How to beat a DAMN PUSHER????

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by Dan007, Aug 24, 2006.

  1. ace_pace

    ace_pace Rookie

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    If you play tennis seriously you'll learn to love them as they show all the holes in your game and show you your worth.
     
  2. Tennis_Monk

    Tennis_Monk Hall of Fame

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    Like any other good tennis player does.

    Pusher or whatever term they may be called is an effective style of tennis and it works. being an ex-pusher, i can confirm that i actually had fun playing that style of game.

    It is even more fun now given that i actually have some offense. When i play new players,i usually start off the match Pushing trying to feel them out. Hitting a lot of balls early in the match, calms nerves and allows one to groove in. Another added advantage is that these new opponents underestimate me and that helps me as match progresses.

    I dont endorse the "approach the net against pusher" notion. One should approach the net after hitting a quality approach shot or after placing the opponent in a difficult position (such as pulling wide or etc). Once that is done, no matter who the opponent is, approaching net is a high percentage shot. I know of pushers who like a target and can thread the needle. meaningless approaches to net will only help them hit a good passing shot OR (worse) LOB and gain more confidence.
     
  3. mightyrick

    mightyrick Hall of Fame

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    Pushers are awesome. I mean where else can you get a human wall to hit with you for two hours and do nothing but feed you meatball dink shots. They are human ball machines.

    There is absolutely no better way to practice your strokes.

    My approach to playing pushers is to do nothing but shadow stroke the entire first set. Nice, slow, easy strokes. Sometimes points will last at least 10 shots or more. It is a fantastic warm-up for your shots/strokes.

    After that first set, no more shadow stroke. I'll commit to going all out for all of my shots. I don't really care if they land in or not. I just want to practice putaways, heavy rally balls, lobs, backhands, and everything. Pushers are the only kind of opponent where you have the opportunity to hit every kind of a shot you want to practice.
     
  4. Tyler91

    Tyler91 Rookie

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    Great thread.

    As a new rec player, I see lots of pushers at 3.0-3.5. They try to suck me into their game...loooong points waiting on the opponent to hit the ball out or into the net. That never works for me. My approach is to get the point over quickly. Can't be impatient, but also can't wait and wait...pick the right ball and pound it to the corner. When I get ahead, I don't want to get too conservative...have to keep being aggressive or my lead will evaporate before I know it.
     
  5. Tyler91

    Tyler91 Rookie

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    Very well-said. I frequently make this mistake.
     
  6. ShoeShiner

    ShoeShiner Rookie

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    I agree.


    There are many game dimensions in tennis. Among the racket sports, tennis has most styles comparing with badminton, ping pong, squash.

    Pusher is just a play style. I do respect the real expert of pusher.
    We should respect the players who can find their own tennis and can expertise their own styles.
     
  7. eidolonshinobi

    eidolonshinobi Professional

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    I used to hate pushers, I still do to some extent. But after trying their style for a while in match play, I really learned to appreciate them. The fact that they can get into their opponents minds and break them if they're weak.

    It was oh so satisfying seeing an opponent I could regularly beat with my all court game, beaten with pusher tactics. He threw his racquet at the end of the first set 6-2. He was all too broken to even win one game the next set.
     
  8. beernutz

    beernutz Hall of Fame

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    This is the best advice posted so far. When you aren't winning against any player you ought to be thinking, "how do I beat this guy?" rather than "no way I should be losing to this guy."
     
  9. JohnYandell

    JohnYandell Hall of Fame

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    Agreed with those above who say if you are so much better than a pusher why are you losing? Obviously in terms of the rules of competitive play the winning pusher is the better player. So how do you reverse that?

    There are several tactics but the most underrated and under utilized tactic against the pusher is the drop shot. Push him back with a taste of his own medicine--some serious moonballs--with heavy top if possible. Wait til he hits a relatively short and/or low return, then drop it. He may get it but is now vulnerable to the lob or pass.

    This strategy often has the effect of turning the pusher into a hitter--or an attempted hitter. It can change the whole psychology of the match.
     
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2013
  10. TheCheese

    TheCheese Professional

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    It's really really hard to beat a pusher until you reach a high enough level to be able to consistently construct points.

