlaw's just as a sanity check. I take great pride in my ability to read the play and coming up with tactics or strategies and then execution of it (sometimes it doesnt work --ofcourse).

My results are mixed at the best. I would rather trust my instincts and adjust as i play the game. Not get too carried away on whether should i hit cross court or DTL.

I would use wardlaw's as a beginners guideline. At advanced levels (or if i play better players) i need to take risks to win.

What chance does carlos moya have in engaging cross court backhand rallies against Blake or Gasquet. On the other hand if moya runs around and take a big forehand DTL or etc, now he has a good chance.

Monk - I watched the Federrer/Djokovic Australian Open matchup again just watching for Wardlaw. I not only saw it a lot, most errors they were making came from violating a directional. Now I agree - these are the top two or three tennis players on the entire planet, and if anybody can break those rules successfully, they can. But they still stuck to the directionals on most points - and lost points breaking directionals. I admit, I was surprised...

Cindysphinx
04-23-2008, 12:33 PM
Or they will rip a forehand down the line off your cross court and make the shot.

Well, yeah.

Wardlaw doesn't let me off the hook for hitting a short or weak ball. Like Smoothtennis said, my opponent missed more than she made.

I wish Wardlaw could help me approach better. I mean, you keep pushing the ball up the middle rather than approach well to the corners, and you're going down in flames. If I could improve that one shot, I would really be cooking with gas . . .

Tennis_Monk
04-23-2008, 07:26 PM
Monk - I watched the Federrer/Djokovic Australian Open matchup again just watching for Wardlaw. I not only saw it a lot, most errors they were making came from violating a directional. Now I agree - these are the top two or three tennis players on the entire planet, and if anybody can break those rules successfully, they can. But they still stuck to the directionals on most points - and lost points breaking directionals. I admit, I was surprised...

may be i am not saying it in right way. All i am saying is i am against hitting crosscourt or DTL because a ball crossed (or didnt cross) an object.

That to me is irrational (i by no means asking others to ignore it. just stating my opinion.) as it doesnt factor in one's own strength and opponents weakness.

To me shot selection is based on 3 factors. What options are available, what i am comfortable doing and what gives opponent most trouble.

I am pretty sure there is a reason why Federer/Djokovic attempted to violate these rules. Why didnt they just engage in the rallies?? They are so skilled that they can engage in cross court or DTL rallies all day long. In my opinion , that is the risk they had to take so that they can go offensive.

Based on pure geometry of the court, there is a definite advantage in crosscourt rallies. take a look at the link below
http://www.tennisserver.com/turbo/turbo_98_5.html

pr0n8r
04-24-2008, 05:30 AM
The Wardlaw directionals work. I began applying them at the beginning of the year, and I finally won our local 4.0 singles league. I also went from always losing to my 4.5 hitting partner to trading wins with him, and always giving him trouble. When I first put Wardlaw into play against my hitting partner, it almost felt like cheating. I don't think there's a level in recreational or even college tennis that can't benefit from understanding the directionals. I used to think I had a good understanding of on-court strategy, but I was badly mistaken.

jb193
04-24-2008, 06:36 AM
Going cross court doesn't have to be a neutral shot. I always go short cross court, deep cross court, mid right cross court and mid left cross court. It keeps the mind engaged and wears on your opponent if you are dictating the point. Going from the deep cross court to the shallow cross court shot is sometimes a difficult footwork adjustment and can produce significant errors. I find that hitting into the open court benefits a lot of my opponents, especially if my shot is easily within reach. They get to run thereby calming their mind a bit, and because of their momentum they easily find their spacing from themself and the ball.

Of course, all of this has exceptions. If someone has a weak backhand, then all of the prior logic is out the door and focal point of attack is mainly one side of the court. But, anyway, just food for thought.........

Sentinel
04-24-2008, 06:51 AM
Or they will rip a forehand down the line off your cross court and make the shot.

Well, yeah.

Wardlaw doesn't let me off the hook for hitting a short or weak ball. Like Smoothtennis said, my opponent missed more than she made.

.
Exactly, if your/my cc was weak enuf to elicit a ripping dtl, then a weak dtl from me would have resulted in the same thing. More likely I would be UE'ing more on the DTL.

I had the same experience as you, my oppo ripped one dtl on me, but on the others he UE'd (in trying to rip a DTL).


So in a nutshell, one is still better off following wardlaw.

And as i said in another thread, my opp caught on that i was going CC, so he was covering cc, and a couple times i foxed him with an easy DTL. Ordinarily I would have tried to go in for a perfect DTL and mess it.

Bungalo Bill
04-24-2008, 06:51 AM
Guys, .... relax. As a beginner I think Wardlaw really helps. As for pros, I would assume they and their coaches know best. No comment.

It is not a beginner strategy. These Directionals are good for the 4.0 player and up who are learning to make better shot choices, who can sustain a rally and are learning when and how to move the ball around. How many crosscourt rallies do you see? It is a fundamental aspect of hitting the ball.

Wardlaws are fundamental to shot selection. You build your game over it, you analyze your weapons which can at times help you defy it, and you build up your matchups around it.

Are you going to follow the Directionals religiously? Absolutely not! However, when you do take on more risk, at least you will know the risk you are taking and if it doesn't work several times, you might want to stop trying it.

However, I have watched GS matches for years and never understood why they had long cc rallies, until I started playing recently and understood the logic behind it.

We beginners watch matches on TV, and start going for shots. We do not truly understand shot selection and point construction. We need guidelines to keep our game simple, keep in play, let the other guy make an error. Yes, as we improve, or as we build a lead, or once in a while we can also take risks.

Lol, again the Directionals are not for beginners. Beginners can't sustain a rally and the ball is moving so slowly that hitting against the grain, is not going to be devastating. When the ball speeds up, then it becomes more of an issue to hit against your natural shot.

Bungalo Bill
04-24-2008, 06:59 AM
may be i am not saying it in right way. All i am saying is i am against hitting crosscourt or DTL because a ball crossed (or didnt cross) an object.

That is fine. But to say it is a strategy for beginners is moronic. It tells me a lot about your knowledge in tennis and your game.

That to me is irrational (i by no means asking others to ignore it. just stating my opinion.) as it doesnt factor in one's own strength and opponents weakness.

Sure it does. The Directionals are about rally's and changing the direction of the ball. It plainly says that hitting against the grain increases your chances for error. It also shows when is the BEST time to change direction of the ball in case you are in a matchup you dont want to be.

If your opponent is pounding your weakness and you try to change direction when it is not the best ball to do it on, that is when your abilities to offset the risk come in. However, if you do it haphazardly, like you indicate you do, that is not a smart way to play tennis.

To me shot selection is based on 3 factors. What options are available, what i am comfortable doing and what gives opponent most trouble.

LOL, that is beginner level thinking.

I am pretty sure there is a reason why Federer/Djokovic attempted to violate these rules. Why didnt they just engage in the rallies?? They are so skilled that they can engage in cross court or DTL rallies all day long. In my opinion , that is the risk they had to take so that they can go offensive.

Based on pure geometry of the court, there is a definite advantage in crosscourt rallies. take a look at the link below
http://www.tennisserver.com/turbo/turbo_98_5.html

LOL, you defintely see the game through your own eyes. LOL!!

Sentinel
04-24-2008, 07:00 AM
BB, I wasn't countering you. I was only sharing my personal experience of how it's helped me. I meant, i do not know how it is for pros and I am certainly not saying its only for beginners.

I have less than a year of tennis under my belt, i can have pretty long rallies both fh and bh at a good pace, and keeping the ball deep. I have no idea of American ratings, so I consider myself to be a beginner (less than 1 year). Earier I may have randomly changd direction, or just hit the ball where my opp was not, which did not help. Applying this has helped.

Sorry, if I have not understood something.

Bungalo Bill
04-24-2008, 07:19 AM
BB, I wasn't countering you. I was only sharing my personal experience of how it's helped me. I meant, i do not know how it is for pros and I am certainly not saying its only for beginners.

Pros are not thinking about Wardlaws. They are already at the level where they make good shot selection choices most of the time. It is obvious when you watch a pros match how they are using their shots.

What people dont realize is the Directionals are a foundation to shot selection. Shot selection is not a beginner thing. I can buy intermediate and above, but very few beginners will benefit from the directionals.

The keys to building your game plan are:

1. Not hurting yourself: This falls into the category of consistency and making good shot choices. This also indicates one needs to know when is the BEST time to change direction if your opponent is challenging your weakness. This does not mean you need to always adhere to it because at times you might want to change direction with more risk.

2. Knowing who you're playing: This means you need to understand what strengths and weaknesses they have. Are they impatient? What shots are their big shots? What shots are they more weak? This will help you determine how you match up and which matchups favor you and your opponent.

3. Consolidating: You know what shots are more risky. You know that hitting corsscourt gives you an edge on consistency and helps reduce your errors. You also know when the most opportune time to change direction. Now you analyze which matchups will win you more points. Is it your weakness against his weakness? Or something else?

4. Now, you build your points: You run plays to execute your strategy and findings. You think three balls out maybe more if you are that good.

5. Court positioning: Court positioning is both knowing where you are in the court and where your opponent is in the court. It is also knowing where both of you should be in the court. Many times intermediate and advanced players will hit a shot, it doesn't quite turnout the way they wanted, and leave a ton of court open. Sometimes you want to take more risk because your opponent is well behind in recovery, etc...

Hardly this is for beginners. Not that you said that, but beginners dont come close to thinking this way. The Directionals are foundational.

smoothtennis
04-24-2008, 07:55 AM
Or they will rip a forehand down the line off your cross court and make the shot.

Point well taken. But...consider this. They are taking the high risk in this situation if I hit a solid ball. As far as I'm concerned, they can go for it, because they rarely make this shot off a strong shot cross-court.

Also consider this - I understand they have that option. I also understand if I hit a shorter, or less aggressive shot there, the probability goes UP for their DTL reply success, to be anticipating, and recovering for the DTL shot.

Realize too, I am not hitting paceless duck balls to my opponent on rallies. These are fairly heavy shots with a lot of spin and decent pace. I know when I hit a shot that they can change direction on.

smoothtennis
04-24-2008, 08:16 AM
I am pretty sure there is a reason why Federer/Djokovic attempted to violate these rules.

Yeah - they decided to take on more risk and make something happen, but they often botched these.


Why didnt they just engage in the rallies?? They are so skilled that they can engage in cross court or DTL rallies all day long. In my opinion , that is the risk they had to take so that they can go offensive.

Exactly - they take on more risk, but they KNOW they are doing this. They did engage in good CC rallies, until many times, they got a ball that had acceptable risk given a less penetrating shot by the Oppoenent - and these are the one's they tended to go on the offensive with and win.

See here is the real point. We already established that CC rallies are less risky, and therefore, the higher the skill level, the less they have to engage in CC rallies - right? They can break the rules better than us lower level players. Then WHY----do the top pro's still engage in CC rallies a LOT? Because they understand and manage the risk and probabilities involved.

The point is, Pro's do USE the directionals as a foundation to their understanding of shot selection. Wardlaw didn't really INVENT these. He termed them, and expounded on the principles behind them. They are just physics in action - an observation in probablity based on physics and geometry. You bet the pro's understand and apply this knowledge.

PS. Fed/Novak did make quite a few more errors on straight up CC rallies than I suspect you would imagine in that match. I was surprised.

rocket
04-24-2008, 08:21 AM
Pros are not thinking about Wardlaws. They are already at the level where they make good shot selection choices most of the time. It is obvious when you watch a pros match how they are using their shots.

BB, when you have a mo', could you pls take a look at NickB's strokes? The kid's got potential & dedication. He might need your help.

Sentinel
04-24-2008, 08:27 AM
BB, thanks fr clarifying. i am certainly no where close to even starting point on what you describe.
My knowledge of Wardlaws directionals were based on a very simple page (http://hoskinsjohn.bizland.com/direc/) someone linked here.
Some of those points did help me - or so I thought.

Thanks again for taking time to detail "building a game plan". As I understand it now, WD's are not an end in themselves, they are the basis for much more advanced shot selection decision-making which is not beginner's stuff. Shall keep reading your post and trying to absorb/glean more.

MordredSJT
04-24-2008, 08:28 AM
I'll throw my own two cents in here along the lines of what Bungalo Bill is saying, with my own perspective...

Wardlaw's directionals are essentially the basic rules of grammar for tennis. If you don't know them at all, you may break them all the time...often with disastrous results. If you learn the rules and follow them strictly you can greatly improve the effectiveness of your self-expression. If you master the rules you can often break them at opportune times to great effect.

Think of the best writers throughout history...they often don't follow grammatical conventions....but they damn sure know them and are aware of why and how they are breaking them. It is purposeful. It's the same with the best tennis players. They are aware of the directionals. It is most likely not in the strict codified way of Wardlaw, but in a natural instinctive idea about where the percentages are in shot selection.

Long story short...learn the rules first. Once you have mastered them, then you can break them for effect.

Cindysphinx
04-24-2008, 08:31 AM
I don't see the point in even discussing what Federer can do. There are no Federer's here, I'm guessing.

As a 3.5 who is pretty new to singles, Wardlaw's is a difficult thing to do. I mean, most of the time I'm thinking stroke mechanics, so it's hard to find space in my brain for using the directionals. I think they're going to be helpful later on, though.

Bungalo Bill
04-24-2008, 08:47 AM
BB, thanks fr clarifying. i am certainly no where close to even starting point on what you describe.
My knowledge of Wardlaws directionals were based on a very simple page (http://hoskinsjohn.bizland.com/direc/) someone linked here.
Some of those points did help me - or so I thought.

Thanks again for taking time to detail "building a game plan". As I understand it now, WD's are not an end in themselves, they are the basis for much more advanced shot selection decision-making which is not beginner's stuff. Shall keep reading your post and trying to absorb/glean more.

Exactly. When you learn directionals, matchups, and understand "calculated" risk, you will see a pros game in a whole new way.

You are very correct in saying Wardlaws are simply foundational and not an end to themselves. There is a whole lot more to tennis strategy, tactics, point building, execution, and risk-taking.

Bungalo Bill
04-24-2008, 08:52 AM
I don't see the point in even discussing what Federer can do. There are no Federer's here, I'm guessing.

As a 3.5 who is pretty new to singles, Wardlaw's is a difficult thing to do. I mean, most of the time I'm thinking stroke mechanics, so it's hard to find space in my brain for using the directionals. I think they're going to be helpful later on, though.

Exactly, they are not for beginners. Beginners have other things to get through. :)

Bungalo Bill
04-24-2008, 08:57 AM
I'll throw my own two cents in here along the lines of what Bungalo Bill is saying, with my own perspective...

Wardlaw's directionals are essentially the basic rules of grammar for tennis. If you don't know them at all, you may break them all the time...often with disastrous results. If you learn the rules and follow them strictly you can greatly improve the effectiveness of your self-expression. If you master the rules you can often break them at opportune times to great effect.

Think of the best writers throughout history...they often don't follow grammatical conventions....but they damn sure know them and are aware of why and how they are breaking them. It is purposeful. It's the same with the best tennis players. They are aware of the directionals. It is most likely not in the strict codified way of Wardlaw, but in a natural instinctive idea about where the percentages are in shot selection.

Long story short...learn the rules first. Once you have mastered them, then you can break them for effect.

Very good analogy or is that a metaphor? Never did take the time to find out. Anyway, you summed it up very well. :)

The Wardlaw Directionals can be simplified like this (although this is very simplified):

"Hit crosscourt, until a ball does not cross your body." So, the basis to your game should be the crosscourt ball. This is what you do, how you setup your matchups, how you evaluate your strengths and weaknesses, how you build your game, and how you understand what weakness your opponent is trying to exploit. This is also how you watch a pros game and what they are trying to do.

The crosscourt ball is THEE ball! If a player can't or doesn't move the ball well (hitting crosscourt) then they really need to develop it.

I know this is very simplified but it keeps it simple for those willing to grow in tennis tactics and strategy.

MordredSJT
04-24-2008, 09:34 AM
Someone once asked Bjorn Borg about his strategic thinking while he played...his reply..."I mostly hit crosscourt." He refused to complicate and or clarify further.

That's the first thing I teach people about playing patterns...you need a reason to not hit crosscourt (preferably a good one).

Bungalo Bill
04-24-2008, 09:42 AM
Someone once asked Bjorn Borg about his strategic thinking while he played...his reply..."I mostly hit crosscourt." He refused to complicate and or clarify further.

That's the first thing I teach people about playing patterns...you need a reason to not hit crosscourt (preferably a good one).

Excellent!

user92626
04-24-2008, 02:40 PM
For crosscourt shots, does anyone have any hard and fast rules, concepts, ideas, ect about which part of the net to aim the ball over?

A lot of time I stand at the baseline making the shot, I can't see the other side's sidelines and baseline to control the ball. It's too far for vision. So, I just go for the feeling of power and general direction, which is unreliable.

Bungalo Bill
04-24-2008, 02:45 PM
For crosscourt shots, does anyone have any hard and fast rules, concepts, ideas, ect about which part of the net to aim the ball over?

A lot of time I stand at the baseline making the shot, I can't see the other side's sidelines and baseline to control the ball. It's too far for vision. So, I just go for the feeling of power and general direction, which is unreliable.

Well in general you dont want to be hitting the lines if that is what you mean. Target practice is usually done with cones so you sort of "memorize" your spots and also develop those specialty shots (like taking pace off and hitting a sharper angle with more topspin) as you drill.

But I dont know why you cant see the baseline or the sideline. That is confusing to me as to what you are getting at.

user92626
04-24-2008, 02:56 PM
Hi Bill,
I did not mean to hit the lines, at least at this level :).

I'm 5.8 tall but honestly I can't see the other side's lines comfortably when I rally from behind my baseline. Apparently, the guys I play with also could not see, hence we have alot of arguments about shot in or out.

I suppose if you see all the lines on the other side relatively clearly, it'll be much easier with aiming.

Cindysphinx
04-24-2008, 03:09 PM
User, actually you may not need to see the other sides' lines to aim for them. After all, you're supposed to have your head down at contact. As it was explained to me, the lines don't move, so your brain knows where they are.

I did a little drill with my pro once. He fed me 10 balls and I was supposed to hit into an area marked by cones. I hit a low percentage of ball into the area. Then he told me not to look at the target area at all but just focus on hitting the ball there. I got 90%.

Interesting, huh?

FWIW, I cannot see the opposing baseline clearly either. It causes me to think my ball has flown long only to have my opponent tell me it was well in.

user92626
04-24-2008, 03:32 PM
It causes me to think my ball has flown long only to have my opponent tell me it was well in.

