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rk_sports
11-20-2009, 10:44 AM
okay.. stay with me :)

when playing players who are not good.. doesnt give you good ball, but short balls, slow slices, bad lobs, just pushing.. makes my game break down.. or even more than the game.. breaks my attitude.. and I make crazy errors and after a while, when I say to myself, okay lets just play a solid game from my side.. whatever you are dealt with.. but I just cannot recover.. :confused:

I'm sure some of you faced this dilemma... what are the keys to self-coach (to say) to break out of such situations ...dont tell me not to play wt that type of players :)

LuckyR
11-20-2009, 10:59 AM
okay.. stay with me :)

when playing players who are not good.. doesnt give you good ball, but short balls, slow slices, bad lobs, just pushing.. makes my game break down.. or even more than the game.. breaks my attitude.. and I make crazy errors and after a while, when I say to myself, okay lets just play a solid game from my side.. whatever you are dealt with.. but I just cannot recover.. :confused:

I'm sure some of you faced this dilemma... what are the keys to self-coach (to say) to break out of such situations ...dont tell me not to play wt that type of players :)

I would rephrase the question, then the answer becomes obvious: How do I beat players who are better than me (since they beat you) and use a higher consistancy than I have, as their strategy?

Well, if you can increase your consistancy to better than theirs, that will work. If you can pressure them enough to lower their consistancy below yours, that will work too. One thing we know for sure, is that the third strategy will not work: hit enough winners to make up for your lesser consistancy.

user92626
11-20-2009, 11:09 AM
It's crazily simple to play against that type of players you describe, because it requires only one strategy:

Just groundstroke the shots back (preferrably to an open area)!

Well, maybe one more aspect is needed: prepare to run and keep running and setting up. Don't be lazy.

That's it!

And you should have fun and get tons of exercise and opportunities to practice various groundstrokes. That's what I do and I like these players very much.

SlapChop
11-20-2009, 11:21 AM
but short balls, slow slices,

if you are getting these I would get up to the net and smash em.

rk_sports
11-20-2009, 11:32 AM
I would rephrase the question, then the answer becomes obvious: How do I beat players who are better than me (since they beat you) and use a higher consistancy than I have, as their strategy?

Well, if you can increase your consistancy to better than theirs, that will work. If you can pressure them enough to lower their consistancy below yours, that will work too. One thing we know for sure, is that the third strategy will not work: hit enough winners to make up for your lesser consistancy.

I get your point.. they beat me.. so they're better.. but I know stroke per stroke I'm better .. but it frustrates me to play that style .. when I hit a great show.. all they would do is just put a lob or just get a racket on it so it drops the other side..
and I guess the answer is obvious.. I need to get over this frustration and take it as a challenge..
what I was looking for is.. the approach to playing this sort of style.. do you do the same or just be consistent.. or..something else.. ?

Mick
11-20-2009, 12:12 PM
you just have to improve your consistency.

there's a guy that i often play with. he's a much better hitter than i do, but i know if the rally continues for more than 5 shots, the odd is in my favor.

i know he would beat me if he becomes more consistent but he has never beaten me in a match.

GuyClinch
11-20-2009, 12:19 PM
This question comes up alot..

Here is my take - its not strategy OR psychology. It's just execution. The big problem is that you think your stroke is so much superior to that of your opponent.

That's almost never the case. The people that complain about pushers (dinkers) are almost always pushers (dinkers) themselves. Players with better execution don't have issues.

BTW its better to call your opponent a dinker then a pusher on these boards because people here think Hewitt is a "pusher."

Anyway back to my point..

when playing players who are not good.. doesnt give you good ball, but short balls, slow slices, bad lobs, just pushing.. makes my game break down..

Pushers challenge your OFFENSIVE shot making ability. Clearly its not there yet. Bad lobs SHOULD become overhead winners. Short balls SHOULD become either very tough approach shots or "forcing shots" hit with pace to hard to get to spots.

You don't really need some fancy strategy - just the ability to hit those shots. Tennis is a humbling game for alot of players.
Some will tell you to just "push back" and I suppose that works. But its better if you can learn the shots that will really allow you to take pushers apart.

The fact that you have trouble with junk should be a red flag that you have some issues with mechanics and stroke production. As I said earlier that's almost always the case with the guys who complain about "pushers."

Pete

Mick
11-20-2009, 12:20 PM
One thing we know for sure, is that the third strategy will not work: hit enough winners to make up for your lesser consistancy.

this is exactly the guy's problem when he plays me: he would go for winners all the time and ends up having more unforced errors than winners.

sir_shanks_alot
11-20-2009, 12:25 PM
this question has existed since the time of dinosaurs. what is "better" anyway?

this player is confident they are "smarter," and they are, because you think aesthetics should determine the outcome. unfortunately for you, they do not! ;)

there are no style points in tennis and winning ugly is fair play. just because you're conceited, like me, and think your strokes might be "prettier" doesn't mean you're entitled to win. i've accepted that and i respect this type of player.

suck it up and admit they are skilled first. otherwise YOU would win, right? then, figure out what you have to do to beat them.

i like the challenge even though its frustrating. it teaches you a lot about yourself!

user92626
11-20-2009, 12:37 PM
At this point it seems like to me that the OP just can't hit the ball back sufficiently though he thinks his stroke is prettier. Like Guy said, it's just execution. "stroke per stroke" the OP is definitely NOT better, if you really think about it. Stroke per stroke, the op eventually lost out, more ue's piling. Hence he lost!

What else is there, besides just hit a shot back (execution) and run & repeat, to beat a pusher / dinker?

Against an advanced player, simply running and hitting a shot back isn't enough. You also need pace and spin to out-pace him and shot selection to increasing your percentage, etc. none of which is necessarily needed against a "pusher" "dinker"

LeeD
11-20-2009, 12:50 PM
Pusher? Better strokes?
Try this. I"m 60, flat serve mostly 100-110, S/V 90% of the time with topspin and twist second serves. I end ALL points on my serve within 4 shots, hopefully less.
When I'm defending on returns, I hit 20% groundies, slice 50%, drop 10%, short angle the rest, not giving you any rythum or rhyme. I end all return of serve points within 6 shots total, like 3 each player.
Am I a pusher?

Mick
11-20-2009, 01:02 PM
you sound like an anti-pusher to me :shock:

enishi1357
11-20-2009, 01:05 PM
I think the main strategy for me at least is to use as many forehand as possible to force them to hit a short shot. Even then you must maintain the topspin forehand not just half volley it back cuz they will lob it over you.

Stewy30
11-20-2009, 01:05 PM
Accept that he is better, practice to become better, and then you will beat him.

This is what I had to do with my hitting partner. He would "push" and I would crumble and end up losing matches after matches even though I know that my strokes were "better". I manned up and accepted he is better despite that, motivated myself to practice offensive tennis with good technique, and now when he turns on his push game that he knows I would ordinarily crumble on, I finish the point within 2 or 3 strokes. Now I never lose against him. Lesson learned, and hopefully you will learn it too =)

rk_sports
11-20-2009, 01:05 PM
ok I think i needed that reality check.. suck it up :)

Yes, as some of you said, I'm no expert level .. maybe a 3.5.. lets give it a rest as to I cant handle them point.. that's the reason I am asking for advice..

