Originally Posted by Cindysphinx
Let's here from the combo players out there.
If you are playing combo, one player is presumably one USTA level stronger than the other. Which side does the lower player tend to play?
When I play 7.5 combo, I play deuce side. This is because some ladies are eaten alive on the BH return back to the server. Indeed, I sometimes partner with a lady who struggles with her FH and lacks variety on her returns. We do much better with her on the ad side because that way we don't spend two sets getting poached on the deuce side.
Here's the weird thing, though. When I captain (3.5 ladies, 7.5 ladies combo, 4.0 ladies), I usually ask the team to tell me which receiving side is their strongest. About 90% of the team replies deuce. I cannot for the life of me figure out why that is.
I play 8.5 and 9.5 mens combo. My 8.5 partner is a 4.0 with a 2HBH. He makes aggressive errors, but his 2 hander does better generating pace back across the court than my 1-handed block or slice.
I am a liability on the ad side because my returns are more likely to float and get poached. The further I'm stretched wide, the more time the net player has to poach.
On the deuce side I create better angles with my FH and even though my backhand can float, I can do a reasonable job of keeping it away from the poaching opponent (less time for him to react on his partner's T-serve).
That's probably the reasoning that most feel they are better on the deuce side. Most have stronger FH than BH and a weak BH return on ad side is more of a liability than it is on the deuce side.