What is your play style in singles?

My singles playing style is predominantly

  • Aggressive Baseliner (power players, bashers)

    Votes: 35 21.5%
  • Consistent Baseliner (includes counterpunchers, pushers)

    Votes: 44 27.0%
  • Junkballer (slicers and those who depend primarily on low-pace variety)

    Votes: 11 6.7%
  • All-court player (changes styles as needed and comfortable at net or baseline)

    Votes: 57 35.0%
  • Net player (S/V and chip/charge)

    Votes: 16 9.8%

  • Total voters
    163
  • Poll closed .

Moveforwardalways

Hall of Fame
An all-court player would probably do something like hit ground strokes, take an approach shot, and then come to the net, hit a volley, and then finish with an overhead. Right?

And y’all are telling me you have seen players attempt this at 3.0 or 3.5 or 4.0 as a primary strategy (not a change up or random occurrence)? I just doubt that.
 

Fairhit

Hall of Fame
An all-court player would probably do something like hit ground strokes, take an approach shot, and then come to the net, hit a volley, and then finish with an overhead. Right?

And y’all are telling me you have seen players attempt this at 3.0 or 3.5 or 4.0 as a primary strategy (not a change up or random occurrence)? I just doubt that.
Well, I'm not saying this for the sake of it, but I'm that player.

I don't live in the USA, I don't have an actual USTA rating or a NTRP official rating, I played last week with a friend that lives in Nevada, he is a borderline 4.5, we played a couple of sets and we each won one I asked him about what could be my actual rating, he told me I was a strong 4.0 entry level 4.5.

Based on that, I'm a 4.0 player who uses that exact same strategy you write about, I take any opportunity I have to hit an approach shot and come to the net, many points won by finishing with an over head.

Just this Monday I played a hard match, my serves were AWOL and my groundstrokes were less than precise I had to change strategies, I shortened the points by going to the net on my serves, when receiving I had to counter punch, deep loopy shots waiting for an opportunity, I managed to win the first set 7-5, for the second set I served only second serves to specific spots, 1,2 punch, approach and net, I won that second set 6-0.

I'm not the best player and I have yet to improved quite a lot but I think I can say I'm an all court player even if better players laugh at me for saying it, I don't hug the baseline, I don't go to the net every point, I don't stay on defense every point, so, what am I?
 

mikej

Hall of Fame
the parenthetical definition next to all-courter in this poll literally says 'changes styles as needed'

some folks seem to be trying to legislate that away in the above responses to defend the ridiculous results of this poll

if it had said 'all-courter (comfortable coming to net sometimes)' i wouldn't have called tennis beginners-intermediates delusional for choosing that option

at the end of the day, it's cool that 90% of tennis singles players are overwhelmingly baseliners, but the plurality of TTW players are maestros of the transition game and chameleons with their style - a very special group (in their minds)
 

Fairhit

Hall of Fame
the parenthetical definition next to all-courter in this poll literally says 'changes styles as needed'

some folks seem to be trying to legislate that away in the above responses to defend the ridiculous results of this poll

if it had said 'all-courter (comfortable coming to net sometimes)' i wouldn't have called tennis beginners-intermediates delusional for choosing that option

at the end of the day, it's cool that 90% of tennis singles players are overwhelmingly baseliners, but the plurality of TTW players are maestros of the transition game and chameleons with their style - a very special group (in their minds)
That's a good thing since tennis is 90% mental.
 

Max G.

Legend
An all-court player would probably do something like hit ground strokes, take an approach shot, and then come to the net, hit a volley, and then finish with an overhead. Right?

No, an all-court player would probably do something like "come to the net". Possibly doing so more or less depending on the opponent.

I've seen a bunch of all-court players who, in fact, cannot consistently "take an approach shot, hit a volley, then finish with an overhead". They also can't consistently sustain a baseline rally of three shots either, so it's not that they're any less consistent at net than at the baseline.