All I was asking was how to develop a better mindset for a situation when things are not going that way you like or prefer .. what happening is.. with that style.. I think I'm not improving.. and mastering against those styles wont make me a better player..

sir_shanks_alot
11-20-2009, 01:13 PM
It will make you better as long as it doesn't drive you insane! ;)

Just don't copy their strokes. Master yours, then you will beat them.

raiden031
11-20-2009, 01:15 PM
I don't think this is a problem that you can attack mentally. At 3.5, you might think you have good ground-strokes when you get feeds you like, but chances are your footwork and timing will fall apart when the ball has more varying trajectories. This means you really need to keep working the stroke-grooving drills. Once you have truly proficient strokes, you won't lose to these junkballin dinkers anymore because their shots won't bother you enough to cause the mental breakdown.

enishi1357
11-20-2009, 01:19 PM
Yeah, I played like one last week and the main thing to remember is to not get hang on every point. Just accept that he somehow pulls it off. I learned that your first serve is really important against pushers because if they can't return it then it basically means free points. If not then try not to lose it.

bharat
11-20-2009, 01:26 PM
I have the exact same problem ... have posted it here too :)

I played a guys last nite who said to me

" ... in 3.5 you don't beat anyone ... you then beat themselves "

I have changed my attitude a lot since i started my 3.5 league to just take it easy and play nice and smooth ground strokes

let then send it back, i got all day to practice my shots ..

so just relax and have fun and dont think about beating them .... they will beat themsleves :shock:

user92626
11-20-2009, 01:27 PM
All I was asking was how to develop a better mindset for a situation when things are not going that way you like or prefer .. what happening is.. with that style.. I think I'm not improving.. and mastering against those styles wont make me a better player..

OP,
Like I said above, you've got to realize that it's quite fun and benefitial to play against people who dink, lob, hit inconsistently short, long, spin, etc. basically try their utmost to keep the ball in play for you. That's the mindset you should come in with. Technique-wise, force yourself not to be lazy and try to keep up proper form/stroke.

Think about it is the other type of player that should drive you crazy. Say, someone who only knows or can serve 130mph and consistently beat you with it. It's a one trick pony. Even when you realize that your return technique needs improvement, there's not much else that they give you to play and improve. I've played with someone who tried mostly to hit FH winners -- in or out. It was a sad and frustrating game for me. But that's just me.

jswinf
11-20-2009, 02:51 PM
Beware of starting your strokes too soon. I feel like it's easy to wind up mimicing an opponent hitting slow stuff because it's hard to wait long enough for the ball, you start to swing too soon and your eye-hand coordination works to slow your swing down to compensate, so you hit mousy stuff back. I think it's good practice to work at hitting good strokes with good timing against slow stuff. It's not easy. Of course, the other night I had somebody that played like Nadal's older brother across the net and my "slow stuff" experience wasn't helpful.

LuckyR
11-20-2009, 03:25 PM
I get your point.. they beat me.. so they're better.. but I know stroke per stroke I'm better .. but it frustrates me to play that style .. when I hit a great show.. all they would do is just put a lob or just get a racket on it so it drops the other side..
and I guess the answer is obvious.. I need to get over this frustration and take it as a challenge..
what I was looking for is.. the approach to playing this sort of style.. do you do the same or just be consistent.. or..something else.. ?

What I do is make them pay for hitting the ball in the center of the court (to get their consistancy). I hit balls into the outer third of the court, not going for winners, which would lower my consistancy, but get them on the run. I end up hitting the ball CC and they hit floaters into the middle of the court. They run a lot, I stand in the center of the court having CC practice.

Of course these guys are rabbits and have speed and stamina. But since I am not trying to hit winners, my consistancy is high and they are doing all of the running. Noone, not even M Chang in his prime, can retrieve all day and keep up their consistancy. Eventually they tire and start making errors.

user92626
11-20-2009, 03:34 PM
luckyr,

that implies that you know how to place the ball and your pusher opponent is competent (or dumb) enough to keep putting the ball back at relatively the same spot.

What if your pusher oppon hits junk balls that spin all over the place or dink it into the first open area he sees, and if you're an incompetent runner or an incompetent hitter of different balls, then what?

Bagumbawalla
11-20-2009, 03:45 PM
I have played against "pushers" who had incredible endurance, and quickness, able to get to some very hard and well placed shots and send them back in such a way so as to cancle my advantage and, basically start the point over, time and again.

It is a falacy to think of them as bad players. In fact, if you do not have the strokes to deal with slow, off-pace balls with odd spins, loopy balls, and slice that dies at your feet, then the fault for playing badly is yours-- for not having practiced enough- learning to deal with all sorts of opponents and situations.

Get out there and practice. Have someone toss you balls so that you need to create the stroke from scratch, with no help from the pace of the opponent-- one small step toward improving the quality of your game.

raiden031
11-20-2009, 03:52 PM
I have played against "pushers" who had incredible endurance, and quickness, able to get to some very hard and well placed shots and send them back in such a way so as to cancle my advantage and, basically start the point over, time and again.

It is a falacy to think of them as bad players.

I agree that they are not bad players, given that they can beat alot of other rec players because of good anticipation, shot tolerance, and movement. But they are bad players in that they waste their talent by not really having the guts to develop a more advanced game because they are content winning at lower levels.

LeeD
11-20-2009, 03:55 PM
Seriously, guys, pushers can be 7.0 players in the ATP top 50 ranks. You know who they are, they're the tough matches whether first round or finals, make opponent's hit more balls than they want to, and run like rabbits mixed with ultra marathoners.
Some would say current #3 is a pusher when he recieves serve.

user92626
11-20-2009, 04:20 PM
It's funny how we all eventually define pushers to be very advanced players without saying aloud. Aren't advanced players those who can retrieve, defend, place well, dictate various paces,you know enough things that kick an average playa's arse? LOL. In this sense, leed has a point about atp relevancy.

LeeD
11-20-2009, 05:03 PM
Well, MaratSafin would say Nadal is a pusher.
Ivo would say Murray is a pusher.
And they all would allow me ONE point in a set.

Bagumbawalla
11-20-2009, 07:23 PM
Yes, I agree, despite the fact that they are often a pain in the neck to play against, and sometimes have good results, the "Pushing" style of play is limited and will only get them so far.

So, we would, then have to say that the person who thinks he/she has a great game, but is beaten by the junkballer, retriever, pusher... also has a limited game in that they may lack stamina, have problems creating pace on their own, have problems with low ball, slow balls, high balls, spin, flat balls, lack consistancy and the ability to set up points and hit winners (rather than wait for errors from the opponent)...

So, in effect, most people, with a bit of intospection, can find areas in their game for improvement, but very often rise to a certain level of play where they feel comfortable- physically and psychologically at ease. More can be said along these lines, but it has, mostly, been said before.

Netspirit
11-20-2009, 07:42 PM
Just enjoy tennis, enjoy longer rallies, enjoy variety. If tennis is the game you love, why do you have to feel as if you want to be out of there ASAP?

Just hang in there. This is not a rush, it's your pleasure time.

Learn to appreciate the opportunity to polish your offensive skills. You do not get frustrated with a wall or ball machine, do you? I guess not - it only makes you better and better. So why get frustrated with a human "ball machine" that comes for free?

Thankfully, you have more time for your shots - so use it to think more. Introspect, analyze your game as if you were watching a replay. Practice things you always wanted to practice. I almost think that pushers should be paid for their job - their infinite patience is extremely valuable.

And never ever show any disrespect or frustration with their game. It is their personal choice, their mentality, their habits, their style. It works and it is perfectly legitimate.

Cody
11-20-2009, 08:17 PM
^^

Wow, a reasonable person,

What are you doing on TW ? :)

ScoopsHaaganDazs
11-20-2009, 08:33 PM
Pushers don't hit bad shots. Even junk ballers don't hit bad shots. Good pushers strategically place them where you aren't, return all balls and force you to make mistakes(imo). The only "bad" balls would be mishits/frames that have awkward spin.

