Most basic stratergy

StringSnapper

Hall of Fame
So if we consider the most basic "all court game" stratergy:

1) serve well, usually wide
2) hit deep crosscourt until your opponent gives you a short/weak one
3) hit the short one up the line
4) volley, finish the point, or overheard, wherever to the opponent isn't


Of course you could win the point at any one of these escalations. I.e. if you're more of an aggressive baseliner, you try to win at 2 or 3.

My question is for 3: should you hit this "sitter" flat? I.e. try to get to it quickly, and smack it down into the court? Or should you go for spin? (I mean in the sense of "the most basic stratergy"..)
 

golden chicken

Professional
Easiest to execute would be to go for placement before power, because it leads to #4.

So, to expand #3, you would try to hit down the line deep into the corner, not just "down the line."

If you can execute the expanded #3 above, you now have several advantages over your opponent. You give yourself more time to get a little closer to the net where you are psychologically intimidating your opponent. You are forcing your opponent to run as far as geometrically possible. You are forcing your opponent to hit from behind the baseline. Guard the down the line pass and you force your opponent to hit back across themselves.

If the sitter also bounces up over the net height and you can take a confident cut at the ball, by all means put some pop on it, but if you hit it more towards your opponent than you intended to, they just need to block it back into the open court, and if you blow it, well, you blew it.
 
To make it hard to reach ??
Wouldn't down the T be equally hard to reach?

A good returner isn't going to give me a lot of space: he'll stand roughly in the middle of my two extreme possibilities. I'm not sure why out wide would be favored, especially if that's the returner's stronger wing. I would think the more conservative strategy would be to serve down the T or into the body to cut down on the returner's potential angles [especially important in doubles].
 

atp2015

Hall of Fame
My question is for 3: should you hit this "sitter" flat? I.e. try to get to it quickly, and smack it down into the court? Or should you go for spin? (I mean in the sense of "the most basic stratergy"..)
Hit flat if the opponent is not likely to get to the ball because he is out of position, otherwise a lot of spin which makes it hard to simply block the ball.

Various strategies by pros.

 
As a basic strategy, I think most people find it hard to serve down the T. Wide is easier to hit than T. But if T is attainable, I think the game has evolved beyond basic which this thread deals with.
For a righty, serving down the T on the Deuce side is harder. But then serving down the T on the Ad side is easier.

I would think the basic rule would be to serve at the fattest part of the box, which is centered around where the SL meets the sideline. The further you serve away from that area, the less space you have to hit in to.
 
As a basic strategy, I think most people find it hard to serve down the T. Wide is easier to hit than T. But if T is attainable, I think the game has evolved beyond basic which this thread deals with.
The other thing is that just because the strategy is basic does not mean the player is: the player could be advanced but is using a basic strategy because that entails the least risk and he doesn't want to take any more risk than necessary to win. If basic strategy does the job, that's the right strategy.
 

atp2015

Hall of Fame
The other thing is that just because the strategy is basic does not mean the player is: the player could be advanced but is using a basic strategy because that entails the least risk and he doesn't want to take any more risk than necessary to win. If basic strategy does the job, that's the right strategy.
Our assumptions are different obviously. Imo, advanced player uses a mix of strategies and not just a few basic ones.
But I can imagine how we can always come up with alternative facts.
 

StringSnapper

Hall of Fame
Wouldn't down the T be equally hard to reach?

A good returner isn't going to give me a lot of space: he'll stand roughly in the middle of my two extreme possibilities. I'm not sure why out wide would be favored, especially if that's the returner's stronger wing. I would think the more conservative strategy would be to serve down the T or into the body to cut down on the returner's potential angles [especially important in doubles].
down the T is probably better as a serve and volleyer
 
Our assumptions are different obviously. Imo, advanced player uses a mix of strategies and not just a few basic ones.
But I can imagine how we can always come up with alternative facts.
In my view, an advanced player won't necessarily use complicated and myriad strategies if the simple one works. Case in point: Nadal. As a righty, you know he's going to be hammering your BH until you cough up a short ball. Simple strategy for one of the GOATs.

