Old-School Tactics

Here are 10 “tried-and –true”, “old-school” tactics guaranteed to produce results.

Gallagher - Wood

  1. No pace. Take pace off the ball with backspin to disrupt rhythm and timing.  This is particularly effective against a player who hits hard and flat.
  2. Chip and charge. Chip (or slice) the approach and then close to finish the point with a volley or overhead.
  3. Serve and volley. Serve and close the net to finish the point at the net.  Commit to come in regardless of how well your serve is hit and/or if you hit or miss your service target.
  4. High ball and close. Hit the ball high above your opponent’s strike zone.  Sneak into the net (with a delayed close) as your opponent is looking up to hit the ball.
  5. Rush and crush. This is all encompassing and takes little imagination.  Come in on everything (returns, serves, groundstrokes, etc.) and make your opponent beat you with passing shots and lobs.  Remember, it’s a numbers game.  You don’t have to perfect or win every point just the last point of each game.
  6. Drop shot and lob. Draw your opponent back and up with lobs and drop shots.  Look to close the net whenever your opponent is struggling to reach your shot to finish the point with a volley.
  7. Play close to the baseline. Take balls early and on the rise with an abbreviated backswing (as necessary) to take time away from your opponent.
  8. Fan the court. Takes balls hit to the middle third of the court and use a backspin/sidespin stroke pattern to angle balls out wide to each corner of the court.  Aim for the service line for the best results and angles.
  9. Moon balls. Hit the ball high and deep preferably with heavy topspin to pin your opponent back behind the baseline.
  10. Mix it up. Work the point with variety, disguise and multiple spins.  Hit from different court positions, mix pace and basically do everything possible to win the point.

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