Just because you have a full swing doesn't mean your stroke is better. What the stroke accomplishes is what determines which is better (imo).

The reason some people lose to pushers is because they don't set their feet properly. If a ball is slow, you might misjudge where it will be, and/or swing too slow/fast/late. Also, if the ball is a lot shorter, don't expect to hit your baseline stroke and have it go in. You have to adjust.

So yeah, basically what the previous posters said.

SystemicAnomaly
11-20-2009, 09:18 PM
Fizz-cology, huh? The study of carbonated drinks?

Actually I like GC's (Pete) take on this (post #7).

LeeD
11-21-2009, 06:49 AM
The reason I like to end points quickly is that I can! :shock::shock:
At lower and my levels, I can hit winners from 70% of my court, so why waste time consuming court time retrieving my opponent's shots and not hitting my best?
At higher levels, I can still hit winners constantly, but I make enough errors to lose badly. Still don't have run around fetching like a dog, I can force the issue. And if I'm going to lose anyways, I might as well go down shooting my best shots.
Tennis is ART FORM to me. I choose the way I play it. I DON'T let my opponent choose how I play my game.
:oops: I'm top 3.5 -4.0 nowadaze, played as well as moderate 5.5's 30 odd years ago.

5263
11-21-2009, 07:26 AM
luckyr,

that implies that you know how to place the ball and your pusher opponent is competent (or dumb) enough to keep putting the ball back at relatively the same spot.

What if your pusher oppon hits junk balls that spin all over the place or dink it into the first open area he sees, and if you're an incompetent runner or an incompetent hitter of different balls, then what?

LuckyR knows the difference in a true pusher and an excellent player who just doesn't choose to limit himself to the power game. His advice is towards a true pusher.

A true pusher is not that skilled and seeks to just get the ball back in play. With some effort, you can punish these shots on a regular basis if you in fact have skills.

Many excellent players are labeled as pushers because they use the whole court with various spins and don't limit themselves to mostly power TS shots.
IMO, these are not true pushers and they don't often give you balls that you can punish, and actually do quite the opposite. Often 3.5 & 4.0 players don't see the difference.

5263
11-21-2009, 07:45 AM
okay.. stay with me :)

when playing players who are not good.. doesnt give you good ball, but short balls, slow slices, bad lobs, just pushing.. makes my game break down.. or even more than the game.. breaks my attitude.. and I make crazy errors and after a while, when I say to myself, okay lets just play a solid game from my side.. whatever you are dealt with.. but I just cannot recover.. :confused:

I'm sure some of you faced this dilemma... what are the keys to self-coach (to say) to break out of such situations ...dont tell me not to play wt that type of players :)

This is really more of a style of play thing than a skill level thing. These guys are better at their style , than you at yours.

jwbarrientos
11-21-2009, 11:44 AM
hmmmm is there any rule against pushers?? :shock:

How to beat them? jus patience, relax and return the f***ng ball to the other side. 8)

If you wanna make some good friend smash over his/her low part body, the next time he/she lobs you, could chose slice or kick to smash it. :mrgreen:

GuyClinch
11-21-2009, 12:14 PM
Think about it is the other type of player that should drive you crazy. Say, someone who only knows or can serve 130mph and consistently beat you with it. It's a one trick pony. Even when you realize that your return technique needs improvement, there's not much else that they give you to play and improve. I've played with someone who tried mostly to hit FH winners -- in or out. It was a sad and frustrating game for me. But that's just me.

Nitpicking a bit guys who have the mechanics to hit 130mph serves can invariably hit wicked slice serves and incredible kickers. <g> Once you have solid mechanics many shots just kind of "flow" from the basics.

Its usually the eastern grip "hard' server that only has that serve and a power puff second serve. These servers are at best 90mph.

Pete

Mick
11-21-2009, 12:15 PM
one way to demoralize a pusher is to out-push him :)

shaysrebelII
11-21-2009, 12:39 PM
right now I'm in a league with lots of pushers, and the strategy that's worked for me has been to get to the net at every opportunity. I get lobbed sometimes, but on the whole, it pays off.

also, PUNISH their second serve. in my experience, pushers really struggle with the second serve, so even if you misfire when you try and kill it, try and maneuver it into a corner and follow it up to the net.

Slazenger07
11-21-2009, 02:04 PM
Heavy topspin balls are a pushers' worst enemy. Ive been whooping pushers for a long time now because of my use of heavy spins, slice included. Using heavy spin means im just as consistent as the pusher and more aggressive in the process. When they finally cough up a short ball, I jump all over it and either hit a winner or force an error from them. Basically anything a pusher can do, I can do a little bit better now, therefore their style doesnt bother me at all.

VaBeachTennis
11-21-2009, 04:57 PM
This question comes up alot..

Here is my take - its not strategy OR psychology. It's just execution. The big problem is that you think your stroke is so much superior to that of your opponent.

That's almost never the case. The people that complain about pushers (dinkers) are almost always pushers (dinkers) themselves. Players with better execution don't have issues.

BTW its better to call your opponent a dinker then a pusher on these boards because people here think Hewitt is a "pusher."

Anyway back to my point..



Pushers challenge your OFFENSIVE shot making ability. Clearly its not there yet. Bad lobs SHOULD become overhead winners. Short balls SHOULD become either very tough approach shots or "forcing shots" hit with pace to hard to get to spots.

You don't really need some fancy strategy - just the ability to hit those shots. Tennis is a humbling game for alot of players.
Some will tell you to just "push back" and I suppose that works. But its better if you can learn the shots that will really allow you to take pushers apart.

The fact that you have trouble with junk should be a red flag that you have some issues with mechanics and stroke production. As I said earlier that's almost always the case with the guys who complain about "pushers."

Pete

Excellent points Pete. One thing that I will add that works for me is to take my "ego" out of the match or game. Have fun with a player like that, laugh a little when they get a racquet on the ball and it comes back over. When your ego gets in the way and you feel that your strokes are superior and "that pusher shouldn't be getting your shots", you tend to tighten up psychologically and physically and your game deteriorates.

I play pushers like I play a lower skilled person. I don't try to "kill" the ball, I concentrate on the basics using spins, control, placement, and good footwork. Most of all be relaxed mentally and physically. A couple of weeks ago, I was practicing against the wall and this guy came up to me and asked if i wanted to hit. I didn't know his level, but I'd rather hit against someone instead of a wall. We went on the court and hit, he played a combination of tennis and badminton mixed with football (middle linebacker), he was deceptively quick, he bounced on the court like he was on a pogo stick and totally threw my rhythm off and distracted me! Then he wanted to play a match!! So we played the best of three and I beat him 6-1 6-0. He got one game off of me because my ego got in the way and I tightened up because he was getting a lot of shots back. Then I relaxed and had fun, concentrated on the ball, footwork, and control, and had fun and won.

Mick
11-21-2009, 05:54 PM
...I play pushers like I play a lower skilled person.
...So we played the best of three and I beat him 6-1 6-0.

and that guy drove home thinking he had been destroyed by a pusher :)

VaBeachTennis
11-21-2009, 07:05 PM
and that guy drove home thinking he had been destroyed by a pusher :)

LOL. I was trying to serve easy to him without messing up my own form. The slice and kick serves gave him mucho problems. I mostly just wrong foot him and have fun using all sorts of different spins during the rallies.

LeeD
11-22-2009, 09:57 AM
First of all, any good pusher will beat you and me ZIP and ZIP.
We can apply all the spin and technique we want, but we're not 7.0 players.
You who have no trouble with "pushers" just play at a lousy level when you play pushers!
Pushers are currently in the top 20 in the ATP tour. You can't get ONE game off them.
If you're so good at beating pushers, why aren't YOU on the ATP tour?

