Dealing with nude balls


I was playing one of my regular hitting partners today and he kept neutralising with slice (almost lobs) that weren't quite high enough to smash, but had to be taken out of the air. I missed a couple of crucial drive volleys. If you let these balls bounce, it gives him too much time to recover, they bounce vertically and have no pace, you seem to be adjusting your feet for hours before you can take a cut at the ball, but if you play it too far from your body (out in front) you shank it due to the lack of pace. (We play on synthetic grass) He also mishit a drop volley that popped up (bounced vertically) and i didn't do enough with the pass and he guessed right and volleyed it into the open court. Another time I hit a drive volley followed by a smash and then he gave me a nude slice low and close to the net that I netted. Does anyone have any drills/technical tips for dealing with balls (slice in particular) that have no pace and don't come on to you at all.
Wear underwear. Also if it's a deep ball hit crosscourt and if it's short hit away from him. Much harder to slice if you know any short ball you concede will make you put on your track shoes.


I believe the term is "newt ball."

I've heard Navratilova use the term in a Fuzzy Yellow Ball video. She called it "newt," as in neither frog nor toad, in describing a first volley in doubles that is placed low around the service line with little pace. It is neither a drop volley nor a penetrating deep volley. It is intended to force the opponent to hit up on the ball.

I suppose any shot that has such "neither/nor" quality can be called a newt ball.


I was checking in for photos. :) [Now the GF is snickering...]

If you know they are going to hit a 'nude' or 'newt' ball, slow down, then step into the shot because it will be short. Depending on where the shot lands, go DTL if coming to the net; or go CC if retreating to the BL.