Playing a 5 set match tomorrow, any tips?

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by The Meat, Feb 26, 2013.

  1. The Meat

    The Meat Hall of Fame

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    Okay it's actually the first time I am ever playing a 5 set match, I've played 3 setters often but never 5. The reason why I'm playing a 5 setter is because when I usually play a three setter with a certain friend, it always ends with a 7-6 or 6-7 outcome in each set, we rarely ever break each other and now have a 3-3 head to head. He's the usual 6'6" giant with a big serve, which is really annoying to me because I can only chip his serve back into play if he doesn't ace me.

    Any tips with conserving energy during the match?
     
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  2. TheCheese

    TheCheese Professional

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    Win in straights.
     
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  3. Say Chi Sin Lo

    Say Chi Sin Lo Legend

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    Or lose in straights, either way... Straights! :)
     
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  4. TheCheese

    TheCheese Professional

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    We try and be optimistic here. :lol:
     
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  5. Ronaldo

    Ronaldo G.O.A.T.

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    Play out each set, no tiebreaks
     
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  6. Bergboy123

    Bergboy123 Semi-Pro

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    12-10, 9-11, 17-15, 4-6, 24-22. Nbd.
     
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  7. Relinquis

    Relinquis Hall of Fame

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    - make sure you have enough water bottles. drink regularly, even in the first two sets.
    - make him run more. it will take it's toll on him in latter sets.
    - drop shots take a lot out of players who hug the baseline. use this a few times a set to make him tired. don't overuse it.

    if all else fails, just high height topspin to the backhand, no?
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2013
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  8. The Meat

    The Meat Hall of Fame

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    If only Wawrinka had a better partner....
     
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  9. The Meat

    The Meat Hall of Fame

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    He'll pull a John Isner and just stop chasing down balls on my service games and just wait until the tie breaks.

    Also, High balls don't work on the big guy with a 2 hander. :(
     
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  10. Mahboob Khan

    Mahboob Khan Hall of Fame

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    He has a huge serve but if you are physically fit you can wear him down by the time 3rd or 4th set comes along. At this stage if he is inferior to you in fitness you can break his serve and edge past him to win in the 5th.

    Let's not forget that even in the best of 5 set match you play one point at a time.

    Good luck.
     
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  11. Fusker

    Fusker Rookie

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    Don't let him open a new can of balls.

    Takes me back to my glory days of HS where we were issued two balls at the start of the match (HS rules didn't even allow the whole can to be given out) and my serve and volley game deteriorated into a shooting gallery by the end of the first set. I'd offer to open up a new can of balls I brought from home after a set. Some guys accepted, but the smarter guys would chuckle and say, "I don't think so man."
     
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  12. onehandbh

    onehandbh Hall of Fame

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    Some tips:

    - if you warm up on the side without the sun, ask your opponent:
    "Do you mind if we not switch sides on odd games? I think the sun's
    about the same on both sides."
    - wear a big hat.
    - go gluten free so that you can play back-to-back-to-back 5 setters
    if necessary without a problem.
    - change socks after each set to prevent blisters.
    - wear sunscreen if it's sunny.
    - hit dropshots against the wind.
    - get massages during the changeovers.
    - sprint back to the baseline at the beginning of the 5th set to show him
    you're not tired yet. (if you already have blistered feet, cramps, etc.
    then hobble back as fast as you can and try not to make audible
    sounds of pain.
     
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  13. HunterST

    HunterST Hall of Fame

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    Sounds like it's just a recreational match. I'd just focus on having fun and, if a long match comes up, embrace it. Playing those kinds of matches consistently would probably help your fitness.
     
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  14. marosmith

    marosmith Professional

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    Slice a lot, chip and charge on return games. End points. His short angles. Take steroids.
     
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  15. 10isfreak

    10isfreak Semi-Pro

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    Make it a three setters... it will spare you efforts. Ahaha

    No, seriously. I played a five setter with a friend once. I recall that it didn't last five sets and that I lost.
    I also recall that it was exhausting, long and that we were making stupid fatigue mistakes by the end.

