playing style question

Discussion in 'Tennis Tips/Instruction' started by srv vlly, May 15, 2006.

  1. srv vlly

    srv vlly Rookie

    Sep 11, 2005
    on a tennis court. mentally if not physically
    do you think that at the junior level it would be a good idea to play like fabrice santoro? with all the spins i think it might work.
  2. vkartikv

    vkartikv Hall of Fame

    May 4, 2005
    The Gym
    If you are talking about the way he holds his racquet and his grips, no it wouldn't work. Look where it has gotten him - he has a separate fan following just for his style but its not effective in today's game. I'm afraid not.
  3. tennus

    tennus Rookie

    Apr 3, 2006
    I know where your coming from on this one but I can't quite agree. There are elements of Santoro's game which are definately effective in todays game. He is after all 47 on the rankings, having won 4 singles and 19 doubles titles. Sure he does things unconventionally, but that is precisely why he is effective. Pay close attention when he plays big guys who lack a little mobility. He keeps the ball low with that slice and then rips the passing shot on any short push backs. I would say he is the ideal doubles partner as he can play all the shots, topspin off both wings, slice off both wings, terrific drop shots, lobs and he'd have to be one of the better vollyers going around.

    On the negative side his grips and overall methods are quickly found wanting against most of the top players. Mind you Safin once described playing Santoro as worse than pulling teeth...:)
  4. kevhen

    kevhen Hall of Fame

    Feb 20, 2004
    Auckland, New Zealand
    I am a spin doctor with a forehand slice but it's only good in singles to rally with at the 4.0 level since it doesn't bounce as deep so a 4.5 level opponent can take it early and use angles against me. I did play 4.5 doubles last week and won but the younger guys couldn't volley my heavy slice so it can be useful against the inexperienced junior players like you mention. To be a legit 4.5 I need a topspin forehand to go with my slice forehand. If the juniors you play are 3.5 level which many are, then slice definitely works as long as you are consistent and hit it to their weaker side. Some will struggle with slice on the forehand side because they use western grips that are hard to get under the ball. Some will struggle with slice on the backhand side especially two handers that will have a hard time getting down low for these.

    It's hard to hit winners with slice but you can melt down alot of opponents by frustrating them with it.

    Have fun and play the game that you think you will enjoy.
  5. Bungalo Bill

    Bungalo Bill G.O.A.T.

    Feb 19, 2004
    Come on Kevhen, you ain't no spin Doctor. You are a 3.0 player! Come on. I came to Boise Idaho and players who rate themselves as 3.5 here are pushers, lob artists, and "happy to get it in" players. The 3.5 rating here in Boise would get stomped by 3.5 California teams.

    Come on Kevhen, who you trying to kid? Spin Doctor, lol. OOOhhhhh, I am the "SPIN DOCTOR", I am spooooky. :)

    Please Kevhen, to be a 4.5 player you first need to wake up from your dream. There is not a chance in hell you will ever be a 4.5 player, you are too weak minded. ;)

    ...wake up kevhen...your house is on fire...wake up...wake up...
  6. chess9

    chess9 Hall of Fame

    Dec 11, 2005
    Interesting stuff here. I played a better high school player who said he was a 4.5 in Florida. He ran everything down and got a lot of shots back, but other than some decent topspin off the forehand wing he had very little power. I beat him all 7 sets we played during my brief stay. I've had no other recent experiences in the states. Over here in England I've recently beaten a host of 6.1, 6.2, and overs (mostly overs) but have no clue how competitive that might make me in the states. Also, here in England, if you are an older age grouper and play only in your age group, your rating is really not as strong as the younger age groupers with a similar number. Very strange and not helpful in preparation. Playing kids is a nightmare because they could be rated 8.1 and be improving so quickly they are now a 6.2 or so. I've had to work very hard in a couple of my matches as a result.

    Regarding strokes, I have all the shots, in varying stages of undress. I still serve and volley at a pretty high level. So, I'm guessing I'm safely a 4.5 in Florida, assuming that kid's rating is remotely close. I'm probably fitter than I was in college, but not nearly as fast.

    All of which probably suggests that the rating system is really not much more than a remote approximation for your region and age group.
  7. Andres

    Andres G.O.A.T.

    Apr 21, 2005
    Mar del Plata, Argentina
    My humble addition to this thread.
    It is possible to USE some of Santoro's game to help yours, but not his entire game. Fabrice uses weird grips, and 2 handed forehand, which mostly, you won't want to use.

    But developing crazy spins, it's perfectly fine. Look what Hingis does, she doesn't rely on power, the thing about her is that she doesn't hit the same shot twice in a row.

    A good way to LEARN how spins work is playing or watching high level table tennis. Learn how the ball is hit, the trajectory and path of the rubber, and the angle of contact. You'll learn that way how to hit a lefty spin (I mean, a spin that goes to your righty's opponent backhand), and with a little snap of the wrist, the same spin to the other way, without much change of the swing path.

    Mixing things up are a good thing. Learn how to use spins, especially sidespins and backspin, but a topspin forehand it's a must in the 4.0 or 4.5 level.

    If you have access to a table tennis... table :)p) and a rubber, spend one hour just experimenting the extreme spins you can achieve, and then, adapt them to tennis ;)

    My two cents

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