USERNAME
11-22-2009, 11:01 AM
1st off how are they not good? They are beating u so they are better then u, give credit where credit is due... Now for what u can try, JUNK BALL the life out of them and make them move! Take them out of their rhythm so they are'nt so comfy then put pressure on em by coming to net. Ive never seen a pusher in an open lvl, national, or itf tourny but there are a few at my club. Sure I could hit with a load of pace to get the ball by them but its not as easy as just junk balling then hit one nice hard shot for a winner. One other thing Ive seen is that they really are not all that confident at net so try bringing them in.

LeeD
11-22-2009, 03:23 PM
Just because YOU haven't seen it, doesn't mean it doesn't exist.
Two "friends" on the pro tour of mine in the old daze were HaroldSolomon and EddyDibbs. They'd hang around our booth most of the day, hitting with us for warmups and generally livening up the joint. I took them sailing and surfing.
Both were pure 7.0 pushers, at the time, Harold maybe top 30 and Eddy top 50 singles.
They would crush you zip forever.

Steady Eddy
11-22-2009, 05:30 PM
Just because YOU haven't seen it, doesn't mean it doesn't exist.
Two "friends" on the pro tour of mine in the old daze were HaroldSolomon and EddyDibbs. They'd hang around our booth most of the day, hitting with us for warmups and generally livening up the joint. I took them sailing and surfing.
Both were pure 7.0 pushers, at the time, Harold maybe top 30 and Eddy top 50 singles.
They would crush you zip forever.
I think Harold Solomon made it into the top 10. However, one time Lendl beat so badly that Solomon only got one game in 3 sets! Besides that, he was, and I'm sure still is, an awesome player.

Mick
11-22-2009, 06:34 PM
i think in the past, salomon and dibbs could get away with that type of a game because of the wooden racquets.
nowadays, if a pro played like that, the other pro would say thank you very much and put the ball away.

LeeD
11-23-2009, 07:23 AM
I can't name all the pure PUSHER pros nowadaze because I don't watch TV.
Santoro, Barasetechi, Mecir, Gilbert, ANDYMURRAY receiving serve, Ferrer, Oudin (OK girl), it's early, brain not researching, but you can help me out.
In this day and age of "powerful" (ColinDibley timed at 149 in 1978) rackets, the pusher is not using a wood racket from the '70's. Believe it.
And notice! Generally in mens, the smaller the rackethead, the more tendency to hit winners or forcing shots. The bigger the head..........:shock:

GuyClinch
11-23-2009, 07:32 AM
^^^ This thread derailment is why I tried to specify "dinkers" in my post - stepping aside from the ridiculous definitions of guy that hit harder then any amateur (Hewitt) as a pusher..

The OP is clearly talking about a dinker - as most people are when they complain about "pushers." All this Nadal is a pusher stuff is counterproductive. Its also stupid as it makes the description of "pusher" essentially worthless. It's like 'revolutionary" in the auto industry where every new feature is termed that..

Likewise every single pro player plays percentage tennis - and then also tries to hit winners off what Bolleteri would call "opportunity" balls. The exact shot tolerance and which balls are those 'opportunities" varies some from pro to pro. But any real distinctions are impossible to make. So every pro is in fact a 'pusher' under the tennis warehouse definition of the word.

The "old school" use of the word "pusher" for a dinker is far more effective and useful. The OP was struggling against a guy who hits very modest slice and spin but basically dinks the ball relying mostly on gravity (the bad lobs give this away) IMHO. This is a classic dinker and I used to play pretty much like this so I know..

Its marked by characteristic half swings and incomplete shoulder turns - but you can still beat plenty of players with this bad form.
If you checked out FYB's email course on the forehand the first guy they feature is a sort of dinker type - although he used a bit of spin. Another dinker type is more often seen among women. They get sideways to the ball hit with a closed or neutrual stance but then just arm the ball back and dink it as well. Many use a kind of "slice" forehand but its basically flat with no real "action" on the ball. Its just hit with a slightly open face and low racquet speed.

Dinkers are actually more diverse then regular players. It turns out there are lots of crappy ways to hit tennis balls over the net but into the court. This is why I hate the "just get more consistent" advice. Dinkers can be very consistent when not playing a real power player. When dinkers beat people it depresses them because they can see the crappy form and you see these kinds of threads on the message boards.

As I alluded to early you just have to improve enough so that your superior form actually pays dividends over a gravity reliant player (as Dave Smith) likes to call em.

Pete

xFullCourtTenniSx
11-23-2009, 07:37 AM
okay.. stay with me :)

when playing players who are not good.. doesnt give you good ball, but short balls, slow slices, bad lobs, just pushing.. makes my game break down.. or even more than the game.. breaks my attitude.. and I make crazy errors and after a while, when I say to myself, okay lets just play a solid game from my side.. whatever you are dealt with.. but I just cannot recover.. :confused:

I'm sure some of you faced this dilemma... what are the keys to self-coach (to say) to break out of such situations ...dont tell me not to play wt that type of players :)

Hmmm... Granted I wasn't having this problem when playing a pusher, but when this happens to me, I start yelling and screaming at myself. Then I start focusing on execution, start using my head more, and just focus on what to do with the ball. It takes a few games for things to start flowing again, but once it starts flowing, there's no stopping it so you use your game to start dominating. The key here is not to play a solid game, but to focus on the things that make you play a solid game. Simply saying "okay, I'm going to stop making errors now" won't do anything. You have to get more involved with it. WHAT are you going to do to cut down on errors? HOW are you going to employ your tactics? Bottom line, the answer is pretty much always focus on the ball and the stroke your hitting, hit with plenty of margin and spin, aim crosscourt, and move your feet a lot regardless of the ball speed (not so much how many steps between shots, but how many steps you can get in during a given interval of time).

Now if you get to play a pusher, and not just someone below your level playing solid tennis when you're crapping out on a few shots and letting that hold you back mentally, the answer is basically more often than not to move your feet. Bad footwork means bad shot production.

LeeD
11-23-2009, 07:39 AM
I beg to differ.
At 2.5 levels, a dinker is the predominant hitting style of pushers.
At 6.5 levels, hard topspin with little pace is the style of pushers.
Notice how the two last 3 words LINE UP!
To Safin, Nadal IS A PUSHER.
To Federer, Murray is a PUSHER.
To you, who is the pusher.
To me, I agree with Safin and Federer, who are not usually pushers, but do push at times.
Hewitt, pure pusher, unless he's whupping my butt, but he's clearly 2 levels above me. Against his level, he's purely pusher.

xFullCourtTenniSx
11-23-2009, 07:58 AM
I can't name all the pure PUSHER pros nowadaze because I don't watch TV.
Santoro, Barasetechi, Mecir, Gilbert, ANDYMURRAY receiving serve, Ferrer, Oudin (OK girl), it's early, brain not researching, but you can help me out.
In this day and age of "powerful" (ColinDibley timed at 149 in 1978) rackets, the pusher is not using a wood racket from the '70's. Believe it.
And notice! Generally in mens, the smaller the rackethead, the more tendency to hit winners or forcing shots. The bigger the head..........:shock:

Well... There are pushers, then there are junkballers, then there are counterpunchers, but they are by no means the same thing.

Pushers just do whatever it takes to get the ball in play on every shot they hit. The ball can have a spin on it, and the pusher won't even know it, let alone what kind of spin. The just put the ball back in play whether they are on the run or not, hence the name PUSHer. They don't even hit to targets! There's not a single pro pusher on the CURRENT ATP tour. As for back then... I doubt it, but it COULD happen. Now it's purely impossible. The ball would just be killed.

