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View Full Version : What happens to the Murray forehand in the big occasions?


TennisNiche
03-07-2012, 03:18 AM
http://tennisniche.wordpress.com/2012/03/06/video-of-the-week-the-andy-murray-forehand/

I don't think it's hugely controversial to say that Murray's failure thus far to win a Grand Slam is due in some part to his forehand. Against Federer (x2), Djokovic (AO Final), and countless times against Nadal (Wimbly '11, US Open '11 most recently), he has failed to find the highest gear on his forehand.

What do you think is going on with Murray in these situations? Is it a technical failing of the shot? A weakness of Murray's game?

Or have you seen enough power and variety from his forehand in other matches to suggest that his failings during the most important matches are mental rather than technical?

http://bit.ly/ADyyjn

- TN

nereis
03-07-2012, 03:20 AM
http://tennisniche.wordpress.com/2012/03/06/video-of-the-week-the-andy-murray-forehand/

I don't think it's hugely controversial to say that Murray's failure thus far to win a Grand Slam is due in some part to his forehand. Against Federer (x2), Djokovic (AO Final), and countless times against Nadal (Wimbly '11, US Open '11 most recently), he has failed to find the highest gear on his forehand.

What do you think is going on with Murray in these situations? Is it a technical failing of the shot? A weakness of Murray's game?

Or have you seen enough power and variety from his forehand in other matches to suggest that his failings during the most important matches are mental rather than technical?

- TN

Not much new ground to be broken here. Everyone knows that the problem lies between the ears.

He can crank it up and hit bigger than almost everyone if he wants to, problem is it isn't his natural game to play high risk high reward tennis.

phnx90
03-07-2012, 03:28 AM
Not much new ground to be broken here. Everyone knows that the problem lies between the ears.

He can crank it up and hit bigger than almost everyone if he wants to, problem is it isn't his natural game to play high risk high reward tennis.

Made worse because Murray's DTL FH is atrocious compared to the rest of his game, a bit like Rafa's DTL BH. Difference really is between the ears I suppose (and lefty advantage perhaps).

MrFlip
03-07-2012, 03:30 AM
Murray doesn't have a down the line forehand. If he did, he could have won a slam by now.

Bobby Jr
03-07-2012, 05:09 AM
Made worse because Murray's DTL FH is atrocious compared to the rest of his game..
Absolutely - but more than that, he hooks around the ball on his normal forehand so it usually doesn't have enough stick on it as a result. He's actually made it work for him over the years but he's really, really prone to hitting it with stuff-all power when he's on the back foot (you can even often see him do that stupid hop on one leg after he's fallen off a forehand).

As people have said about his lack of DTL - when your opponents know where the vast majority of your forehands are going and they're not powerful or accurate enough to render that knowledge irrelevant (as Federer and Nadal's often are) then it's a pretty big disadvantage.

BULLZ1LLA2.0
03-07-2012, 05:12 AM
Even Murray's bread and butter, his crosscourt backhand passing shot falls into the net when he's under pressure. So its not just the forehand. It's just about everything.

Gorecki
03-07-2012, 05:19 AM
it goes Dunkeld Atholl Brose

Mainad
03-07-2012, 06:55 AM
A couple of videos to demonstrate Murray's weak, ineffective FH, both cross-court and DTL:

Pathetic cross-court FH:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5aLdJ1MOXII&feature=related

Ludicrous attempt at a DTL:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vXj_vYyct6A&feature=related

Cup8489
03-07-2012, 07:08 AM
A couple of videos to demonstrate Murray's weak, ineffective FH, both cross-court and DTL:

Pathetic cross-court FH:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5aLdJ1MOXII&feature=related

Ludicrous attempt at a DTL:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vXj_vYyct6A&feature=related

He can't pull either of those off on any regular basis in major semis or finals, so you can show tokyo highlights all you want. that's all hes gonna be winning anyway.

Also, notice he hit both shots when on the dead run because he was out of the point and decided to go for broke; He'd never hit those shots of his own volition while in control of a point.

Mainad
03-07-2012, 07:19 AM
He can't pull either of those off on any regular basis in major semis or finals, so you can show tokyo highlights all you want. that's all hes gonna be winning anyway.

If that's what makes you happy, you go on believing it!



Also, notice he hit both shots when on the dead run because he was out of the point and decided to go for broke; He'd never hit those shots of his own volition while in control of a point.

Well, if he's in control of the point, he probably wouldn't need to hit them would he? Isn't it amazing how many titles he's managed to win and beaten practically every player on tour without ever being in control of the point or being able to hit a forehand!!

Now that MUST be a record!

TennisNiche
03-07-2012, 07:53 AM
Absolutely - but more than that, he hooks around the ball on his normal forehand so it usually doesn't have enough stick on it as a result. He's actually made it work for him over the years but he's really, really prone to hitting it with stuff-all power when he's on the back foot (you can even often see him do that stupid hop on one leg after he's fallen off a forehand).