For example, I saw an O'Shaughnessey breakdown of the Nadal/Tsitsipas match and he said Nadal's strategy was simple: "serve + 1". There were 43 times after Nadal served that it came back and 41 times he subsequently hit a FH.

Just because you're a really good player does not mean you have to employ really complicated strategies.
 
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There was some breakdown stat that showed Federer usually serves wide 80% of the time on first serves, and 20% down the T just to keep them honest.

I think because it opens up the court more, he can hit the next one to the other side to keep them running (and occasionally behind them when they start to guess)
If so, did his opponents recognize that [either in real-time or in post-match study] and start shading wide?
 

FiReFTW

Legend
I hope you know that this is an extremely basic and simplified strategy and that theres ALOT more strategy involved than just what you mentioned.
This is just 1 pattern basically from many.

But in any case, it depends what kind of ball you get, your position, your intention.

You can drive it more, you can spin it more with a higher arc, you can hit a short angle or dropshot or many more things.

But it all depends, its not as simple as just doing A or B
 

Pete Player

Hall of Fame
If you get the ball into play either way, serving or returning. Wardlaw’s high per centages is a good start. I think that would be basic stuff, which a lot of people seem not to understand.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
If you get the ball into play either way, serving or returning. Wardlaw’s high per centages is a good start. I think that would be basic stuff, which a lot of people seem not to understand.
At least some of those people understand it but think it's too simple: either "that can't work because it's too simple" or "I'm too good for simple strategy".
 

sureshs

Bionic Poster
So if we consider the most basic "all court game" stratergy:

1) serve well, usually wide
2) hit deep crosscourt until your opponent gives you a short/weak one
3) hit the short one up the line
4) volley, finish the point, or overheard, wherever to the opponent isn't


Of course you could win the point at any one of these escalations. I.e. if you're more of an aggressive baseliner, you try to win at 2 or 3.

My question is for 3: should you hit this "sitter" flat? I.e. try to get to it quickly, and smack it down into the court? Or should you go for spin? (I mean in the sense of "the most basic stratergy"..)
Serving "well" is not a strategy, it is a skill
 

StringSnapper

Hall of Fame
I hope you know that this is an extremely basic and simplified strategy and that theres ALOT more strategy involved than just what you mentioned.
This is just 1 pattern basically from many.

But in any case, it depends what kind of ball you get, your position, your intention.

You can drive it more, you can spin it more with a higher arc, you can hit a short angle or dropshot or many more things.

But it all depends, its not as simple as just doing A or B
i'm asking specifically: should you drive it more or spin it more on a slow ball
 

StringSnapper

Hall of Fame
If so, did his opponents recognize that [either in real-time or in post-match study] and start shading wide?
if they recognise it or not, its Mr. Federer we're talking about here... GOAT status achieved.


I think as well sometimes you know what your opponent will do, they just do it too well that you can't do anything. I.e. you shade out wide, get it back, but they cross it so fast and heavy to the other side even though you left in a full sprint to get there you still didnt make it
 
if they recognise it or not, its Mr. Federer we're talking about here... GOAT status achieved.


I think as well sometimes you know what your opponent will do, they just do it too well that you can't do anything. I.e. you shade out wide, get it back, but they cross it so fast and heavy to the other side even though you left in a full sprint to get there you still didnt make it
Which supports the point I made about advanced players not necessarily needing many and complicated strategies.
 

Pete Player

Hall of Fame
Weird, this is completely opposite for me. I do everything wrong :p
I wonder, if you have a good slice spin on your serves or not. Flattish would probably be easier to serve wide on the ad-court, but the net is higher towards the sidelines, which makes it harder, unless your position is further off the center mark.

Slicing it at the T or close to it on ad-court will quite often result an ace in my case. A slice at the sideline will end up being a body serve, which is also tough to return.

If you slice it wide on deuce, there is a fair chance of opening the court too much on your forehand making it possible to hit steep cc on the return, if the opponen reads it well or you don’t have enough pace or spin on it.


