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View Full Version : Bad day for tennis...? Is it the weather?


AlphaCDjkr
01-20-2009, 05:02 PM
Hey everyone. This is kinda going to be a half rant and half advice-seeking.

Me and my partner normally play doubles all the time at some public tennis courts; usually when we play, we can almost always win against this particular pair that we play often. This pair is considered one of the better teams on our school's varsity team, and we normally beat them. However, this is when we play at night...

Today, me and my partner had 3 sets we had to play at school to determine some rankings and stuff. We were playing these 3 teams that we should have easily blown off; these 3 teams lost to the pair I talked about in the above paragraph; logically this means we should be able to safely beat them.

It was a complete slaughter; first set was 2-6, 2nd set was Tiebreak loss at 4-7, 3rd set was Tiebreak loss at 5-7.

At first we were clueless. These were people we should have been able to consistently beat. They did play a pusher style, but we already know how to beat pushers. Here is what I noticed about the day.

My serves were better than usual, with more pace and spin.
My groundstrokes were as good as normal, good spin that often lands deep.
My volleys were atrocious; I can normally volley quite well, however, all my volleys seemed to either dive into the net or land behind the baseline, out.

My partner's serves all went out by just a tiny margin; they too were faster and contained more spin than normal. Literally almost all of his serves were out by less than half of a foot. His slice serves, which are normally excellent, all curved just a few inches too far and also landed out. His kick serves (when executed right; he isn't too good at them) were quite nice, nice bounce and pace. That is, assuming they went in.
My partner's groundstrokes were terrible compared to normal; many of his shots hit the net, and more than half of them hit the white tape but didn't make it over. His technique looked fine to me.
My partner's volleys were around as good as they normally were; they had some good pace and control.

Judging by this info, (I normally play a more controlled, spin-orientated game; he usually plays a power game), he came to the conclusion that it was the weather. We normally find that we play best at night, when it's cool; today, we were playing in burning weather (though neither of us felt debilitated from the heat). He thinks that the heat is making both the ball AND our racquet's stringbeds more lively; after some thinking, it would almost explain our lack of performance almost perfectly. Hes better than me at volleys, so he wouldn't mind receiving faster shots, though I flinched on almost all incoming volleys. Both of our serves did get faster. I'm used to playing at faster paces at baseline, but maybe not him.

I'm highly tempted to agree that it is the weather's fault; it would really be a relief knowing that it might not be our basic techniques, but merely our lack of ability adapting to the change. Then again, I'm afraid that we might be deluding ourselves by making senseless excuses.

What do you all think? Do you think it would be sensible to consider the heat as a factor of our play?

LeeD
01-20-2009, 05:07 PM
Lucky for you, your opponents also had to play in the same heat and they adapted somehow, to their success.
If you can't volley, and your partner can't groundie, don't expect normal results.
We all lose due to a mulitude of variables. You'll get better once you play more. When losing, try to figure why and change to compensate.
I've lost 0 and 1 in front of my best friends and teammates.

AlphaCDjkr
01-20-2009, 05:11 PM
Lucky for you, your opponents also had to play in the same heat and they adapted somehow, to their success.
If you can't volley, and your partner can't groundie, don't expect normal results.
We all lose due to a mulitude of variables. You'll get better once you play more. When losing, try to figure why and change to compensate.
I've lost 0 and 1 in front of my best friends and teammates.

Er, well they didn't particularly adapt. They all normally hit short shots anyway, and they very rarely hit deep. Now most of their shots seemed to land deeper, halfway around midcourt. It shouldn't have been a big deal, not too hard to actually catch and receive the shot; our main issue was just returning it properly, which is what I believe killed us.

We do want to compensate, but here is an issue. Our coach watched all 3 sets, and she has convinced herself that we don't work well and she wants us to play with different partners. I can guarantee that this is a road to disaster; I don't play well with anyone except this particular partner. I'm not sure we'll ever have much of a chance to play w/ each other as partners again.

LeeD
01-20-2009, 05:15 PM
As you play more and more tennis, you'll find you can play with just about anyone, some better than others, of course.
I've played matches with at least 5 different doubles partners, most better than me, and had limited success with all of them.
I've even played mixed with more than 3 partners and if I could only hit the ball, we'd be fine.
Partners come, partners go, don't worry who they are, just concentrate on the job at hand, play just within yourselves, and have fun!