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kevhen
05-23-2006, 12:41 PM
Does mixed doubles pretty much boil down to lobbing the woman?

That's what our opponents did this weekend and it was pretty successful although we rallied in the third to win a close one. I probably should have lobbed their woman more myself and not tried to hit my lobs so deep since sometimes they went out and instead force her to hit winning overheads.

tennis-n-sc
05-23-2006, 03:16 PM
Kev, I think it depends on whatever you think will work to win. Lobs, drop shots, lots of top and cut spin. I was playing a gal last year that was about 5'11" and had a great overhead. She could cover the court and was having a great game. I best game plan was working on the guy. But, we lost anyway. :(

papa
05-24-2006, 04:17 AM
Does mixed doubles pretty much boil down to lobbing the woman?

That's what our opponents did this weekend and it was pretty successful although we rallied in the third to win a close one. I probably should have lobbed their woman more myself and not tried to hit my lobs so deep since sometimes they went out and instead force her to hit winning overheads.

I'd rather see you hit your lobs deep (last quarter of the court) than short - some go out, so bet it but don't start making them hit winning overheads because they will do just that. The odds quickly shift to their favor if they can get to an overhead - against good teams you "might" get a racquet on one every once in a while but you've given away your offensive posture and must now depend on luck. Get some spin on the lobs if they start sailing long but don't give up the easy overhead.

mislav
05-24-2006, 04:26 AM
I think any doubles game pretty much boils down to picking on a weaker player.

I've played an amateur tourney lately and got outclassed in every match simply because my mixed doubles partner couldn't handle any ball coming her way. :(

slewisoh
05-24-2006, 05:21 AM
I would think that opponents lobbing your partner would give you some excellent overhead opportunities. If they are successfully lobbing the woman, it suggests that you are consistently crowding the net and your opponents wisely elect to simply go over both of you. Is that what is happening?

I only lob the women in two situations:

1) lob return over the woman against strong male servers

2) lob over the woman when the man is aggressively charging the net

If I lob the woman and the man is anywhere other than right at the net, I expect to be eating tennis ball fuzz.

If you have a really aggressive net game and feel you can control the match by being there, you need to find a partner who is willing to play the role of retriever. She effectively becomes the set up person and you do the finishing at the net.

I have a good overhead so I usually try to handle my own overheads. But most of the men I know have better overheads than me, so if my partner can make a play on a lob, I encourage him to do so.

kevhen
05-24-2006, 06:10 AM
The woman I played with was about 5'4 and was consistent but couldn't put away her overheads so it was a good play by our opponents to constantly lob her. The other two 4.0 women I have played with in the league didn't have great overheads either so opposing teams have lobbed them with success as well. Generally I have to stay aggressive and look to hit overheads on as many of these lobs that I can get to.

On the flip side, I haven't seen any women in this league with great overheads so I should be lobbing them as well as they will miss some overheads, hit a weak one, or lose court position to us as we retake the net.

Also I am used to playing with guys who can put away their overheads so I wasn't always sure when to move over in front of her, since I could see her preparing to hit the overhead and didn't want to create any collisions although she had given me the go ahead to take as many overheads as I could get to. We still won the match 6-3, 3-6, 5-3 (timed) but it was very tight the last two sets.

slewisoh
05-24-2006, 06:38 AM
Don't you hate timed matches?

If a lob is in front of me I'm clearly going to take it so that we maintain good court position. I can angle it off or at least aim for the woman so that if it comes back it probably won't hurt us.

But if the ball is going behind me, I'm hoping my guy can cross behind me and take an overhead (even if you have to let it bounce and then hit the OH from deep in the court) I see men do this all of the time - never see a woman hit that shot.

Assuming my male partner is a righty, if I'm on the deuce side and the opponent lobs over me, I am hoping my partner will be able to take just about any shot. However if I am on the ad side and they lob my backhand side the best he can do is hit a high backhand. That would be a really effective strategy, and at higher levels I can see that being successfully employed.

It might be worth having your partner stay back when she is on the ad side. Or even if she gets pulled in (say to play a short ball) she should probably hang closer to the service line so that she can better defend against the lob. She could then play the net more aggressively on the deuce side, as she knows you can cover the lobs more easily on that side.