This is the kind of thinking and feeling I want to avoid because it affects how you choose to swing the racket. See, I have that too, and to me that sounds like guessing the shot more than playing in the know and with intention. Well, I guess you can never have a 100% confidence in every shot, but a relatively high confidence and enough "knowing" is desirable.

waves2ya
04-24-2008, 03:59 PM
Another good Mr. Bill thread...

Here's how one pro I worked with help me understand Wardlaw's directionals: balls can be offensive, defensive or neutral. You will receive many more defensive or neutral balls than offensive ones. Be patient and hit crosscourt for defensive or neutral balls.

When you get an offensive opportunity - make your opponent pay.

He used to say it another way too - "there are 'my balls' and 'his balls'; you have to learn not lie to yourself about which balls are really yours vs. your opponents (make you call 'em out loud as you saw/hit 'em).

When they are your balls, put the point away...

Bungalo Bill
04-24-2008, 07:35 PM
Hi Bill,
I did not mean to hit the lines, at least at this level :).

I'm 5.8 tall but honestly I can't see the other side's lines comfortably when I rally from behind my baseline. Apparently, the guys I play with also could not see, hence we have alot of arguments about shot in or out.

I suppose if you see all the lines on the other side relatively clearly, it'll be much easier with aiming.


A couple things you can do. Place cones and memorize. Or you can use reference points like from the net or other obstacles.

albino smurf
04-25-2008, 03:24 AM
Oh wow! Thanks for this thread. This helps so much I can't get over it.

Tennis_Monk
04-26-2008, 03:43 AM
That is fine. But to say it is a strategy for beginners is moronic. It tells me a lot about your knowledge in tennis and your game.



Sure it does. The Directionals are about rally's and changing the direction of the ball. It plainly says that hitting against the grain increases your chances for error. It also shows when is the BEST time to change direction of the ball in case you are in a matchup you dont want to be.

If your opponent is pounding your weakness and you try to change direction when it is not the best ball to do it on, that is when your abilities to offset the risk come in. However, if you do it haphazardly, like you indicate you do, that is not a smart way to play tennis.



LOL, that is beginner level thinking.



LOL, you defintely see the game through your own eyes. LOL!!

I definitely agree on the point that " I see the game through my own eyes". There isnt ONE SINGLE expert of the game (in this forum) contrary to what ppl may think. I dont trust posts at their face value nor every rinky dinky cookie cutter approach that people try to get everybody onto.

As i emphasized in earlier posts, your opinion on some aspects means zilch to me. This Directionals stuff is beginners and it really is. No Advanced player will ever hit a ball cross court or DTL because the ball crossed an object (or it didnt).

It needs a " better" player and really knowledgeable expert to see whether it fits someone or not... as opposed to....<most ppl get the point>

Bungalo Bill
04-26-2008, 06:49 AM
I definitely agree on the point that " I see the game through my own eyes". There isnt ONE SINGLE expert of the game (in this forum) contrary to what ppl may think. I dont trust posts at their face value nor every rinky dinky cookie cutter approach that people try to get everybody onto.

LOL, yeah, whatever.

As i emphasized in earlier posts, your opinion on some aspects means zilch to me. This Directionals stuff is beginners and it really is. No Advanced player will ever hit a ball cross court or DTL because the ball crossed an object (or it didnt).

Ahhh, wrong. Although advanced players have developed their shot selection and incorporate other aspects, hitting the crosscourt ball is a staple because it isn't hitting against their efforts and increases their chances to be consistent which is EXACTLY what the Wardlaw Directionals are all about.

Sorry you dont get it. However, you presented nothing and can't present anything to support your opinion that Directionals are for beginners.

Hitting crosscourt is fundamental.

Bungalo Bill
04-26-2008, 06:50 AM
BB, when you have a mo', could you pls take a look at NickB's strokes? The kid's got potential & dedication. He might need your help.

I posted a reply to his video, thanks.

Tennis_Monk
04-26-2008, 07:18 AM
LOL, yeah, whatever.



Ahhh, wrong. Although advanced players have developed their shot selection and incorporate other aspects, hitting the crosscourt ball is a staple because it isn't hitting against their efforts and increases their chances to be consistent which is EXACTLY what the Wardlaw Directionals are all about.

Sorry you dont get it. However, you presented nothing and can't present anything to support your opinion that Directionals are for beginners.

Hitting crosscourt is fundamental.


It is the other way round. I am sorry but you dont seem to understand or whatever.

Most things you stated only confirms that directionals are not for advanced.see below
<<
Although advanced players have developed their shot selection and incorporate other aspects
>>
yes. Advanced player shot selection is more than ball crossing a path (or didnt) and thats what i have been saying all along. Shot selection is usually based on where one is, what one is comfortable doing and what gives most trouble to opponent.Even more advanced ones also incorporate the most likely outcomes of that shot and bunch more parameters.

I still stand by the same statement that The concept of hitting cross court or DTL because it crossed or didnt cross an object (that too a moving one) works for beginners NOT for Advanced. Advanced players will not hit cross court JUST because they can be consistent. It is way beyond that.

pr0n8r
04-27-2008, 11:16 AM
What I have observed watching pro matches since being familiar with Wardlaw is that much of the time the pro's play shots exactly according to directionals. Also, much of the time when they make an error, they are going against the directionals.

If you want to debunk Wardlaw, I think you will have to do better. You will have to prove that the selections made using Wardlaw are bad selections. If you don't do that, then you really have nothing to offer.

What do you mean by "advanced players" anyway? Are we talking 4.0, 4.5, 5.0, D1 College, or professional?

To suggest that advanced players couldn't benefit from a better understanding of risk / reward on the tennis court seems a little naive.

I would love to see someone chart a pro match, and count how many times the directionals are followed by shot, when they are broken, and the outcomes of breaking them. I bet the results would validate Wardlaw.

Ross K
04-27-2008, 12:02 PM
Just wanted to ask what the 'rules' are with Wardlaw's Directionals as they relate to the inside out fh.

Tennis_Monk
04-27-2008, 12:10 PM
What I have observed watching pro matches since being familiar with Wardlaw is that much of the time the pro's play shots exactly according to directionals. Also, much of the time when they make an error, they are going against the directionals.

If you want to debunk Wardlaw, I think you will have to do better. You will have to prove that the selections made using Wardlaw are bad selections. If you don't do that, then you really have nothing to offer.

What do you mean by "advanced players" anyway? Are we talking 4.0, 4.5, 5.0, D1 College, or professional?

To suggest that advanced players couldn't benefit from a better understanding of risk / reward on the tennis court seems a little naive.

I would love to see someone chart a pro match, and count how many times the directionals are followed by shot, when they are broken, and the outcomes of breaking them. I bet the results would validate Wardlaw.

I am not debunking wardlaw. I am simply stating a very obvious fact that Shot selection at advanced levels is more than a ball crossing (or didnt) one's path. Wardlaw is a good approach for "learning" tennis rallies.

Advanced players hit their shots based on several factors and their understanding of risk reward goes way beyond Wardlaws.

I dont know what matches you happened to watch or what you observed or how representative it is of other matches or how much of a sampling it resembles in overall number of matches played in tennis at various levels. So i wont comment but you get the point.

Which is a better strategy?

a) Hit crosscourt or DTL because the ball crossed (or didnt) a path.

b) Hit cross court or DTL because you are in a position to play that shot + (whats my positional advantage on court , what can trouble my opponent /or what can move him around , what other options do i have + etc)

Which is Naive? I will always hit cross court FH because the ball did (or didnt) cross the path regardless of opponent /his position and also ignore all other apparent options available to end a point ?

Kaptain Karl
04-27-2008, 04:13 PM
TM - The more you post the less I think you have any understanding of this thread's topic. I suggest you familiarize yourself with "The First Rule of Holes."

- KK

Tennis_Monk
04-27-2008, 05:59 PM
TM - The more you post the less I think you have any understanding of this thread's topic. I suggest you familiarize yourself with "The First Rule of Holes."

- KK

Thanks ...but no thanks.

In this thread, It is the purporters of Wardlaws as an advanced concept that are in need of that "first rule of holes".

I understood enough about this wardlaw concept to know its merit and its obvious limitations. If others dont see it that way and they think this is the best thing since slice bread...all the power to them.

some of the posts actually "thinks" PRO's violated "wardlaw" directionals. Leave it to some TW posters to tell worlds top seeded professional tennis players ,what they need to do.

Cindysphinx
04-28-2008, 03:24 AM
You keep saying that advanced players' shot selection is based on "what they feel comfortable doing."

Could it be that what they feel comfortable doing *is* Wardlaw?

I mean, you get a pro on the run or on defense, and they get a ball that comes across their body to their forehand, do you think they are going to try to change the direction of that ball and go DTL? I'd be surprised if they even try.

I'll bet most pros were trained on Wardlaw, regardless of whether it was called something else.

I mean, you said this:

Advanced players hit their shots based on several factors and their understanding of risk reward goes way beyond Wardlaws.

Wardlaws is a *foundation.* Obviously players can, will and should learn when to go beyond something that is supposed to be a foundation. That's why they call it a foundation.

I like Moz' analogy to grammar also. Very clever.

Swissv2
04-28-2008, 04:29 AM
Tennis_Monk, so what is your "expert experience" that puts your shot selection knowledge above all others on this board?

Chuck Kriese, the coach who highly endorses the Wardlaw Directionals, has all his players integrate them into their shot selection AND has a better "tennis resume" than you.

He was the men's coach at Clemson University and former U.S. Junior Davis Cup Team coach. He is the all-time winningest coach in the Atlantic Coast Conference, and his career victories stand among the top in U.S. collegiate history.

His coaching accomplishments include eleven ACC titles, eight national top ten finishes, and six ACC Coach of the Year awards. The Kriese coaching legacy has produced thirty All-Americans, sent twenty-three former players to the professional ranks, and spawned twelve current collegiate level coaches from among his former players and assistants.

Regarding the Wardlaw directionals, he states it should be a staple of an individuals shot selection - only extreme skill determines the shot selection one should use on a very small scale: shots not based on the Wardlaw Directionals should be the exception, not the rule. Even the professionals have a foundation shot selection based on the Wardlaw directionals, and apply them on a regular basis. Once they feel they have control of the point will they imply their choice of shot, OR they have a shot that they can rely on, on a consistent basis. (I.E. the Nadal running passing shot, or the Federer 90 degree change of direction backhand DTL passing shot)

So, Tennis_Monk, what can you say about your credentials?

BeHappy
04-28-2008, 05:07 AM
From what I can see, TennisMonk is right, and so is BB, They are both saying exactly the same thing, either BB knows this and he's trolling or else he's misread your post tennismonk.

BeHappy
04-28-2008, 05:09 AM
Tennis_Monk, so what is your "expert experience" that puts your shot selection knowledge above all others on this board?

Chuck Kriese, the coach who highly endorses the Wardlaw Directionals, has all his players integrate them into their shot selection AND has a better "tennis resume" than you.

He was the men's coach at Clemson University and former U.S. Junior Davis Cup Team coach. He is the all-time winningest coach in the Atlantic Coast Conference, and his career victories stand among the top in U.S. collegiate history.

His coaching accomplishments include eleven ACC titles, eight national top ten finishes, and six ACC Coach of the Year awards. The Kriese coaching legacy has produced thirty All-Americans, sent twenty-three former players to the professional ranks, and spawned twelve current collegiate level coaches from among his former players and assistants.

Regarding the Wardlaw directionals, he states it should be a staple of an individuals shot selection - only extreme skill determines the shot selection one should use on a very small scale: shots not based on the Wardlaw Directionals should be the exception, not the rule. Even the professionals have a foundation shot selection based on the Wardlaw directionals, and apply them on a regular basis. Once they feel they have control of the point will they imply their choice of shot, OR they have a shot that they can rely on, on a consistent basis. (I.E. the Nadal running passing shot, or the Federer 90 degree change of direction backhand DTL passing shot)

So, Tennis_Monk, what can you say about your credentials?

So that means he's right about everything?

pfffffft, ridiculous.

look up ''appeal to authority fallacy''.

Don't bother responding to that post TennisMonk.

Swissv2
04-28-2008, 06:19 AM
I would use wardlaw's as a beginners guideline. At advanced levels (or if i play better players) i need to take risks to win.

So that means he's right about everything?

pfffffft, ridiculous.

look up ''appeal to authority fallacy''.

Don't bother responding to that post TennisMonk.

Its very easy to throw out a term such as "Appeal to authority fallacy", but you don't understand what that means. I never said that Chuck Kriese's knowledge is infallible, because if I stated that, then you can apply your term. Rather, Kriese has a system that has been proven to work time and again with great results at a very high level of play. If Kriese made a claim that Wardlaw Directionals work, which he could never back up with proven results, then one is justified to void the claim.

The main point in this conversation is that Tennis_Monk's assertion that the Wardlaw Directionals are ONLY for beginners, and cannot be used in advanced play is wrong.

sureshs
04-28-2008, 08:59 AM
Someone once asked Bjorn Borg about his strategic thinking while he played...his reply..."I mostly hit crosscourt." He refused to complicate and or clarify further.

That's the first thing I teach people about playing patterns...you need a reason to not hit crosscourt (preferably a good one).

Someone had posted on this board once that a similar question was asked of Pete Sampras, and he replied - I just put the ball where the opponent isn't. And refused to clarify further.

From what I have seen of pro matches, they use this strategy a lot of the time i.e. hitting to the open court, while once in a while using reverse psychology and putting the ball behind the opponent.

Even the great Federer was mercilessly pulled side to side by Sampras in the third exo last year.

Every so often a commentator will say - he had the entire open court to go to, but he gave it right back to him and lost the point.

I am not sure if this follows Wardlaw's directionals, but something to think about I hope.

Sentinel
04-28-2008, 09:08 AM
I am not sure if this follows Wardlaw's directionals, but something to think about I hope.

Hi Sureshs, first of all. Think of the devil ... yes, I was wondering about your absence and your one-liners :-D . Glad to see you back.

Actually, yesterday I was studying a Nick Boll video on placement and this seemed to make sense to me (a noob). He talks of RECOVERY position.

So if you are standing in the center and you hit to the opposite left corner, then you recover slightly to the right of the center since the opp has a larger angle on that side. Its easy to show in a diagram or vid than to explain.
So when you hit crosscourt your recovery position is the closest to you. When you hit down the line, you have your own court open, and you have to rush to the other half of the court to get to the recovery position.

Obviously this does not hold true in some situations, like you are sure you have a clean winner down the line. Or short balls. But by and large it is the safest not just due to high margin of error over net and length of court, but also safer due to proximity to recovery position.

Please let me know if the above is as per conventional/accepted logic. Thanks.

Bungalo Bill
04-28-2008, 09:14 AM
Thanks ...but no thanks.

In this thread, It is the purporters of Wardlaws as an advanced concept that are in need of that "first rule of holes".

Well this is where your brain fell out of your head.

Nobody has said it is an advanced topic. What we said is it can be used at all levels and is a fundamental aspect of hitting tennis shots and working out a point. Wardlaw directionals are a foundation to tennis tactics which also includes taking risk, hitting crosscourt to minimize errors, and understanding your own strengths and weaknesses to name a few.

What you dont understand is it isn't only for beginners as beginners are still learning to hit a ball and sustain a rally.

The Wardlaw Directionals was introduced at the COLLEGE level and they are hardly beginners.

If you want to do your own thing that is fine, but your knowledge surrounding what the Wardlaw Directionals is severely flawed which clearly shows you dont know what you are talking about.

If you read from the beginning of my posts, I have always mentioned that the pros will take more chances, however, they are taking those chances based on their ability to hit a better ball and their training. The pros are well beyond thinking crosscourt balls, however, they are aware that by going DTL with a ball crossing in your body is going against how their body would have a more natural shot. They are wel passed thinking anything about the Directionals.

It is a lot like learning the split-step, at first it feel awkward but over time it becomes automatic and you dont think about it any more.

For you to say hitting crosscourt (which is what the Directionals is based on) is for beginners is just flat out false. I have provided so much logical information on this topic that you have absolutely nothing to say and are now beginning to simply argue to argue.

sureshs
04-28-2008, 09:23 AM
Hi Sureshs, first of all. Think of the devil ... yes, I was wondering about your absence and your one-liners :-D . Glad to see you back.

Actually, yesterday I was studying a Nick Boll video on placement and this seemed to make sense to me (a noob). He talks of RECOVERY position.

So if you are standing in the center and you hit to the opposite left corner, then you recover slightly to the right of the center since the opp has a larger angle on that side. Its easy to show in a diagram or vid than to explain.
So when you hit crosscourt your recovery position is the closest to you. When you hit down the line, you have your own court open, and you have to rush to the other half of the court to get to the recovery position.

Obviously this does not hold true in some situations, like you are sure you have a clean winner down the line. Or short balls. But by and large it is the safest not just due to high margin of error over net and length of court, but also safer due to proximity to recovery position.

Please let me know if the above is as per conventional/accepted logic. Thanks.

I was caught up in some business travel and could not read your delightful posts. Then one day I woke up and found myself with pains and pulls all along my right leg from lower back till calf muscle. Either a ham string injury or a sciatica nerve issue. It is almost cured with stretching and ibuprofen, so I don't want to find out what it was :-)

Anyways, hitting crosscourt has all the advantages you mention that I have also read - net is lower, distance is greater, area is greater, recovery distance is shorter, path is 90% to racquet face so direction change is not required, etc. That is what I have seen every coach teach juniors.

Just pointing out that in the pro game, I find that they instinctively put the ball where their opponent isn't, or behind him a small %tage of the time. I am not sure whether it is in accordance with the directionals.

Bungalo Bill
04-28-2008, 09:29 AM
I am not debunking wardlaw. I am simply stating a very obvious fact that Shot selection at advanced levels is more than a ball crossing (or didnt) one's path. Wardlaw is a good approach for "learning" tennis rallies.

Yo! We are saying that too! But you have said it is ONLY for beginners!!!! It is not!

Advanced players hit their shots based on several factors and their understanding of risk reward goes way beyond Wardlaws.

Of course they go beyond Wardlaws but it is the Directionals that are the foundation. Hitting crosscourt, matchups, tactics, taking risk is all wrapped up.

Which is a better strategy?

a) Hit crosscourt or DTL because the ball crossed (or didnt) a path.

b) Hit cross court or DTL because you are in a position to play that shot + (whats my positional advantage on court , what can trouble my opponent /or what can move him around , what other options do i have + etc)

Which is Naive? I will always hit cross court FH because the ball did (or didnt) cross the path regardless of opponent /his position and also ignore all other apparent options available to end a point ?