I don't know about levels below 4.0, but I've played a bunch of 4.0-4.5 players that come to net fairly often.
 

socallefty

G.O.A.T.
Play style is not about competence, but about how you play on the court. There are players who miss within 3 shots from the baseline and within 2 volleys at the net. Some of them might therefore decide to stay back and take their chances as baseliners. Others might be interested in shortening points and coming to net anyway. I know 4.0 players who come to net a lot with very bad overhead technique and they lose all points that you hit a half-decent lob on - but they come in anyway.

In most cases, it seems to be more a matter of personality and risk-taking that determines play style than competence in one are or the other. There are impatient players who want short points where the outcome is decided by their racquet, more patient types who are willing to wait for opponent errors and others in between.
 

mikej

Hall of Fame
Yes, but the overwhelming majority of recreational tennis players are doubles players. Are you also surprised that primarily doubles players try to come to net when they play singles, even though they're not good at it?

yes, because most rec players play mostly doubles because they're not particularly fit or speedy, and being an effective net player in singles when covering a much larger area requires a lot more speed / agility

i play against about a zillion effective 4.5 doubles players who can cover their half of the court with a decent set of hands, many of them carrying quite a few extra pounds or a bad knee around, and i'd throttle in 30 minutes if they ever tried to approach the net consistently in singles

winning consistently at the net in singles is hard, which is why so few do it, at any level form 3.0 to the pros...everywhere except in this poll...

but anyway, keep on keeping on with the illustrious singles net play, Talk TW
 
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Max G.

Legend
yes, because most rec players play mostly doubles because they're not particularly fit or speedy, and being an effective net player in singles when covering a much larger area requires a lot more speed / agility

i play against about a zillion effective 4.5 doubles players who can cover their half of the court with a decent set of hands, and i'd throttle in 30 minutes if they ever tried to approach the net consistently in singles

And do those doubles players beat you from the baseline, making them baseliners in singles?
 

mikej

Hall of Fame
And do those doubles players beat you from the baseline, making them baseliners in singles?

most of them don't play singles (i mean our 4.5-5.0 singles players in Gainesville, FL are probably 10% the volume of the 4.5-5.0 doubles players)

because they realize that the above post pretending that being an effective rec doubles volleyer means you can be an effective all-court singles player is a bunch of nonsense, totally different skill sets and physicality

the ones who do play singles also - yes, they play mostly from the baseline in singles despite being solid doubles volleyers, with a notable exception of a guy who's about 6'6" - the best singles player i play against, who throttles 4.5-5.0 singles players in USTA FL sectionals, doesn't ever warmup volleys when we play practice singles matches, despite spending a lot of time at the net in dubs

maybe there's something different in the water in other parts of the country / world

i'll resign this argument with the knowledge that people will self-identify how they want to, and it was maybe stupid all along to pick at whether the results of the poll represented reality - #1 tennis-playing walrus in N Central FL out
 
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socallefty

G.O.A.T.
maybe there's something different in the water in other parts of the country / world
Well, there is a popular meme about ‘Florida Man’ doing things differently than the rest of the world in everything. So, maybe it is the water in Florida that might be different;)
 

Max G.

Legend
most of them don't play singles (i mean our 4.5-5.0 singles players in Gainesville, FL are probably 10% the volume of the 4.5-5.0 doubles players)

The poll did not ask how often the player plays singles! Maybe some of those doubles players who play singles pretty rarely would tend to come to net more if they do play singles?

...if you're beating them all in singles, presumably that doesn't tell you anything about their style - "style" only matters in a close match, when you're outmatched by your opponent you're probably a defensive baseliner no matter what and if you're winning easily you can play any "style" you want and still win.

because they realize that the above post pretending that being an effective rec doubles volleyer means you can be an effective all-court singles player is a bunch of nonsense, totally different skill sets and physicality

You keep on using that word, effective. I don't think it's relevant here. We're not talking about effective players, we're talking about all rec players (none of whom are really effective at anything, because they're all rec players).

Maybe there's fewer all-court players at high 4.5/5.0 than below because at that level all players have good passing shots or something. I know at low levels you can get a lot of free points by just... coming to net and letting the other guy miss the pass. Or just hit to the backhand of the guy that can't hit a topspin backhand and come in on that.

