PDA

View Full Version : Advice for "Low Skidding Slice"


tacoben
01-05-2009, 01:48 PM
Recently, I had a opportunity to play against a 4.5-5.0 rated player, who hit with tremendous pace. I had a problem with his slice, which tended to skid the surface and stay low instead of gripping the ground (which would then make the ball rise) resulting in a "swing and miss" for me. Any suggestions on how to handle this shot? FYI, we were playing on hard courts. Many thanks in advance to your replies.

Farz77
01-05-2009, 01:52 PM
Recently, I had a opportunity to play against a 4.5-5.0 rated player, who hit with tremendous pace. I had a problem with his slice, which tended to skid the surface and stay low instead of gripping the ground (which would then make the ball rise) resulting in a "swing and miss" for me. Any suggestions on how to handle this shot? FYI, we were playing on hard courts. Many thanks in advance to your replies.

Well, hold on. Are you swing and missing above the ball or under, so verticaly or to the left, so horizontally. I'm guessing, since it's slice, your're not stretched out to it. Move more to that side. He will be reluctant to serve there. And if he does you're right there. But if he goes down the middle, then you gotta just stay low and WATCH THE BALL. Also, are you remembering to slip-step. If you are doing all of these things, you should be able to lift that low ball back to his side. Also sine it's low, bend those knees, so you are not bending at the waist.

tacoben
01-05-2009, 01:57 PM
Well, hold on. Are you swing and missing above the ball or under, so verticaly or to the left, so horizontally. I'm guessing, since it's slice, your're not stretched out to it. Move more to that side. He will be reluctant to serve there. And if he does you're right there. But if he goes down the middle, then you gotta just stay low and WATCH THE BALL. Also, are you remembering to slip-step. If you are doing all of these things, you should be able to lift that low ball back to his side. Also sine it's low, bend those knees, so you are not bending at the waist.

I'm sorry, I did not make myself clear...it was a slice backhand as opposed to a slice serve. Thanks.

LeeD
01-05-2009, 02:03 PM
Are you talking returning sliced serves or returning his sliced backhands?
I'll focus on the backhand.
You gotta get into position earlier and hit thru the ball, with a longer strike zone, so your mishits still go in, and you mishit less often. The sliced one hander has a slow backspin after landing, so coupled with your brushing stroke, makes for very little margin for error.
Try slicing it back one handed, but not near him.
Lots of good 4.5 players use a slice held with a continental side of FOREHAND grip, to exagerate the spin into an oval hit ball. OVAL, as in extreme backspin, low skidder running away from you...or into your body.
Always fun to hit that shot against a 3.5 player and watch him just stand there in awe as the ball low skidds 20 degrees sideways away from the player.

Farz77
01-05-2009, 02:06 PM
I'm sorry, I did not make myself clear...it was a slice backhand as opposed to a slice serve. Thanks.

HAHA, no problem! Well... same rule applies here. You MUST BEND WITH YOUR KNEES. Not your waist. You lose your balance if you move with your knees. Now, I'm not aware of your physical attributes, but if you are getting to the ball on time, and you know that skidding slice is coming, get down and lift. If he hits it to your backhand, it's best if you hit a slice, if he hits it to your forehand, you can hit a short cross-court above the shortest part of the net. And never take your eye off that ball.

Bungalo Bill
01-05-2009, 02:47 PM
Recently, I had a opportunity to play against a 4.5-5.0 rated player, who hit with tremendous pace. I had a problem with his slice, which tended to skid the surface and stay low instead of gripping the ground (which would then make the ball rise) resulting in a "swing and miss" for me. Any suggestions on how to handle this shot? FYI, we were playing on hard courts. Many thanks in advance to your replies.

Considering that your technique, movement, positioning, etc...are good, I answer a slice like that usually with a slice of my own. It is a simple yet effective strategy. If the ball is such that I can hit topspin, I will, however, I usually answer this slice with another slice.

naylor
01-05-2009, 07:13 PM
On the backhand side, I usually play slice back against slice.

On the forehand side, I tend to play topspin, because I'm often mindful that a slice down the line to my forehand is an approach shot - therefore, I don't want my ball to just float over the net, it needs to get over and dip. If it's not an approach, then a topspin cross-court to the open court puts more pressure on the other guy.

On both wings, you have to get low - from the knees (as someone else has already said) rather than bend from the waist.

If you go for topspin on the forehand (or backhand, for that matter), you also have to make sure that you give the ball more clearance over the net than usual, because very often as you're hitting a low ball you can't drop the rackethead low enough to pay a proper topspin swing so you don't quite hit it with the sweetspot. In either case, the more I move from the middle of the baseline to one side or the other (but still able to play topspin back), the more I think crosscourt over the lower part of the net for extra safety. If I know the opponent is coming in, my objective is to try to make him volley up (so it doesn't matter that my ball will land short, what I want is for it to dip once it goes over the net). If he stays back, then I know I have a bit more height to work with to try to play a crosscourt with better depth (here, I need to avoid giving him a short ball he can approach on).

