I played a fun and challenging match tonight. And I saw something I had never experienced before. It's definitely something for you guys who play mixed to consider. I'm 3.5; partner is a solid 4.0. Opposing 4.0 male was really good with his placement and slices and spins and volleys. He was also crazy fast around the court. His partner hits her groundies a ton and otherwise parks herself on the net and lets her partner take care of everything else. After the warm-up, we knew that trying to beat him was pointless but we might get somewhere with her. So the guy lines up to serve to me in the deuce court, and he did something unusual. He served from very close to the center T. Hmmm. That's unusual. Most doubles players line up wide, at least halfway between hash and sideline. As the match went on, I decided that that his service positioning -- normally a position you see from folks who aren't very experienced in doubles or from singles players -- was actually very smart. He could serve hard up the middle to my BH. If I played a good shot back, it was likely to his FH. That's a nice match-up for him. He could serve out wide to my FH. I could take it crosscourt, but that's fine by him. What surprised me was that he also took away my FH DTL drive from that position. I swear, I ripped a FH up the line past the lady, a shot that is a stone cold winner 100 times out of 100; this guy reached all but one of them. He didn't necessarily win the point because he had to hit a defensive shot, but it was enough to make me have to hit the thing very aggressively or not at all. Had he been serving from a normal doubles position, he couldn't have tracked those drives down. The only risk he took by serving from the middle like that was that I might crush a FH crosscourt so hard he couldn't reach it. In my dreams. He was plenty fast to reach any crosscourt ball I could hit. How come more of you dudes playing mixed don't line up this way? I might have to have a talk with my 4.0 partner about this. He was having some difficulty reaching the woman's BH with his serve, but he positions very wide when he serves. Maybe he would have done better to mimic the other guys positioning. Anybody of you fellas ever try this?