Now junkballers (like Santoro, Hingis, and in some cases Federer) CAN and DO exist on the tour. Why? Because they use both placement and spin, which are two key factors to surviving on the pro tour. Basically they just never let you get into a groove, they neutralize any shot you hit, and they give you nothing to feed off of (or if they do, you won't see it often enough to capitalize).

Counterpunchers (like Andy Murray, Agassi, and maybe Hingis) redirect or absorb your pace. Some, like Murray, are incredibly dangerous if you underestimate them because they'll take a crosscourt bomb and redirect it down the line for a winner. They feed off the pace of your shots and use the pace you give them to hurt you by placing it either back solidly crosscourt or down the line. Murray can also qualify for a junkballer (since that's the strategy he effectively used to beat Nadal in the 2008 US Open) for his use of dropshots and the occasional moonball. Nadal I would say is more of a pace absorber, who then junks the ball with incredible amounts of height and spin. Would I consider him a junkballer? No, simply because he doesn't vary the height and spin of the ball nearly as much as even Federer, though Federer is quite good at giving junk when he wants to. Nadal and Murray over the years have sought to improve their aggressive games, and have made some good progress, though they are still essentially counterpunchers.

On the run, most people's games devolve closer and closer to that of a true pusher, even professionals. Though their base game can be anywhere from an aggressive baseliner to a junkballer. Some people are so good on defense that they don't ever resort to pushing except maybe one or two shots a year (Nadal and Federer come to mind here). Though Federer and Nadal are incredibly gifted in their footspeed, so they can more easily put some pace or spin on the ball as well as place it compared to the average player.

Pushers do not exist on the ATP tour. True pushers drop out by the 3.5 level max! From there, the only kind of defensive or neutral players left are counterpunchers and junkballers (AKA spin masters, spin doctors, and so on), and the better ones can occasionally use their skills to play offensive shots.

MakeSenseNotBabies
11-23-2009, 08:35 AM
I get your point.. they beat me.. so they're better.. but I know stroke per stroke I'm better .. but it frustrates me to play that style .. when I hit a great show.. all they would do is just put a lob or just get a racket on it so it drops the other side..
and I guess the answer is obvious.. I need to get over this frustration and take it as a challenge..
what I was looking for is.. the approach to playing this sort of style.. do you do the same or just be consistent.. or..something else.. ?

this is why i'm so against coaching. so much emphasis is put on proper technique and footwork and ''drills'' and ''patterns.'' it doesn't matter that you have better strokes according to a tennis manual.
the best approach is to play your game. what are your strenghts? list them, and use them. you know that this type of player is going to be reactive. so, be proactive and impose your game.

LeeD
11-23-2009, 11:03 AM
So, according to xFull, pushers are stupid people who can't think, and therefore must be the dredges of society.
I say bull crap. Pushers are guys who don't go for winners and forcing shots leading to winners. That's all.
Safin is not a pusher. Most every other pro player pushes to some extent.

Mick
11-23-2009, 11:56 AM
So, according to xFull, pushers are stupid people who can't think, and therefore must be the dredges of society.
I say bull crap. Pushers are guys who don't go for winners and forcing shots leading to winners. That's all.
Safin is not a pusher. Most every other pro player pushes to some extent.

chris fowler (espn2) said when caroline wozniacki was playing in the junior, all of her shots were moonballs :)

he then questioned why and mary joe fernandez answered because she had won a lot of matches with them moonballs.

LeeD
11-23-2009, 12:01 PM
Read your previous post again....
Yeah, I'm sensitive to people who use general classifications and type casting. YOU!

xFullCourtTenniSx
11-23-2009, 12:09 PM
chris fowler (espn2) said when caroline wozniacki was playing in the junior, all of her shots were moonballs :)

he then questioned why and mary joe fernandez answered because she had won a lot of matches with them moonballs.

That makes her a Nadal style counterpuncher. Now, if she mixed in plenty of low slices and flat balls with that, she'd be a junkballer.

xFullCourtTenniSx
11-23-2009, 12:11 PM
Read your previous post again....
Yeah, I'm sensitive to people who use general classifications and type casting. YOU!

I'm sensitive to people who misuse logic and generalize to the point where it's sheer stupidity - YOU!

LeeD
11-23-2009, 12:30 PM
:):)
Oh yeah, I"M the one who generalizes, typecasts, and catagorizes everyone without noting exceptions! :shock::shock:
Yup, that me all right. You got it.

xFullCourtTenniSx
11-23-2009, 12:40 PM
Oh yeah, I"M the one who generalizes, typecasts, and catagorizes everyone without noting exceptions! :shock::shock:
Yup, that me all right. You got it.

Glad you admit it, even if you don't believe it. The first step is getting the words out. The second step is believing them. The third step is rebuilding your understanding of the subject.

And from looking at your other posts on the topic, you clearly don't know what a pusher is... :shock:

LeeD
11-23-2009, 02:51 PM
Ah yes, once again typecasting what only HE KNOWS, because HE"S GOD!
Pushing is not physical styles, it's MENTAL boldness or meekness.
You MIND is the key, not your body.

USERNAME
11-23-2009, 04:33 PM
Just because YOU haven't seen it, doesn't mean it doesn't exist.
Two "friends" on the pro tour of mine in the old daze were HaroldSolomon and EddyDibbs. They'd hang around our booth most of the day, hitting with us for warmups and generally livening up the joint. I took them sailing and surfing.
Both were pure 7.0 pushers, at the time, Harold maybe top 30 and Eddy top 50 singles.
They would crush you zip forever.

Did I say they didnt exsist at a higher lvl??? Ur a moron and take things out of context, pushers dont generally make it past the 4.0 lvl because at around the 4.5-5.0 lvl players start to get more strategic and can deal with the consistency. A pusher is (imo) a person who just gets the ball back usually to the middle of the court with little pace, now a grinder is way different they get the ball back with nice spin and pace and can move the ball well. Iv seen alot of grinders in the tournys Iv played but no pushers. If someone (I dont care who) gives me a sitter in the middle of the court, Im gonna hit a hard shot to the corner and make them run! If the get it thats wonderful but if I get another sitter, Im gonna hit it to the other corner. I can do that all day, but I bet that after doing this 2-4 times Ill draw a nice short ball to rip for either a winner or a nice approach.

USERNAME
11-23-2009, 04:43 PM
I can't name all the pure PUSHER pros nowadaze because I don't watch TV.
Santoro, Barasetechi, Mecir, Gilbert, ANDYMURRAY receiving serve, Ferrer, Oudin (OK girl), it's early, brain not researching, but you can help me out.
In this day and age of "powerful" (ColinDibley timed at 149 in 1978) rackets, the pusher is not using a wood racket from the '70's. Believe it.
And notice! Generally in mens, the smaller the rackethead, the more tendency to hit winners or forcing shots. The bigger the head..........:shock:

I beg to differ.
At 2.5 levels, a dinker is the predominant hitting style of pushers.
At 6.5 levels, hard topspin with little pace is the style of pushers.
Notice how the two last 3 words LINE UP!
To Safin, Nadal IS A PUSHER.
To Federer, Murray is a PUSHER.
To you, who is the pusher.
To me, I agree with Safin and Federer, who are not usually pushers, but do push at times.
Hewitt, pure pusher, unless he's whupping my butt, but he's clearly 2 levels above me. Against his level, he's purely pusher.