Someone who is equally "BAD" at the baseline and at the net is just as much an all-court player as someone who's really good both at the baseline and at the net.

the ones who do play singles also - yes, they play mostly from the baseline in singles despite being solid doubles volleyers, with a notable exception of a guy who's about 6'6" - the best singles player i play against, who throttles 4.5-5.0 singles players in USTA FL sectionals, doesn't ever warmup volleys when we play practice singles matches, despite spending a lot of time at the net in dubs

Hmm, definitely very different from my experience here at 4.0-4.5. We've got at least a few doubles specialists who do pure serve-volley when they do singles, and plenty more that opportunistically come to the net when they can (i.e. all-court players).

Maybe your experience with the best of the rec players isn't representative of average rec players. Most are in the 3.5-4.0 range, so your experience with 4.5-5.0 players is what, the top 1% of rec tennis players?

maybe there's something different in the water in other parts of the country / world

Maybe different surfaces. I did notice that when I moved to someplace with a long winter where all the tennis is indoors from September to March, that there were a heck of a lot more net players here than in the place I moved from where it's outdoors all year.

So the poll may well be telling you something about the geographical distribution of players, the speed of the surfaces they typically play on and the conditions, etc.
 

mikej

Hall of Fame
So the poll may well be telling you something about the geographical distribution of players

this walrus thinks the poll just tells me that humans think very highly of themselves - the most common option picked is highly unrepresentative of any singles play that one might watch at their local courts, but does align with ‘I’m good everywhere on the court’

and along the same lines, very few described themselves with the least flattering option, junkballers
 

kevin qmto

Hall of Fame
this walrus thinks the poll just tells me that humans think very highly of themselves - the most common option picked is highly unrepresentative of any singles play that one might watch at their local courts, but does align with ‘I’m good everywhere on the court’

and along the same lines, very few described themselves with the least flattering option, junkballers
Very true. It’s like that other controversial thread here a while back, “no pusher thinks they’re a pusher.”

at least I’ll happily post video proof that I’m the type of player that I say I am. I see a lotta middle aged/old dudes still calling themselves all court players. Ok sure.
 

Chairman3

Hall of Fame
True all-court, just need a racquet to match :p

Like to take aggressive approach shots and finish with a volley or overhead.
Really like to hit a wide kick-serve on the ad-side for the serve and volley.
Lately I have been using some smart chips or defensive slices to draw the opponent in and hit a passing shot.
I really enjoy using every shot though.

As I've been searching for a new racquet for the better part of 6 months I have adjusted my game if a racquet isn't working on a particular shot, so that's been a positive.
 

Fairhit

Hall of Fame
Very true. It’s like that other controversial thread here a while back, “no pusher thinks they’re a pusher.”

at least I’ll happily post video proof that I’m the type of player that I say I am. I see a lotta middle aged/old dudes still calling themselves all court players. Ok sure.
This post only confirms that you probably are very insecure about your own level.

However, everyone can identify as they please and I don't see a problem if some random folks on a forum agree or disagree, to each, their own.
 

S&V-not_dead_yet

Talk Tennis Guru
winning consistently at the net in singles is hard, which is why so few do it, at any level form 3.0 to the pros...everywhere except in this poll...

This is where I see the disconnect: no one claimed they are winning with their chosen strategy, just that it is their strategy. You're assuming everyone is logical and will choose the strategy that optimizes their chances for winning. Not so. If this thinking were true, everyone could lose weight, save money, and quit smoking.
 

S&V-not_dead_yet

Talk Tennis Guru
Someone who is equally "BAD" at the baseline and at the net is just as much an all-court player as someone who's really good both at the baseline and at the net.

This is my key point that I think some are either missing or dismissming: it's not about how skilled an all-courter they are but only how they choose to divide their time among the various skills. Someone who stays back unless dragged forward kicking and screaming is a BLer. Someone who crashes the net no matter how ill-advised [raises hand] is a S&Ver. But someone who does both, no matter how well or poorly, is more of an all-courter.
 

S&V-not_dead_yet

Talk Tennis Guru
this walrus thinks the poll just tells me that humans think very highly of themselves - the most common option picked is highly unrepresentative of any singles play that one might watch at their local courts, but does align with ‘I’m good everywhere on the court’

and along the same lines, very few described themselves with the least flattering option, junkballers

Part of it is relative: against someone a level below me, I may appear to be an all-courter. Against someone a level above me, a junkballer.