I miss playing mixed...:(

kevhen
05-24-2006, 06:48 AM
Yeah, I should run over and take the deep lobs on her side while she moves over. She started playing deeper herself and covering these.

The lobs they hit weren't that high for me to have enough time to get under but high enough for her not to be able to do enough with.

I usually play backhand side so I just need to cheat towards the center and get over there quickly for semi-deep lobs on her side.

I am getting used to timed matches with all the 3 setters I get into.

Kaptain Karl
05-24-2006, 07:53 AM
I think I'd enjoy being partnered in Mixed with slewisoh.

My sister and I are a great team. (But she is 5'8" and has a very good Serve and Overhead.) Still, we have arrived at an understanding that I will take the deep lobs on her side ... IF ... I believe I can get to them. My job is to size up this situation very quickly and call "Mine" if I'm going for the OH on her side. Her job is to then call "Switch" letting me know she's covered her (new) responsibilities.

Also ... if we both call "Mine" simultaneously on a lob to her side, the OH is HERS. (We don't do "Yours" calls; we just understand this.) I stay on my side. kevhen - maybe you two need to work more on your communication and your situational calls...?

slewisoh - Sis is a Lefty. The wide lob when she's on the Ad side is right in her wheelhouse. (I love partnering with Lefties.)

- KK

kevhen
05-24-2006, 08:37 AM
Yes, it was the first time I had played with her so alot of learning was taking place. She likes to poach alot using hand signals since she is quick but their constant lobbing took that advantage away.

Next time I will serve and volley more since I did that last night in doubles and was able to hold serve all 7 times against consistent but not hard hitting guys similar to playing mixed. I just don't like charging when the returner hits a zinger and prefer to stay back against aggressive returners.

slewisoh
05-24-2006, 08:49 AM
Yes, it was the first time I had played with her so alot of learning was taking place. She likes to poach alot using hand signals since she is quick but their constant lobbing took that advantage away.

Next time I will serve and volley more since I did that last night in doubles and was able to hold serve all 7 times against consistent but not hard hitting guys similar to playing mixed. I just don't like charging when the returner hits a zinger and prefer to stay back against aggressive returners.

I'm not sure that's the answer unless your are able to really control the points with your s&v game. If I see the man coming in, I go right over the woman, preferably closer to the alley.

tennis-n-sc
05-24-2006, 09:07 AM
I'm not sure that's the answer unless your are able to really control the points with your s&v game. If I see the man coming in, I go right over the woman, preferably closer to the alley.

Yep, my strategy as well. What might work with Kevhen S/V is to put the lady at the baseline.

kevhen
05-24-2006, 09:53 AM
yeah but I doubt most ladies would want to play at the baseline when the guy is serving although it sounds like a decent strategy if the woman can't finish points at the net.

slewisoh
05-24-2006, 10:59 AM
yeah but I doubt most ladies would want to play at the baseline when the guy is serving although it sounds like a decent strategy if the woman can't finish points at the net.

??? Not following you. As the woman I'm a target whether I'm at the net or at the baseline. At least at the baseline I have more time to react. And it's not as though my partner is back at the baseline with me - that would be open season on the woman. I would expect my partner to play the net aggressively, controlling at least his half of the court and crossing over to take some of the drives that are being targeted at me.

The only time I ask the man to play two back is if I'm returning poorly against a very active man at the net. If I'm returning poorly our odds aren't good anyway, but losing that target may help us at least start the point.

Don't take this the wrong way, but it's difficult to gauge whether you even enjoy playing mixed. I get the feeling you don't communicate with your female partners in the same way you communicate with your male partners. Most women who are playing the level you describe are pretty tough cookies. Perhaps this would be more enjoyable if you saw them more as equal partners as opposed to someone you must compensate for.

I think I understand your situation somewhat as I've been doing the same thing with a senior lady I play with. The less I try to "compensate" for her the more success we have. She can't run down lobs or handle really brutal pace. But her serves are perfectly placed, she puts >90% of her returns in play and if the ball is anywhere within reach she will put it back in play. I was trying to be more aggressive in order to shorten our points and minimize the amount of targeting the other team could do. But what is working better is changing my shot choices and placement to give her easy put aways at the net and playing back a bit to cover lobs. I only aggressively close if I know I can immediately finish the point - otherwise we lose the point to a lob.