    A thing you will have to bother about is managing your energy. You'll have to play for at least 3 full sets,
    for perhaps 30 to 45 minutes each... I mean, I wouldn't expect that match to end before 2 hours of play,
    unless one of you is much better than the other or if you happen to play very fast tennis. With my friend,
    sets generally lasted above 45 minutes, sometimes a full hour and it wasn't uncommon to play a tie break
    or end a set 7-5. So, when you play and decide to go for a run to try and get back this pesky drop shot,
    have a thought for how you'll be playing in two hours from then if you try to keep up the rhythm you
    imposed over yourself.

    When you get tired, moving becomes challenging, hard and, despite great will and desire, you're bound to
    be slower as you play more and more points. Even if you're technically good, you'll make more mistakes
    when you are tired than when you are fresh out of the warm-up before the match. Bending your knees,
    moving forward, making small adjustment to ensure perfect spacing to the ball... all those details that
    must be done with consistency and rigor to ensure quality shots will become a burden.


    Here, on the other hand, you are somewhat "lucky": your friend is a big server and not a Nadal-like kind of
    guy. A guy who has a physical edge will see the match fall on his side ever more as it lasts longer because
    of what I explained above.

    How do you play that sort of guy? Obviously, with 6 matches completed, you're better placed than any of
    us to answer that question. Once of the usual response is to play with your slice if you have a good one.
    Tall guys have a MUCH harder time digging low balls than small guys. Furthermore, since he's tall, you don't
    have to bother about hitting arcs or flat strokes a lot: by his measure, arcing balls are much easier to strike!
    So, if you're good at flattening out your balls, while keeping them in the lines a lot, it would be a good idea.

    A second detail is that slices can be used, not only to force an opponent to bend and dig a low ball, it can
    also be used to force him to work "vertically." A good way to exhaust an opponent is to force him to adapt
    a lot: avoid, absolutely avoid, playing a pure "cost-to-coast" game.
    Forcing him to bend, move forward, move
    backward... even better: with flat strokes and your slice, the change in speed risks to be very annoying,
    even more than if you were arcing the balls more.

    I wouldn't recommend doing the "chip and charge/ serve and volley" shortening scenario, unless you're very
    good at it or unless your opponent is in much better shape than you are. If you can force him to work harder
    than you, DO IT. For amateurs, a 5 setter is DAMN LONG and adjustments (the core and the corner stone of
    tennis) happens to be the most tiring exercise during rallies... if you can just play two sets by forcing him to
    do more adjustments than you (not necessarily by playing junk balls, but simply by varying the location of
    your targets, the pace of your stroke and the type of spin), in the end it will pay big time.

    Why? Even if you loose the one of these sets, you'll be in a better physical position to execute than he is
    after both sets are completed. As time goes by, any bit of physical advantage, any bit of not being as tired
    as the opponent, means more and more and more. In tennis, adjustments are big: your footwork and your
    posture are important and being able to adjust better than your opponent for a set means winning the set.
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2013
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  16. The Meat

    The Meat Hall of Fame

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    Thanks for the advice everyone, we'll see what happens tonight. :)



    Can't do that, three setters won't settle our head to head. Only a grueling 5 setter will determine who is better. :twisted:
     
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  17. Ronaldo

    Ronaldo G.O.A.T.

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    PEDs??? Who does that?
     
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  18. Relinquis

    Relinquis Hall of Fame

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    don't stop chasing balls. make sure you get everyone back Gilles Simon style. otherwise you are giving him less pressure.

    if he is tall + two hander, low bouncing slice is ideal.
     
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  19. The Meat

    The Meat Hall of Fame

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    Okay update on the 5 setter.

    I just got back home from a 3 and half hour 4 set epic.
    I won it 6-7(7-9), 6-4, 6-3, 7-5

    I lost the first set after being up a break of serve because of two double faults and ended up going to a tiebreaker where I had set point at 7-6, I hit a ridiculous running backhand flick cross court on a serve and volley attempt on that point. Then he he pulled out his John Isner tactic and just served aces and then I lost the first set on a unforced error.
    I got really pissed off because I had a good start and then I stepped into gear and won the rest of the sets with a break each.

    We had 20+ shot rallies a lot because I wanted to wear him out, which didn't really work all that well because they were all on my serve. I was really lucky today because I had an awful serving day.

    Chipping the serve low worked pretty well and slicing was also effective on his forehand side. Thanks for the tips!
     
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  20. luvforty

    luvforty Banned

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    slip a mickey in his drink
     
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  21. Ronaldo

    Ronaldo G.O.A.T.

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