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-   -   It is interesting that playing a weaker opponent improves my game so much (http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=435662)

Long Face 08-10-2012 01:54 PM

It is interesting that playing a weaker opponent improves my game so much
 
I usually play tennis with a group of "tennis buddies" 2-3 times a week. Most of them are better than me (they are faster and they know my weakness). I always have very tough singles matches with them, and often end up losing.

Early this week I was invited to a singles match against a guy I knew I can beat. He is a pusher, but his shots are slow, allowing me to dictate where I want to hit the next one. When playing him I let myself loose, and focus in hitting the ball early and guiding my shots to either side of his court. I gradually increased power in my shots, while keeping my shots safely in the court. And when his shots were short, I rushed the net with confidence.

I won the match 6-3, 6-1.

Then I came back and played one of my buddies who I have never been able to beat. He loves to moon-ball my 1HBH and see my suffer. However, for some reason, I used some of the strokes that I used against the pusher, and was able to strike his moonballs back to his side, often near the side lines. I made him run. He was not able to moon-ball me any more. Instead, he produced some short ones which I went forward and killed. Amazingly, I won, with a big margin.

Then I face another one who is very fast, and is usually able to cover anything. I had never beat him before, either. Again I used the same strokes that I used against the pusher. Hit the ball early, keep it safe, and make him run. Rush the net when the ball is short. With the new confidence and fewer errors, I won again.

It is amazing that a match with a weaker opponent would help build my game and produce such positive results. I guess I will call that pusher for another match next week......

LeeD 08-10-2012 07:42 PM

Work that pusher until AndyMurray starts to call you for his practice partner, then dump him like a sack of potatoes.

ace_pace 08-11-2012 01:05 AM

Actually that problem was more of a confidence issue. Playing someone who you thought was inferior gave you confidence. Really as long as you think your opponents are inferior to you, then you'll play better. Problem is when it backfires, you'll feel like *****.

Long Face 08-11-2012 07:40 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ace_pace (Post 6798313)
Actually that problem was more of a confidence issue. Playing someone who you thought was inferior gave you confidence. Really as long as you think your opponents are inferior to you, then you'll play better. Problem is when it backfires, you'll feel like *****.

Confidence is a big factor, yes.

However "controlled agression" and the mind set of "make him run" is new to me, and I had not been able to do this until after playing the weaker pusher. Before that I usually tried to attack (say opponent's backhand side) and made errors, or got frustrated if my the ball kept coming back, and made errors.

Now I have a new "style" of play which may be what they call "percentage tennis"?

ace_pace 08-11-2012 07:55 AM

Yeah I had a problem of getting frustrated when I couldnt do anything against an opponent. I still kinda do.
If you really think you are onto something tackle some bigger 'fish'. See how far you can go.

On topic though its very important that you vs a variety of players, whether they are better or worse than you, so you get experience under different kinds of pressure.


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