——————————
No more on pain meds - all contributed matter and anti-matter are still subject to disclaimer
 

atp2015

Hall of Fame
In my view, an advanced player won't necessarily use complicated and myriad strategies if the simple one works. Case in point: Nadal. As a righty, you know he's going to be hammering your BH until you cough up a short ball. Simple strategy for one of the GOATs.

For example, I saw an O'Shaughnessey breakdown of the Nadal/Tsitsipas match and he said Nadal's strategy was simple: "serve + 1". There were 43 times after Nadal served that it came back and 41 times he subsequently hit a FH.

Just because you're a really good player does not mean you have to employ really complicated strategies.
I agree if simple one works, no need for anything else.
It's down to interpretation- advanced strategy is one that requires advanced skills. Basic one requires basic skills. Adv strategy does not mean starting with a 5 shot plan to win a point. I think most tactics are +1 or +2 - whether or not it requires advanced skills.

I think wide slice serve in deuce or simple wide to bh in ad are basic skills, and can learn a lot easier than t serves. That's based on my observation at rec level. Most folks slice wide very easily.
 

junior74

G.O.A.T.
Serving "well" is not a strategy, it is a skill
Well, i mean its a long-term stratergy to develop said serve within your tennis playing (recreational) career
Obviously, the serve is a strategy, too.

If I play someone who is more consistent than me, I take more risks with my serve, because that gives me opportunities to open up the court and get the upper hand. I'd rather make 4 more DFs in a match, than giving my opponent too many sitters, which fuels his confidence more than I'd like. Also, every time I hold serve, my opponent feels pressure, no matter how good he is.

For serve & volleyers - the serve is the strategic basis.

Not being predictable and easy to read is a strategy, which Federer's career is more or less based on. He uses variety as a strategy.
 

J011yroger

Talk Tennis Guru
Easiest to execute would be to go for placement before power, because it leads to #4.

So, to expand #3, you would try to hit down the line deep into the corner, not just "down the line."

If you can execute the expanded #3 above, you now have several advantages over your opponent. You give yourself more time to get a little closer to the net where you are psychologically intimidating your opponent. You are forcing your opponent to run as far as geometrically possible. You are forcing your opponent to hit from behind the baseline. Guard the down the line pass and you force your opponent to hit back across themselves.

If the sitter also bounces up over the net height and you can take a confident cut at the ball, by all means put some pop on it, but if you hit it more towards your opponent than you intended to, they just need to block it back into the open court, and if you blow it, well, you blew it.
This is completely wrong.

J
 

Mongolmike

Hall of Fame
I would say to the OP's question of "BASIC strategy" it is a basic pusher style:

-get your serve in. Period. However you can.
-hit everything back in. Period.

Basic pushers generally just pop their serve in to get the point started, then somehow/any way just hit every shot back. No pace, no big spin, no "paint the lines" attempts. Just get the ball back and wait for the opponent to make a mistake.

Pretty simple.
 
I agree if simple one works, no need for anything else.
It's down to interpretation- advanced strategy is one that requires advanced skills. Basic one requires basic skills. Adv strategy does not mean starting with a 5 shot plan to win a point. I think most tactics are +1 or +2 - whether or not it requires advanced skills.

I think wide slice serve in deuce or simple wide to bh in ad are basic skills, and can learn a lot easier than t serves. That's based on my observation at rec level. Most folks slice wide very easily.
I agree with everything except "advanced strategy is one that requires advanced skills": an advanced strategy could be one that employs more decision-making than a basic one but isn't necessarily dependent on advanced skills. For example, instead of following Wardlaw 100% of the time [basic], you start building in exceptions based on circumstances [could be advanced]. The more detailed the exceptions, the more complicated the strategy.
 

WestboroChe

Hall of Fame
So if we consider the most basic "all court game" stratergy:

1) serve well, usually wide
2) hit deep crosscourt until your opponent gives you a short/weak one
3) hit the short one up the line
4) volley, finish the point, or overheard, wherever to the opponent isn't


Of course you could win the point at any one of these escalations. I.e. if you're more of an aggressive baseliner, you try to win at 2 or 3.