Well this is where your stupidity really shows. Nobody is saying you cant take risks and go against the grain, especially if you see your opponent recover slowly. Nobody is saying you blindly ignore all your options. That is just dumb.

What we are saying is blindly accepting risk is what you dont want to do. Understanding the crosscourt ball, what is natural for your body to do is very valuable. This is fundamental and carries through to the advanced levels of tennis.

If you can't do them dont knock them. But to think the Directionals are the end to tennis strategy and tactics is just stupid.

Bungalo Bill
04-28-2008, 09:33 AM
I was caught up in some business travel and could not read your delightful posts. Then one day I woke up and found myself with pains and pulls all along my right leg from lower back till calf muscle. Either a ham string injury or a sciatica nerve issue. It is almost cured with stretching and ibuprofen, so I don't want to find out what it was :-)

Anyways, hitting crosscourt has all the advantages you mention that I have also read - net is lower, distance is greater, area is greater, recovery distance is shorter, path is 90% to racquet face so direction change is not required, etc. That is what I have seen every coach teach juniors.

Just pointing out that in the pro game, I find that they instinctively put the ball where their opponent isn't, or behind him a small %tage of the time. I am not sure whether it is in accordance with the directionals.

Pros will build a point. The crosscourt ball is a staple shot. If they want to open it up, they need to take risk. This may or may not work in their favor. However, going crosscourt is alway obvious to see especially if they are working the ball around for a key matchup they want.

What is idiotic to say is that the Directionals are the end to all tennis strategy, tactics, and risk taking and that it is only for beginners.

Sentinel
04-28-2008, 09:34 AM
Just pointing out that in the pro game, I find that they instinctively put the ball where their opponent isn't, or behind him a small %tage of the time. I am not sure whether it is in accordance with the directionals.
Very often putting the ball behind the opp does mean CC too, although i can guess that sometimes it is not - when opp goes down the line and runs to cover cross-court - even I've done this with success -- the DTL behind the opponent is an easy one, doesn't need to be a killer shot.

Now I'm a newbie to all this but while watching the Nadal-Fed match i did notice him often giving it back to Nadal DTL rather than going CC. And Nadal would go CC and win the point. It seemed absurd to me ... seemed like Fed did not want to give the ball to Nadal's FH and get pounded on his own BH, so he gave BH's down the line. Seemed like a basic violation of Wardlaw with no reason apparent to me.

Did anyone else notice that, would you like to explain without us going too off-topic.

Bungalo Bill
04-28-2008, 09:46 AM
Very often putting the ball behind the opp does mean CC too, although i can guess that sometimes it is not - when opp goes down the line and runs to cover cross-court - even I've done this with success -- the DTL behind the opponent is an easy one, doesn't need to be a killer shot.

Now I'm a newbie to all this but while watching the Nadal-Fed match i did notice him often giving it back to Nadal DTL rather than going CC. And Nadal would go CC and win the point. It seemed absurd to me ... seemed like Fed did not want to give the ball to Nadal's FH and get pounded on his own BH, so he gave BH's down the line. Seemed like a basic violation of Wardlaw with no reason apparent to me.

Did anyone else notice that, would you like to explain without us going too off-topic.

Lets straighten some of this OVER ANALYSIS OF WHAT THE DIRECTIONALS ARE.

All the Directionals are saying is, if the ball crosses you, your most natural swing will be to send the ball back where it came from - which in many cases is crosscourt. This is very evident and valuable for the player that is developing their game plan. It is not something you should be consciously thinking about during a match but should be developed to make it more automatic. It is also what consistency is built on for reasons we already know: longer court, lower net, easier to recover.

It is also not saying that you can't hit DTL if the ball crosses your body. It is simply about building consistency and using your most natural shot to sustain a rally, work out your tactics, take risk with your weapons, and so on.

Wardlaws is also about knowing when the BEST time it is to change direction on the ball. This is very important for matchup strategies and understanding what your opponents game plan is against you sooner then later. This has nothing to do with a player wanting to "defy" their most natural shot and do something else. The Directionals are only saying hitting the ball in this direction compliments your most natural swing.

Finally, it is not saying that you have to change direction. It is again simply about building consistency and using your most natural shot to win the point, sustaining a rally, and building tactics around your weapons, your risk-taking ability, etc...this is hardly beginner level.

To say that the Directional are anything else, are for only beginners, or to imply we are saying it is more then it is, is flat out ridiculous.

Fay
04-28-2008, 05:10 PM
You are right. I would not go cross court to the baseline, if it was a short ball near the sideline. The would leave the huge area for the opponents passing shot.

This discussion was for a low short ball cross court (defensive one for you)

If you change the direction and go down the line , the opponent still has lots of area cross court before you can cover the center.

You could do a very sharp cross court where the ball crosses the opponents sideline around the service line, taking him off the court. This way you do not violate wardlaw's law in terms of you getting the ball cross court. Also, gives you time to cover the center angle, and gives the opponent a really small area to hit into from outside the sideline.

Oh I get it now. ThnX

bhupaes
04-28-2008, 05:51 PM
If the ball is paceless, or a sitter, or easy otherwise - directionals don't apply - just hit it to wherever you'll get the most advantage.

It's just not safe to change directions on a heavy and/or deep "outside" ball, unless you are hitting perpendicular to the baseline, because a slightly delayed swing will spray the ball outside the sideline. This is not true for "inside" balls, where you have to hit earlier to change direction, and hit later to send it back where it came from.

This is all the directionals are saying, as far as I can tell.

Tennis_Monk
04-28-2008, 07:28 PM
Yo! We are saying that too! But you have said it is ONLY for beginners!!!! It is not!



Of course they go beyond Wardlaws but it is the Directionals that are the foundation. Hitting crosscourt, matchups, tactics, taking risk is all wrapped up.



Well this is where your stupidity really shows. Nobody is saying you cant take risks and go against the grain, especially if you see your opponent recover slowly. Nobody is saying you blindly ignore all your options. That is just dumb.

What we are saying is blindly accepting risk is what you dont want to do. Understanding the crosscourt ball, what is natural for your body to do is very valuable. This is fundamental and carries through to the advanced levels of tennis.

If you can't do them dont knock them. But to think the Directionals are the end to tennis strategy and tactics is just stupid.

Well ...whose stupidity is really showing up is very clear. All of a sudden the directionals became foundational as opposed to advanced players winning strategy. May be few more posts can knock it down to beginners stuff. In any case foundational also means Basic. Who usually learns the basics?..probably the Pros because they dont have their basics...yea right.

I never disagreed with hitting cross court. There are several advantages in hitting cross court (little to do with Wardlaw). The diagnol is longer and hence provides more margin, The net is little lower in the middle of the court and etc ... Look at the link i provided.

I would like to point out the "Blindly accepting risk".

So which has more risk involved?

a) Hit cross court or DTL because a ball did or didnt cross the path

b) You hit DTL or cross court because you already did the risk evaluation (that includes your court position, opponents, your available shot options, your comfort level, opponents preferences/limitations, possible responses)

(a) may work at beginner levels. (b) has higher percentage of working even at Advanced levels because it incorporates more parameters.

Once again i will reiterate what i stated in earlier posts. Wardlaws is basics/beginners.it doesnt incorporate some essential key elements that is staple diet of advanced players game.

Fay
04-28-2008, 07:46 PM
......... Wardlaws is basics/beginners.it doesnt incorporate some essential key elements that is staple diet of advanced players game.

Please share what is the staple diet of play for advanced players ~

Ross K
04-28-2008, 09:50 PM
1. Can someone please oblige with a simple explanation here?... basically I get the first part about hitting back cross court in the direction of where the ball came from - but not sure about the rest of it - 'inside balls', etc.

2. How specifically do the directionals relate to inside out fh's? :confused:

Thanks

R.

pr0n8r
04-29-2008, 04:52 AM
WD's are what every beginner should learn, but surprisingly, they are also what many advanced players are missing.

pr0n8r
04-29-2008, 05:13 AM
1. Can someone please oblige with a simple explanation here?... basically I get the first part about hitting back cross court in the direction of where the ball came from - but not sure about the rest of it - 'inside balls', etc.

If the ball crosses your body, it's an outside ball. Otherwise, if the ball doesn't cross your body, it's an inside ball.

1. As a general rule, don't change the direction of outside balls. Hit these balls deep with plenty of net clearance.

2. If an outside ball falls short, or you feel as if you can punish it, change the direction of the ball, which means sending it down the line (Wardlaw's 90 degree change of direction). You are looking for a winner or weak reply on this down the line shot. Follow these to net.

3. Change the direction of inside balls, and pull them accross your body. These are the balls you can do damage with while not being risky, so feel as if you have the license to hit them more aggressively. For example, if your opponent's backhand doesn't cross your body to your backhand, punish that ball with your forehand to the deuce side of the court (for righty's). One of the most important aspects of WD's that is often overlooked is that you really need to get into the mindset of punishing inside balls to receive the full benefit. It's not just about hitting crosscourt.


2. How specifically do the directionals relate to inside out fh's?
I treat run-around shots as a replacement for the shot you might have hit, and they inherit the rules of the shot they are replacing. So, if an outside ball is coming towards the backhand, and you run around it, if you want to play safe by the directionals, hit that forehand inside-out. If you want to take risk, hit it inside-in.

Ross K
04-29-2008, 05:21 AM
prOn8r,

Many thanks for your revealing, clear and concise post there ^!

Bungalo Bill
04-29-2008, 06:32 AM
WD's are what every beginner should learn, but surprisingly, they are also what many advanced players are missing.

Ohhhhhhh!!!!! Outstanding! Great comment and reply which I believes summs up this entire thread.

With your insight, I rest my case.

Bungalo Bill
04-29-2008, 06:55 AM
Well ...whose stupidity is really showing up is very clear. All of a sudden the directionals became foundational as opposed to advanced players winning strategy.

Man you are talking in circles. This will be my last reply to your stupidity.

Once again, there is nothing opposing. YOU ARE MAKING STUFF UP! What you just said about "winning strategy" (which you have no clue about) is complimentary in nature. The pros aren't working on the Directionals in practice although they still practice fundamentals. They already know that the crosscourt ball is important in their matches. Your argument is weak.

May be few more posts can knock it down to beginners stuff. In any case foundational also means Basic. Who usually learns the basics?..probably the Pros because they dont have their basics...yea right.

Actually, you said the Directional are only for beginners. I said they are not. There are many 4.0 - 5.0 players that could use the Directionals to improve their game.

I never disagreed with hitting cross court. There are several advantages in hitting cross court (little to do with Wardlaw). The diagnol is longer and hence provides more margin, The net is little lower in the middle of the court and etc ... Look at the link i provided.

Yeah you did. Over and over again you said the Directionals are for beginners. That advanced players just "do whatever they want" and you implied that they dont need to hit crosscourt. You also implied that pros really don't hit crosscourt and they just hit where their heart desires. Pretty idiotic isn't it. lol

I would like to point out the "Blindly accepting risk".

So which has more risk involved?

a) Hit cross court or DTL because a ball did or didnt cross the path

b) You hit DTL or cross court because you already did the risk evaluation (that includes your court position, opponents, your available shot options, your comfort level, opponents preferences/limitations, possible responses)

(a) may work at beginner levels. (b) has higher percentage of working even at Advanced levels because it incorporates more parameters.

Once again i will reiterate what i stated in earlier posts. Wardlaws is basics/beginners.it doesnt incorporate some essential key elements that is staple diet of advanced players game.

So what are those key elements? I have already stated what they are and showed how they all compliment each other? They are progressions. Have I ever said the pros only use the Directionals or consciously use them and are not allowed to do anything else?

Once again! The Directionals show where the ball should be hit that is most natural to your body position and swing. It does not say "you can't do anything else." The Directionals were introduced at the college level and is also incorporated in many books. The video that shows this is hardly for beginners.

You also seem to think that I am implying that ALL pros use the Directionals. They don't! The Directionals is simply an approach to the game. It is a way at looking at it and provides answers to players who are diving into tennis strategy and tactics which usually takes place at the 4.0 level and above. It also provides insight for the crosscourt ball that the pros hit often. It provides insight on when the most opportune time is to change the direction of the ball. It isn't saying you can't change the direction if it happens another way.

This is what you are not getting.

Swissv2
04-29-2008, 06:59 AM
Bill, Tennis_Monk is "obviously" a pro player, better than any of us at TW, rated a 8.0+ NTRP - and has 5 GS under his belt, has beaten BOTH Nadal and Federer at least 12 times - so he MUST know what he is talking about. :p

Bungalo Bill
04-29-2008, 07:05 AM
Bill, Tennis_Monk is "obviously" a pro player, better than any of us at TW, rated a 8.0+ NTRP - and has 5 GS under his belt, has beaten BOTH Nadal and Federer at least 12 times - so he MUST know what he is talking about. :p

Yeah, actually I think he is a frustrated 3.0 tennis player that can't keep things simple to save his life. He is trying to box in the Directionals when there is nothing to box in!

Just his ranting about how taxes are illegal and brings up the wrong amendment (and also explains it wrong) is enough for me to know this guy is for the cookoo's nest.

rocket
04-29-2008, 07:12 AM
Federer vs Hewitt:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ubmmOPuuGYc

NoBadMojo
04-29-2008, 07:53 AM
1. Can someone please oblige with a simple explanation here?... basically I get the first part about hitting back cross court in the direction of where the ball came from - but not sure about the rest of it - 'inside balls', etc.

2. How specifically do the directionals relate to inside out fh's? :confused:

Thanks

R.

I dont blame you for being confused. While these directionals are fundamental, i think the terminology 'inside ball' is really confusing as evidenced by all the discussion both in this section of the forum and in the Adult League section.

As to inside out forehands as applied to these confusing directionals, I teach two types of inside out FH's.....a step around FH and a run around FH. both can involve a change in direction. so you might step around a so called 'inside ball' depending and hit an inside out forehand ...that would/could then essentially be the same as a crosscourt and you arent changing the direction of the ball...or you might step around and hit a forehand and rip it up the line if that happens to be the better choice. There is also the element of hitting to the opponents weaker side which is often the backhand at less than advanced levels, so that would involve more change of ball direction. then at more advanced levels, the strategy might be to expose the backhand by pulling the opponent wide to his forehand and then making him hit his weaker backhand on the run...so much of this is situational and based on abilities.

I really think depth trumps direction any time. that the use of these directionals is so dependent upon the players abilities and strengths and the opponents abilities and tendencies that they arent really that meaningful other than the message of crosscourt = good. you have a lower net to clear and more length of court to work with

The basic rule of going cross court unless you have a ball to change the direction on is fundamental to tennis..the 'directionals' just seems to confuse a lot of people....but cross court sans the depth aint so good

EDIT: I added more stuff

Bungalo Bill
04-29-2008, 07:58 AM
I dont blame you for being confused. While these directionals are fundamental, i think the terminology 'inside ball' is really confusing as evidenced by all the discussion both in this section of the forum and in the Adult League section.

As to inside out forehands as applied to these confusing directionals, I teach two types of inside out FH's.....a step around FH and a run around FH. both can involve a change in direction. so you might step around a so called 'inside ball' depending and hit an inside out forehand and may or may not change the direction depending

I really think depth trumps direction any time. that the use of these directionals is so dependent upon the players abilities and strengths and the opponents abilities and tendencies that they arent really that meaningful other than the message of crosscourt = good. you have a lower net to clear and more length of court to work with

The basic rule of going cross court unless you have a ball to change the direction on is fundamental to tennis..the 'directionals' just seems to confuse a lot of people....but cross court sans the depth aint so good

Very good post. I can buy that explanation. I appreciate your comment. I really do. It isn't for everyone nor should it be. It is simply an approach.

sureshs
04-29-2008, 11:35 AM
Some of these posts got me thinking. That is why I learn something new every so often out here. What I am wondering now is: how important are the lesser net height and longer distance in today's game, specially for recreational players? I think the difference in height is 6 inches. Shouldn't recreational players be hitting with much more margin than that anyways? Re: distance, with sufficient top spin, is it really that much more difficult to bring the ball into the court on DTLs, specially when the swingspeed is not at the pro level?

Bungalo Bill
04-29-2008, 11:57 AM
Some of these posts got me thinking. That is why I learn something new every so often out here. What I am wondering now is: how important are the lesser net height and longer distance in today's game, specially for recreational players? I think the difference in height is 6 inches. Shouldn't recreational players be hitting with much more margin than that anyways? Re: distance, with sufficient top spin, is it really that much more difficult to bring the ball into the court on DTLs, specially when the swingspeed is not at the pro level?

Great point! At the beginner level the ball is moving so slow or is usually looped that the Directionals aren't going to be of much help except just learnig that crosscourt balls are a key fundamental. In other words, the swing speed of the racquet vs. the speed of the incoming ball will outweigh things.

When the ball is hit harder and coming at you faster and with more spin, controlling the ball becomes more of a concern. The ball is heavier and timing is critical, not to mention your ability to hit cleanly consistently.

Although you can defy the Directionals any time, this knowledge plays a key role in understanding what is the most natural shot to take in order to reduce your chances for error. The Wardlaw Directionals are about playing the percentages and going with the shot that gives yo the best chance to win the point.

Should you ever defy the Directionals? Sure. That is where risk comes in and knowing what your strengths are. Many times, when I play I run around my backhand which technically keeps the ball on the same side, however, the natural shot is to hit my inside-out forehand back crosscourt.

The Directionals are basic and fundamental to tennis strategy and tactics. This is different then it being for beginners.

Ross K
04-29-2008, 10:15 PM
I dont blame you for being confused. While these directionals are fundamental, i think the terminology 'inside ball' is really confusing as evidenced by all the discussion both in this section of the forum and in the Adult League section.

As to inside out forehands as applied to these confusing directionals, I teach two types of inside out FH's.....a step around FH and a run around FH. both can involve a change in direction. so you might step around a so called 'inside ball' depending and hit an inside out forehand ...that would/could then essentially be the same as a crosscourt and you arent changing the direction of the ball...or you might step around and hit a forehand and rip it up the line if that happens to be the better choice. There is also the element of hitting to the opponents weaker side which is often the backhand at less than advanced levels, so that would involve more change of ball direction. then at more advanced levels, the strategy might be to expose the backhand by pulling the opponent wide to his forehand and then making him hit his weaker backhand on the run...so much of this is situational and based on abilities.