But yeah, self-identification is tricky. Maybe a better question would be "what would my opponents characterize my style as?".
 

socallefty

G.O.A.T.
this walrus thinks the poll just tells me that humans think very highly of themselves - the most common option picked is highly unrepresentative of any singles play that one might watch at their local courts, but does align with ‘I’m good everywhere on the court’

and along the same lines, very few described themselves with the least flattering option, junkballers
I didn’t know that walruses are very smart:)

Don’t you guys play a lot on clay in Florida? I am a baseliner when I occasionally play on clay in California, but mostly play on hard courts and play all-court tennis. As you can see in my earlier post, a quick analysis of my most common singles opponents at the 4.5/high 4.0 level in the last two years does not skew that different from the poll results. Just one sample, but it is different from yours and so, it does give credence to the fact that the rec world in other places can be different from what you are used to. I also play mostly 40+ age group guys (less than 7 on my list are below 40) who play doubles with decent volley skills, they want to play shorter points as it is easier on their older body and so, they will come to the net in singles. None of us older guys think that playing 3 to 3.5 hour matches will play to our strengths and so, if we can shorten points by coming to the net, we do it. I would add that the oldest singles guys I know (60+) are the ones that come to net the most because they will lose if they play longer points against mostly younger players - they hit slice approaches and come to net.

So, surface and age of singles players have a lot to do with the style they play.

I was just looking at the list of about 22 players I’ve played social singles against the most in the last two years on hard courts and I would characterize 8 of them as all-court players - 3 of them rush the net a lot. So, that’s not far from 40%. The % might be lower on clay courts.
 

mikej

Hall of Fame
I didn’t know that walruses are very smart:)

Don’t you guys play a lot on clay in Florida?

yeah play almost exclusively on green clay nowadays

but have lived areas w a lot of indoor tennis also

agree, the the green clay and Florida sun doesn’t help the guys who like to make a living at net - time to slide into a passing shot, and throwing up a lob into that bright orange ball in the sky is pretty effective when more defensively positioned

makes it a suicide mission to come in off neutral balls, ie the BH slice DTL approach
 

socallefty

G.O.A.T.
yeah play almost exclusively on green clay nowadays

but have lived areas w a lot of indoor tennis also

agree, the the green clay and Florida sun doesn’t help the guys who like to make a living at net - time to slide into a passing shot, and throwing up a lob into that bright orange ball in the sky is pretty effective when more defensively positioned

makes it a suicide mission to come in off neutral balls, ie the BH slice DTL approach
That certainly skews the style you see. I played a lot on clay four years ago when I joined a new club and realized quickly that baseline tennis (maybe even consistent rather than aggressive) is the best style for me on clay in singles due to the slowness of the surface and many of my opponents played like that too. Now, I play at two other locations of the club where it is all hard courts and the style I play is all-court bacause it works well at my age.

Weather is also a factor as our clubs are close to the ocean and we get a marine layer early in the day and in the evenings that brings cool temperatures, humidity and ocean breeze. All of those make harder to hit precise, high pace passes making net play more effective. In the hot summer, passing shots and serve +1 are much more effective as the ball is more lively.
 

Idaho MEP

Rookie
I almost never see an actual all court player at 4.5 or below. Pretty uncommon. It’s just not a skill set that most people have.
Would you say CP here is an all-court 4.5?


Mixed styles between offense and defense. 13 winners and 12 net points in the first set, but then switched to playing more defense in the second, so just six winners and two net points. Seems like he was probing in that first set, and depending on how the match was going, may have gone more on offense.
 

mikej

Hall of Fame
Would you say CP here is an all-court 4.5?