Uhhh no, Santoro maybe (I think he is more of a junkballer) but those other names you threw out there are FAR from pushers! Hewitt counter punches alot, Murray can play very aggressive but is also a great grinder, Fed and Safin pushers??? REALLY??? Ferrer is also very aggressive especially with the FH. Oudin goes for broke on many shots which is why she isnt at the top of her game yet.

bhupaes
11-23-2009, 05:20 PM
A pusher is someone who is very fit and quick on his feet, but has very mediocre stroke making ability. His goal is to get every ball back. Pushers capitalize on a few things to win:

1. They will have very few unforced errors because they are just bunting the ball back. The aggressive player will usually end up hitting a slow paced ball into the next county, thus losing the point.

2. The better pushers will have excellent placement. They will get to the ball very quickly, and will apply only minimal power, so they will have a lot more control than the aggressive player. So when the aggressive player gets to a short ball and fails to finish it, he will leave a gaping hole in the court, which he will watch with horror as the pusher's next shot heads there at a leisurely pace. Thus the pusher will jerk around and eventually break down the aggressive but delusional player.

Higher level players have the skill and power to finish sitters, and make mince meat of balls with nothing on them, that's why pushers reign supreme at only at lower levels. While I agree with LeeD on lots of things, this is one place where I disagree... sorry, old chap! :) The ATP players you are calling pushers are, IMO, counter punchers.

LeeD
11-23-2009, 05:26 PM
Like BB and xFull, you guys read something, then add something from your brain into what you read, not knowing YOU added the something, not the original author.
Read my post again. Did I say Safin/Fed was the pusher? Or did I say .."to S/F, the OTHER guy is a pusher?
And you low level thinkers and players. Really, try to get your head out of 2.5 level play. Some players are not at your beginner level, and when YOU think Hewitt is a great hitter, counterpuncher, and strategist, other's AT HEWITT'S level think of him as a pusher, a counterpuncher for sure, but someone who does not initiate the end of the point, rather he wants to PROLONG the point, exactly your definition of a PUSHER :shock::shock:
You guys play as such low levels, you think a pusher can only be someone hitting flat balls with no strokes aiming for the center of the court.
7.0 pushers are guys waiting for the other guy to make the first aggressive shot. PUSHER, yes. Counterpuncher, definitely, but still, without the other guy getting aggressive, they are just getting the ball back, albeit at a better style than YOUR 2.5 guy.
Both Solomon and Dibbs told me they were excellent pushers to make up for their short height disadvantage.

USERNAME
11-23-2009, 07:31 PM
Like BB and xFull, you guys read something, then add something from your brain into what you read, not knowing YOU added the something, not the original author.
Read my post again. Did I say Safin/Fed was the pusher? Or did I say .."to S/F, the OTHER guy is a pusher?
And you low level thinkers and players. Really, try to get your head out of 2.5 level play. Some players are not at your beginner level, and when YOU think Hewitt is a great hitter, counterpuncher, and strategist, other's AT HEWITT'S level think of him as a pusher, a counterpuncher for sure, but someone who does not initiate the end of the point, rather he wants to PROLONG the point, exactly your definition of a PUSHER :shock::shock:
You guys play as such low levels, you think a pusher can only be someone hitting flat balls with no strokes aiming for the center of the court.
7.0 pushers are guys waiting for the other guy to make the first aggressive shot. PUSHER, yes. Counterpuncher, definitely, but still, without the other guy getting aggressive, they are just getting the ball back, albeit at a better style than YOUR 2.5 guy.
Both Solomon and Dibbs told me they were excellent pushers to make up for their short height disadvantage.

A person who gets the ball back with pace, spin, and good placement (while not really going for winners) is a grinder not a pusher! A pushers goal is get the ball back, not hit a high safe ball to the corner or chip a ball short or anything really strategic, its just GET THE BALL BACK...

GuyClinch
11-23-2009, 09:22 PM
I was suggesting you guys stay out of the semantic "pusher" argument.

Some people define a "pusher" as someone who plays percentage tennis at the pro level. I think that's pretty stupid as the word "pusher" is meant to describe how some people hit the ball. They just gently "push" on it with a half stroke. Clearly the pros don't do this.

But nonetheless this idea has stuck on mostly because I think real pushers want to feel that they play like the pros.. It of course makes the word meaningless - because an intelligent observer knows every pro plays the same kind of game more or less.

But you can't change people. They want to try to say that say Hewitt or Nadal are "pushers" because they don't hit "enough" winners - and they define the word this way. How can argue?

It's just how they have decided to redefine the word. A couple of pros started this (Gilbert) so it has really caught on. Murray is probably the closest player on the tour to being a pusher as almost all his winners come off of aces.

The problem is though if you really did hit a short crappy shot to him he would turn it into a winner. It's just it has to be a pretty bad shot for him to go on offense. It's the same with Hewitt who has no issues ripping a ball down the line if you give him a really good ball to do it with.

Pete

bhupaes
11-23-2009, 09:39 PM
Yeah, I agree we're just arguing over semantics. We've all played enough to know what everyone's talking about...

Blake0
11-23-2009, 09:48 PM
Okay well..we all know pushers dont tend to hit the ball hard..

Just stick with the pusher..play consistent...wait for a short ball (which you'll get quite frequently and quickly), then slice/topspin approach shot and volley the ball away. Cut off all the major angles..when you approach the net...especially dtl passing shot..which is what pushers most likely will go for other then lobs., unless ofcourse you leave the cc too open.

Besides moving up to net, you could also try move him around..and open up the court.

5263
11-24-2009, 05:21 AM
A person who gets the ball back with pace, spin, and good placement (while not really going for winners) is a grinder not a pusher! A pushers goal is get the ball back, not hit a high safe ball to the corner or chip a ball short or anything really strategic, its just GET THE BALL BACK...

I think this is a pretty good definition of a pusher and clearly something we don't see on tour. Grinder is a much better term for the tour player some call a pusher.

Mick
11-24-2009, 05:30 AM
i don't know if you have watched the olympics women's singles final, jimmy arias (who was the commentator for that match) said safina played like a pusher -- so LeeD was correct when he said a higher level player could find that his opponent is pushing even though the lower level players don't think so because that player simply has too much skills.

mental midget
11-24-2009, 08:19 AM
The reason I like to end points quickly is that I can! :shock::shock:
At lower and my levels, I can hit winners from 70% of my court, so why waste time consuming court time retrieving my opponent's shots and not hitting my best?
At higher levels, I can still hit winners constantly, but I make enough errors to lose badly. Still don't have run around fetching like a dog, I can force the issue. And if I'm going to lose anyways, I might as well go down shooting my best shots.
Tennis is ART FORM to me. I choose the way I play it. I DON'T let my opponent choose how I play my game.
:oops: I'm top 3.5 -4.0 nowadaze, played as well as moderate 5.5's 30 odd years ago.

nobody asked.

GuyClinch
11-24-2009, 08:48 AM
don't know if you have watched the olympics women's singles final, jimmy arias (who was the commentator for that match) said safina played like a pusher -- so LeeD was correct when he said a higher level player could find that his opponent is pushing even though the lower level players don't think so because that player simply has too much skills.

Yes. Like I said some pros have started using that word to describe pros playing a defensive style. However its a fairly stupid trend. As all pros WILL go on the offense and hit winners given the right ball. But amateur pusher/dinkers can't. But after Gilbert there isn't much you can do about it.

That doesn't mean Lee is 'correct' because we all know the OP is talking about some dinker/pusher type that you find on the rec courts all the time not Safina.