As people have said about his lack of DTL - when your opponents know where the vast majority of your forehands are going and they're not powerful or accurate enough to render that knowledge irrelevant (as Federer and Nadal's often are) then it's a pretty big disadvantage.

This is a good description of what can bring Muzza down on the forehand.

Yet I can't stop thinking that he holds back on the shot when it really matters - his forehand is a lot better than the Rafa match at last year's Us Open would suggest.

I would have to say his problems are more mental than technical.

Nathaniel_Near
03-07-2012, 08:00 AM
Mainad, I have no idea why you are so defensive about Murray. He clearly struggles more than the other top players to produce consistent pace DTL on his forehand, and that he hooks it in a manner which allows for the shot to be easily returned/countered. It's this very reason why Nadal can often so safely just swamp the Murray forehand with his own weaker backhand side - he just doesn't have to worry much about Murray changing the angles much mid rally as they get stuck in the mud in this same repetitive strategic syndrome.

Murray's forehand is easily the weakest of the top four because he has huge problems hitting forehand with any sort of commanding 'off' angle. From central court he does OK because the amount of off angle needed to swing the ball around to the ad court is less severe but as soon as he's forced to came deep right in the deuce court he becomes sort of stuck and strangulated. This isn't to say he can't sometimes produce impressive shots from this position - he wouldn't be top 4 otherwise, probably - but your defense of Murray seems overbearing. The problems should be accepted. I'm sure Lendl has brought it up and that it's something they will continue to remedy even as we speak. If Murray ever finds a way to markedly improve his FH just by making it far less predictable, then the world might even become his oyster.

Bobby Jr
03-07-2012, 07:11 PM
Yet I can't stop thinking that he holds back on the shot when it really matters...

I would have to say his problems are more mental than technical.
Yep. He rarely backs himself to step in a clock it like Federer does at least once in almost every single rally.

This in itself isn't a liability against most opponents -and in fact it possibly makes some of his matches easier for him (less errors) - but when he comes up against someone who will back themselves to hit a bomb forehand like Federer, Del Potro, Soderling, Berdych, Nadal, Djokovic etc they know it too. It means there is one more area on the court they can hit to when playing Murray knowing the chances are it wont be hit for a dead winner. It makes defending and attacking mentally and technically easier than against the top three.

On the technical side the root of his issues come from his hooking around the ball too much and not being set in the position (angle) when he hits it (ref > how often he falls backwards into that one foot hop... he's not in control enough of his balance much too often).

RoddickAce
03-07-2012, 07:35 PM
A couple of videos to demonstrate Murray's weak, ineffective FH, both cross-court and DTL:

Pathetic cross-court FH:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5aLdJ1MOXII&feature=related

Ludicrous attempt at a DTL:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vXj_vYyct6A&feature=related

A couple of videos to demonstrate Roddick's weak, ineffective BH, both cross-court and DTL:

Pathetic cross-court BH:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mTMHgIvVvUA&t=0m18s

Ludicrous attempt at a DTL BH Return:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DDIetdMgEAY&feature=related&t=5m37s

OldFedIsOld
03-07-2012, 08:05 PM
Good example of his forehand breaking down was against Fed in the Dubai finals, in the first set he was playing aggressive then started to push again. Absence of Lendl and his death glare affected him a little?

Evan77
03-07-2012, 08:26 PM
Mainad, I have no idea why you are so defensive about Murray. He clearly struggles more than the other top players to produce consistent pace DTL on his forehand, and that he hooks it in a manner which allows for the shot to be easily returned/countered. It's this very reason why Nadal can often so safely just swamp the Murray forehand with his own weaker backhand side - he just doesn't have to worry much about Murray changing the angles much mid rally as they get stuck in the mud in this same repetitive strategic syndrome.

Murray's forehand is easily the weakest of the top four because he has huge problems hitting forehand with any sort of commanding 'off' angle. From central court he does OK because the amount of off angle needed to swing the ball around to the ad court is less severe but as soon as he's forced to came deep right in the deuce court he becomes sort of stuck and strangulated. This isn't to say he can't sometimes produce impressive shots from this position - he wouldn't be top 4 otherwise, probably - but your defense of Murray seems overbearing. The problems should be accepted. I'm sure Lendl has brought it up and that it's something they will continue to remedy even as we speak. If Murray ever finds a way to markedly improve his FH just by making it far less predictable, then the world might even become his oyster.

good post. as much as I love Andy his FH is non existent... a big problem. His FH simply sucks.

Funbun
03-07-2012, 08:36 PM
On the contrary, I thought that at some point during the AO2012 semi did Murray actually had a forehand that really moved Djokovic around, somewhere around the 3rd set.