Mixed styles between offense and defense. 13 winners and 12 net points in the first set, but then switched to playing more defense in the second, so just six winners and two net points. Seems like he was probing in that first set, and depending on how the match was going, may have gone more on offense.

i know you didn't ask me, but since i was also one of the villains of this thread who thought people were being too generous calling themselves all-courters

1) i'd probably say consistent baseliner, that's how he plays the vast majority of points and many of his net points are coming in off short balls more so than manufacturing a way to the net in points where things are neutral or he's pressing a slight advantage

but

2) there are a scattering of points like 4:00-4:10 where he makes his way to the net during a neutral point, so sure there's some all-court element as well, i wouldn't call it heresy if he wanted to describe his game that way :) generous and not the most accurate option, but not heresy
 
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mikej

Hall of Fame
also, clever player, certainly realized early on that his opponent's BH was the weakest shot on the court, and controlled patterns of play very nicely with a lot of looped DTL FHs

if i'd never seen any poll options and was describing him to my friend who had to play him in a USTA match next week, would probably say
"controlled, cerebral baseliner who's going to make you beat him"
 

Idaho MEP

Rookie
1) i'd probably say consistent baseliner, that's how he plays the vast majority of points and many of his net points are coming in off short balls more so than manufacturing a way to the net in points where things are neutral or he's pressing a slight advantage

but

2) there are a scattering of points like 4:00-4:10 where he makes his way to the net during a neutral point, so sure there's some all-court element as well, i wouldn't call it heresy if he wanted to describe his game that way :) generous and not the most accurate option, but not heresy
I could see consistent baseliner as well. That is how he played most points in this match. I guess I'm not sure how he plays against other opponents, though. He clearly has the skills to win a lot of points at the net or with aggressive groundstrokes.

At 3-2 in the first set (8:30 in the video), it looks like he's still trying to decide how to play, and it seems like decided to go on offense for that game: six points in a row he attacked with aggressive groundstrokes and/or net attacks until the game went to deuce. Reasonably effective, but ended up losing that game.

After that, it was like he decided he was better off playing this particular opponent with more patience, and didn't lose another game the rest of the match. But he was playing an aggressive baseliner in this match, so it made sense to counterpunch. It sure seems like he would have been comfortable taking over offense against, e.g., a defensive baseliner.
 

Xen

Rookie
I think it's fair that most players call themselves all-court. It's all very dependent on what level/style you're playing against. If I can win as a baseliner, I'll play as a baseliner, but I'd also consider anyone who I can out-rally as a weaker/lower-rated player than me. If I'm playing against a big hitter, no way am I matching pace, so I have to slice/bunt, but I don't consider that intentionally giving them junk. If someone gives me a weak ball that I feel comfortable blasting, why wouldn't I blast it? I do indeed also resort to intentionally junkballing, mostly against the older-guy-pusher-type, since they can comfortably bunt back any pace I give them, but can't put their own pace on the ball, so if I give them none, then they're dead.
 

Rosstour

G.O.A.T.
Part of it is relative: against someone a level below me, I may appear to be an all-courter. Against someone a level above me, a junkballer.

But yeah, self-identification is tricky. Maybe a better question would be "what would my opponents characterize my style as?".

Yup. Against my 5.0 buddy I'm a counterpuncher. Against my 3.5 buddy an offensive baseliner. Against my 3.0 Dad, I look like a pro. lol
 

socallefty

G.O.A.T.
I think it's fair that most players call themselves all-court. It's all very dependent on what level/style you're playing against. If I can win as a baseliner, I'll play as a baseliner, but I'd also consider anyone who I can out-rally as a weaker/lower-rated player than me. If I'm playing against a big hitter, no way am I matching pace, so I have to slice/bunt, but I don't consider that intentionally giving them junk. If someone gives me a weak ball that I feel comfortable blasting, why wouldn't I blast it? I do indeed also resort to intentionally junkballing, mostly against the older-guy-pusher-type, since they can comfortably bunt back any pace I give them, but can't put their own pace on the ball, so if I give them none, then they're dead.
Generally all-courter means that you can and do go to the net to finish points when you need to. Someone who plays different baseline styles is a baseliner and if you junkball playing against better/like level players, that is your style. Everyone‘s style could be different playing an overmatched opponent, but you should label style based on playing same level or slightly better opponents.
 