Kevo
01-06-2009, 06:22 PM
I was working on slices the other day with the ball machine. I started really hitting through the ball and it was staying so low and speeding through the court I started to wonder if I would be able to return such a shot if it were hit to me.

My answer after a few moments of consideration was that slicing it back would pretty much be the only option. Some of these slices were so low that I don't think there would be enough room to get the sweetspot of the racquet on the ball cleanly without brushing the ground. I've never seen anyone hit a slice like this in a league match, so I can't wait for the new season to start so I can try it out.

So, working on your own biting slice may be the way learn to return one.

LeeD
01-06-2009, 07:19 PM
You should have asked your opponent how he hits that ball.
Bet he uses forehand side of continental, high to slow swing, much faster than his normal swings, and the ball goes OVAL, it goes flat trajectory, it bounces wierd and stay low, and it bites... meaning you mishit off it.
Sounds like a nice changeup to have, even for a two hander, eh?

FedererISBetter
01-06-2009, 11:56 PM
All advices are correct IF you are there to hit the ball. The trick is to read his motion, see the slice is coming... come up to the slice ball, and take it on the rise. Once the ball hits the court, its gonna slide a lil then dies.

larry10s
01-07-2009, 03:55 AM
slice the slice if you can

In D Zone
01-07-2009, 08:58 AM
Yes, normally slice the slice on the backhand side. If I have time to get to the ball - I would at times hit a 1hbh topspin.
Forehand normally replies with a Topspin.

Having said that you want to be aware of the intent of the opponent -Watch for the bait : is he intentionally changing the pace to move you low, pinning you to the corner so that he will attack you with a heavy topspin to the open court or coming to the net.

Whatever you do.... be on the look out or be ready to aggressive.

junbumkim
01-07-2009, 09:35 AM
I have faced 5.0 players who could hit some nasty slice bh to me, low and skidding.

Pay close attention to their backswing to pick up hints that they are hitting slice.

As soon as you realize that they are going to hit slice, you have to be ready to move and get down low.

Don't try to do too much with the ball, focus on staying down low, and making a clean contact.

There really is no way around this but to face these kind of shots time and time again.

LeeD
01-07-2009, 10:10 AM
Exactly....
At any level we play, not including 6 and above, we'll be facing a few old guys who insist on slicing backhands hard, low, and deep ....mostly to our backhands.
The ball is struck so hard it goes OVAL, like a true second serve, so we have to deal with it or go home.
Best to NOT go home, so seek out more practice against that ball!!

jb193
01-07-2009, 11:50 AM
I have had a similar problem as you. I play an older former 5.0 singles player periodically and his lefty slice on his backhand is beyond nasty. It has good pace, get about 3-4 inches off the ground and can angle the heck out of it.....

What you really have to ask yourself is what kind of balls is he feeding off of when he really hurts you with this shot. I have realized that if I don't hit with 1) depth 2) depth & 3) depth, he eats me alive with his slice. However, if I can get him moving and hit with significant depth (with adequate pace), his slice isn't near as lethal & returnable and actually attackable at times.....

mikeler
01-07-2009, 12:33 PM
I like to give slicers looping topspin groundstrokes that get out of their strike zone and force them to put some pace on the ball. There are a few who can do it well, but most people's slices will float just a little bit more when they have to generate the pace and then their slice is not quite so deadly.

Rickson
01-07-2009, 01:00 PM
Slice a slice.

dman72
02-26-2009, 05:39 AM
I have had a similar problem as you. I play an older former 5.0 singles player periodically and his lefty slice on his backhand is beyond nasty. It has good pace, get about 3-4 inches off the ground and can angle the heck out of it.....

What you really have to ask yourself is what kind of balls is he feeding off of when he really hurts you with this shot. I have realized that if I don't hit with 1) depth 2) depth & 3) depth, he eats me alive with his slice. However, if I can get him moving and hit with significant depth (with adequate pace), his slice isn't near as lethal & returnable and actually attackable at times.....

Had to pull this thread up because I was getting killed with low slice to my backhand last night..the guy I was playing only hit slice on both sides with a continental grip, but it was good enough to beat me..a few he didn't really lay into I put away for winners, but more often than not, I struggled to get them back with anything productive.

The observation I made..too late..which he confirmed afterwards in conversation, is that anything to the T or shorter that I hit him, I was basically done...anything 2 feet deeper, his shot becomes purely defensive. The problem is keeping that low slice ball coming back at him deep..it's easier said than done.

the only other option I can see is charging the net, because slice is easier to volley, but since I suck at volleying, that's opening up a whole other problem. I'll need to work on slicing low balls back. I just wish my ball machine had slice.