My question is for 3: should you hit this "sitter" flat? I.e. try to get to it quickly, and smack it down into the court? Or should you go for spin? (I mean in the sense of "the most basic stratergy"..)
Going back to the OPs question about the down the line approach. Flatter is better as it takes time away from your opponent. But if you can’t execute that then of course spinning it in is better. The main decider of course is how high the ball is: above the net? Smack if flat and hard. Below the net? Spin it deep and be prepared for a volley or a lob.
 

atp2015

Hall of Fame
I agree with everything except "advanced strategy is one that requires advanced skills": an advanced strategy could be one that employs more decision-making than a basic one but isn't necessarily dependent on advanced skills. For example, instead of following Wardlaw 100% of the time [basic], you start building in exceptions based on circumstances [could be advanced]. The more detailed the exceptions, the more complicated the strategy.
But breaking simple laws require advanced skills, imo. Is it easy for beginnes to win consistently by hitting dtl on deep balls? Not for most. Most advanced players are able to hit dtl from almost anywhere ( but at the risk of going out of position, but not at the risk of missing the shot itself)
 

WestboroChe

Hall of Fame
But breaking simple laws require advanced skills, imo. Is it easy for beginnes to win consistently by hitting dtl on deep balls? Not for most. Most advanced players are able to hit dtl from almost anywhere ( but at the risk of going out of position, but not at the risk of missing the shot itself)
True. But even at the highest level DTL is a riskier shot. And of course even the best players still miss plenty of shots.
 
But breaking simple laws require advanced skills, imo. Is it easy for beginnes to win consistently by hitting dtl on deep balls? Not for most. Most advanced players are able to hit dtl from almost anywhere ( but at the risk of going out of position, but not at the risk of missing the shot itself)
Hitting DTL is not 10x harder than hitting CC. it is more difficult due to net height and court length but I think what trips me up is the need to hit a winner because my opponent is out of position CC. That, more than the physical geometry aspects, are why I mess up.

Good back and forth.
 

ONgame

Semi-Pro
I would say at the most basic, you would want #3 to land in. I see too many people have no idea how to hit a shot from inside the court.
If you can hit #3 with a flat, you should really be finishing the point then and there. Since hitting a flat one DTL from inside the court requires the contact point to be somewhat higher than the net.
Having to go to #4 means you must spin #3 in.
 

ByeByePoly

G.O.A.T.
There was some breakdown stat that showed Federer usually serves wide 80% of the time on first serves, and 20% down the T just to keep them honest.

I think because it opens up the court more, he can hit the next one to the other side to keep them running (and occasionally behind them when they start to guess)
I think he is the best that ever played on that next shot after the return (edit: after his serve). Nadal ain't half bad at it also. :-D

Anyone who played a lot of s&v singles is likely to serve a high percentage of wide serves because you volley cc to an open court.

Also ... great if you play military tennis ... start opponent with first hit:

LEFT RIGHT ...LEFT RIGHT ...LEFT RIGHT ...

I will take Military Tennis any day over whoever this Wardlaw dude is. :p
 
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atp2015

Hall of Fame
True. But even at the highest level DTL is a riskier shot. And of course even the best players still miss plenty of shots.
Sure, dtl comes with a warning.
It's riskier for different reasons- for beginners, it's the execution itself. For advanced players, surrendering the positional neutrality.
 

ByeByePoly

G.O.A.T.
If you are at the center of your baseline, you have to run farther to get to the sideline between the service line and baseline than to the corner. A short flat fh dtl or c&c is very effective as long as you keep the bounce low. I would much rather run to my corner and hit a ball that bounces than run in on an angle trying to dig out a ball (particularly a FH).
 

WestboroChe

Hall of Fame
Sure, dtl comes with a warning.
It's riskier for different reasons- for beginners, it's the execution itself. For advanced players, surrendering the positional neutrality.
I suppose so. But how many times have we seen a top pro pull the trigger on a DTL only push it wide or dump it in the net?

