How would you handle this type of player?

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by johndagolfer, Feb 4, 2012.

  1. johndagolfer

    johndagolfer Professional

    Apr 2, 2006
    I was watching a DI college match today and saw a match between a very aggressive power baseliner and an unconventional style. The "unconventional" style was a heavy slow looping forehand that jumped up to 7 to 8 feet and a very consistent, very heavy backhand slice.

    I wouldn't call this a pushing or counter punching style. It was definitely defensive and caused the attacking style fits with a lot of errors.
    I would call it opportunistic. Whenever the conventional player hit a short ball, the reply was a heavy angled forehand or a heavy deep slice backhand that would be approached on.

    The only way I could think to attack this was to attack the forehand in the air or early, which worked some of the time, but took great timing and energy to do(energy I probably couldn't afford for a whole match) or keep pounding the backhand and hopefully get a short opening to attack the open forehand side. Either way I don't think I would have the stamina or consistency to attack that type of style.

    Last edited: Feb 4, 2012
  2. Xizel

    Xizel Professional

    Feb 13, 2011
    Either approach the net or make him approach the net. Slower forehands are prone to volleys. Backhand slice isn't a very good passing shot. Slower forehands also don't make very good approach shots. To get a good slice, you need some court space to work with. If you draw him to the net on your terms, you could narrow that space.
  3. Ducker

    Ducker Rookie

    Jun 1, 2010
    Considering he was playing D1, Im sure he has the ability to hit hte forehand flat aswell. Besides that you cant just come to net whenever you please at that level.
  4. johndagolfer

    johndagolfer Professional

    Apr 2, 2006
    This is the truth. The heavy slice made it difficult to get a clean approach. The heavy forehand was attacked and approached on a lot more than the backhand. But this was done when the aggressive baseliner had enough time to take the ball early.
  5. Ballinbob

    Ballinbob Hall of Fame

    Sep 7, 2008
    Good luck, those guys are very difficult to handle. I absolutely hate playing those types of players and they always beat me. The easy answer is "Approach the net" but it's easier said than done.

    Good thread though, looking forward to see the responses people give
  6. TTMR

    TTMR Hall of Fame

    Jul 24, 2009
    Accuse him of being a pusher, question his manhood and goad him into attacking more to generate unforced errors. If that fails, blame the organizers for slowing down the courts.
  7. ATP100

    ATP100 Professional

    Nov 19, 2010

    I wish you had a video of this, it is very common at all levels for an aggressive player to lose to a player like this and the reason other than skill is almost always footwork. But when people watch tennis, rarely do they watch footwork.
  8. ace_pace

    ace_pace Rookie

    Nov 1, 2011
    You make smile so dam much :D
  9. Lsmkenpo

    Lsmkenpo Hall of Fame

    Aug 21, 2006
    You have to remain patient and not panic when playing a moonballer. Aggressive players tend to make the mistake of playing even more aggressive than usual against this style and start going for shots at the wrong time, this is exactly what the moonballer is hoping for. The only way this style can beat you is if you beat yourself. Be a little more patient, don't let the slower pace cause your footwork to become complacent. Wait for the right time to attack, you will get a short ball eventually if you just work the ball around and don't continually rally crosscourt.

    Practice the high forehand, most players don't hit the shot enough to get comfortable with it, you have to adjust your takeback much higher. Once you learn the shot you can blast hard flat forehands
    that the moonballer will not be able to control as easily, you will get a weak short reply, than you look to hit the winner.
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2012
  10. escii_35

    escii_35 Rookie

    Apr 1, 2008
    In a later round of University level conference (not DI) tournament I saw two teammates play on a warm day.

    One player (international) had the game you described, the other tried to the following:

    S&V 1st serve every time and second serve some of the time. When a rally happed he tried to get the clay courter moving then clobber an approach to the backhand early in the rally. If the approach was not big enough the claycourter would use his wheels, set up and make him look silly. At the start or the third both players were using alot of potty mouth and neither looked comfortable out there. The match was not pretty.

    Interesting note, anytime the attacker would get into an extended rally he yell at himself to shorten the point.
  11. TennisCJC

    TennisCJC Legend

    Apr 20, 2010

    1. Hit wide to their forehand and open up court so you can hit into their sliced backhand. Serve wide or hit hard forehand crosscourt, then follow with something aggressive to their backhand if they give you something you can work with. If you can force them to hit running slice backhands, you might be able to move in and take them in the air or to run around and hit an aggressive forehand on the next shot.
    2. Attack the slice backhand either with s&v or come in off the 1st short ball - as someone said above it is tough to pass off the slice if the approach is good.
    3. Work on a defensive slice for your high backhand. If you have this shot, you don't have to move back and hit a topspin backhand when they roll a high one to your backhand. You can stand in and hit the high ball with slice without a great deal of effort. Use their pace to hit your shot.
  12. danno123

    danno123 Rookie

    Sep 20, 2010
    You are quickly becoming my favorite poster.
  13. bharat

    bharat Rookie

    Nov 5, 2009
    Warn him once or twice that you wont put up with such kind of play. If he doesnt listen, pack your bag and storm off the court.

    Oh you can take the tennis balls too, especially if he bought them :)
  14. OldFedIsOld

    OldFedIsOld Professional

    Sep 7, 2011
    2D plane of existence
    @OP, was this at FSU?

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