LeeD
11-24-2009, 10:53 AM
LeeD is referencing his experiences, from 2.5 beginner partner thru 6.5 JoaroSoares, and RussellSimpson.
Just because YOU are stuck at 3.5 doesn't mean we all are.
I've frequently mentioned a reknown pusher, TomBrown, a solid 5.5 (A) player in the old daze. Even his practice partners call him a pusher.
He could wipe out ArtLarsen (won USOPEN) and still be called a pusher.

5263
11-24-2009, 11:24 AM
Just cause someone calls someone something does not make it accurate.

mtommer
11-24-2009, 12:09 PM
Pushing is not physical styles, it's MENTAL boldness or meekness. You MIND is the key, not your body.

Very nice. I would only add that it can also be a crutch for physical inability and the desire to be a big fish in a raindrop. Not it every case, naturally.

LeeD
11-24-2009, 12:15 PM
I certainly have played my PUSHER matches, so don't think I'm above it.
When not interested, but know I'm going to win.
When injured, and can't hit my strongest shots.
When playing someone inconsistent or injured, hang in there for one more point.
Everyone pushes to some extent. You may call it grinder or whatever, but it's still MEEK MENTAL TENNIS. MEEK being defensive.

USERNAME
11-24-2009, 07:00 PM
I certainly have played my PUSHER matches, so don't think I'm above it.
When not interested, but know I'm going to win.
When injured, and can't hit my strongest shots.
When playing someone inconsistent or injured, hang in there for one more point.
Everyone pushes to some extent. You may call it grinder or whatever, but it's still MEEK MENTAL TENNIS. MEEK being defensive.

Grinding is in no means defensive OR meek, when I see people play like that they are aiming for the corners so they can move their opponent around and open up the court so they can hit a winner or force an error. Hitting aggressively and/or offensively does not always mean hitting hard.

LeeD
11-25-2009, 08:15 AM
They can aim for corners because they're better than you!
Your grinders become mere pushers when they face superior opposition.
Pushers/grinders/fetchers/retrievers all play defensive tennis as a first choice.
Our minds control everything, and choice is a matter of the mind.

USERNAME
11-25-2009, 07:23 PM
They can aim for corners because they're better than you!
Your grinders become mere pushers when they face superior opposition.
Pushers/grinders/fetchers/retrievers all play defensive tennis as a first choice.
Our minds control everything, and choice is a matter of the mind.

When I play people who are grinders (not pushers) I up the consistency on my shots by imparting more spin and aiming for higher clearance and deeper in the court, then I uncork a big fh to the corner when I get a shot I like and come in to finish the point off. I dont lose to many grinders because I move very well, I play smart, and I am not afraid to use the weapons I built up when given ANY chance to.

LeeD
11-26-2009, 07:09 AM
Well, I"m just not at your level!
I cannot beat the Gilberts, Solomons, Dibbs, Barasetechis, Mecirs, Ferrers, Davedenkos, Gonzalezs, Nadals, Hewitts of the former and current years. All grinders according to you.
I'd get bagelled every time!

USERNAME
11-26-2009, 10:52 AM
Well, I"m just not at your level!
I cannot beat the Gilberts, Solomons, Dibbs, Barasetechis, Mecirs, Ferrers, Davedenkos, Gonzalezs, Nadals, Hewitts of the former and current years. All grinders according to you.
I'd get bagelled every time!

Once again taking things out of context! I never said I could beat ALL grinders much less a pro, most of the grinders i have come up against in JUNIOR tournys i have beaten. FYI Davydenko, Ferrer, and Gonzo are not even grinders, they are aggressive players that like to attack.

LeeD
11-26-2009, 11:29 AM
The 3 you mentioned would choose to attack against you and I. Against Nadal, Fed, DJ, Tsonga, they are pure pushers.
Just like you can beat most pushers. Those are not as good as you. Go up another level, play pushers who are 5.5's, and they start to beat you and me.... :shock::shock:

Ripper014
11-26-2009, 11:56 AM
I hate coming to a thread late... especially a long one since I won't read the whole thing... but base on the tail end of this one it seems to me it has gotten way off topic. The OP was looking for help in playing a pusher not a defintion of what one is.

It seems to me things have gotten a bit heated... and personal.

I don't believe any of us here are at a 7.0 level so why are we discussing it...? I don't see any of us having to deal with having to handle Andy Murray or even a retired Harold Solomon or Eddie Dibbs, so I don't really care if I couldn't win a game from them (I am sure I would get a few points).


The 3 you mentioned would choose to attack against you and I. Against Nadal, Fed, DJ, Tsonga, they are pure pushers.
Just like you can beat most pushers. Those are not as good as you. Go up another level, play pushers who are 5.5's, and they start to beat you and me.... :shock::shock:


LeeD you are getting beaten by 3.0 players (under your own omission), and rated yourself at your best as a 4.5 player, so why do you include yourself in the same breath of 7.0 players (by the way you seem to love to name drop).

This board is for better recreational players helping those less experienced... we all have skills in different parts of the game be it technically, strategically or even historically... we are just here to share our knowledge (or at least what we think we know). In the end we are all going to take away what we believe applies to us... no one is going to be able to impart their will on anyone else here... soooooooooooooooooooo... can't we all just get along.

Ripper014
11-26-2009, 12:01 PM
Oh and just to add... my definition of grinders and pushers...

Pushers can be skilled players... but in my definition they are players that will pass up obvious opportunities to win a point and just put the ball back in play. Professional players will never give up an opportunity to win a point, so in my world there are no professional pushers.

Grinders can play any type of game... skill or unskilled... but they work to win every point... they do not give up any point easily whether it is the first point of the match... or when they are up 5-0 40-0 they work (grind) for every point. These players are successful because they never give you a free point.

LeeD
11-26-2009, 12:15 PM
..and pushers, even YOUR pushers, give away FREE points ??
See, that's the problem we have here. Your definitions are based on your level of play. We don't all play like you! Some of us are much worse, some close to, some better than ..... YOU.
As to losing to 3.0. YES, I had a sprained ankle, my left wrist was sore (me lefty), I had windsurfed 3 hours the day before, I wasn't interested.
So the following week, the score was 2,1,1, in 3 sets.
As for mentioning players.... don't you need a reference point and a standard?

z_z
11-26-2009, 12:23 PM
Are all these useful for the threadstarter? I doubt so.

Entertaining, but not useful.

Ripper014
11-26-2009, 12:35 PM
Are all these useful for the threadstarter? I doubt so.

Entertaining, but not useful.

I have to agree... but I just cannot help myself.

Ripper014
11-26-2009, 12:40 PM
..and pushers, even YOUR pushers, give away FREE points ??
See, that's the problem we have here. Your definitions are based on your level of play. We don't all play like you! Some of us are much worse, some close to, some better than ..... YOU.
As to losing to 3.0. YES, I had a sprained ankle, my left wrist was sore (me lefty), I had windsurfed 3 hours the day before, I wasn't interested.
So the following week, the score was 2,1,1, in 3 sets.
As for mentioning players.... don't you need a reference point and a standard?


I am just came back to play this summer after 15 years put when I stopped playing I didn't know any pushers... all the players I knew either attacked with a first strike weapon such as a serve... or played out a point waiting for the first tactical opportunity to end the point. No one sat back waiting for an error... because whoever gave up the first opening the point would be over one way or another, with the attacking player winning better than 2/3 of those points.

I played a 4.0 player earlier in the summer... his opponent didn't show... I beat him 0 and 1 with a wooden racket I had in my bag... a Slazenger Demon... hardly a brand name frame. My point... he didn't have any weapons that could hurt me... I just move the ball around the court until he missed. I am still finding it hard to believe an experienced 4.5 could lose to a 3.0 but it doesn't matter... if you were not interested you did not do your opponent any favours by being there.