Fintft

G.O.A.T.
Generally all-counter means that you can and do go to the net to finish points when you need to. Someone who plays different baseline styles is a baseliner and if you junkball playing against better/like level players, that is your style. Everyone‘s style could be different playing an overmatched opponent, but you should label style based on playing same level or slightly better opponents.
Don't you mean " all courter", rather than "all counter"?
 

Xen

Rookie
Generally all-courter means that you can and do go to the net to finish points when you need to. Someone who plays different baseline styles is a baseliner and if you junkball playing against better/like level players, that is your style. Everyone‘s style could be different playing an overmatched opponent, but you should label style based on playing same level or slightly better opponents.

Do people actually have the option to not go to the net? What else can you do if your opponent gives you a weak ball that bounces well within the service line? I'm pretty decent with approach shots and I'll go for them whenever I have the opportunity. The point usually ends there, one way or another. :p

Perhaps, I'm still just in that range of skill level where there's a huge variety in styles of like-level players that it's really hard to say what a like-level player really is. I'd consider "like-level" a player who either of us could take full sets off each other, and in my level range, that'll include:
  • players who will return any shot with a lob moonball
  • players who return even the biggest groundstrokes with a pinpoint bunt/slice that hardly bounce off the ground
  • big hitters who all you need to do is lob back at them and eventually they'll smash one into the net
  • and of course "regular" players who play "move you around with angles on groundstrokes" - but honestly, these are in the minority
 

Fintft

G.O.A.T.
Do people actually have the option to not go to the net? What else can you do if your opponent gives you a weak ball that bounces well within the service line? I'm pretty decent with approach shots and I'll go for them whenever I have the opportunity. The point usually ends there, one way or another. :p

Perhaps, I'm still just in that range of skill level where there's a huge variety in styles of like-level players that it's really hard to say what a like-level player really is. I'd consider "like-level" a player who either of us could take full sets off each other, and in my level range, that'll include:
  • players who will return any shot with a lob moonball
  • players who return even the biggest groundstrokes with a pinpoint bunt/slice that hardly bounce off the ground
  • big hitters who all you need to do is lob back at them and eventually they'll smash one into the net
  • and of course "regular" players who play "move you around with angles on groundstrokes" - but honestly, these are in the minority
We are talking about coming to the net to finish loopy balls (not only the obvious short balls), so that the opponent doesn't get to reset the point...
 

socallefty

G.O.A.T.
Do people actually have the option to not go to the net? What else can you do if your opponent gives you a weak ball that bounces well within the service line?
It means when you go to the net because you hit an approach shot on your terms, not when an opponent drags you to the net.

It does sound like at the level you play, players do whatever it takes to keep the ball in the court a few times and so, they are not worrying about styles.
 

Xen

Rookie
We are talking about coming to the net to finish loopy balls (not only the obvious short balls), so that the opponent doesn't get to reset the point...
IDK, "finish points when you need to" didn't sound like "proactively go to the net", which I don't usually do. I think it's more-so that people my level prefer to lob instead of trying to pass vs someone at net, which just means I have to run back again. Lob is a decently high percentage shot vs the low percentage shot I'll be forced to take when I try to cover it. I think to be more accurate, I'd like to revise the description of All-Courter from:
All-court player (changes styles as needed and comfortable at net or baseline)
to:
All-court player (changes styles as needed and equally uncomfortable at both net and baseline)
 

Fintft

G.O.A.T.
IDK, "finish points when you need to" didn't sound like "proactively go to the net", which I don't usually do. I think it's more-so that people my level prefer to lob instead of trying to pass vs someone at net, which just means I have to run back again. Lob is a decently high percentage shot vs the low percentage shot I'll be forced to take when I try to cover it. I think to be more accurate, I'd like to revise the description of All-Courter from:
All-court player (changes styles as needed and comfortable at net or baseline)
to:
All-court player (changes styles as needed and equally uncomfortable at both net and baseline)
You didn't get my point. You don't come to the net only after approach shots, but whenever you know that your opponent will be in trouble ( after your shot), "proactively" like you said and as my coach wants.
Do you take lessons? And what level are you?
 

Xen

Rookie
You didn't get my point. You don't come to the net only after approach shots, but whenever you know that your opponent will be in trouble ( after your shot), "proactively" like you said and as my coach wants.
Do you take lessons? And what level are you?

