Hate the junk ballers

donquijote

Legend
Why? They are often quite creative and unpredictable.
Also, what is your definition of a junkballer?

Sent from my SM-G965W using Tapatalk
You can get the definition from the pinned thread at top if it's still there.
They do spectacular shots unintentionally when they are on a good day and they also make weird winners by hitting with the frame. On an unlucky day, they suck big time. Either way it's no fun playing with them.
 

BlueB

Legend
I thought that you were talking more about higher level, intentional junkers...

Sent from my SM-G965W using Tapatalk
 

zaph

Semi-Pro
You will get allot of abuse for this but I can see were you are coming from. Playing someone who is tailor made to make to counter your game and make your life hard is no fun for anyone. I play a guy who hits the ball very flat, very deep and can get to anything. His shots don't bounce, so I find him really hard work but playing him has made me better.

As for junkballers, I have found the best way to understand the strengths and weaknesses of another style is to try it yourself. Just slice off both sides, hit it short, add in a few lobs, squash shots and watch your opponent blow up. You will find that it is surprisingly easy to junkball power shots from low level players. You don't have to take a full swing because your slicing it and you don't have to worry about it landing short, because low level players don't what to do with it.

The player you can't beat junkballing, is a good net player, when I tried it against one of those I was destroyed. It is also hard to junkball balls when facing heavy topspin, they are difficult to control.

As for how I play a junkballer now, I avoid giving them free points. If I have to junk back, so be it. I wait till I get an easy ball to attack and hit it.
 

whorng

Rookie
4 - Junk Ball players can drive the “purists” among us into the Nut House. These players never allow you to get into a rhythm. They vary the height, depth, angles and quantity of spin so much your “strokes” fall apart ... right after your brain explodes. Junk Ballers seem never to be out of breath and play high-percentage tennis when it comes to “court position.” When you do manage to get them on the run, you learn they are also very quick on their feet.

Sounds like The Wizard I mean Hsieh Su-wei.
 

mad dog1

G.O.A.T.
You can get the definition from the pinned thread at top if it's still there.
They do spectacular shots unintentionally when they are on a good day and they also make weird winners by hitting with the frame. On an unlucky day, they suck big time. Either way it's no fun playing with them.
That’s not a junk baller. That’s just a bad player. Junk ballers hit junk intentionally, not accidentally. Yeah, it sucks to play with awful players.
 

undecided

Semi-Pro
I play a guy who I used to think is a junk baller but he plays with intent. His shots are just meant to make you uncomfortable. No 2 shots are alike. And, he has a lot of 'reaction' half volley shots a la federer that come back although they shouldn't.
 

donquijote

Legend
That’s not a junk baller. That’s just a bad player. Junk ballers hit junk intentionally, not accidentally. Yeah, it sucks to play with awful players.
I have no idea whether the guy we played doubles was hitting intentionally junk balls but I know for sure you can't control the racquet and the ball like that intentionally unless you are a wizard.
 

ubercat

Semi-Pro
Depends what level. A guy who owns a short and long slice and a side spinny forehand is always a very tough day at the office.
 

RajS

Semi-Pro
The problem for me is not the junk ball itself but the fact that most successful junk ballers can run... they cover the court incredibly well, but don't get as tired as they should since they are not expending too much energy hitting heavy shots. I don't have the power/spin/skill to make some of these guys miss just by hitting hard at them. If you don't want a war of attrition - like junking back every ball - I think a good strategy will be to try to get them out of position. But you will need a decent topspin shot that you can hit deep or with a short angle, at a moderate pace (which does not tire you), and reliably hit (or volley) into open court when you see the court open up (nothing spectacular!). Expect every ball to come back, and prepare for it with anticipation and a determination to run it down if necessary and regain court position as quickly as you can. Even if you lose, the game becomes interesting if you have a strategy like this in mind. After all, it's not like we're playing for money... and there's always the next time!
 

mcs1970

Hall of Fame
Junkballers are different from paceless retrievers. The latter really have no weapons to finish the points. The latter have a much lower ceiling. The former have more tricks up their sleeve and are seen all the way up to the pro level.

If they are at a higher level than you are, good luck
 

Fintft

Legend
I really do. They ruin all the fun in tennis.
Well, don't play with them for fun (non of my partners is a junkballer)

As for matches, I would treat them as target practice, I live by the sword and die by the sword.