I really think depth trumps direction any time. that the use of these directionals is so dependent upon the players abilities and strengths and the opponents abilities and tendencies that they arent really that meaningful other than the message of crosscourt = good. you have a lower net to clear and more length of court to work with

The basic rule of going cross court unless you have a ball to change the direction on is fundamental to tennis..the 'directionals' just seems to confuse a lot of people....but cross court sans the depth aint so good

EDIT: I added more stuff

Thanks NBM - nice post.

NoBadMojo
04-30-2008, 08:38 AM
Thanks NBM - nice post.

you're quit welcome Ross. mojo

Cindysphinx
04-30-2008, 11:54 AM
What I am wondering now is: how important are the lesser net height and longer distance in today's game, specially for recreational players? I think the difference in height is 6 inches. Shouldn't recreational players be hitting with much more margin than that anyways? Re: distance, with sufficient top spin, is it really that much more difficult to bring the ball into the court on DTLs, specially when the swingspeed is not at the pro level?

Others are more qualified to speak, but I have the unique perspective of being Not Very Good, especially at singles.

I think the advantages you get by going crosscourt (lower net, bigger court) are huge for us recreational players. We *don't* have the control to thread the needle that finely. Many of us have little spin to help us and hit too flat too often. We have been known to hit when badly out of position due to unfortunate footwork, which further decreases our control and ability to generate spin.

So if the DTL court is both smaller and requires some topspin to clear the net, we are flirting with disaster absent some discipline in our shot selection.

heycal
04-30-2008, 10:29 PM
From what I have seen of pro matches, they use this strategy a lot of the time i.e. hitting to the open court, while once in a while using reverse psychology and putting the ball behind the opponent.

Just pointing out that in the pro game, I find that they instinctively put the ball where their opponent isn't, or behind him a small %tage of the time. I am not sure whether it is in accordance with the directionals.

It seems like I notice the opposite when I watch pros. Before I learned of this wardlaw business, and just thinking about cross court shots in general, I could never understand why the pros seem to engage in so many cross court rallies, while I myself rarely did. As I'd watch a pro rally, I kept thinking they could/would/should go down the line into the open court that seemed to sitting there beckoning right before my eyes -- but often they would just hit it back cross court. Now I finally realize why they do that. It's a smarter and safer shot.


Change the direction of inside balls, and pull them accross your body. These are the balls you can do damage with while not being risky, so feel as if you have the license to hit them more aggressively. For example, if your opponent's backhand doesn't cross your body to your backhand, punish that ball with your forehand to the deuce side of the court (for righty's). One of the most important aspects of WD's that is often overlooked is that you really need to get into the mindset of punishing inside balls to receive the full benefit. It's not just about hitting crosscourt.


Exactly! WD is NOT just about hitting cross court. Spanking those inside balls is a whole other part of Wardlaw that is getting overlooked here. That's why this Wardlaw stuff is worth paying more attention to than the simplistic "try and hit cross court unless you get a short ball" advice we always hear.

Cindysphinx
05-01-2008, 02:56 AM
Just to add to what Heycal says . . .

The "hit crosscourt until you get a short ball" doesn't seem to be working for me. You have to wait a great long time for a short ball against some players, as hitting deep is what they do. I figure Wardlaw gives me a guideline on when I can Try Something. Right now, I just Try Something when I get sick and tired. It feels random because it is random.

Well, I have another practice match today, and I will try Wardlaw. again. The opponent is good at directing medium shots to the baseline, so waiting for a short ball isn't going to work so well with her.

Sentinel
05-01-2008, 03:27 AM
^^^ Cindy, wardlaws is not the end all -- as you said earlier, what to do if the ball is in the center, not in the side? I've been watching DVD's on tactics by various coaches and there's a bunch of other things you can do to get that shortball.

As I understand it, you can;t wait all day for a short ball. I'd rather not get into details because i am not a coach, and I'm probably newer and less experienced than most.

Suggest you google for tactics and check out some books or videos, too.
Or start a thread on tactics.

Fletch
05-01-2008, 03:59 AM
I am going to give this a try just based on the simplicity of the principle, and it seems to make perfect sense. One question though.
Say you are playing a lefty and he gets you in a your backhand to his strength, his forehand rally, do you keep with the crosscourt pattern? Doesn't seem like the right play with the crosscourts, seems like you would eventually want to go down the line. Same goes if the player has a slightly better backhand.

Bungalo Bill
05-01-2008, 06:48 AM
I am going to give this a try just based on the simplicity of the principle, and it seems to make perfect sense. One question though.
Say you are playing a lefty and he gets you in a your backhand to his strength, his forehand rally, do you keep with the crosscourt pattern? Doesn't seem like the right play with the crosscourts, seems like you would eventually want to go down the line. Same goes if the player has a slightly better backhand.

Hi Fletch,

In this case no. You want to get out of that matchup. Chances are you will lose more rallies then win.

Where the Wardlaw principle comes into play is recognizing when the BEST time to change directions for various reasons including moving the ball to get the matchup you want.

However, the Wardlaw Directions are guidelines to higher percentage tennis and shot selection. If you get a ball you should have changed direction on, but missed the opportunity, then it is because you are either unaware or are not paying attention.

It is very easy out there to throw out what you know about tennis in a rally and just blindly hit the ball.

With that said, if you are not getting the "ideal" ball, then an inside-out forehand may be the ticket to reposition yourself lets say after two more shots or you will have to assume more risk.

Fletch
05-01-2008, 07:28 AM
Bungalo Bill,
Thanks for the tip, that is kind of what I thought, it makes sense. I read up on this last night and can't wait to try it. Interesting concept at the net too. It keeps it simple, basic and high percentage. I can tell I will have to work on the short ball change of direction shot. I would think every high school coach would implement this so kids are not just smacking the ball all over the place.
When reading it last night, there was a story about a D3 team, Kenyon, using it with much success in the mid 90's. They won a national title in 94 or 95. I guess the theory that this is for beginners is not true. I have a feeling Clemson used this too, since there coach endorses it.
Fletch

Bungalo Bill
05-01-2008, 07:43 AM
Bungalo Bill,
Thanks for the tip, that is kind of what I thought, it makes sense. I read up on this last night and can't wait to try it. Interesting concept at the net too. It keeps it simple, basic and high percentage. I can tell I will have to work on the short ball change of direction shot. I would think every high school coach would implement this so kids are not just smacking the ball all over the place.

Yes, it does keep things simple. However, just because it is simple doesn't mean it is only for beginners. I believe (and some dont which is fine) that it is the basics of tennis tactics and strategy. As you begin to incorporate this in your game, you will need to grow further and add more intermediate and advanced methods and learn ways in constructing a game plan. It is actually pretty fun to get into.

When reading it last night, there was a story about a D3 team, Kenyon, using it with much success in the mid 90's. They won a national title in 94 or 95. I guess the theory that this is for beginners is not true. I have a feeling Clemson used this too, since there coach endorses it.
Fletch

Exactly, it isn't true which was my point in that senseless argument.

It is the beginning to tennis tactics and strategy which is usually introduced at the 3.5 level and many times higher then that!

It will improve your game because it is going after the percentages which is very important in club level play. So many club players take unnatural shots and make so many errors.

Even if you are predictable at the club level using the Directionals, you will still be in a good position to win the match simply due to you playing high percentage tennis.

From the 3.5 level and above, I start introducing them.

So here is what you need to practice.

1. If you have a partner: Get a basket of balls (if you lived in my area, I would be happy to drill you for free). Have your partner feed you balls to your backhand coming from crosscourt. Every ball that crosses in front of you hit crosscourt. Go with the high percentage shot. Do 10 of these. have your partner from the 10th ball on, mix in a ball that doesnt cross in front of you. Change the direction of that ball. Always talk to yourself and mutter "crosscourt, straight, etc... Do this drill on both sides.

2. Practice your crosscourt ball on both sides and also hit angled shots (seperate drill) to get a rally going crosscourt from the center mark area.

3. Practice your change direction ball.

Hope that makes sense.

Fletch
05-01-2008, 08:54 AM
It does make sense and I will give it a shot this week.

I am getting a ball machine so this type of drilling will really work well with the machine.

I appreciate the offer to hit for free, but I don't get to Boise much :)

Bungalo Bill
05-01-2008, 08:59 AM
It does make sense and I will give it a shot this week.

I am getting a ball machine so this type of drilling will really work well with the machine.

I appreciate the offer to hit for free, but I don't get to Boise much :)

Practice hitting the ball and moving the ball crosscourt - a lot.

sureshs
05-01-2008, 10:22 AM
Others are more qualified to speak, but I have the unique perspective of being Not Very Good, especially at singles.

I think the advantages you get by going crosscourt (lower net, bigger court) are huge for us recreational players. We *don't* have the control to thread the needle that finely. Many of us have little spin to help us and hit too flat too often. We have been known to hit when badly out of position due to unfortunate footwork, which further decreases our control and ability to generate spin.

So if the DTL court is both smaller and requires some topspin to clear the net, we are flirting with disaster absent some discipline in our shot selection.

I hear you

sureshs
05-01-2008, 10:27 AM
It seems like I notice the opposite when I watch pros. Before I learned of this wardlaw business, and just thinking about cross court shots in general, I could never understand why the pros seem to engage in so many cross court rallies, while I myself rarely did. As I'd watch a pro rally, I kept thinking they could/would/should go down the line into the open court that seemed to sitting there beckoning right before my eyes -- but often they would just hit it back cross court. Now I finally realize why they do that. It's a smarter and safer shot.


It is possible that when I watch, the open court shots are the ones which draw the attention, because they are more spectacular. Mind can play strange tricks by filtering out the usual stuff.

hewitt20
05-01-2008, 08:25 PM
Improved my game so much

Gugafan_Redux
05-02-2008, 06:53 AM
C'mon man. A 5-second investment in Google returned the following:

http://hoskinsjohn.bizland.com/direc/

Wow, I'd be interested in reading that if it

didn't give me a raging heading looking at the type.

sureshs
05-02-2008, 09:22 AM
Watched on TTC last nite a 2007 clay court final in Acapulco, Mexico between Moya and Chela. Observed each point carefully to make sure I was not biased. I have to say that the only consistent pattern I could discern was "hitting to the open court." Happened all the time. Did not matter whether the open court required a crosscourt or DTL shot - they did it all the same. In fact, the more the shot from the opponent was going "outside" their body (away from them sideways, that is), the more they seem to return it DTL, not crosscourt. Seemed to be easier for them to guide such a ball up the line and into the open court, rather than put the effort to get it back crosscourt to the waiting opponent. The crosscourt returns were actually on shots over which they could exert control - these they aggressively smacked back at the opponent. Quite the opposite of what you might expect - the difficult shots were returned DTL, the easier ones were attacked crosscourt (sometimes - other times these were also to the open court). We are talking about a former #1 here, so it is interesting.

heycal
05-02-2008, 09:28 AM
^^^
Hmm. I don't have the tennis channel so can't run and watch a match to see what you mean, but what do others think of Suresh's findings, and the idea we are talking about in general? When and how often are the pros hitting xcourt and why, and when are they going up the line/into the open court, and why?

sureshs
05-02-2008, 09:38 AM
^^^
Hmm. I don't have the tennis channel so can't run and watch a match to see what you mean, but what do others think of Suresh's findings, and the idea we are talking about in general?

It is very intriguing. A crosscourt return is supposed to be easier for the reason that your stringbed is at right angles to the incoming direction, among the many other reasons that have been mentioned here. I am wondering if this is true for topspin anymore. These guys really do not just hit with the stringbed moving directly forward into the ball anymore - they have topspin action going on. It might be that returning topspin is easier to do DTL with a little topspin of your own, rather than challenging it and putting it right back crosscourt, which might require a lot more topspin to reverse the incoming topspin.

In table tennis, the advised return of serve to a "pendulum serve" is "up the line." This serve, the most common one, comes from a righty server from his backhand side to the righty returner's backhand, and moves away from him towards the left end of the table. It is considered that the safest return to control the spin is to get it back to the server's forehand, not to go crosscourt. It is called "going with the spin," not "against the spin."

tennisdad65
05-02-2008, 09:40 AM
Interesting observations by sureshs.
Seems like there was a lot of open court..
1) Did you notice if one or both guys were protecting their backhands and hitting more inside out forehands from the backhand corner?
2) Were they cheating to their backhand sides after hitting their shots? i.e. were they not moving back to center completely after a stroke?

sureshs
05-02-2008, 12:26 PM
Interesting observations by sureshs.
Seems like there was a lot of open court..
1) Did you notice if one or both guys were protecting their backhands and hitting more inside out forehands from the backhand corner?
2) Were they cheating to their backhand sides after hitting their shots? i.e. were they not moving back to center completely after a stroke?

They were hitting IO forehands, but not to the extent of someone like Roddick.

They were always cheating on recovery. This I have noticed in the men's game a lot. The WTA players often follow the book and move back to the center for recovery. But even then, no one has the time to move to the other side of the center line after hitting a DTL shot. The men certainly move towards the center most of the time, but they do it partially after hitting the shot, and then continue it only after guaging where the opponent is going to hit. If they anticipate the return is going to come to the same side, they stop their recovery. They don't want to be caught by a shot aimed at getting behind them.

The impression I get is that they are making a tradeoff during recovery. They do the minimal recovery, to protect against the "behind" return. If they always did a full recovery, it would mean spending a lot of energy, and even then they may be still on the run and unable to return successfully. They just let these balls go and concede the point, rather than spending energy in an unsuccessful attempt. The exceptions may be Nadal and Hewitt, who have the stamina to chase down every ball. For others, it is not worth it since they have to conserve energy for the entire match.

LuckyR
05-02-2008, 12:29 PM
Interesting observations by sureshs.
Seems like there was a lot of open court..
1) Did you notice if one or both guys were protecting their backhands and hitting more inside out forehands from the backhand corner?
2) Were they cheating to their backhand sides after hitting their shots? i.e. were they not moving back to center completely after a stroke?


You are aware that you aren't supposed to recover to the hash mark after hitting your shot, right?

sureshs
05-02-2008, 12:36 PM
You are aware that you aren't supposed to recover to the hash mark after hitting your shot, right?

What I have heard is till a couple of feet of the hash on the same side after crosscourt, and a couple of feet of the hash on the other side after DTL (these are the center of angles). What I was saying is even after DTL shots, the men don't seem to do this.

Sentinel
05-03-2008, 12:37 AM
What I have heard is till a couple of feet of the hash on the same side after crosscourt, and a couple of feet of the hash on the other side after DTL (these are the center of angles). What I was saying is even after DTL shots, the men don't seem to do this.
suresh, I was just watching a match (small clip (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=31BuQK-za6o)) of Davydenko, and I noticed that in a CC rally he is always recovering and then again coming back. Just one example, though. I don't know whether its the norm, but certainly it is happening.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=31BuQK-za6o

heycal
05-03-2008, 07:11 AM
suresh, I was just watching a match (small clip (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=31BuQK-za6o)) of Davydenko, and I noticed that in a CC rally he is always recovering and then again coming back. Just one example, though. I don't know whether its the norm, but certainly it is happening.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=31BuQK-za6o

Many cross courts shots as opposed to open court shots there, Suresh...

tennisdad65
05-03-2008, 08:45 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9tZhQi8aDcg

This is a 64 second rally between hewitt and Fed. They seems to be following the law >80% for the first ~45 seconds during the baseline rally. The last ~15 seconds of the rally is more net related.

sureshs
05-04-2008, 10:15 AM
suresh, I was just watching a match (small clip (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=31BuQK-za6o)) of Davydenko, and I noticed that in a CC rally he is always recovering and then again coming back. Just one example, though. I don't know whether its the norm, but certainly it is happening.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=31BuQK-za6o

Many cross courts shots as opposed to open court shots there, Suresh...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9tZhQi8aDcg

This is a 64 second rally between hewitt and Fed. They seems to be following the law >80% for the first ~45 seconds during the baseline rally. The last ~15 seconds of the rally is more net related.

You are correct. The Fed-Hewitt point was almost all cross-court. In the Davydenko clip, lot of crosscourts, but some of them were also to the open court.

sureshs
05-04-2008, 10:18 AM
Watched the first few minutes of this (Nadal-Federer):

http://youtube.com/watch?v=jdLQPm_lEYo

Many DTL open courts.

Chrystal
05-04-2008, 11:10 AM
Watched the first few minutes of this (Nadal-Federer):

http://youtube.com/watch?v=jdLQPm_lEYo

Many DTL open courts.

Good point. Could it be something to do with the fact that one is LH and the other RH? Are the directionals compromised if you are playing an opponent who uses a different hand to you?

heycal
05-04-2008, 12:28 PM
^^^
That's always the question I come back to, the lefty player versus righty play aspect of things, and how that might affect the Wardlaw principles.

GuyClinch
05-05-2008, 04:38 AM
I think they are quite effective and I disagree with the poster who says that are used for beginners. The beginners I play with hit so many short balls that the Wardlaw rules about not changing direction don't apply that much. Your allowed to change directions on weak balls - in fact I think it's encouraged.

I also think Wardlaw might get a bit too much credit. I think many players naturally learn to play with these laws just through trial and error.

Pete

Kaptain Karl
05-05-2008, 11:08 AM
sureshs - I think you are over-thinking the Directionals. (Have you actually *read* Pressure Tennis?) Or are you attempting to formulate arguments about the Directionals based solely on the snippets of info you've gathered from abbreviated "finds" on the Web?

Right on page 20, Wardlaw describes the Directionals as only one of "The Big Three."

The big three -- Directionals, court position, and shot selection -- form the general framework for tactical tennis by addressing the following three tactical decisions:
• When to change direction of the ball
• Where to position yourself on the court
• What type of shot to use

... Again, the big threee address tactical decisions and provide a strategic framework from which players build their tactical games.

The Directionals are not "laws". They are part of a "framework" for tactical tennis.

My copy of Pressure Tennis is one of the most highlighted tennis books I own. Wardlaw's book is a prized resource to me as a Coach.

Good luck as you explore the Directionals ... and how they work with the "other two" members of The Big Three....

- KK

sureshs
05-05-2008, 11:18 AM
sureshs - I think you are over-thinking the Directionals. (Have you actually *read* Pressure Tennis?) Or are you attempting to formulate arguments about the Directionals based solely on the snippets of info you've gathered from abbreviated "finds" on the Web?

Right on page 20, Wardlaw describes the Directionals as only one of "The Big Three."

The big three -- Directionals, court position, and shot selection -- form the general framework for tactical tennis by addressing the following three tactical decisions:
• When to change direction of the ball
• Where to position yourself on the court
• What type of shot to use

... Again, the big threee address tactical decisions and provide a strategic framework from which players build their tactical games.