I'll sometimes S&V vs certain players who I know will only try to dink back my serve, but beyond that, I'm not going to beeline the net for no reason. Even if I hit a loopy groundstroke that I know my opponent will take with their back to the fence, I'll wait in no-mans or service line, since I'll have still have time to line up from there. No, I'm not at a level where it makes sense to take a swing volley at a weaker ball. Instead, I can let it bounce and much more easily hit a winner off a big groundstroke after opening up the court. I guess I could say that I prefer to allow a ball to bounce if I can. Any ball that's slow enough for me to confidently volley is also slow enough for me to back up, line up, and crush.

I self-rate at ~3.0, but honestly it doesn't mean much, since my skillset (as well as my typical opponent's) is very unbalanced. There's a wide range of skills needed to play tennis and not everyone trains them in the same order.
 

Fintft

G.O.A.T.
I'll sometimes S&V vs certain players who I know will only try to dink back my serve, but beyond that, I'm not going to beeline the net for no reason. Even if I hit a loopy groundstroke that I know my opponent will take with their back to the fence, I'll wait in no-mans or service line, since I'll have still have time to line up from there. No, I'm not at a level where it makes sense to take a swing volley at a weaker ball. Instead, I can let it bounce and much more easily hit a winner off a big groundstroke after opening up the court. I guess I could say that I prefer to allow a ball to bounce if I can. Any ball that's slow enough for me to confidently volley is also slow enough for me to back up, line up, and crush.

I self-rate at ~3.0, but honestly it doesn't mean much, since my skillset (as well as my typical opponent's) is very unbalanced. There's a wide range of skills needed to play tennis and not everyone trains them in the same order.
Harder to crash balls from the baseline, mind you.
But if you hit a hard ball to your opponent's BH corner and you know that he/she will have trouble returning it with pace that's when you should come to the net and finish the point especially if the opponent is a good mover and has consistency.
I guess I am talking 3.5 or even 4.0.
 

Xen

Rookie
Harder to crash balls from the baseline, mind you.
But if you hit a hard ball to your opponent's BH corner and you know that he/she will have trouble returning it with pace that's when you should come to the net and finish the point especially if the opponent is a good mover and has consistency.
I guess I am talking 3.5 or even 4.0.
Volleys are still on my "to practice" list. They're still too easy for me to shank and even on good contact, I don't feel confident in aiming them very tight, so they're typically not strong winners. A good mover will still come back and retrieve (and lob) my bad volleys. :cry:
On the other hand, if my feet are service-line to no-mans-land, I can blast a FH wherever I choose, so those feel like a much stronger winner, even if I give my opponent more time to get back.
 

Fintft

G.O.A.T.
Volleys are still on my "to practice" list. They're still too easy for me to shank and even on good contact, I don't feel confident in aiming them very tight, so they're typically not strong winners. A good mover will still come back and retrieve (and lob) my bad volleys. :cry:
On the other hand, if my feet are service-line to no-mans-land, I can blast a FH wherever I choose, so those feel like a much stronger winner, even if I give my opponent more time to get back.
For the former, practice volleys. In my scenario it would be into the open court...Sometimes I don't even have to volley, not even against my coach.

For the latter, what if you get a deep ball? NML is the worst place to be.
 

Xen

Rookie
For the former, practice volleys. In my scenario it would be into the open court...
For the latter, what if you get a deep ball? NML is the worst place to be.
If I must take the volley, of course I'll just take the volley (or even worse, the overhead). If I judge that I could either take a volley or back up and take a FH, then I'll probably take the FH. Assuming this is still the situation where my opponent's probably giving me a weak return from off the court, so I'll have plenty of time to judge and move around.
 

Fintft

G.O.A.T.
If I must take the volley, of course I'll just take the volley (or even worse, the overhead). If I judge that I could either take a volley or back up and take a FH, then I'll probably take the FH. Assuming this is still the situation where my opponent's probably giving me a weak return from off the court, so I'll have plenty of time to judge and move around.
In NML it would be a swing volley, more difficult.
Anyhow, ttyl, gl!
 
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