Slicendicer
02-26-2009, 05:43 AM
Slice a slice.

Yeah... thats pretty much it. :)

If you can slice well enough then just send it back with some side spin. The only answer is to improve your slice BH, so it is not a deficiency.

jrod
02-26-2009, 07:03 AM
I agree with most here on slicing back a slice. However, this can get difficult for some if the slice is to your FH wing. It can be quite difficult to hit an effective FH slice for some folks, depending on their grip. I generally will try to hit a topspin back but have to get down real low, use my legs and exaggerate the racquet head acceleration in order to be successful. I have also developed a defensive FH slice (squash-shot) for those cases where I cannot get set up well.

I do find slicing to my opponents FH side more effective than slicing to their BH side because of the issues outlined above.

LeeD
02-26-2009, 08:53 AM
I"m lefty and have that hard skidding low slice....
If you hit that to me, I'd turn shoulders lots, prepare early, and mostly slice back to the side that gives you problems on low skidded balls.
But as an alternative, a FLAT hit backhand groudie works really well against that skidding hard, sliding and slipping ball. Gotta stay firm, don't overstroke, and block it solidly to get a deep ball back at the slicer.
And if I had 5.5 groundies, which I don't, maybe a topspin would work just fine.

Frank Silbermann
02-27-2009, 02:51 PM
If you think it's bad on hard courts, just try returning that shot on grass.

But a low, skidding slice is no problem if you hit your ground strokes using a continental grip. That's why most of the top players in the 1950s and 60s used grips that were continental or pretty close (even though most beginners have more success learning the eastern grip). The difficulty of handling that shot with a western or two-handed grip is the reason those grips were considered incorrect.

Kevo
02-27-2009, 04:22 PM
I agree with most here on slicing back a slice. However, this can get difficult for some if the slice is to your FH wing. It can be quite difficult to hit an effective FH slice for some folks, depending on their grip. I generally will try to hit a topspin back but have to get down real low, use my legs and exaggerate the racquet head acceleration in order to be successful. I have also developed a defensive FH slice (squash-shot) for those cases where I cannot get set up well.

I do find slicing to my opponents FH side more effective than slicing to their BH side because of the issues outlined above.

It really depends on the opponent I think. I've encountered quite a few players who are able to get a forehand back even with bad prep and position. It seems for most people it's much more difficult to get a backhand back with poor prep and position. But, you're point is well taken. Some players will not handle the shot as well on the forehand side. It pays to try different things and find an effective shot and then use it.

oneguy21
02-27-2009, 04:31 PM
Use your legs to get down low and stay low throughout the entire shot. You can't crush these balls so just hit them back deep.

A common mistake is to bend your waist to get down to these shots. Ideally you should get down by bending your knees.

mikeler
02-27-2009, 05:11 PM
Hit to the forehand more if the slice backhand is killing you.

LeeD
02-27-2009, 05:24 PM
I've been playing with a 3-3.5 guy who just topspin lobs me if I give him that hard, low, skidding slice ball. He mishits it more often than not, but a topspin lob is not an easy ball to groundie when he hits it about 3' from the baseline.
Actually, he mishits lots of topspin lobs off both sides of his groundies, and it's a very effective shot.

mixertefera
02-27-2009, 05:39 PM
Had to pull this thread up because I was getting killed with low slice to my backhand last night..the guy I was playing only hit slice on both sides with a continental grip, but it was good enough to beat me..a few he didn't really lay into I put away for winners, but more often than not, I struggled to get them back with anything productive.

The observation I made..too late..which he confirmed afterwards in conversation, is that anything to the T or shorter that I hit him, I was basically done...anything 2 feet deeper, his shot becomes purely defensive. The problem is keeping that low slice ball coming back at him deep..it's easier said than done.

the only other option I can see is charging the net, because slice is easier to volley, but since I suck at volleying, that's opening up a whole other problem. I'll need to work on slicing low balls back. I just wish my ball machine had slice.

sounds like you played my dad but aginst him anthing not hit really deep or with lots of pace and your dead one otherthing is i would say volleying hevey slice is just as hard as volleying topspin

LeeD
02-27-2009, 06:17 PM
You are sooo correct!
Volleying heavy sliced shots are just about as hard as volleying heavily topped passing shots. Both, you tend to mishit unless you lengthen your stroke and move forwards. Both, if you move forwards, the opponent lobs you negating your volley.
Personally, I'd rather volley a heavy topspin ball at knee level than a heavy sliced ball at that same height. (first volley).
For the second volley, it makes little difference because I'm 5' from the net and can angle hard for a putaway.
Flat hard shots are the easiest to volley, unless it handcuffs you.