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theartoftennis
01-24-2009, 09:50 PM
playing the first tournament of the school season this upcoming weekend and i'm playing mixed. this should be a pretty tough tournament and i want to start the season off really well. I'm a good doubles player but my partner is a bit weaker. Obviously we have a bit of a weakness and hopefully we can hide it.
Are there any strategies I should try to implement in our game to help her feel more comfortable?

BU-Tennis
01-24-2009, 11:13 PM
The biggest weakness in mixed doubles is when the girl serves. I suggest playing two back, especially when the girl is serving to the other guy player. Of course, this all depends on how well you can volley and read your opponent, and your partner's service ability. I would say just have you partner, when serving to the guy, to always serve down the t. You don't want to open up the line because if you can't pick the volley off that goes cross court your partner might not be able to handle the pace.

One thing is to not automatically assume that you should always try to attack the opposite girl member. Even though there is usually an obvious weak player, in mixed or mens doubles, you should go out and play some high percentage doubles. For the first few games, you should always return crosscourt. If you are serving try and keep away from serving wide as this gives the returner too many choices: down the line, middle of the court, or a sharp angle. A great doubles serve is (for a righty) is to slice a slower serve into the returners body which will usually make a reply that has less pace and is high above the net. Then move in and, if the ball is over the level of the net, volley towards the opposing net person, if not just give a deep volley back into the corner.

The best way to make your partner comfortable is to serve well yourself and take pressure off of her at net. Girls more than guys feel vulnerable at net and if you're just spinning serves into the returners wheelhouse they are going to soon see that your partner isn't confident and she will be a sitting duck.

If one up one back doesn't work try and play two back with the girl on the backhand side and you on the forehand side when possible (assuming you are both righties).