The Directionals are not "laws". They are part of a "framework" for tactical tennis.

My copy of Pressure Tennis is one of the most highlighted tennis books I own. Wardlaw's book is a prized resource to me as a Coach.

Good luck as you explore the Directionals ... and how they work with the "other two" members of The Big Three....

- KK

No no, I am not over thinking it. The first match that I watched after reading this thread just happened to be a Moya-Chela clay court match shown on TTC where they were hitting to the open court all the time. As other pointed out, in clips from Federer-Hewitt and Davydenko, this was not the case.

Bungalo Bill
05-05-2008, 11:37 AM
No no, I am not over thinking it. The first match that I watched after reading this thread just happened to be a Moya-Chela clay court match shown on TTC where they were hitting to the open court all the time. As other pointed out, in clips from Federer-Hewitt and Davydenko, this was not the case.

Players will gamble on their shots a lot especially at the pro level when players are so fast and consistent. They have to make something happen.

However, what goes largely unnoticed is when a pro hits to the open court. Although at times they will change the direction on a difficult ball, most of the time it is on a ball that is hit slower or is a ball that doesnt bounce as deep.

Once again, the Directionals are a foundation to tennis tactics and strategy. It isn't law.

Kaptain Karl
05-05-2008, 02:36 PM
Watched the first few minutes of this (Nadal-Federer) ... Many DTL open courts.Context is important....

Fed had already won the 1st set. It seems the typical "cat and mouse" game was going-on in the first part of that clip (which was early in the 2nd set) where each phenomenally gifted player was attempting to gain the FH-to-BH advantage. What you saw as "DTL open court" shots I saw as each attempting to regain the above match-up. And they tried it over and over again.

In the 3rd set it seemed Roger had tired of the above tactical battle and he was attacking the net ... too much and off pretty poor approach shots. Obviously it did not work.


That's always the question I come back to, the lefty player versus righty play aspect of things, and how that might affect the Wardlaw principles.I would *not* say the Directionals were foremost in either player's tactical mind ... in the clip above. When the two most gifted players of the day are opposing each other, the dynamic is different; very different. In that clip both players were reverting to attempting to gain a strength-to-weakness match-up. Each player's BH is (relatively) weaker than his FH. So, rather than employ the Directionals without considering WHO was on the other side of the net ... they were going for the FH-to-BH mismatch ... in the beginning of the clip, anyway.

Remember, these two are not "normal". They were both going for some ridiculous shots ... and sometimes they made them.

- KK

Fay
05-05-2008, 03:07 PM
Is there a

SPOILER

thread at TW ?

ThnX

Fay
05-06-2008, 05:02 PM
Please share what is the staple diet of play for advanced players ~

I have made it abundantly clear that any strategy that doesnt take into account about matchups, opponent strengths, weakness, one's own strengths , court positioning is beginners and not advanced.

Maybe I am trying to short circuit ten years of lessons, but if it is too long to post, where might I find a website and/or book, etc., for the more advanced strategies?

BeHappy
05-06-2008, 05:13 PM
Maybe I am trying to short circuit ten years of lessons, but if it is too long to post, where might I find a website and/or book, etc., for the more advanced strategies?

join procompare.com, (free but you ave to register), and read TW'S own: Mahboob Khan's 'tactical universe'.

or you could even ring him and ask him for advise, he posted his phone number at some stage.He's a coach to the pros.

Tennis_Monk
05-06-2008, 05:25 PM
Maybe I am trying to short circuit ten years of lessons, but if it is too long to post, where might I find a website and/or book, etc., for the more advanced strategies?

I am not sure if you are serious or sarcastic. Its interesting.

I am not a coach unlike some other posters and definitely cannot illustrate concepts like them (frankly that isnt something that interests me).

As far as strategies go, there are too many good tennis sites to list including this forum (especially read the tennis tips/instructions). What specific strategies to use depends largely on one's goal. These strategies can help optimize one's game and chances of winning matches (which is what i am interested in). What exactly are you looking for? Whats your end goal?

If you want to become an overall better player with better mechanics and etc, i dont think there is any substitute.

Tennis_Monk
05-06-2008, 05:31 PM
join procompare.com, (free but you ave to register), and read TW'S own: Mahboob Khan's 'tactical universe'.

or you could even ring him and ask him for advise, he posted his phone number at some stage.He's a coach to the pros.

absolutely. I know that he coached aisam ul haq qureshi (seeded 149) and couple others.

Fay
05-06-2008, 08:12 PM
join procompare.com, (free but you ave to register), and read TW'S own: Mahboob Khan's 'tactical universe'.

or you could even ring him and ask him for advise, he posted his phone number at some stage.He's a coach to the pros.

Thank you !

Fay
05-06-2008, 08:21 PM
I am not sure if you are serious or sarcastic. <<< snip >>>

No I am not being sarcastic ... I have been playing tennis a little over a year, did 3 tournaments last year, and 3 this year and will do 2 during May. My goal is to play 2 tournaments a month.

I thought it would be helpful to read about and learn the advanced strategies so that when I watch more advanced players at the tournaments that I'll have some conceptual pegs upon which to hang what I see when I watch others.

I am a retired figure skating coach and a photographer and am well aware how long it takes to train one's eye, so to speak.

I was asking a straight forward question.

For someone new to tennis to sort through all of the posts here with all of the extra conversation is sometime daunting to someone new to the sport. So again, no I am not being sarcastic, I am trying to get some good guidance from others who have a lot more experience than I do.

I appreciate the referral to pro compare tennis . net. ThnX

Tennis_Monk
05-07-2008, 04:06 PM
No I am not being sarcastic ... I have been playing tennis a little over a year, did 3 tournaments last year, and 3 this year and will do 2 during May. My goal is to play 2 tournaments a month.

I thought it would be helpful to read about and learn the advanced strategies so that when I watch more advanced players at the tournaments that I'll have some conceptual pegs upon which to hang what I see when I watch others.

I am a retired figure skating coach and a photographer and am well aware how long it takes to train one's eye, so to speak.

I was asking a straight forward question.

For someone new to tennis to sort through all of the posts here with all of the extra conversation is sometime daunting to someone new to the sport. So again, no I am not being sarcastic, I am trying to get some good guidance from others who have a lot more experience than I do.

I appreciate the referral to pro compare tennis . net. ThnX

What is your self NRTP rating? It can help me tailor some options towards you.

I will be happy to share with you what helped me and what didnt.

JavierLW
05-07-2008, 06:44 PM
from above link, at the bottom it says:
This is just a basic idea on the Wardlaw directionals, the same principles apply to Volleys, approach shots etc.,


Not sure this applies to volleys or approach shots..
If I am at the net and someone hits a cross court passing shot from the corner, and the ball goes across my body, why would I volley cross court back to him all the time.

Similarly, for an approach shot, most of the time I want to go down the line on a short cross court hit ball, even if the ball goes across my body.

I agree.

I think the point is that just for purposes of hitting the shot, even on volleys the Wardlaw principles would apply. It's easier to an inside shot back to where it came from because you are hitting a right angle.

Like in doubles, if your partner serves it way out wide, and you intercept the ball, sending it right back to where it came from is your easiest shot. Sending it the other way where it becomes an outside shot is harder because you have to deflect the ball in a 90 degree angle.

However, like you said, you have to consider other factors here. If you volley a ball cross court, you have the problem of putting the ball somewhere that has the entire court open to your opponent. If you poach a return and hit it right back to where it came from, you just gave your opponent the entire side of the court to hit it in.

So you're right, I dont think you should follow Wardlaw on volleys either.

But that is why I see a lot of players hitting their volleys in the wrong place, it's because it actually is easier to do so if all they are thinking about is making that shot.

Fay
05-07-2008, 08:35 PM
What is your self NRTP rating? It can help me tailor some options towards you.

I will be happy to share with you what helped me and what didnt.

Thank you. I would classify myself as a solid 3.0. I got a second place trophy at a 3.0 tournament last fall and did beat one 3.5 in a tournament the beginning of this year. The other 3.5s I played in tournaments I lost to. My official computer rating is 2.5 as I have not played enough tournys to get bumped up.

The only strategies I know now: hit deep cross court to the corner -- I practice hitting from 5 feet behind the baseline off the corners and aim for the opposite corner both FH & BH -- and if I get a short ball approach DTL. Then be prepared to volley cross court sharply angled. And if I am pulled off court hit high & deep to the center. If I get a short ball to my forehand and it sets up high enough I will hit a sharp angled ball with pace.

My FH is my weapon at this point (including swing volley) and am working to get more pace on my serve. I did get a couple of games off a man last week that normally is 6-0, 6-0 based upon my improved serve to his BH. My lobs are great, volleys coming along okay (meaning firm), and OH smash the weakest (meaning I can get them in but no pace to speak of (they do not hit the back fence like they are supposed to) so I try for the back corners of the court preferably on the BH side if I am able). and if the opponents BH is weak I try to send most shots there, but if they can get a good FH on it of course I am made to pay for my error, LOL.

But other than that I am at a loss. I would like to start to develop some plans even if I cannot implement them totally -- at least get some general conceptions of what the next steps are. Thanks for your suggestions!

heycal
05-11-2008, 07:18 PM
I'm getting a little frustrated with Wardlaw. I've lost several matches against opponents I'm capable of beating after trying to implement this theory.

I still believe in many of the concepts, but maybe my personality or my particular game -- an offensive minded left handed 3.5 -- is not ideally suited for it. I'm tired of losing points on cross court rallies because my opponent is steadier than me, or having to hit my backhand to a righty's forehand over and over again.

I'm not giving up on Wardlaw yet, because sometimes I do see benefits, but I gotta start hitting from my backhand to their backhand more often than Mr. Wardlaw might like, for starters, or otherwise mixing it up a little to gain better results.

JavierLW
05-11-2008, 07:37 PM
I'm getting a little frustrated with Wardlaw. I've lost several matches against opponents I'm capable of beating after trying to implement this theory.

I still believe in many of the concepts, but maybe my personality or my particular game -- an offensive minded left handed 3.5 -- is not ideally suited for it. I'm tired of losing points on cross court rallies because my opponent is steadier than me, or having to hit my backhand to a righty's forehand over and over again.

I'm not giving up on Wardlaw yet, because sometimes I do see benefits, but I gotta start hitting from my backhand to their backhand more often than Mr. Wardlaw might like, for starters, or otherwise mixing it up a little to gain better results.

I think playing righty versus lefty is weird anyway and you probally go thru that almost every time.

Remember that Wardlaw is just a guideline. For most of us when we are hitting cross court it's because we reconize that hitting an outside shot down the line is actually more difficult.

But maybe it's not for you. You are a lefty, and from what Ive seen (and I play 3.5/4.0), leftys have a built in advantage over a lot of rightys already.

While it may be okay in Wardlaw land for you to plug away cross court from your backhand to their forehand, in other aspects it may not make the most sense.

You are probally right to do what you are doing. You probally want to try to force the rallys so it's going to go from your forehand to their backhand, and the only way to do that is for you to hit it down the line at their backhand.

Plus you are playing 3.5, and either you or your opponents may have a weakness, which means you may spend more time either hiding your weakness or exploiting theirs then you worry about Wardlaw because in 3.0/3.5 you can win if you do that.

At 4.0+/4.5/etc, players still have weaker backhands but they are not THAT weak. So then ideas like Wardlaw become much more important because everyone is hitting the ball a lot harder and can do so from both wings so the physics of it becomes a much bigger deal.

Also Wardlaw is not some sort of defensive strategy. You can hit shots that are offensive and aggressive, but are not necessarily meant to end the point there. In fact it's almost more offensive to do so because in that way you can dictate the point and push your opponent around.

Cindysphinx
05-12-2008, 05:41 AM
Heycal,

I'm having trouble with Wardlaw these days too. I'm not sure I can blame my troubles on Wardlaw, though.

I just don't seem to bring myself to aim for the corners. If my opponent hits crosscourt to my FH, I will try to go crosscourt. But it just goes back to the middle or only slightly crosscourt. Eventually I will lose the point either by hitting one too short or by missing.

I feel like my mindset for singles is way too based on offense. I think I should whack every ball, so I make too many errors. I don't know whether to just stick with it and wait for my skills to develop, or whether to find some sort of conservative game where I just wait as long as it takes for my opponent to miss.

And the women I lose to. Gads! I have a hard time beating a 3.0, and I have never even taken a set off of a 3.5. And the 3.5s I'm playing are hardly Sharapovas. :(

heycal
05-12-2008, 09:59 PM
I think playing righty versus lefty is weird anyway and you probally go thru that almost every time.

Remember that Wardlaw is just a guideline. For most of us when we are hitting cross court it's because we reconize that hitting an outside shot down the line is actually more difficult.

But maybe it's not for you. You are a lefty, and from what Ive seen (and I play 3.5/4.0), leftys have a built in advantage over a lot of rightys already.

While it may be okay in Wardlaw land for you to plug away cross court from your backhand to their forehand, in other aspects it may not make the most sense.

You are probally right to do what you are doing. You probally want to try to force the rallys so it's going to go from your forehand to their backhand, and the only way to do that is for you to hit it down the line at their backhand.

Plus you are playing 3.5, and either you or your opponents may have a weakness, which means you may spend more time either hiding your weakness or exploiting theirs then you worry about Wardlaw because in 3.0/3.5 you can win if you do that.

At 4.0+/4.5/etc, players still have weaker backhands but they are not THAT weak. So then ideas like Wardlaw become much more important because everyone is hitting the ball a lot harder and can do so from both wings so the physics of it becomes a much bigger deal.

Also Wardlaw is not some sort of defensive strategy. You can hit shots that are offensive and aggressive, but are not necessarily meant to end the point there. In fact it's almost more offensive to do so because in that way you can dictate the point and push your opponent around.

Good analysis. Thanks.

heycal
05-12-2008, 10:04 PM
Heycal,

I'm having trouble with Wardlaw these days too. I'm not sure I can blame my troubles on Wardlaw, though.

I just don't seem to bring myself to aim for the corners. If my opponent hits crosscourt to my FH, I will try to go crosscourt. But it just goes back to the middle or only slightly crosscourt. Eventually I will lose the point either by hitting one too short or by missing.

I feel like my mindset for singles is way too based on offense. I think I should whack every ball, so I make too many errors. I don't know whether to just stick with it and wait for my skills to develop, or whether to find some sort of conservative game where I just wait as long as it takes for my opponent to miss.

And the women I lose to. Gads! I have a hard time beating a 3.0, and I have never even taken a set off of a 3.5. And the 3.5s I'm playing are hardly Sharapovas. :(

Are you having trouble with wardlaw or with singles? I'm guessing you'd say both, right?

Don't know why you can't hit the corners. I have no problem hitting the corners, and am so good at it I frequently hit the doubles line corners too...

I have no idea what you should do. But trying to play so conservatively that you just wait around for your opponent to miss sounds boring to me. Can't you find a happy medium between dull pushing and whacking every ball? How about whacking every third ball!

Pet
05-13-2008, 05:01 AM
Would be a problem with this, when you play 2,3 or more crosscourt ball, the other player can hit a paralel with the open court and you donīt stay already for that ball.

Kaptain Karl
05-13-2008, 07:57 AM
Would be a problem with this, when you play 2,3 or more crosscourt ball, the other player can hit a paralel with the open court and you donīt stay already for that ball.Pet, I've read ... and re-read ... this post of yours. I don't understand it.

- KK

Bungalo Bill
05-13-2008, 08:12 AM
Would be a problem with this, when you play 2,3 or more crosscourt ball, the other player can hit a paralel with the open court and you donīt stay already for that ball.

Your sentence does not make sense so I will try to answer this.

It is not just hitting the ball crosscourt that matters in the Directionals. The Directionals point out which is the most natural and risk free ball to hit given the balls incoming direction and how your body is positioned.

Knowing this, the Directionals are also implying the recovery area as well. It is much easier to get into position when you recover going crosscourt then it is DTL.

Many club players get in trouble because they have a brain "dump" and go DTL without surveying where they are in the court, where their opponent is in the court, if their opponent has the wheels to get into position quickly to hit the ball to your open court, and whether they are in a good position to recover properly. It is simply hit it DTL and watch their ball too long to see if it is in or is a winner.

Use the Directionals as the basis for your tennis strategy. For lower level players, like intermediates, you want to use the Directionals for a majority of your tennis strategy. You want to move the ball around with the understanding of how you are going to recover and where, and which is the direction you need to hit the ball that is most risk free. If you decide to go DTL, you just need to know that you are taking on more risk in all areas: court position, body position to the ball, etc...so make it an intelligent one.

Pet
05-13-2008, 10:17 AM
Yes I think that with this system is very important recover the center of the your court and not stay waiting the crosscourt. But sometimes is impossible. This is an example, they play some crosscourt and....min:1:27

http://es.youtube.com/watch?v=IZNT0nai_tY&feature=related

sureshs
05-13-2008, 11:55 AM
After watching several more Rome and Hamburg matches over the last couple of weeks, I now think that the pros use Wardlaw's directionals as their primary strategy, and violate it when then sense an opportunity to gain the upper edge. One complication in the men's tour is the extensive use of the inside-out forehand, which is technically crosscourt, but doesn't seem to be in the theme of the directionals, as it is not a safe response to a tough ball, but an aggressive maneuvre.

christos_liaskos
05-13-2008, 12:58 PM
OK, having read the first 5 pages of this thread I am getting bored of the arguements that seem to be going on, especially about wether Wardlaw applies to pros. Wardlaw is percentage play and you dont get to be a good player if you dont know or believe in the percentages. One of the greatest pros of all time and who clearly played the percentages more than most? Any answers from you lot who are saying this doesnt apply to pros? The answer is Agassi. The guy would just keep going back crosscourt at the most ridiculous times, over and over, why? Because its PERCENTAGE!

As for absolute beginners, the reason it doesnt apply to you? Well thats simple, you are still learning to hit the ball, nevermind think about winning a match. You have so much time for every shot that you often see beginners running all over the court, side to side, backwards and forwards, covering every inch. It isnt possible to do that once the ball starts flying.

One last thing to those of you who seem to dispute whether Wardlaw is for the pros. I have named a legend in Agassi who almost religiously stuck to the framework, now you guys name a legend, or any pro infact that is clearly breaking the rules religiously and is doing well out of it.

sureshs
05-14-2008, 11:27 AM
Would be a problem with this, when you play 2,3 or more crosscourt ball, the other player can hit a paralel with the open court and you donīt stay already for that ball.