Another way of putting it, is that I'm trying to improve my ratio of WEs/UFEs and so forth.

We, moritori (who are not junk ballers) sometimes do art for the sake of the art.
 

TnsGuru

Professional
The only high level junk baller would be Santoro formerly on the ATP side, he was fun to watch breaking down the big hitters with all kinds of variety. On the ladies side I like Su-Wei Hsie as well but If she had a better serve she would be higher ranked. I like how she takes the ball early and redirects or slices and then can spank the ball with some pace unexpectedly with the same backswing.....so much disguise and different but refreshing to watch than all the big hitters with not much variety except hit hard and harder.
 
Last edited:

mcs1970

Hall of Fame
The only high level junk baller would be Santoro formerly on the ATP side, he was fun to watch breaking down the big hitters with all kinds of variety. On the ladies side I like Hsei as well but If she had a better serve she would be higher ranked. I like how she takes the ball early and redirects and then can spank the ball with some pace unexpectedly with the same backswing.....so different but refreshing to watch than all the big hitters with not much variety except hit hard and harder.
There are pros other than the top 50 or 100 in the world. We have seen lesser known pros who slice on the fh. Jarryd Chaplin is one of those.


Again, not saying that a whole lot play that way, but the number of players just retrieving and hitting paceless balls are rare even at the 5.0 level let alone at the pro level. Junk ballers OTOH have a much higher ceiling. On this forum both are mentioned as similar. That should not be the case.
 

Enga

Hall of Fame
I have no idea whether the guy we played doubles was hitting intentionally junk balls but I know for sure you can't control the racquet and the ball like that intentionally unless you are a wizard.
Hard to know if we're talking about the same type, but I think I know what you mean. I had a guy like that. His focus was there but its like he had no muscle memory or even an understanding of how the tennis racket works. At net he would block the ball back, but he would keep hitting it off the top of the frame and dragging it down so the ball would die, unintentionally. And further back, he would get many mishits and weird bounces.

It is a bit annoying. Its like cmon man, learn how to hit the ball this isnt fun for anybody. Feels like I'm playing with a first time playing 12 year old but its a grown man.
 

time_fly

Hall of Fame
I really do. They ruin all the fun in tennis.
Yeah. There are different kinds of junkballers. Guys with tons of topspin don't bother me as much. It's the ones with the low bunt-slices that bug me. I know that win or lose I will be charging in towards the net, bending to scoop out ankle-high balls, then most likely backpedaling furiously for the slice-lob, on almost every point.
 

Fairhit

Semi-Pro
I have to admit, I like to trow junk to my opponents from time to time, I've been working on a more focused game plan, not that much weird spins and more ts and work on patterns but sometimes I just can't resist and start with the dropshots, the the sidespins, the backspins, high balls that you don't know where are going to bounce to, the smash dropshot is a particularly frustrating shot, no one expects a dropper from 3 feet behind the baseline...
 

Dartagnan64

Legend
If the guy is better than my then for sure I'm going to junk ball him. Stupid to play strength on strength against better players. Then only an off day by him is likely to get you a win.

When I find someone that is better and they have no problem with my game, I try to find the shot they hate and feed a lot of that mixed with changing pace, bounce and depth. I still don't typically win but I most assuredly compete.
 

hurworld

Hall of Fame
I have to admit, I like to trow junk to my opponents from time to time, I've been working on a more focused game plan, not that much weird spins and more ts and work on patterns but sometimes I just can't resist and start with the dropshots, the the sidespins, the backspins, high balls that you don't know where are going to bounce to, the smash dropshot is a particularly frustrating shot, no one expects a dropper from 3 feet behind the baseline...
How the hell? Like in badminton? Overhead drop would still bounce quite high, no?
 

Dansan

Rookie
Some junk ballers are masters at their craft. Took me a while to realize that this type of tennis is not the same as I have been playing, and it requires a completely different strategy. They could care less about playing according to a certain style....their only motive is to exploit your weakness by returning every ball to you only to elicit unforced errors. A good junkballer will make even a 4.0 look like a fool running around like an idiot. It's not the same game, I wouldn't even call it tennis to be honest.
 

