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Published: 10 Jan 2006 - 07:22 by aprice1985

Updated: 24 Sep 2008 - 11:51

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I have noticed while watching some pro squash that they don't seem to volley the ball very much.  I was always told that you should volley as much as possible but i often see pros wait and hit the ball later off ones i maybe could have volleyed, why is this and what are the pros and cons?

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From rippa rit - 12 Jan 2006 - 10:09

aprice85 - coaches always have to convince their players what to concentrate on first, second and third so to speak, as it is impossible to do everything at the same time. Then of course they watch the pros or top players (which provides motivation) and come back and say "why do I have to hold my racket like this, as so and so hold it this way, his feet are this way, he serves this way", and so on, and the ball bounces this high and so on.
At a top level it seems it does not matter what you do the ball comes back.  The only way to win a point is when the player hits the tin. No shot is a definite winner, all strokes are strong, everyone is fit, etc. etc.
Over a match it is not one single action/stroke that wins but the culmination of several of these that build up to making physical pressure, mental pressure, tiredness, frustration, etc.
We have heard of players cracking up, why could that be, eg
  • Ran to the front of the court 80 times in 20 mins.
  • Chased 100 balls to back of the court in 10 mins.
  • Reached up in the air to volley 20 times in 30 mins.
  • Retrieved the ball 12/14 times in one rally, and then lost the point
  • The more they attack the ball, the more it bounces, the less effective the drops
Of course there is heaps more I could say, but I will NOT as I hope you get another perspective.Why should any of the above cause a person to "crack up"..... got any idea?

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From aprice1985 - 12 Jan 2006 - 06:10

Firstly careful of the use of the word pom!  I see what you mean and is the ball used by the pros different from a normal dunlop double yellow dot?

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From raystrach - 11 Jan 2006 - 23:52

dear members

you must remember that, although the pros play squash, it is not Squash as we know it.
  • the ball is hot a lot harder
  • the ball is a lot hotter
  • the players are much fitter and much faster than the rest of us
  • their skill level is much higher
  • the game is faster to an extent that you can hardly believe
  • the players are more deceptive than you can believe (without even trying)
that is not to say basic tactics are not roughly the same, but it does skew things somewhat

of course, most of  the poms have been playing a grinding game for years but some of the recent greats jahingir, jansher, rodney martin, jon power and to a lesser extent david palmer and peter nicol were all strong volleyers who tried to speed up the game with the volley

however, it is probably true that volleying at club level will make a greater difference than volleying at the pro level

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From rippa rit - 11 Jan 2006 - 13:51

So long as the return of serve was nice and tight to the wall and drew the player to the back I guess that is the main thing - and all players have a preference of where and how to intercept the serve.
If it is tight you cannot volley well, and if the ball is overhit and tight it can be easier to retrieve so without seeing what is happening I cannot comment any further.

Also sometimes players seems to put the tape-recorder on PLAY and keep playing a similar tune all the time. 

If you doubt what I say, just play a few games, and do not hit the serve on the full, do not volley, and see how it goes, then put in another post  to let us know how you are going.

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From aprice1985 - 11 Jan 2006 - 09:14

It make some sense Rita but if it is tactically better to volley why do pros not seem to play it as a routine shot, even with some straight drives that don't seem to be glued to the wall?  I presume most of them can volley with the same precision as the play the other shots so why is it so much less popular for them to leave the ball, i know that some of the reasons you have given are why i would numebrs 2 and 3 anyway, i like to volley where i can although do muck them up at times, the nothing shot you describe.

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From rippa rit - 11 Jan 2006 - 06:38

Hi aprice85 - yeah that is interesting you should mention this.
 Here are a few comments.
  • Volleying is a must to be  successful, as the reasons for leaving the ball go back  are not about tactics but:
    • I had a top world student who was so fit, and keen to get the ball, he often got to the back wall before the ball, and thought the volleys were not there to get, as he had left the centre before the ball left his opponent's racket.
    • Racket not in the "ready" position and therefore unable to strike the ball before it has gone past.
    • Volleying the ball, but doing nothing with it, and get into trouble as the volley turns into a "nothing" shot.
    • Feel more comfortable at the back of the court, as it feels a bit too rushed and fast in the centre court.
  • To play in the centre court as the focal point, requires keen vision, controlled returns, good racket movement.
  • It is better to do what is tactically required rather than what feels most comfortable on court.
Does this make sense?

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From drop-shot - 10 Jan 2006 - 20:35

In my opinion, if they do not volley enough, they just wait for the right moment.
What you see probably is a wide game when the ball goes stuck on the side walls and it's almost impossible to hit proper volley. So, the player prefers to wait for the back glass shot and be ready to hit than to risk loosen volley...

Non-pro players with certain experience playing at clubs love to show off with this kind of game, when they hit lenght-lenght-lenght and nothing more... It may look as impressive as the power shots but it's just the part of a game called squash.

My opinion on volleying is simple. The player who controlls the T and volleys more will become the winner of the match.

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