I think what he means is: by hitting repeated crosscourt shots, you "get used" to the rhythm, and then a DTL takes you by surprise.

Bungalo Bill
05-14-2008, 12:18 PM
After watching several more Rome and Hamburg matches over the last couple of weeks, I now think that the pros use Wardlaw's directionals as their primary strategy, and violate it when then sense an opportunity to gain the upper edge. One complication in the men's tour is the extensive use of the inside-out forehand, which is technically crosscourt, but doesn't seem to be in the theme of the directionals, as it is not a safe response to a tough ball, but an aggressive maneuvre.

You can only glimpse at what the pros are doing in comparison to the Directionals. They are not in full use.

The Directionals are basic to tennis strategy and tactics. Largely, when a pro gets a difficult ball and tries to change direction and errors, you might hear comments about "wrong shot choice" from the commentors.

However, because the pros are stronger, faster, well practiced, and their timing is exceptional, they can change the direction on balls that would be difficult for most of us. When we see this without considering their training, this makes us think we can also change the direction on the ball whenever we feel like it without taking into account their talents and skills.

We prematurely think we can do it whenever the pro did it. Most of us are under different constraints and those need to be respected, otherwise you could be making more errors then you should be.

Pisolino227
05-15-2008, 01:08 PM
forgive my ignorance, but if I'm in a cross court rally with my opponent and he suddenly hits the down the line, let's say he took a low percentage shot but nailed it, is my correct response a cross court slice.....or since the ball did not cross my body should I attempt to slice back dtl, which in my view is the lower percentage shot........thanks guys, I appreciate your replies as always, this is a very interesting thread.

Kaptain Karl
05-15-2008, 02:14 PM
P - "It depends" ... on how well your opponent hit that DTL shot ... and how deeply ... and where you are positioned ... and what weapons you have at your disposal. Remember, the Directionals are just "guidelines", not rules.

- KK

Bungalo Bill
05-15-2008, 02:48 PM
forgive my ignorance, but if I'm in a cross court rally with my opponent and he suddenly hits the down the line, let's say he took a low percentage shot but nailed it, is my correct response a cross court slice.....or since the ball did not cross my body should I attempt to slice back dtl, which in my view is the lower percentage shot........thanks guys, I appreciate your replies as always, this is a very interesting thread.

Here is the deal on that shot.

If a player decides to take a ball that crosses his body and hit it DTL and nails it, guess what? He took the extra risk and made it. It doesn't mean he took a large risk because that would depend on the players talent, skill, and whether your ball was easy for him.

However, where do you think he will have to recover (provided he is not following it in)? Yes, towards the center mark to protect for a crosscourt reply. What does that mean? It means that if he nailed it, he is putting you under a lot of pressure to hit a good shot and increasing your risk (it may not be by much) to hit it where he isn't. He is also increasing his risk in court positioning so his DTL better be a darn good one. So, you might now have to take on more risk.

Remember, the Directionals are about reducing risk and increasing your chances of keeping the ball in play. It is high-percentage tennis. There is also medium-percentage tennis and low-percentage tennis. You have to decide when and how much risk you need to take to beat a player and to stay in a point.

Sometimes that increase in risk is forced on you, sometimes we take the extra risk when we didn't need too. Sometimes all we have to do is play high-percentage tennis and we win as we watch the other player crumble.

SystemicAnomaly
05-16-2008, 01:14 AM
After watching several more Rome and Hamburg matches over the last couple of weeks, I now think that the pros use Wardlaw's directionals as their primary strategy, and violate it when then sense an opportunity to gain the upper edge. One complication in the men's tour is the extensive use of the inside-out forehand, which is technically crosscourt, but doesn't seem to be in the theme of the directionals, as it is not a safe response to a tough ball, but an aggressive maneuvre.

Isn't the inside-out FH an implementation of the principles of the Directionals rather than a violation of them? By moving into position to hit a FH (on the BH side of their court), the player is now turning what would have been an outside (BH) shot into an inside (FH) shot. This run-around movement facilitates hitting the ball more easily in any direction -- either aggressively x-court or DTL.

Many/most pros will continue to hit x-court BHs until the see an opportunity (a shorter ball or a ball that can run-around fairly easily) to hit the aggressive run-around FH. According to Chuck (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d7PJ73e-iVU) Kriese (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d7PJ73e-iVU), this is one of the fundamentals of the Directionals.

SystemicAnomaly
05-16-2008, 02:29 AM
Just did a bit of browsing of Paul Wardlaw's book, Pressure (http://www.amazon.com/gp/reader/0736001565/ref=sib_dp_pt#) Tennis (http://www.amazon.com/gp/reader/0736001565/ref=sib_dp_pt#). He delves into his Directionals in Chapter 3, High-Percentage Tactics. He first discusses the general guidelines for 50-50 players -- those players who divide the court in half for FHs and BHs. On page 27, he then discusses the guidelines for players with a preferred weapon. Here he gets into the Inside-Out FH and the Inside-FH with a 90-degree COD.

Try the link (above) to browse Chapter 3 (which starts on page 19).

heycal
05-16-2008, 06:37 AM
Isn't the inside-out FH an implementation of the principles of the Directionals rather than a violation of them?

This is how I understand it. I'm not sure why the inside-out FH seems to confuse everyone when it comes to Wardlaw.

sureshs
05-16-2008, 07:39 AM
Isn't the inside-out FH an implementation of the principles of the Directionals rather than a violation of them? By moving into position to hit a FH (on the BH side of their court), the player is now turning what would have been an outside (BH) shot into an inside (FH) shot. This run-around movement facilitates hitting the ball more easily in any direction -- either aggressively x-court or DTL.

Many/most pros will continue to hit x-court BHs until the see an opportunity (a shorter ball or a ball that can run-around fairly easily) to hit the aggressive run-around FH. According to Chuck (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d7PJ73e-iVU) Kriese (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d7PJ73e-iVU), this is one of the fundamentals of the Directionals.

Probably it is. I did not see in the couple of web pages I saw. I thought inside shots were to "reflected" back, with a small change in direction. But often players hit IO forehands on a crosscourt ball.

heycal
05-29-2008, 06:08 AM
I've decided to cool things down with Mr. Wardlaw and his directionals. After trying to faithfully follow them for a couple of matches, I found myself losing too many games for whatever reason. (Partly because I'm a lefty, I think, and the system isn't perfectly designed for lefties in my opinion.)

The last match I played, I decided to toss the directionals jazz, and just play the sort of high risk freestyle game I'm famous for. What this meant in practical terms was that balls hit to my backhand I often returned more or less down the line to my opponents backhand, and I often went DTL on a whole bunch of forehands, which I realize is even more risky for me than it is for righties since DTL is to my opponents forehand, but it seems to work for me. Basically, my philosophy is to hit the ball where I want to, when I want to.

Playing this offensive and aggressive improvisational style earned me a three set victory over a guy who beat me in straight sets the last two outings. I still think Wardlaw's concepts are interesting and worth paying attention to in certain respects, but for me at least, as a 3.5 recreational player, I can no longer be in an exclusive relationship with him.

To quote the Mighty Bill Tilden, who allegedly responded thusly in his youth when some bystander offered him advice on how he should be playing: "I'll play my own sweet game".

Bungalo Bill
05-29-2008, 06:13 AM
I've decided to cool things down with Mr. Wardlaw and his directionals. After trying to faithfully follow them for a couple of matches, I found myself losing too many games for whatever reason. (Partly because I'm a lefty, I think, and the system isn't perfectly designed for lefties in my opinion.)

The last match I played, I decided to toss the directionals jazz, and just play the sort of high risk freestyle game I'm famous for. What this meant in practical terms was that balls hit to my backhand I often returned more or less down the line to my opponents backhand, and I often went DTL on a whole bunch of forehands, which I realize is even more risky for me than it is for righties since DTL is to my opponents forehand, but it seems to work for me. Basically, my philosophy is to hit the ball where I want to, when I want to.

Playing this offensive and aggressive improvisational style earned me a three set victory over a guy who beat me in straight sets the last two outings. I still think Wardlaw's concepts are interesting and worth paying attention to in certain respects, but for me at least, as a 3.5 recreational player, I can no longer be in an exclusive relationship with him.

To quote the Mighty Bill Tilden, who allegedly responded thusly in his youth when some bystander offered him advice on how he should be playing: "I'll play my own sweet game".

That is fine, the Directionals are not for everyone.

However, blaming the Directionals for your losses is like blaming your racquet. The Directionals focus primarily on high percentage shots which means any ball crossing you should be hit to where it came from which is cross-court.

If you are hitting those balls crosscourt and you are finding yourself at a loss, then perhaps the issues lie elsewhere?

It could be:

1. That you are not that consistent.

2. Fail to recover properly.

3. Are not in tennis shape to handle a shot that your opponent decides to take more risk on.

4. You are simply thinking too much about them in match play

I work around the Directionals quite often myself especially if I am going to run around my backhand and smack a forehand straight vs. sending it back crosscourt.

However, if I lose, it ain't the Directionals fault. It is my fault.

goober
05-29-2008, 06:21 AM
I just see the directionals as a general guide to high percentage tennis. If you can consistently hit a DTL BH shot then that is a high percentage shot for you. It also may be strategically advantageous since you are going to a rightys BH.

heycal
05-29-2008, 06:26 AM
That is fine, the Directionals are not for everyone.

However, blaming the Directionals for your losses is like blaming your racquet. The Directionals focus primarily on high percentage shots which means any ball crossing you should be hit to where it came from which is cross-court.

If you are hitting those balls crosscourt and you are finding yourself at a loss, then perhaps the issues lie elsewhere?

It could be:

1. That you are not that consistent.

2. Fail to recover properly.

3. Are not in tennis shape to handle a shot that your opponent decides to take more risk on.

4. You are simply thinking too much about them in match play

I work around the Directionals quite often myself especially if I am going to run around my backhand and smack a forehand straight vs. sending it back crosscourt.

However, if I lose, it ain't the Directionals fault. It is my fault.

Hey, you can blame whoever you want for my losses. I just know that, so far, following Wardlaw results in losses for me, not following them results in wins for me. Draw your own conclusions.

Bungalo Bill
05-29-2008, 06:28 AM
Hey, you can blame whoever you want for my losses. I just know that, so far, following Wardlaw results in losses for me, not following them results in wins for me. Draw your own conclusions.

lol, My conclusion? You lost because YOU lost. Not because of the Directionals. The Directionals are not written law. They are guidelines and if you were making them more then what they are, that is your fault and no one elses.

It just sounds like you are not a consistent player and you couldn't hang in the rally.

fuzz nation
05-29-2008, 06:35 AM
The directionals make sense, but a pal of mine (who is a very accomplished teaching pro and former college coach) pointed out that if something like that is your gospel, it makes your play very predictable. In some settings, that doesn't matter if you can outlast a less consistent opponent, but in a relatively even match up, one player can often create more pressure with better variety. It's great to be consistent and the Wardlaw guide can be helpful toward that in the right situation, including coaching high school sluggers who want to hit like rock stars too often.

heycal
05-29-2008, 06:40 AM
lol, My conclusion? You lost because YOU lost. Not because of the Directionals. The Directionals are not written law. They are guidelines and if you were making them more then what they are, that is your fault and no one elses.

It just sounds like you are not a consistent player and you couldn't hang in the rally.

Like I said, you can draw whatever negative conclusions you want about my game or why I win and lose, but I'll continue to draw the obvious and most important one: Attempting to follow Wardlaw results in me losing, not trying to follow Wardlaw results in me winning.

Supernatural_Serve
05-29-2008, 06:44 AM
The classic adult 3.5 player's dilemma:

Do I accept that I am going to have to take a step back in my performance in order to improve as a player or do I keep playing the same way I always do and get the same results and not improve.

Am I going to give a powerful idea (the most powerful concept in singles point construction strategy I've ever encountered) a chance and accept that it will take time to integrate, understand, customize in my own way, and ultimately selectively own this new tool while tolerating losses along the way during the steep learning curve phase.

The classic instructor trying to make a living teaching 3.5 adults dilemma:

Do I keep teaching and working on a strategy, tactic, shot, or device to a student who complains that I'm hurting his performance and risk losing him.

or

Do I keep teaching a student what he thinks he wants and enjoy the fee for service even though it doesn't help his game.

Bungalo Bill
05-29-2008, 06:46 AM
Like I said, you can draw whatever negative conclusions you want about my game or why I win and lose, but I'll continue to draw the obvious and most important one: Attempting to follow Wardlaw results in me losing, not trying to follow Wardlaw results in me winning.

lol, You will lose with them or without them. It is you not the Directionals.

PimpMyGame
05-29-2008, 06:46 AM
I just see the directionals as a general guide to high percentage tennis. If you can consistently hit a DTL BH shot then that is a high percentage shot for you. It also may be strategically advantageous since you are going to a rightys BH.

Ditto. For the record I also find it quite easy to get into the groove of directionals, and don't have to think about it too much in a match.

Bungalo Bill
05-29-2008, 06:55 AM
The classic adult 3.5 player's dilemma:

Do I accept that I am going to have to take a step back in my performance in order to improve as a player or do I keep playing the same way I always do and get the same results and not improve.

Exactly, when players cry about the Directionals it is usually because a huge hole in their game called CONSISTENCY is missing. It calls it out. There is no question, you need to be able to defend an aggresive shot if your opponent wants to force you to take a lower prercentage shot with you and quite possibly having to change direction on that ball. However, the Directionals are about high-percentage play and learign them takes time to make it automatic and to see how it benefits in ones game.

Am I going to give a powerful idea (the most powerful concept in singles point construction strategy I've ever encountered) a chance and accept that it will take time to integrate, understand, customize in my own way, and ultimately selectively own this new tool while tolerating losses along the way during the steep learning curve phase.

The classic instructor trying to make a living teaching 3.5 adults dilemma:

LOL, very true! If we lose games, don't blame it on your racquet, the balls, the court, the sun, the wind, the Directionals, or anything else, it is a sad excuse to do so.

I keep teaching and working on a strategy, tactic, shot, or device to a student who complains that I'm hurting his performance and risk losing him.

or

Do I keep teaching a student what he thinks he wants and enjoy the fee for service even though it doesn't help his game.

Me? I would dump him in a heart beat. Give him back his money, and kick him in the rear-end as he leaves. I can't stand whiners. Anyone, who blames a loss on something else is a whiner. The things I ask them are:

1. What was your double fault percentage?

2. How many errors did you make on the forehand side?

3. How many errors did you makc on the backhand side?

4. What was your first serve percentage?

5. How many short balls did you miss?

6. How many times did you NOT know the score!

The Directionals obviously showed weaknesses in the above guys game. Painfully obvious.

Cindysphinx
05-29-2008, 07:58 AM
I've tossed Wardlaw too. Not because it didn't work. How would I know whether it worked?

Instead I'm going with this, which I will call "Cindy's Directionals:"

Get your butt to the right spot on the court as fast as possible for every ball, and stop with all the "Just In Time" tennis. Recover as soon as you strike the ball rather than waiting around like a spectator, wondering what will happen with your shot. Set up, get the ball in your strike zone, then attack the thing. Direction and shot selection are entirely unimportant. It's not about winning the point; it's about hitting good shots every time.

Maybe I'll write a book . . . :)

Bungalo Bill
05-29-2008, 08:11 AM
Instead I'm going with this, which I will call "Cindy's Directionals:"

Get your butt to the right spot on the court as fast as possible for every ball, and stop with all the "Just In Time" tennis. Recover as soon as you strike the ball rather than waiting around like a spectator, wondering what will happen with your shot. Set up, get the ball in your strike zone, then attack the thing. Direction and shot selection are entirely unimportant. It's not about winning the point; it's about hitting good shots every time.

Maybe I'll write a book . . . :)

Ummmm, okay. I sure would hate to play you. ;)

heycal
05-29-2008, 08:13 AM
I've tossed Wardlaw too. Not because it didn't work. How would I know whether it worked?

Instead I'm going with this, which I will call "Cindy's Directionals:"

Get your butt to the right spot on the court as fast as possible for every ball, and stop with all the "Just In Time" tennis. Recover as soon as you strike the ball rather than waiting around like a spectator, wondering what will happen with your shot. Set up, get the ball in your strike zone, then attack the thing. Direction and shot selection are entirely unimportant. It's not about winning the point; it's about hitting good shots every time.

Maybe I'll write a book . . . :)

I was guessing you'd be breaking up with Sir Wardlaw sooner or later too based on your previous posts.

Where do you live, Cindy? In the D.C. area, right? Next time I'm down there, which is not that frequently these days truth be told, we should a play a non-Wardlaw influenced match. I'm about a 3.5 as a lefty, and 3.0 as a righty. I'll play you with whatever hand you think would be most competitive for us. (Check out the thread about my match with StormHolloway, "Rumble in the East". It was fun.)

heycal
05-29-2008, 09:16 AM
The fact that you are at a higher level makes your OP sound even dumber.

At a 3.0 level it's kind of understandable, but 3.5+ level players should at least have a basic idea of when it is wise and unwise to change the direction of the ball.

I have no problem understanding the directionals. I'm just choosing to toss them out the window as a guiding principle for how I play my matches.

I'll play my own sweet game, Djokerdude.

Djokovicfan4life
05-29-2008, 09:37 AM
Whatever works for you.

raiden031
05-29-2008, 10:10 AM
Like I said, you can draw whatever negative conclusions you want about my game or why I win and lose, but I'll continue to draw the obvious and most important one: Attempting to follow Wardlaw results in me losing, not trying to follow Wardlaw results in me winning.

This does not mean that Wardlaw directionals won't make you a better player. I myself am not familiar with Wardlaw directionals, but by rejecting them because you don't get instant gratification seems shortsighted to me.

I have lost against several players that do not play with orthodox technique and strategies. Teaching pros say to serve with the continental grip and I've lost to players who serve with eastern and western grips. Do I think its dumb for them to use these grips, YES. But they are content with the short term success they get using a more comfortable grip. I have lost to players who don't follow through on their forehands. They might have some short term success against a 3.0 or 3.5 player but eventually the 3.0 and 3.5 player who hits with a proper follow through will become a better player.

Bungalo Bill
05-29-2008, 10:54 AM
This does not mean that Wardlaw directionals won't make you a better player. I myself am not familiar with Wardlaw directionals, but by rejecting them because you don't get instant gratification seems shortsighted to me.

That is right and if you look at my original post, I offered some areas the Directionals might have uncovered that were the REAL weaknesses in his game.