    Very frustrating, but there isn't a ton you can do until you get good enough.
     
  11. tennisplayer1993

    tennisplayer1993 Semi-Pro

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    If you're good at placement and can hit hard while doing it. I usually hit them cross court and once I see they have trouble getting one returned I start getting closer to the net. to volley out the point and to end it as quickly as possible by being aggressive. I play a lot better against pushers than guys who can hit harder than me.
     
  12. Nostradamus

    Nostradamus G.O.A.T.

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    didn't john Yadell have a video "how to destroy the pushers at your club" ?
     
  13. JohnYandell

    JohnYandell Hall of Fame

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    Nos,

    Yep and the drop shot is one of the key components to the destruction.
     
  14. GrandSlam45

    GrandSlam45 Rookie

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    I played a pusher a few months ago and my strategy completely failed. He was over 40, so I thought I'll I need to do is run him back and forth on every point and sooner or later he'll get tired. The ******* never got tired! He wound up wearing me down, and I lost.

    There's 2 important things I didn't do... hit with lots of pace and rush the net to finish the point. And drop shot! I never hit one drop shot.

    We'll see how it goes next time.
     
  15. JohnYandell

    JohnYandell Hall of Fame

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    Be careful about the pace... likely he will slow ball those back and eventually you will make errors.

    That will work if you are super confident and can continue to feel that way for the entire match. But the whole idea of the push is to destroy that feeling and your game.

    Another strategy is modified rhythm attack. This means dropping into rhythm with his ball and working many many shots to open the court--pushing him wider and wider, but it might take 5 or 10 balls--and only when you have the court super open going in.

    Better practice your overhead as well.
     
  16. lobman

    lobman Rookie

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    For all us pushers out there let me say "thanks" for the tips to use against us that we can now look for! Also, I've never understood those who dog us pushers; we are tennis players too. Disparaging us is the same as saying, "I hate those lefties and their unreturnable serves; they ought to be banned."
     
  17. mikeler

    mikeler G.O.A.T.

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    Lobman is a great username for a pusher!
     
  18. Avles

    Avles Hall of Fame

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    This seems like a key to me. If I had a rock-solid overhead (no such luck) I'd be coming to net over and over again against players like this (a genuine "pusher" presumably won't be hitting great passing shots and I think a good overhead will be a match for most lobs).

    When I hear people say "I keep losing to pushers" I figure either they have a suspect overhead or they aren't really playing pushers.
     
  19. blakesq

    blakesq Professional

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    Play someone better than yourself.

     
  20. GrandSlam45

    GrandSlam45 Rookie

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    Everyone hates you because you're lazy and you play like an old lady. You never took the time to actually develop your tennis strokes. At what point in your tennis history did you stop taking lessons and become satisfied with just bunting the ball around like your grandma?
     
  21. JohnYandell

    JohnYandell Hall of Fame

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    There was a famous coach who used to really enjoy watching "better" players at his camps lose to "pushers." He'd tell the story about players complaining that it wasn't "real" tennis etc. Then he'd smile tell them "I'm sorry if you weren't playing tennis. What game was it you were playing when you lost?"
     
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2013
  22. Avles

    Avles Hall of Fame

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    Translation:

    People hate losing to you because it reveals that years of practice, club membership, lessons, racquet tweaks, etc. still haven't made them a good enough player to consistently beat someone who hits with no pace.
     
  23. beernutz

    beernutz Hall of Fame

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    Since you lost to one I guess that means you play worse than an old lady.
     
  24. lobman

    lobman Rookie

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    Sounds like all your lessons and great strokes weren't enough to keep you from getting beat by pushers; otherwise, why the rude sour grapes?
     
  25. Greg G

    Greg G Professional

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    I played a pusher type player last night. Controlled aggression was the strategy I used, running him crosscourt until the court opened up. The main issue was really controlling the urge to finish the point early with a 'hero' shot. Playing like this really tires you out mentally, and you have to control the stress that builds up from your shots returning over and over with no pace. I won 6-2 6-3, mainly because my serve was misfiring and the few times I lost patience. Lucky I was able to rein it in.
     

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