I don't want to get into a ******* contest with you because it serves no purpose... I know how well I play I don't need to prove it to anyone.

As far as a point of reference... what good is a point of reference if it does not apply to anyone here? Could we get those that play on the pro tour to acknowledge they are here so we can help them with their game...

LeeD
11-26-2009, 01:19 PM
3.0 I lost to 3 weeks ago plays 4.5 SINGLES. But 3.0 doubles.
But easy to lose if you're not interested, don't hit your best shots, and I've already beaten him maybe 100 times in the last 2 years. He'd never gotten a set off me, and mostly not even 3 games per set.
AND, I'm 60 and out of shape. He's 40 and in super great shape. AND, he plays tennis 5 days a week while I'm still on my same pair of shoes since last Sept...15 months ago. AND STRINGS! :shock:

Ripper014
11-26-2009, 01:36 PM
3.0 I lost to 3 weeks ago plays 4.5 SINGLES. But 3.0 doubles.
But easy to lose if you're not interested, don't hit your best shots, and I've already beaten him maybe 100 times in the last 2 years. He'd never gotten a set off me, and mostly not even 3 games per set.
AND, I'm 60 and out of shape. He's 40 and in super great shape. AND, he plays tennis 5 days a week while I'm still on my same pair of shoes since last Sept...15 months ago. AND STRINGS! :shock:

This is starting to get ugly and I feel it is getting a little personal... so this will be my last post on this thread, because it no longer nothing has anything to do with the original post nor serves any positive purpose.

But...... why would you say you lost to a 3.0 if he is a 4.5, unless you were playing doubles (which you did not state and based on your responses makes it clear you played singles). People that play at a 4.5 level of singles that play 3.0 doubles we call sandbaggers... dropping 0.5 of a level I understand but not a level and a half.

You have said that you were a 4.5 at your best but now rate yourself somewhere between a high 3.5 to a 4.0, it is amazing that you have beaten this 4.5 player 100 times in the last 2 years, someone that physically is at a much higher level than you. Not one set... and never more than 3 games... he cannot be a very good 4.5 player.

Anyhow... feel free to post... I am done with this thread as anything else would just be counter productive... not like this has provided anything positive to the forum. So please accept my apologies to any of those that I have offended.

My final words in response to all your insightful posts would be "you might be right".

5263
11-26-2009, 01:38 PM
Your definitions are based on your level of play.

I think it is YOUR def that depends on level of play.

Most people consider a pusher as someone who just keeps the ball in play with little power or use of Topspin. This player may be 2.0 and up but rarely seen at higher levels. It has nothing to do with level of play of the person viewing the push shots.
While grinders are at all levels and are players who use power and TS regularly in their games, but limit the risks on their shot selection and depend more on working the shot the tolerance of their opp in lots of odd positions.

LeeD
11-26-2009, 02:49 PM
No, that's YOUR definition.
And most of you being below 4.0, that's your consensus.
Not me, but some players are above 4.0, and to them, pusher is a grinder is a fetcher is a getter, is defensive and waits for his opponent to start the aggressive part of the point.

5263
11-26-2009, 03:56 PM
No, that's YOUR definition.
And most of you being below 4.0, that's your consensus.
Not me, but some players are above 4.0, and to them, pusher is a grinder is a fetcher is a getter, is defensive and waits for his opponent to start the aggressive part of the point.

Like Ripper said, You might be right.
But IMO, it is more like someone said earlier, at the higher levels it's more the whiners getting beat by grinders that mis-label them as pushers.
Somehow insulting the one that beat them, gives them some comfort? odd. must be linked to trying to hurt them with their strokes on the court, then carrying over to comments after the match.

Back to the point of the OP, our def of a pusher is helpful in working out his problems, where as your broad def serves little purpose and may even be the problem, as it could be used to describe anyone who doesn't hit as hard or risky as the user of the term.

LeeD
11-26-2009, 05:28 PM
Sure, my broad def just means there's more than one way to push a grinder/pusher.
If you're better than them, no problem.
Problem comes when you're close to even, or worse. Even, they can play their "A" game most days, while we seem to play our "A" games only when it finds us.
So of course, they're more consistent match to match... and everyone knows it takes a full on assault to win against them.

mental midget
11-26-2009, 08:24 PM
Sure, my broad def just means there's more than one way to push a grinder/pusher.
If you're better than them, no problem.
Problem comes when you're close to even, or worse. Even, they can play their "A" game most days, while we seem to play our "A" games only when it finds us.
So of course, they're more consistent match to match... and everyone knows it takes a full on assault to win against them.

'pushers' p1ss people off because they hold up a mirror to a player's true level of competency, and the truth can hurt. if you're not good enough to keep the ball in play, with another guy who's good enough to keep the ball in play, then the other guy is better than you. i think a lot of players are deluded by a few spectacular winners in the space of a match into thinking this is their rightful level of play.

bottom line, somebody's serving you junk, and you're not good enough to take out the trash, then, brother, keep practicing.

rk_sports
11-27-2009, 10:46 AM
Are all these useful for the threadstarter? I doubt so.

Entertaining, but not useful.

A bit of both really :)

It started out in the right intentions before deviating to the types of pushing :)
(pusher, dinker, grinder, junkballers .. we need a sticky with the correct definition of these terms so ppl can refer the appropriate one when asking for advice)

I did get a handle on what I should be focusing on .. basically on 'myself' ..
(in a nut shell)
1. focus on basics (execution)
2. improve yourself to be able to punish junk balls (consistency)
3. beware of off speed balls (timing)
4. move them around and finish with volley
5. learn to do heavy topsin / to offset ease of pushing
5. dont underestimate anyone / be ready to grind out there
6. keep calm / have fun out there /challenge urself (take ego out)

Thanks to all of you who gave really uselful tips

LeeD
11-27-2009, 10:56 AM
Don't forget the short angle slices, drops, hard slices, and vary your shots.

mlnsdj
01-04-2010, 11:35 AM
You can be a good tennis ball hitter, and a terrible tennis player at the same time. That's what I fall victim to a lot. It's a mental thing. You blow a guy out 6-2, he starts improving consistency, you start missing, and then before you know it you're in a tiebreak fighting to survive, and all of the pressure is on you. You might be better at hitting the ball, but if a dinker beats you regularly, they're the better "tennis player". You have to play with urgency, knowing you don't win until the last point is over. Be cruel. Don't let up thinking you have it won, try to win 6-0, 6-0, especially against that kind of player. Don't get mad if you lose a point or game, but just stay focused for two entire sets, and if you're the better player, you'll usually win.

crash1929
01-05-2010, 06:52 PM
okay.. stay with me :)

when playing players who are not good.. doesnt give you good ball, but short balls, slow slices, bad lobs, just pushing.. makes my game break down.. or even more than the game.. breaks my attitude.. and I make crazy errors and after a while, when I say to myself, okay lets just play a solid game from my side.. whatever you are dealt with.. but I just cannot recover.. :confused:

I'm sure some of you faced this dilemma... what are the keys to self-coach (to say) to break out of such situations ...dont tell me not to play wt that type of players :)

For me if I know I'm playing a pusher I always remember what Brad Gilbert said. Maybe in Agassi's book? Great friggin book btw! He says when your going to the dentist you know your in for some pain but you can handle it because all day mentally you are preparing yourself for that pain so when the dentist says "open up" and the tools come in you can deal with it. WEll BG says playing a pusher is the same thing. You have to prepare yourself mentally for a long long battle which you should be able to win because if the pusher really was any good then he wouldn't be a pusher. (i know i know there are some good "pushers" out there and that word is a can full of worms- but you know what I mean.