Fairhit

Semi-Pro
How the hell? Like in badminton? Overhead drop would still bounce quite high, no?
If you execute it well not so much, that's the beauty of that particular shot, your opponent is waiting for a smash, even a soft one will put them on defense so they will wait for your shot behind the base line, the dropshot lands and they have next to no reaction so you can easily have a medium bounce ball and they'll just give up before the first bounce, nevertheless, I give the ball lots of sidespin, almost like a kick serve but you are not brushing the back of the ball, is more an over and to the side of the ball brush, the ball goes to the side dips over the net and low bounces to the side of the court, is fun to execute but I get no friends with it.
 

dimkin

Hall of Fame
when I went to Total Tennis camp ... we ran a very good drill - one person only throws junk to the other, and the other moves his feet gets under the ball and feeds nice controlled top spin strokes TO the junk-baller. Having run that drill a few times, I no longer hate junk-ballers - I welcome them ...
 

Fairhit

Semi-Pro
when I went to Total Tennis camp ... we ran a very good drill - one person only throws junk to the other, and the other moves his feet gets under the ball and feeds nice controlled top spin strokes TO the junk-baller. Having run that drill a few times, I no longer hate junk-ballers - I welcome them ...
Thanks!
 

r2473

G.O.A.T.
when I went to Total Tennis camp ... we ran a very good drill - one person only throws junk to the other, and the other moves his feet gets under the ball and feeds nice controlled top spin strokes TO the junk-baller. Having run that drill a few times, I no longer hate junk-ballers - I welcome them ...
You got it! That’s exactly how I play junk ballers.

-Don’t give them much pace. Most JB’s need pace they can redirect

-If you hit with pace, it will make you run a lot as well. Hit less pace and you can basically walk back to the recovery position

-Controlled topspin. Plenty of air. Mostly in the middle of the court. Use spin to keep them deep.

-Be patient. They can’t really hurt you unless you give them pace or angle to work with

-Look to move in. Be prepared for lobs and slow, junk ball passing shots. Your volley doesn’t have to be a winner

It is quite boring to play these guys. I see it as mainly a mental challenge. Can I not get frustrated, stay patient.

For me the real fun isn’t outlasting them (which I’m good at). It’s moving in and being successful at the net against these guys (which I’m not good at).

Personally, I find these types of guys impossible to hit through. I’ll make an error playing offensive before they make one just playing defensive junk ball. And this is what I think the OP is getting at. He doesn’t want to be patient. He wants to blast ground strokes. And he keeps losing
 

bostontennis

New User
The only high level junk baller would be Santoro formerly on the ATP side, he was fun to watch breaking down the big hitters with all kinds of variety. On the ladies side I like Su-Wei Hsie as well but If she had a better serve she would be higher ranked. I like how she takes the ball early and redirects or slices and then can spank the ball with some pace unexpectedly with the same backswing.....so much disguise and different but refreshing to watch than all the big hitters with not much variety except hit hard and harder.
federer is also one of the kind, if you consider ATP average style.
sorry... ruined someone's idol.
 

Bobs tennis

Semi-Pro
Would WTA players Hsieh and Niculesciu (sorry for the spelling) be considered junk ballers. If so I love watching them and try to emulate them
 

Wurm

Rookie
A junkballer by intent doesn't bother me.

The unintentional junkballer whose junk is a product of simply not being in control of the ball can be infuriating, particularly if they're having one of those days when a disproportionate number of flukes are resulting in them winning points.

You can tell the latter by their complete inability to hit the ball to you during the warmup, particularly if on a doubles court and every other shot is leaking into the other side of the court.
 

Fairhit

Semi-Pro
A junkballer by intent doesn't bother me.

The unintentional junkballer whose junk is a product of simply not being in control of the ball can be infuriating, particularly if they're having one of those days when a disproportionate number of flukes are resulting in them winning points.

You can tell the latter by their complete inability to hit the ball to you during the warmup, particularly if on a doubles court and every other shot is leaking into the other side of the court.
I can relate to that, just two days ago I played against a guy that hit like 5 winners out of framed shots, very frustrating.
 

ChaelAZ

Legend
when I went to Total Tennis camp ... we ran a very good drill - one person only throws junk to the other, and the other moves his feet gets under the ball and feeds nice controlled top spin strokes TO the junk-baller. Having run that drill a few times, I no longer hate junk-ballers - I welcome them ...
What is the outcome of the drill. By feeding back are you working the point to get a weak or short putaway ball?
 
Top