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Can't Quite Get the Drop Shot

Published: 27 Feb 2005 - 13:40 by shuaib

Updated: 27 Feb 2005 - 22:37

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This post shifted from replies in "Returning Hard Shots/Serves"...

Thanks for all the suggetions. I've tried some of these and managed to make some headway against the 'offending' player.

Now a slightly different question:
This particular player also has very strong low shots (just above the tin) which often kill off a rally - I believe it's called a Drop.

So firstly how would you counter this tactic (ie how to ensure the opponent doesn't get a lot of opportunities to hit this shot, and also, once he's hit this shot, how best to return it)?

Secondly, I have tried to master the drop for some time now, however I find whatever I have read up on this type of shot really confusing: Most squash books/websites say: Keep the racket 'open' when hitting a drop. What does this really mean? Does does the racket head need to face the ceiling? If so, does this mean you actually slice the ball? In which case I find it's difficult to accurately place the ball just above the tin.

Another thing: does the Drop come in many variations? ie are both the following shots (which I have seen being played) different types of drop shots?
1- Just above the tin, but not with a lot of power, hence it falls and dies in the front of the court.
2- A very powerful shot just above the tin, which falls some distance back from the front wall, but often killing off the rally.

Please enlighten (I do apologise for the lengthy questions!).

Thank you.

Shuaibsquash game squash extras How to add images to Members' Forum posts and replies here...


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From rippa rit - 27 Feb 2005 - 14:18

Hi Shuiab - my second post for you in reply.
Variations of drop shots:-

A. There is a volley drop, which is usually hit off a hard shot (particularly if it is not tight or going cross court) and can be punched into the corner. Also on return of serve it is possible to hit a cross court drop into the opposite front corner, as well as the volley drop into the front corner.

B. A drop shot can be hit hard, especially off a higher bouncing ball. Very effective when hit with a slice or chop that slows it down (backspin). Best hit at the top of the bounce.

C. A hard drop (nick shot) usually hit off a loose ball with high bounce, or volleyed, into the nick. This can be a flat hard shot - not really a percentage shot for average players. Why? If you miss the nick you could be in big trouble! Then run run run...

You mentioned the low hard shot which sounded to be like a low, hard, tight, short shot that lands about quarter court and is really a low hard drive. It is hard to retrieve if it is close to the wall. Because of the speed/reflex required to return this shot, stretch out, control the racket head, then reply with a high lob (open racket face and soft), or drop into the corner (short sharp drop, a bit like a volley drop).

Shuiab, if this does not cover your question just put in another post, and I will try again..

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From raystrach - 27 Feb 2005 - 14:10

dear shuaib
i have added a drop shot link above - this has some good photos which might illustrate the point. to reitterate:
  • keep a firm wrist and the racket head under control
  • keep the racket head moving through the ball to the target point

on the subject of the low hard shots, these are sometimes called "kill shots". if you opponent is in front when hitting them, get your opponent behind by hitting higher on the front wall to achieve better length.

If the opponent is behind, you are either standing too deep in the court or you're not watching the opponent play the shot carefully enough or both. (watch closely and you can usually tell when the kill is coming)

a good repsonse in the secong case (when the opponent is deep) is a short two wall boast - it is very safe and your opponent must run hard to get to it

have fun!!

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From rippa rit - 27 Feb 2005 - 13:34

Hello Shuaib - you've been saving up those good questions!
I will deal with them one at a time, and divide the reply into more than one post:-
1. Drop shot - it is an advanced skill and requires a "good feel" of the ball onto the racket and is a fine motor skill.
How to develop the "feel" - Solo practice is the best way:-
(a) Stand 1m from the front wall, stand balanced, side on, open racket face, and chip (slice the ball, only contacting a small area of the bottom of the ball) till you can feel a sort of spin (slice/backspin). Aim about 10-15cm above the "tin" to start with. Be patient.
(b) When you can control six consecutive shots, move (travel) slowly along the front wall until you can hit, say, 20 consecutive shots. Repeat, Repeat.....Keep experimenting with the chipping/slicing action, and speed of the hit, until you get that "feel"....that feel might be a new experience for you, often referred to as "the thrill of skill"!

2. A good strategy is - reply to a drop shot or boast is a cross court lob - that will take the opponent to the opposite back corner.

Variations of drop shots (short shots) next post.
Shuaib, let me know in a couple of weeks how that went.

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