I must go work on the lattice - I think it will take 2 days to stain this stuff and here I am gabbing about tennis.

Bungalo Bill
05-24-2006, 11:09 AM
??? Not following you. As the woman I'm a target whether I'm at the net or at the baseline. At least at the baseline I have more time to react. And it's not as though my partner is back at the baseline with me - that would be open season on the woman. I would expect my partner to play the net aggressively, controlling at least his half of the court and crossing over to take some of the drives that are being targeted at me.

The only time I ask the man to play two back is if I'm returning poorly against a very active man at the net. If I'm returning poorly our odds aren't good anyway, but losing that target may help us at least start the point.

Don't take this the wrong way, but it's difficult to gauge whether you even enjoy playing mixed. I get the feeling you don't communicate with your female partners in the same way you communicate with your male partners. Most women who are playing the level you describe are pretty tough cookies. Perhaps this would be more enjoyable if you saw them more as equal partners as opposed to someone you must compensate for.

I think I understand your situation somewhat as I've been doing the same thing with a senior lady I play with. The less I try to "compensate" for her the more success we have. She can't run down lobs or handle really brutal pace. But her serves are perfectly placed, she puts >90% of her returns in play and if the ball is anywhere within reach she will put it back in play. I was trying to be more aggressive in order to shorten our points and minimize the amount of targeting the other team could do. But what is working better is changing my shot choices and placement to give her easy put aways at the net and playing back a bit to cover lobs. I only aggressively close if I know I can immediately finish the point - otherwise we lose the point to a lob.

I must go work on the lattice - I think it will take 2 days to stain this stuff and here I am gabbing about tennis.

Wow, a lady shows up our great one.

Great post! Lot's of intelligence and foresight. It sounds like you put some thought into your reasoning.

By the way, this guy got on my bad side real quick recently, he is a nit-wit (even he said he was), gives lousey advise, and somehow thinks his advice is on target!

You go girl!

kevhen
05-24-2006, 11:55 AM
But these women are decent volleyers so they like to be up at net, so I doubt they would like playing baseline (where they have good groundstrokes but can be poached more easily). Maybe if I just played in a deeper volley position to cover lobs then they could stay tight to net. We've won these matches and have enjoyed them even though this was our first time playing. Both women would like me to serve and volley more so I am working on that now.

You are right that the two women that I won with are tough cookies and were also flexible to trying new things. The one lady liked to poach alot so that was fun too giving hand signals and being aggressive.

Bill, it's not about showing someone up. It's about learning to be a better tennis player and improving. There is more than one way to play winning tennis and the entire world is not always going to agree with you.

slewisoh
05-24-2006, 01:38 PM
I usually have more success volleying a man's hard driven shots than getting into a baseline rally, so I prefer to be at the net if possible. I do know a woman who at 3.5 could rally with any 3.5 or 4.0 man. Her partner just hung at the net and picked off shots. They were a very successful team...

I think we were just looking at different options for covering lobs - bringing the woman back, not crowding the net so as to encourage lobbing etc. Hopefully some of the ideas shared here will be helpful.

My lattice progress is verrry slow. I think I need one of those spray things.

slewisoh
05-24-2006, 01:43 PM
I think I'd enjoy being partnered in Mixed with slewisoh.

My sister and I are a great team. (But she is 5'8" and has a very good Serve and Overhead.) Still, we have arrived at an understanding that I will take the deep lobs on her side ... IF ... I believe I can get to them. My job is to size up this situation very quickly and call "Mine" if I'm going for the OH on her side. Her job is to then call "Switch" letting me know she's covered her (new) responsibilities.

Also ... if we both call "Mine" simultaneously on a lob to her side, the OH is HERS. (We don't do "Yours" calls; we just understand this.) I stay on my side. kevhen - maybe you two need to work more on your communication and your situational calls...?

slewisoh - Sis is a Lefty. The wide lob when she's on the Ad side is right in her wheelhouse. (I love partnering with Lefties.)

- KK

Thanks Kaptain Karl. This is getting serious. I seem to recall a potential marriage proposal that accompanied my statement about hating shopping...;)

Gotta love those lefties! You two must tear up the court together. I hope to get back to mixed this fall - lots of fun.