And you don’t need to be all that good to lose your position. I’ve hit plenty of DTL shots only to watch it bounce past me the other way.
 

NuBas

Legend
So if we consider the most basic "all court game" stratergy:

1) serve well, usually wide
2) hit deep crosscourt until your opponent gives you a short/weak one
3) hit the short one up the line
4) volley, finish the point, or overheard, wherever to the opponent isn't


Of course you could win the point at any one of these escalations. I.e. if you're more of an aggressive baseliner, you try to win at 2 or 3.

My question is for 3: should you hit this "sitter" flat? I.e. try to get to it quickly, and smack it down into the court? Or should you go for spin? (I mean in the sense of "the most basic stratergy"..)
You will develop court sense as I did once you get more experience.
Most basic strategy is serve well don't double and keep the ball in play.

The scenario you presented won't necessarily work all the time, you won't always get the ball you want so you have to be willing to have a second or even third plan or option for a single point, be willing to improvise.
I think most will do fine if they don't double, can keep up a rally with relatively deep balls and stay patient they will have a window to strike.
Lots of greater players even if you pull them wide they can get it back in many ways so I guess its good to try to end the point at the net but you have to be comfortable there and its a bit more advanced.

For your question with number 3, I'd either short angle it flat cross court or down the line depending on where the opponent is or I could loop the ball which may actually in some situations be better cause the ball will speed up and push your opponent back since hitting a flat winner may be riskier and it actually might bounce short allowing the opponent to sky rocket the ball back, which its a tough ball cause it could land deep and it definitely dwells long in the air giving him more time to recover, so perhaps a ball with more topspin is better but placement is definitely key.
 

StringSnapper

Hall of Fame
If you are at the center of your baseline, you have to run farther to get to the sideline between the service line and baseline than to the corner. A short flat fh dtl or c&c is very effective as long as you keep the bounce low. I would much rather run to my corner and hit a ball that bounces than run in on an angle trying to dig out a ball (particularly a FH).
yeah i find slicing a low backhand really short to this position you speak of is SUPER effective, especially on grass. opponent will often get it back, but its always a pathetic sitter
 

StringSnapper

Hall of Fame
You will develop court sense as I did once you get more experience.
Most basic strategy is serve well don't double and keep the ball in play.

The scenario you presented won't necessarily work all the time, you won't always get the ball you want so you have to be willing to have a second or even third plan or option for a single point, be willing to improvise.
I think most will do fine if they don't double, can keep up a rally with relatively deep balls and stay patient they will have a window to strike.
Lots of greater players even if you pull them wide they can get it back in many ways so I guess its good to try to end the point at the net but you have to be comfortable there and its a bit more advanced.

For your question with number 3, I'd either short angle it flat cross court or down the line depending on where the opponent is or I could loop the ball which may actually in some situations be better cause the ball will speed up and push your opponent back since hitting a flat winner may be riskier and it actually might bounce short allowing the opponent to sky rocket the ball back, which its a tough ball cause it could land deep and it definitely dwells long in the air giving him more time to recover, so perhaps a ball with more topspin is better but placement is definitely key.
11:55 point play starts, what do you think of my stratergies at the moment? i consider myself an aggressive baseliner (note in the video i have a groin strain so i cant run very hard)


the shot at 12:46 was silly, i needed to cross court this (especially with my groin lol). i think this kind of should i would have been able to get to faster and topspin it pretty easily if my groin wasn't messed up

same again at 14:03 ... if im gonna go down the line to my opponents forehand i need to smack that ball and not just powder puff it in.. lol
the one at 14:43 had a bit more gusto and i was able to volley the next one for a winner



@ByeByePoly the forehand slice i hit at 15:29 and the backhand slice just after... these are the kinds of shots you were talking about right?
 
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NuBas

Legend
11:55 point play starts, what do you think of my stratergies at the moment? i consider myself an aggressive baseliner (note in the video i have a groin strain so i cant run very hard)
Oh didn't realize there were points played later in video, let me take a look.
 
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