DeShaun
03-07-2012, 10:16 PM
The same that happens to Roger's and a lot of guys,' it softens and becomes conservative. In contrast, one thing that Novak excels at is actually hitting bigger during the very biggest moments instead of tightening up and becoming conservative.

Mainad
03-07-2012, 10:16 PM
Mainad, I have no idea why you are so defensive about Murray. He clearly struggles more than the other top players to produce consistent pace DTL on his forehand, and that he hooks it in a manner which allows for the shot to be easily returned/countered. It's this very reason why Nadal can often so safely just swamp the Murray forehand with his own weaker backhand side - he just doesn't have to worry much about Murray changing the angles much mid rally as they get stuck in the mud in this same repetitive strategic syndrome.

I get a bit defensive about him because discussions about his technical issues so often get out of hand and go to extremes! It is one thing to talk about his inability to hit his FH consistently enough compared to the top 3, which is a reasonable point to discuss, and quite another to state he has no FH at all which is not a reasonable point for discussion at all. I have produced two clips of evidence to prove that Murray is quite capable of hitting powerful forehands both cross-court and DTL when he wants to and yet despite this you still see posters on here state he can't hit any at all which is plainly absurd! I could scour You-Tube for even more bits of evidence but in the face of the blind prejudice that so often manifests itself where Murray is concerned, (see posts below) I agree, what would be the point?


Murray's forehand is easily the weakest of the top four because he has huge problems hitting forehand with any sort of commanding 'off' angle. From central court he does OK because the amount of off angle needed to swing the ball around to the ad court is less severe but as soon as he's forced to came deep right in the deuce court he becomes sort of stuck and strangulated. This isn't to say he can't sometimes produce impressive shots from this position - he wouldn't be top 4 otherwise, probably - but your defense of Murray seems overbearing. The problems should be accepted. I'm sure Lendl has brought it up and that it's something they will continue to remedy even as we speak. If Murray ever finds a way to markedly improve his FH just by making it far less predictable, then the world might even become his oyster.

As I said above, my defense of Murray is not over-bearing compared to the far more unreasonable attacks on his abilities fom many on here. It is virtually impossible on here to have a rational and objective discussion about Murray's strengths and weaknesses without it descending into farce. There are some good posts on here that make some valid points I agree, but those stating that Murray has no FH are not among them!

DeShaun
03-07-2012, 10:20 PM
I get a bit defensive about him because discussions about his technical issues so often get out of hand and go to extremes! It is one thing to talk about his inability to hit his FH consistently enough compared to the top 3, which is a reasonable point to discuss, and quite another to state he has no FH at all which is not a reasonable point for discussion at all. I have produced two clips of evidence to prove that Murray is quite capable of hitting powerful forehands both cross-court and DTL when he wants to and yet despite this you still see posters on here state he can't hit any at all which is plainly absurd! I could scour You-Tube for even more bits of evidence but in the face of the blind prejudice that so often manifests itself where Murray is concerned, (see posts below) I agree, what would be the point?



As I said above, my defense of Murray is not over-bearing compared to the far more unreasonable attacks on his abilities fom many on here. It is virtually impossible on here to have a rational and objective discussion about Murray's strengths and weaknesses without it descending into farce. There are some good posts on here that make some valid points I agree, but those stating that Murray has no FH are not among them!

Murray is a big strong guy, he's got some awesome strokes. I especially like his first serve; and of course his running forehand. Long before he joined forces with Lendl, I predicted Murray to overtake the number one ranking in 2013. I still believe he will.

TennisNiche
03-08-2012, 12:16 AM
I get a bit defensive about him because discussions about his technical issues so often get out of hand and go to extremes! It is one thing to talk about his inability to hit his FH consistently enough compared to the top 3, which is a reasonable point to discuss, and quite another to state he has no FH at all which is not a reasonable point for discussion at all.

It's important to keep this distinction when discussing top players - for example if pointing out the weakness of Federer's topspin backhand compared to the rest of his game & the backhands of Dkojovic and Murray, it needs to be stressed that it's only a relative weakness, when compared against the very highest standards in the sport. Same goes for the Murray FH, good shot but at the very top top level it might not just cut it.

It is virtually impossible on here to have a rational and objective discussion about Murray's strengths and weaknesses without it descending into farce. There are some good posts on here that make some valid points I agree, but those stating that Murray has no FH are not among them!
I thought so before I started posting here, but since then I've been pleased to discover a lot of posters who are actually quite willing to participate in a measured debate:)

syc23
03-08-2012, 01:31 AM
TBH, the posters who states that Murray has no FH whatsoever are delusional. When you can achieve what AM has achieved so far then come back and post your advice then I might be inclined to read up on your pearls of wisdom and how to play tennis at the highest level.

At the moment, Murray's issues is more mental and those who play tennis (or any sport) know that confidence is key. He is making the right progress in 2012 so far so there is still time to make things right.