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Serve reception advice

Published: 05 Nov 2008 - 22:30 by italguy10

Updated: 13 Nov 2008 - 07:05

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I get many of my points from my lob serve. However, recently the guys I play have modified their stance by hugging the side wall and trying to hit a forehand smash on both service sides. How can I solve this? They are hitting winners often.



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From rippa rit - 13 Nov 2008 - 06:35   -   Updated: 13 Nov 2008 - 07:05

Further thoughts on that serve.

A backhand serve from the forehand box can have a more accute angle as the ball travels closer to the side wall for a longer period (as it rebounds off the front wall).  That then means the forehand serve and the backhand serve should have a similar front wall target, say, to start with try about 2m from the side wall. Remember it is the distance across the front wall the ball is hit that alters the angle of the rebound. As a guide, throw the "ball toss" about in line with the "short line" as a basic starting point; you may even find throwing the ball back (towards the back wall) a fraction from there is a bit more accurate (just turn your body/shoulders slightly to alter this angle.

You get that ok?

I agree with Mike about the racket binding job.  I have done it, just to see, providing the break is only "green stick" style and then ended up keeping it for a spare.  The fibreglass does alter the balance too.

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From rymercho - 13 Nov 2008 - 00:34   -   Updated: 13 Nov 2008 - 00:34

I thought as much to be fair, was hoping it may be fixable but I'll have to buy new, sob sob!

That 'Front wall target' link has some good information to get those wall huggers on on their toes :P.

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From mike - 12 Nov 2008 - 22:47

"Anyone patched a racket up with fibreglass or epoxy?"

I think you'll find that more trouble than it's worth. The racket will still be weaker where it broke and will be unbalanced and probably feel off anyway. I know it hurts, but you probably need to bite the bullet and buy a couple of new rackets.

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From rymercho - 12 Nov 2008 - 21:52   -   Updated: 12 Nov 2008 - 21:54

I have a very similar problem with an opponent, he always stands on the left hand side of the court for the return and is now geting very good at playing it off the volley and killing it in the corner.

It's very frustrating becasue I know if I had a better serve I could give him more problems than he gives me because of his positioning being unorthodox. (Or so I thought) But at the moment it seems to be pretty effective for him.

I find bodyline shots work best - waist hieght, becasue his racket is aloft for a volley, anticipating the lob serve - which I am not too accurate at. But I think varying between lob - bodyline - middle, mess him up a enough to get him away from making that return.

All tactics went out the window last night as I am playing with a damaged racket so I think I'll have to sort that out before the next game. Anyone patched a racket up with fibreglass or epoxy?


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From hamburglar - 07 Nov 2008 - 03:41

Another note is that you only get points with just your serve at somewhat lower levels of play (B-,C,D). As you get better and play better players, you have to win points with rallies, not just one shot. A good player will know how to deal with a lob serve, and it will be easier to handle than a lob during a rally because he already knows what corner of the court the ball is landing in.

Just watch how many pro rallies only last one hit/serve.

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From rippa rit - 06 Nov 2008 - 07:11   -   Updated: 06 Nov 2008 - 07:16

Sounds like your opponent is trying to think smart!  As hamburglar said, vary the serve.  By varying the serve, eg

  • high/soft (if they are righthanded, upaginst the wall, servee from the left box)
  • hard/low,
  • medium height to hit the side wall,
  • hit bodyline is good too while they are up against the wall,
  • power serve that lands around their knees too is good,

and this variety will confuse the opponent and also give you a chance to observe how the opponent handles each one.  That,  in turn, should make/force your opponent to  readjust their positioning/stance when returning the serve.  By keeping up the same pattern of play you are actually giving them practice, and in your case they are getting better at returning your lob serve!!

Check out the front wall targets to help get the ball closer to the side wall.

PS - I don't think I would serve down the middle unless you wear your crash helmet.

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From hamburglar - 06 Nov 2008 - 03:15   -   Updated: 06 Nov 2008 - 03:15

As with all squash strategy, vary your shots. Hit a few hard wide serves, hit one up the middle. I even like to throw a cupcake serve in sometimes, they get so excited half the time they muff it up.

If they can hit your lob serve with a forehand on the backhand side, you're not getting the lob wide enough, and if they are hitting with a forehand, they're too close to the wall. you should be volleying and sending the ball to the other corner.

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