PDA

View Full Version : Problem w/ Roddick's backhand??


VictorS.
02-11-2005, 08:30 PM
I'm watching the Roddick-Enquivst match right now on the tennis channel. And it just seems like roddick is slicing the backhand more than ever, like someone mentioned earlier. What do you guys think is the root of the problem in roddick's backhand from a mechanical standpoint?

To me, it seems like he hits the backhand very flat and doesn't come over the ball very well, which leaves him very little margin for error. In addition, his motion seems very forced and rigid. Is it too late for him to improve? I once read that Bill Tilden took an entire season or year just to work on his backhand....came back and became arguably the greatest player ever.

Vlad
02-11-2005, 08:44 PM
He is doing it very often against hard flat hitters like Enqvist or Safin...

BTW, how's the match, I see he is struggling a bit?

Vlad
02-11-2005, 08:47 PM
Wasn't he broken like 4 times in a set and a half?
What happened to his serve?

court_zone
02-12-2005, 04:16 AM
Andy's two-hander bh was already very solid. Remember the November/December tennis magazine issue where Ken Flach,a former world no.1 doubles player, and currently head men's tennis coach at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tenn., wrote that on a scale of 1 to 10 Roddick's serve is a 10, forehand a 9.5 and backhand an 8. Of course his forehand is more of a weapon between the groundstrokes, but I see his backhand as just as consistent which he can also use as a weapon at times. His bh slice was nice when he wanted to slow down a rally/give Roddick's opponent a different look or to approach the net, please stop slicing your bh Andy, use it like you previously did and stick with you two-hander bh.

VictorS.
02-12-2005, 06:55 AM
I dunno. It seems like most of his unforced errors come on the backhand side. 9 times out of 10, when he misses his forehand...it's because he went for the shot. I'm not saying his backhand is horrible. Obviously compared to the average tennis hack, it's an extremely servicable shot. But when compared to Safin and even a guy like Enquivst....it just seems to be more of a liability. He doesn't seem able to dictate points off the BH side IMO.

Andy Hewitt
02-12-2005, 07:03 AM
Ever since he got that new coach his game is DECLINING!!!! NOOO!!! WHY!!!!! :(

alienhamster
02-12-2005, 07:09 AM
But does he NEED to dictate points with the backhand? There've always been really successful pros with one really good money shot coupled with a less effective side. I think Safin's rare in that he's so able to dictate off both sides. Andy seems totally fine when he keeps his backhands deep and with topspin and waits for the right shot to run around and hit the forehand, mix in a slice, etc. He's trying the backhand DTL more now--and sometimes nailing it--but it's really not reliable on the pressure points.

What I can't figure is why he's relying on the slice so much now. On grass that's not a bad strategy. But he could get creamed by Haas . . .

VictorS.
02-12-2005, 11:47 AM
Obviously Roddick's a solid top-5 player, with a game many of us dream about. But it just seems like his backhand really limits him. I mean, even if he had Mardy Fish's backhand....I think he would so much more of a threat against the federers and hewitts.

Steve Huff
02-12-2005, 12:39 PM
The slice backhand is great for making the ball float deeper and stay low off the bounce, which is great for S & V because they are coming to the net. The deep, slow ball gives the S & V more time to get to the net and establish position. The low bounce forces the opponent to hit up more. But Andy is only an S. He needs to buy a V before he can utilize the slice to his advantage.

West Coast Ace
02-12-2005, 01:29 PM
Court_Zone, Ken Flach is entitled to his opinion - whether it has any basis in the real world or not. I'll bet Ken dreams of being Davis Cup coach and realizes sucking up to the current US #1 is mandatory to ever be considered. Roddick's BH has always been less than average for a top 50 pro - it's much better than it was when he first got on tour, but it has a long way to go. If his BH is an 8, Roger's is an 18.

Usually when someone is slicing the BH a lot, it's because of poor footwork - he's just not getting in position to drive the ball. Mixing it in occasionally to change speeds is good, as is using it as an approach shot, but in today's game it's a recipe for mediocrity if a pro is hitting it too often.

court_zone
02-12-2005, 01:40 PM
Yes, I agree with you West Coast Ace, Roddick still needs a lot of improvement in his bh but I agree with Ken Flach. Has Roddick's two-hander let him down since he started having success with Gilbert? Federer is an amazing player but I wouldn't rank his bh so high. It is where he makes most of his errors and Federer himself even called his 1-handed bh the weakness of his game. In comparison to Roddick's, Federer's backhand is the a bit of a better shot and has had more improvement. I think you're right about Andy slicing the BH due to poor footwork. He was previously using the shot as it should have been used as you stated, now he is using it way too excessively which will lead to mediocrity.

ohplease
02-12-2005, 03:39 PM
But does he NEED to dictate points with the backhand? There've always been really successful pros with one really good money shot coupled with a less effective side. I think Safin's rare in that he's so able to dictate off both sides. Andy seems totally fine when he keeps his backhands deep and with topspin and waits for the right shot to run around and hit the forehand, mix in a slice, etc. He's trying the backhand DTL more now--and sometimes nailing it--but it's really not reliable on the pressure points.

What I can't figure is why he's relying on the slice so much now. On grass that's not a bad strategy. But he could get creamed by Haas . . .

Safin's rare in that his backhand is actually more of a threat more often than his forehand. He's a head case anyway, but that state of affairs sure can't help things.

I think I remember there was an interview w/Roddick's new coach during the aussie where he said that Andy's problem was that he wasn't about the pace of his groundies - it was where he was hitting them. His forehand is a monster, but he's often standing so far back that it wasn't effectively robbing his opponents of time. I think the exact phrase was that he wasn't hungry enough for the ball.

I haven't seen him play this week, but if this tournament is being used to burn in something new (like a better slice backhand or more of a nose for the bounce) than more power to him.

court_zone
02-12-2005, 04:07 PM
I haven't seen him play this week, but if this tournament is being used to burn in something new (like a better slice backhand or more of a nose for the bounce) than more power to him.

I am sure Andy wants to win this tourny but it's great that he is trying new things. This is one of the minor tournies and the right place to try something new.

swedechris
02-14-2005, 04:18 AM
roddick has the shots but not the mind.. he is a bit a waste of talent . he should stand near or on the baseline to win . work on shortening his swing a bit to not be jammed because of lack of tiem to prepare for the shots and not let his lack of aptience eat him up. he plays well in the us but sucks here in europe .. no guts or lack of adaptabilty??
best/c