The Directionals are simply a high-percentage strategy of play. This is why it isn't for beginners because the ball isn't moving that fast, a lot of balls are framed, sprayed, and have no rhyme or reason of going where they go.

However, as one progresses, the margin for error is small and a player needs to use a strategy that takes advantage of the percentages while waiting for their opening to accept more risk. One of the beauties of the inside-out forehand is its ability to be used to change direction even when a ball would technically cross the body.

I have lost against several players that do not play with orthodox technique and strategies. Teaching pros say to serve with the continental grip and I've lost to players who serve with eastern and western grips. Do I think its dumb for them to use these grips, YES. But they are content with the short term success they get using a more comfortable grip. I have lost to players who don't follow through on their forehands. They might have some short term success against a 3.0 or 3.5 player but eventually the 3.0 and 3.5 player who hits with a proper follow through will become a better player.

Yeah, at the 3.5 level on down it is fair game to me. I usually start introducing the Directionals to advanced players and some intermediate. With the margin of error smaller at the advanced level, the Directionals are a good foundation but they are not the rule.

Cindysphinx
05-29-2008, 01:13 PM
Here's something to consider, Heycal.

You say the directionals leave you hitting balls to opponent's stronger sides too often, on account of how are a lefty. Say you RH opponent hits a FH ball crosscourt to your BH. Wardlaw says you can change the direction of that ball, which would take it to you opponent's BH.

How come that isn't your bread and butter killer shot?

It seems to me that you are very concerned about getting caught in a rally where opponent is hitting to your BH while Wardlaw is telling you to go crosscourt, right back to opponent's FH.

But isn't it equally likely that you can get the rally going the other way, where you are hitting FH and opponent must hit BH?

chess9
05-29-2008, 01:52 PM
Cindy's just outside of Cairo, of course. ;)

Here's a thought:

Don't re-invent the wheel. Learn from the greats, and if what they have to teach doesn't work for you, put it away for awhile, and COME BACK TO IT LATER. I can't tell you how many times I had a problem to solve, looked it over, wasn't struck with the best approach, and simply shelved the problem for a few days or a few weeks. Tennis is NO different. Sometimes we are ready and ACHING for an idea whose time is right. ("Just In Time Ideas?" :) ) Sometimes NOT.

Just my humble opinion. I'm usually wrong. :)

-Robert

Cindysphinx
05-29-2008, 01:54 PM
Oh, I'll come back to it later. No doubt about that.

It's just that what BB is saying is true: Without the shot control and mechanics, Wardlaw is just a new and exciting way to lose.

Me, I gotta square away my footwork, which is the biggest impediment to good mechanics for me.

tarheels2323
05-29-2008, 02:27 PM
I'm just going to chime in and say this...

The Directionals are a part of the professional game, so why should anyone below that level believe they can ignore them? Like BB said, the Directionals need to be taught and used along with other strategies by players that can successfully implement them (I won't use an NTRP - if you're at this level you're aware of it; basically, you have developed great consistency and can focus on shot selection and strengths/weaknesses of you and your opponent).

There is a small percentage on this board that know what they're talking about and only a few with the experience to really know what they're talking about. I suggest listening.

Rafael_Nadal_6257
05-29-2008, 03:01 PM
Heycal...

Your primary reason for not using the Wardlaw Directionals (a set of guidelines, and nothing more) is that with it, you are more likely to lose matches, and when you disregard it, you are more likely to win matches. This is almost verbatim of what you have posted.

I can see how you can get frustrated when you use the Directionals, and you lose more often, than when you don't use the directionals...BUT...

In the end, the long-term benefits of considering and using the Wardlaw Directionals as a guideline far outweigh the (relatively small) short-term benefits (in your case) of exclusively ignoring them.

For you to advance and get better as a tennis player, it is sometimes necessary to sacrifice a couple losses here and there, to learn and get accustomed to an idea, which will work wonders for you, when and if your consistency improves.

LuckyR
05-29-2008, 03:31 PM
Using the Directionals without drilling to hit balls deep and out the back of the baseline (instead of wide across the sideline) is folly. Why would you be suprised that playing in a style you have practiced all of your life would be inferior to a style you read out of a book or saw on a Forum and tried to put into play without much practice?

No doubt about it, if you can play the Directionals correctly you will: hit difficult to handle balls with a relatively lower UE rate. Against most folks that will lead to wins.

On the other hand trying to hit Directionals without drilling that type of shot will lead to UEs or perhaps to the other guy hitting winners. You can either make mistakes with the Directionals in practice (then win the matches) or you can make those early mistakes in matchplay, get discouraged and drop an otherwise effective tactic.

heycal
05-29-2008, 05:04 PM
You say the directionals leave you hitting balls to opponent's stronger sides too often, on account of how are a lefty. Say you RH opponent hits a FH ball crosscourt to your BH. Wardlaw says you can change the direction of that ball, which would take it to you opponent's BH.

It's my understanding that Dr. Wardlaw wants me to hit that ball right back to my opponents FH if it's an outside ball. So no, I can't change direction on most cross court shots to my backhand.


But isn't it equally likely that you can get the rally going the other way, where you are hitting FH and opponent must hit BH?

Yes, it's equally likely. And I prefer to make it more than equally likely by aggressively seeking opportunities to hit my BH dtl. Doing so is more likely to produce a return to my FH, and thus put me in the match-up that works to my advantage.

heycal
05-29-2008, 05:08 PM
Well then...thats fine, but I don't quite understand why you even made a new thread if you're content to "continue playing my own sweet game, thank you."

Because people have frequently posted on this tennis website regarding their experiences with various equipment or tactics related to tennis, and I've come across many posts on Wardlaw lately. So I was simply sharing my experiences with trying something out, and explaining why I abandoned it. It was not a cry for help.:)

Cindysphinx
05-29-2008, 05:53 PM
Yes, it's equally likely. And I prefer to make it more than equally likely by aggressively seeking opportunities to hit my BH dtl. Doing so is more likely to produce a return to my FH, and thus put me in the match-up that works to my advantage.

Yes, but . . . Why is the bolded portion correct? Wouldn't your opponent (if he is of a similar mind) hit to your BH?

Hey, everyone can do what they want out there. Your lefty-ness is an interesting twist, which is why I'm mulling it with you. So if you're done with Wardlaw, then you're done.

I, however, can't help wondering WWND (What Would Nadal Do?). Wouldn't you figure Nadal has sorted this out? When I watch him play, I don't sense he does anything at all to protect his backhand. He (and most pros except Roddick) seem to be able to hit winners off of both sides. He doesn't seem to be freaked out when he has to take his BH to Federer's FH. So how come you are?

BTW, my BH is far less likely to break down than my FH (darn my stupid forehand!), yet most opponents try to attack my BH. So maybe some of your opponents are more like me, and you are doing them a favor by hitting to their BH?

heycal
05-29-2008, 06:29 PM
Believe it or not, Cindy, Nadal is a lot bettter than me.

That said, my 2 hbh backhand is actually fine, relatively speaking, and I can hit winners with it often. Sometimes its more solid than my FH. But it's not so fantastic and superior that I want to try and engage in endless backhand to forehand rallies with my opponent. I would like to reverse that match-up if I can, capice?

As for your other question, "won't a similarly minded player just return my dtl backhand right back DTL to my bh?"

Yes, that happens sometimes. And I might just send it right back at him in the same way. But they are often not as good at that shot as I am, because as a lefty I've relied on that shot much more than they have, unless they've spent their whole lives playing lefties, which they haven't. So the shot is more foreign to them than to me.

Plus, they might not be similarly minded, but a conservative sort who likes to hit cross court. Ergo, the ball often comes to my forehand.

And then I start pounding their 1 hbh with my devasting lefty forehand just like your friend Nadal does until they weep for mercy...

drak
05-29-2008, 07:00 PM
"After trying to faithfully follow them for a couple of matches, I found myself losing too many games for whatever reason"

Heycal you said it right there! "a couple of matches"? Do you really think a couple of matches is enough to judge the effectiveness of a new strategy -especially at the 3.5 level? Gimme a break man, first you should be consistently doing crosscourt drills along with playing to begin to get comfortable with something very new and different. This IMO is something one builds up to one after many weeks and months of practice. To abandon it after 2 matches is your choice but truly stupid.

Drak

J011yroger
05-29-2008, 07:02 PM
Your stroke mechanics do not favor playing in the method that Wardlaw perscribes.

That is why you didn't work out so well with him.

You would either have to alter your stroke production, to better fit Wardlaw.

Or, keep your current game and strokes, and use an alternate strategy.

Either one is fine. But trying to apply Wardlaw to your game is like trying to put a square peg in a round hole.

J

J011yroger
05-29-2008, 07:04 PM
P.S. Heycal is on the 3.5/4.0 cusp. He played like a weaker 4.0 in the match against storm, but he said (I think) that he played well, and usually makes more errors.

To call him, or even entertain the thought of him being a 3.0 is silly.

J

heycal
05-29-2008, 07:21 PM
Gimme a break man, first you should be consistently doing crosscourt drills along with playing to begin to get comfortable with something very new and different. This IMO is something one builds up to one after many weeks and months of practice. To abandon it after 2 matches is your choice but truly stupid.


Sorry, Drak. I'm not interested in spending time on drills or practicing.

Your stroke mechanics do not favor playing in the method that Wardlaw perscribes.

That is why you didn't work out so well with him.

You would either have to alter your stroke production, to better fit Wardlaw.

Or, keep your current game and strokes, and use an alternate strategy.

Either one is fine. But trying to apply Wardlaw to your game is like trying to put a square peg in a round hole.


This is what I was trying to explain to them, Jolly, and they're treating me like I'm the worst player in the world if not the devil himself.

Hey, what does that mean anyway, 'my stroke production and mechanics aren't suited to Wardlaw'. I certainly understand that intuitively, but perhaps don't understand exactly why that is, other than being a lefty who often likes to play aggressively. Can you elaborate?

P.S. Heycal is on the 3.5/4.0 cusp. He played like a weaker 4.0 in the match against storm, but he said (I think) that he played well, and usually makes more errors.

To call him, or even entertain the thought of him being a 3.0 is silly.


I appreciate that, Jolly. Coming from a very high level player like yourself means a lot. Thank you.

I feel I did play fairly well against Storm that night in Queens, and am certainly capable of worse. (And when are you going to write up that match report for the other "rumble in the East" thread? This is probably my only chance to read an account from a third party about a match I played, so I'm looking forward to it, as our legions of fans.)

sharpilistik
05-29-2008, 07:35 PM
heycal,

You're actually wrong. The devil does play better tennis than you. :)

On a more serious note, what this means is that wardlaw won't help you much because of the limiting factors in your game eg. technique/footwork/misc. so it makes sense why you would lose if you followed the wardlaw shot selections.

I would say you would need to be atleast a 4.5 to execute all the directionals on a consistent basis.

5263
05-29-2008, 07:36 PM
I haven't read up on the directionals lately, but remember them as a guide to when you should consider changing dir of a ball, as most of the time you should just take it back where it came from. Also suggests that you use the 90 degr rule on some changes.

I don't get what the big deal here is heycal. Just deviate as required with you style of play. Actually can't you deviate as much as you want as long as you make shots?? If you can't make the shots with deviations, then you should be hitting the directional. If you can make your deviations, then no problem, as the directionals account for this too if I remember right.

MordredSJT
05-29-2008, 09:38 PM
That said, my 2 hbh backhand is actually fine, relatively speaking, and I can hit winners with it often. Sometimes its more solid than my FH. But it's not so fantastic and superior that I want to try and engage in endless backhand to forehand rallies with my opponent. I would like to reverse that match-up if I can, capice?

Not to interrupt the flow of this thread with something substantive...but this statement really caught my eye.

I'm not hardcore into Wardlaw's Directionals, but I know percentage tennis and there is no reason why can't or shouldn't do this...at the right time off of the appropriate ball. That is the whole point. If you get a ball that you can hit down the line very comfortably, then you can do that. If you get a ball that challenges your ability to hit down the line, then it is much smarter to hit the higher percentage cross court reply.

Now, for the sake of just changing the diagonal, you don't even need to hit an aggressive shot down the line. You just need to hit a shot that is not attackable. To give an example, I will often hit a very safe, heavily spun forehand deep down the line to an opponent's backhand even if I am in a neutral or slightly defensive position. I do this when I am in forehand to forehand rallies with people that don't necessarily favor me (I have a good forehand, but I am not a grinder). My backhand is often a much easier diagonal for me to dominate, and hitting that safe shot down the line allows me to get into that pattern of play. As soon as I get a look at anything attackable I can step into the court, take my backhand on the rise and do whatever I want with it (usually rip it down the line, or punish them with a nasty short cross court angle). None of this is against the concepts of the directionals as I understand them. I played high percentage shots in all cases, with an eye on what was tactically advantageous to me.

If you can hit a safe shot down the line off of a ball to change the pattern of play away from your backhand, and that is truly the best tactical option at the time, then do it. The problem is that you seem to be advocating a rip it down the line as soon as possible on any old ball because I'm not patient enough or smart enough to wait for the right opportunity mentality...and that is just dumb tennis. If you are hitting quite well that day you will win, if you are a little bit off against a player around your level who isn't playing just as dumb as you are...you will almost always lose. Every so often you will play great and look really cool, but most good tennis players will beat you. If that is the trade you want to make, then go for it.

heycal
05-29-2008, 09:55 PM
you didn't LOSE because of the Directionals, you lost because you aren't at the level to use the Directionals.

So what you are saying is that using the directionals is a losing strategy for me.

Thanks for finally realizing the truth of what I stated very clearly in my OP. Glad you finally saw the light. Just don't know why it took you three hundred posts to get it.

heycal
05-29-2008, 10:08 PM
If you can hit a safe shot down the line off of a ball to change the pattern of play away from your backhand, and that is truly the best tactical option at the time, then do it. The problem is that you seem to be advocating a rip it down the line as soon as possible on any old ball because I'm not patient enough or smart enough to wait for the right opportunity mentality....



I don't recall saying I instantly try and rip a backhand winner down the line the second I get a ball to my backhand. But I am looking to hit some sort of ball to my opponent's bh as soon as I see an opportunity. But not always. Sometimes I'll feel like hitting a cross court ball. As I did say earlier, I like to play an improvisational style and hit the ball where I want to, when I want to, and not try and follow a set of guidelines out there that don't seem to lead to good results for me. I'm not looking to go pro here, and I'm not interested in or able to spend time drilling and practicing. I have enough confidence in my athletic ability and competitive instincts to play free and loose and intuitively during my lowly 3.5 matches and obtain decent results.

Bungalo Bill
05-29-2008, 10:09 PM
So what you are saying is that using the directionals is a losing strategy for me.

Thanks for finally realizing the truth of what I stated very clearly in my OP. Glad you finally saw the light. Just don't know why it took you three hundred posts to get it.

Noooooooo, lol, my gosh.

What I am saying is:

{{{{GOING BACK TO POST #2 IN THIS THREAD}}}}

That is fine, the Directionals are not for everyone.

However, blaming the Directionals for your losses is like blaming your racquet. The Directionals focus primarily on high percentage shots which means any ball crossing you should be hit to where it came from which is cross-court.

If you are hitting those balls crosscourt and you are finding yourself at a loss, then perhaps the issues lie elsewhere?

It could be:

1. That you are not that consistent.

2. Fail to recover properly.

3. Are not in tennis shape to handle a shot that your opponent decides to take more risk on.

4. You are simply thinking too much about them in match play

I work around the Directionals quite often myself especially if I am going to run around my backhand and smack a forehand straight vs. sending it back crosscourt.

However, if I lose, it ain't the Directionals fault. It is my fault.

So here is how you can use the Directionals for shot selection. We are going to suppose here.

Let's say you are playing on a clay court. Both you and your opponent are righthanders. Your opponent hit a forehand crosscourt. You decide to stay with the high percentage shot and hit it back crosscourt. Your opponent is quick and recovers very well. In other words, if you try to change direction, you best hit a winner or an awesome shot, or the neutral position you did have will soon fall to a more disadvantaged position and becomes defensive.

So let's say you use the high percentage play to setup your point. You decide to setup the drop shot and to do so you decide to hit the ball even wider - more angle. This causes your opponent to move off the court some and because you hit it well and recovered well, he decides to hit it back crosscourt for the shortest path for his recovery (remember your opponent is very quick and believes he can still recover). Now, you execute your drop shot in the service court (deuce side) directly in front of you and catch your opponent off guard. You outright win the point because your opponent has no chance to respond.

This is just a basic example of constructing a point using the fundamentals of the Directionals. The Directionals were in the background. You trying to setup the drop shot was in the foreground. They are not written in stone. If you were a strong player, you might have decided to hit the ball straight and hard. However, because you are on clay and your opponent is very quick, this might cause the matchup to change to backhand to backhand. This may not be what you want.

This is not to say that you need the Directionals to setup all your shots. All I am saying is it wasn't the Directionals fault concerning your loss record.

Now, if the blue text is what you now agree with, then it is you that has come full circle.

Supernatural_Serve
05-29-2008, 10:28 PM
To me, I don't fully understand the idea of attaining a level to then be able to successfully employ Wardlaws directionals.

It seems to me that once a person knows how to construct points with 2-3 shot combinations, they are ready to employ Wardlaw's principles.

From my perspective there are a couple of approaches to singles

1. No strategy at all

2. Simply hit the ball I feel like hitting with very little objective other than to keep it in, possibly deep, possibly attacking a weakness

3. Employ simple 2-3 shot point constructions to take control and end points

then, the next logical step is Wardlaw's directionals.

I would assume that anyone can put the principles to good work once they understand simple point construction combinations (especially the ones from the baseline).

heycal
05-29-2008, 10:46 PM
All this talk of strategy and rules reminds me of a little thing I seem to remember Brad Gilbert saying about Agassi: that when he first started working with Andre, Andre told him he often did not to decide where he was going to serve the ball until after his toss was already in the air. This must seem like a crazy notion to a lot of the guys around here, who probably have decided where to serve the ball before they even get to the court...

What I take from this Agassi anecdote is that 'winging it' seems to work well for certain types of athletes. Other seem to need to work and think more to achieve good results.

Bungalo Bill
05-29-2008, 10:49 PM
To me, I don't fully understand the idea of attaining a level to then be able to successfully employ Wardlaws directionals.

It seems to me that once a person knows how to construct points with 2-3 shot combinations, they are ready to employ Wardlaw's principles.

I can agree with that and my reference to levels is a loose reference and based on my experience in seeing when players are using 2-3 shot combinations. Normally at the 3.5 level players are not thinking this way.

From my perspective there are a couple of approaches to singles

1. No strategy at all

2. Simply hit the ball I feel like hitting with very little objective other than to keep it in, possibly deep, possibly attacking a weakness

3. Employ simple 2-3 shot point constructions to take control and end points

then, the next logical step is Wardlaw's directionals.

I would assume that anyone can put the principles to good work once they understand simple point construction combinations (especially the ones from the baseline).

Yes, but the problem is executing those 2-3 shot combinations.

If a player can sustain a rally pretty well and has a good game where they can employ certain tactics with their skills, this usually means that they can probably construct a point. This is a good time to introduce the Directionals as a foundation to high-percentage play and building points around it.

However, there is nothing wrong with taking on more risk and mixing it up, so long it is helping you rather then hurting you.

heycal
05-29-2008, 11:28 PM
I guess we can agree to disagree.

Sure, we can agree to disagree. Meanwhile, I'll stop trying to implement the directionals so I can win more matches.

J011yroger
05-30-2008, 03:15 AM
Hey, what does that mean anyway, 'my stroke production and mechanics aren't suited to Wardlaw'. I certainly understand that intuitively, but perhaps don't understand exactly why that is, other than being a lefty who often likes to play aggressively. Can you elaborate?

When I get home from work, if you want, I will write it up and send you a private e-mail.

I am not big on offering up unsolicited advice, and I certainly wasn't going to say anything in this train wreck of a thread.

If you want to after reading it, you can post or not post my e-mail here.

J

MordredSJT
05-30-2008, 04:31 AM
What I take from this Agassi anecdote is that 'winging it' seems to work well for certain types of athletes. Other seem to need to work and think more to achieve good results.

You know...I almost used Agassi as an example in my previous post...

I can assure you that after Agassi started working with Gilbert he knew where he was going to serve before he tossed the ball up and why he was going to serve there...not to mention what he was going to do after that.

Pop quiz...how many grand slams did Agassi win before he worked with Gilbert? How many did he win after?

Bungalo Bill
05-30-2008, 06:26 AM
Sure, we can agree to disagree. Meanwhile, I'll stop trying to implement the directionals so I can win more matches.

Look, I am going to take the emotion out of my posts.

If you go back and reread post #2 without the emotion or trying to think I was belittling you, you might see that I was trying to give you a different perspective and help you.

The feedback you received during your matches regarding your game and the use of the Directionals was good feedback. I just thought your conclusion did not shed the proper light to make your practices more helpful.

If taking out the word "blame" out of the equation will help that is fine. However, I would need to supplement this word with a synonym of the word blame. You can choose whatever word you like.

I believe the Directionals, whether you want to use them or not, provided you feedback in aspects of your game that need more attention. I made a brief list of those areas. Whether you want to see that or not is up to you.

I will still hold that the Directionals are about playing high-percentage tennis because they are and building your points around high-percentage tennis will increase your chances of winning the point. However, it does not mean you can not go outside of the box and put some creativity in your play. It is simply a foundation to strategy and tactics.

For example, the inside-out forehand can defy the principles of the Directionals. I hit a lot of them. However, because I have knowledge of fundamental principles of high-percentage tennis, it allows me to better choose when to execute the inside-out forehand. Sometimes, I take on a lot of risk. However, it is calculated risk and not blind risk that my decision is based on.

Pet
05-30-2008, 06:39 AM
The pros not follow this always, i prefer hit the weakness backhand with my forehand that hit a crosscourt ball for example.

Bungalo Bill
05-30-2008, 06:45 AM
Hey, wassup Double B?

You understand that I actually know Heycal right?

And if he wanted instruction, he would call me, and we would, well you know, go out on a tennis court and practice.

But he isn't asking for advice here, which is why I haven't offered any.

J

But you did offer advice. You can't see that? You also make your little sly comments that you continue to make a big deal about regarding people who rate conservatively. Why does this matter to you? Can't you see that if a player can play up on a general rating that it is a good thing?

When I rate, I do it on the evidence I have, what I have seen, what I have experienced, and my background. So what if people are off on some players. Is it that the conservative raters on these boards are way way off - all the time?

Further, the region I played in was very competitive. Players played down. So if someone says he is a recreational 3.5, I automatically rate a half-point lower for competitive play. Did I break the law? Are the the rater of raters? When you come out of the closet, when it is safe, is your rating now right and everyone else is wrong? LOL!

I don't care if your married to the guy. The rating system, whether someone self-rates or gets a ballpark rating from a tester is not an exact science and there is always room for error. Nobody is counting how many you got right and how many you got wrong, except for you of course. LOL!!!

raiden031
05-30-2008, 06:46 AM
I looked up the Wardlaw directionals last night and found just that it says the following three principles:

- If receiving an outside shot, then hit it cross court back in the same direction
- If receiving an inside shot, then change the direction
- Only change direction on an outside shot when you have an easy ball to work with because of the 90 degree change

This doesn't seem like anything revolutionary but something that people would do naturally without even thinking. Is there more to it than this? What about this strategy makes it only suitable for advanced players?

Also I don't get the 90 degree change. I don't see anything 90 degrees. To change 90 degrees would mean the outgoing ball would send the ball perpendicular to the incoming ball, which would mean straight into the neighboring court.

drak
05-30-2008, 06:53 AM
"Sorry, Drak. I'm not interested in spending time on drills or practicing"

LMAO!

It's funny, in the previous 2 pages of often "heated" discussion NO ONE mentoned this simple yet totally revealing post by Heycal!

He is simply not interested in drilling or practicing - well I think that simply says it all. No matter what "strategies" one employs, practice is a huge and needed ingredient in improving ones game and RESULTS. Lets stop wasting our time on a guy that does not recognize such a simple yet important fact. He'll keep losing (unless he plays 3.0's or lower all the time - lol) and likely never get better, and the rest of us will move on.

raiden031
05-30-2008, 06:57 AM
"Sorry, Drak. I'm not interested in spending time on drills or practicing"

LMAO!

It's funny, in the previous 2 pages of often "heated" discussion NO ONE mentoned this simple yet totally revealing post by Heycal!

He is simply not interested in drilling or practicing - well I think that simply says it all. No matter what "strategies" one employs, practice is a huge and needed ingredient in improving ones game and RESULTS. Lets stop wasting our time on a guy that does not recognize such a simple yet important fact. He'll keep losing (unless he plays 3.0's or lower all the time - lol) and likely never get better, and the rest of us will move on.

Hate to say it, but I would guess a solid majority of the 3.5 league players in my area don't care to do drills or even change their stroke technique to improve their game.

Bungalo Bill
05-30-2008, 07:02 AM
"Sorry, Drak. I'm not interested in spending time on drills or practicing"

LMAO!

It's funny, in the previous 2 pages of often "heated" discussion NO ONE mentoned this simple yet totally revealing post by Heycal!

He is simply not interested in drilling or practicing - well I think that simply says it all. No matter what "strategies" one employs, practice is a huge and needed ingredient in improving ones game and RESULTS. Lets stop wasting our time on a guy that does not recognize such a simple yet important fact. He'll keep losing (unless he plays 3.0's or lower all the time - lol) and likely never get better, and the rest of us will move on.

I know, hilarious. Good insight and point well taken. I spent a good amount of time trying to get this guy to see that the Directionals are not the issue.

Now, that you highlighted those words, I can now see where I have errored. Thanks for knocking me upside the head.

heycal
05-30-2008, 07:05 AM
"Sorry, Drak. I'm not interested in spending time on drills or practicing"

LMAO!

It's funny, in the previous 2 pages of often "heated" discussion NO ONE mentoned this simple yet totally revealing post by Heycal!

He is simply not interested in drilling or practicing - well I think that simply says it all. No matter what "strategies" one employs, practice is a huge and needed ingredient in improving ones game and RESULTS. Lets stop wasting our time on a guy that does not recognize such a simple yet important fact. He'll keep losing (unless he plays 3.0's or lower all the time - lol) and likely never get better, and the rest of us will move on.

Right. I'm not interested in drilling or practicing. Does that offend your religious beliefs or sense of patriotism or something?

So yes, you can stop wasting your time here and move on. I don't recall posting "Drak, and others: Please help me get better, and also learn to stick with the directonals!"

heycal
05-30-2008, 07:07 AM
I know, hilarious. Good insight and point well taken. I spent a good amount of time trying to get this guy to see that the Directionals are not the issue.

Obviously, I could use tons of practice and improvement. God knows you could too. Or anyone. But since I'm not interested in drilling or practicing, but mostly playing matches and winning them, I will toss the proven losing strategy of Wardlaw directionals and play my own sweet game.

Djokovicfan4life
05-30-2008, 07:10 AM
Obviously, I could use tons of practice and improvement. God knows you could too. Or anyone. But since I'm not interested in drilling or practicing, but mostly playing matches and winning them, I will toss the proven losing strategy of Wardlaw directionals and play my own sweet game.

And not practicing leads to winning, HOW??????????? :confused:

Bungalo Bill
05-30-2008, 07:11 AM
I looked up the Wardlaw directionals last night and found just that it says the following three principles:

- If receiving an outside shot, then hit it cross court back in the same direction
- If receiving an inside shot, then change the direction
- Only change direction on an outside shot when you have an easy ball to work with because of the 90 degree change

This doesn't seem like anything revolutionary but something that people would do naturally without even thinking. Is there more to it than this? What about this strategy makes it only suitable for advanced players?

Also I don't get the 90 degree change. I don't see anything 90 degrees. To change 90 degrees would mean the outgoing ball would send the ball perpendicular to the incoming ball, which would mean straight into the neighboring court.

It means that considering your body position along with considering your stroke rotation, the more natural shot would be to hit it straight. It means it is the path of least resistance if you will and you are not fighting your body.

1. It does not mean go for the lines which some end up intepreting.

2. It does not mean you can't decide to do something else as some end up interpreting.

3. It does not mean that if you get a ball that you know you can handle that you can't do something else as some end up interpreting.

4. It does not mean you can't hit an inside-out forehand and work the ball differently as some end up interpretting.

5. It does not mean you need to keep doing it over and over again until you become pro while being predictable as some end up interpreting.

6. It does not mean it is law and from now on you are locked into this as some end up interpreting.

7. It does not mean you can only hit groundstrokes from now on and never use another shot choice or introduce a surprise shot that may be more risky, like setting up your point for a drop shot as indicated in my example a few posts up as some end up interpreting.

It simply means that, in general, based on your body position, the angle of the incoming ball, and the rotation of your stroke, that the more natural stroke is to hit it straight in this case. Also, if you are looking to get a better matchup, that this is the ball that gives you the highest precentage chance to not error and execute that change.

This does not take into account the different weapons people have, the different level of risk people are willing to take, and so on. The additional stuff is what you build your points around OVER the fundamentals of high-percentage play.

Kokopelli
05-30-2008, 07:25 AM
There are threads that ask for instructions, and then there are threads that share personal experience. I think this is the "sharing my experience" thread.

I think it's valid to suggest that Heycal should give the Wardlaw strategy more time (with practice) before dismissing it so quickly. I'm happened to be on this side of the argument.

But I also think it's okay for Heycal to disregard the suggestions above. After all, he's not advocating that Wardlaw is bad for everyone. In fact, he stated very clearly that with HIS LIMITED experience and implementation with the Wardlaw strategy, he came to the conclusion that Wardlaw is not for HIM (only). The man was just sharing his personal experience.

No big deal!!! So be it!!! No need to resort to personal attacks and name callings (from both sides).

heycal
05-30-2008, 07:29 AM
You know...I almost used Agassi as an example in my previous post...

I can assure you that after Agassi started working with Gilbert he knew where he was going to serve before he tossed the ball up and why he was going to serve there...not to mention what he was going to do after that.

Pop quiz...how many grand slams did Agassi win before he worked with Gilbert? How many did he win after?

Pop quiz: Can you tell me how many matches Agassi won and how many millions of dollars he made from tennis playing his own sweet improvisational game and deciding where he was going to serve during his toss?

drak
05-30-2008, 07:31 AM
Hate to say it, but I would guess a solid majority of the 3.5 league players in my area don't care to do drills or even change their stroke technique to improve their game.

Then guess what? they will likely not improve and remain 3.5's forever, which by the way is totally fine. But if one wants to improve and win more then guess what - like anything else in life one MUST PUT IN THE WORK!

raiden031
05-30-2008, 07:32 AM
It means that considering your body position along with considering your stroke rotation, the more natural shot would be to hit it straight. It means it is the path of least resistance if you will and you are not fighting your body.


Wait are you only addressing here when hitting an outside shot? Because it says not to hit it straight on an inside shot. But also how is this an advanced player's strategy unsuitable for intermediates? I would think intermediates are better off hitting more high-percentage shots and less high-risk shots.

raiden031
05-30-2008, 07:40 AM
I will toss the proven losing strategy of Wardlaw directionals

Statements like this are why you are being attacked in here.

Kokopelli
05-30-2008, 07:47 AM
Statements like this are why you are being attacked in here.

Yes, Heycal should not have written "I will toss the proven losing strategy of Wardlaw directionals." But notice, he wrote "I will..." and not "YOU and EVERYONE should..."

Also to be fair, this statement came about after several heated exchanges PRIOR to this post - from both sides.

This is all unnecessary.

Bungalo Bill
05-30-2008, 07:48 AM
Wait are you only addressing here when hitting an outside shot? Because it says not to hit it straight on an inside shot. But also how is this an advanced player's strategy unsuitable for intermediates? I would think intermediates are better off hitting more high-percentage shots and less high-risk shots.

I getting a bit tired of typing my explanations of the Directionals and my position on them. I hope you can understand.

I am going to give you a present since you are interested, asking reasonable questions, and I consider it a joy helping people truly interested in getting better.

Carefully listen to this video. Listen to every word because it is the same information that I (and others) have sprinkled around this board.

Whether you want to use them or not, that is up to you. However, if you are going to use them, use them to improve your game by trying to understand what glaring weakness it will draw out (the HOW). Then you can setup your practices and goals to shore them up to make you a better player. As you progress, you will soon surpass them and move on to higher play.

So here you go: Review all of these videos but Lesson 5, 6, and a little bit on 7 is on the Directionals from Coach Kriese whom I respect.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d7PJ73e-iVU

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fbsDnSmsod8&feature=related

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wEwdLMhhiZ4&feature=related

Let me know what you think.

CAREFULLY LISTEN TO THE BEGINNING OF THE VIDEO. HE TALKS ABOUT THE "HOW" TO HIT A TENNIS BALL AND THE FOOTWORK.

This is exactly what I was trying to tell HeyCal but he refused to listen.

Kokopelli
05-30-2008, 07:58 AM
...
So here you go: Review all of these videos but Lesson 5 is on the Directionals from Coach Krieses whom I respect.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d7PJ73e-iVU

...[/B]

I watched the entire series numerous times and found them to be very helpful.

raiden031
05-30-2008, 08:13 AM
Yes, Heycal should not have written "I will toss the proven losing strategy of Wardlaw directionals." But notice, he wrote "I will..." and not "YOU and EVERYONE should..."

Also to be fair, this statement came about after several heated exchanges PRIOR to this post - from both sides.

This is all unnecessary.

I don't think it matters who should toss the strategy, but he is stating that it is a "proven losing strategy", which means he is stating a fact about the strategy without really any evidence to back it up.

Bungalo Bill
05-30-2008, 08:35 AM
I don't think it matters who should toss the strategy, but he is stating that it is a "proven losing strategy", which means he is stating a fact about the strategy without really any evidence to back it up.

I find this entire thread interesting because it is such a simple thing causing so much fuss from players who are still at club level or recreational play. :)

MordredSJT
05-30-2008, 08:38 AM
Pop quiz: Can you tell me how many matches Agassi won and how many millions of dollars he made from tennis playing his own sweet improvisational game and deciding where he was going to serve during his toss?

He won a lot. He also lost a lot of matches that he could have won. He lost a lot of matches that by all rights he should have won. He was not living up to his full potential. Again, if that is ok with you and you would rather go on ignoring the mental disciplines of the game, then that is your choice...it is a choice that will limit the effectiveness of your game.

Incidentally, I find it kind of silly that you are using a quote from Bill Tilden over and over in reference to your "own sweet game". Bill Tilden was a master strategist and tactician. He always had a plan and went about putting that plan into action. The man wrote books on strategy and tactics that still have relevance today...you should read them sometime.

Kokopelli
05-30-2008, 08:40 AM
I don't think it matters who should toss the strategy, but he is stating that it is a "proven losing strategy", which means he is stating a fact about the strategy without really any evidence to back it up.

Well, to HIM, according to HIS perception, and from HIS personal experience of implementing it in a very limited manner, it is a "proven losing strategy." The guy was just sharing what works and doesn't for him. He's not advocating that others should follow.

You, on the other hand (and myself included), might have perceptions and personal experiences with the Wardlaw strategy that are on the contrary to that of Heycal. So, to YOU, according to YOUR perception, and from YOUR personal experience, Wardlaw is not a "proven losing strategy."

I just don't see the need for attacking people (from both sides) for having different personal experiences.

Kokopelli
05-30-2008, 08:53 AM
I find this entire thread interesting because it is such a simple thing causing so much fuss from players who are still at club level or recreational play. :)

Well, probably because at the club/recreational level, minor changes could have an exaggerated effect due to the skill sets of these players. IMO, Wardlaw is not as simple as you put it. It's something new to people at this level and it's a complete new way to thinking and a new approach to the game. I venture to say that most club/recreational players are not familiar with the Wardlaw strategy, so implementing it is a huge adjustment - thus so much fuss.

Bungalo Bill
05-30-2008, 09:01 AM
Well, probably because at the club/recreational level, minor changes could have an exaggerated effect due to the skill sets of these players. IMO, Wardlaw is not as simple as you put it. It's something new to people at this level and it's a complete new way to thinking and a new approach to the game. I venture to say that most club/recreational players are not familiar with the Wardlaw strategy, so implementing it is a huge adjustment - thus so much fuss.

That is not where the fuss is, at least not the majority of it.

The fuss is in the expectations and misinterpretations of the Directionals. I have over and over again tried to manage the expectations of it by explaning that it is a guideline and they are prinicples. It isn't law. I have also explained that it needs to be practiced and worked into your game plan as a fundamental underlying way to improve your shot selection skills and your tennis strategy.

The Directionals are simple. However, the execution part (the HOW) is what falls short which is seperate from the simplicity of the Directionals, it isn't the Directionals itself.

Wardlaw strategy is so darn simple it makes me a bit sick. It is a way to raise a persons game play if practiced like anything else.