Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Beginners : Returned Serve in Double

Returning serve in doubles is a complicated animal. Not only do you have to get the ball in play, but you have to direct it to a spot that will neutralize your opponents and hopefully make your partner at net a factor.

That’s why it’s a more pressurized situation than returning serve in singles and is a key to your success as a team. Here are some things to consider that will increase your chances of making an impact on your opponents’ service games.

Get into the point. The most important thing on the return is to keep it simple. Try to make solid contact and put the ball in play. One of the biggest booby traps for beginners is the tendency to worry too much about the opposing net player. This causes your concentration to waver and makes a successful return more difficult.

Pick a big target area crosscourt that gives you plenty of mar-gin for error, and don’t con-cern yourself with whether the net player poaches. If he does, so be it. Hit a good re-turn and he’ll have trouble with the volley anyway. Once you can get the ball back crosscourt consistently, you can start to get a little more creative. Hit down the line to keep the net player honest or toss up a few lob returns for a change of pace. Much of this will revolve around the movement and activity level of the opposing net player. If he’s stationary, you can focus on getting the ball back to the server.

Put your net player in the right position. In a perfect doubles world, the returning team’s net play-er would look to cut off as many balls as possible. But with less-skilled players the role is a less intrusive one, as you should focus primarily on protecting your side of the court and preparing for any potential volleys. It’s impor-tant to make sure you give your partner the best chance to return.

If that means mov-ing back to the baseline so there’s less pressure on him to keep the ball away from the net man, then do it. If you’re going to be up at net, stand on the service line halfway between the singles sideline and the center line. That puts you in a good position to cover your side of the court. It also allows you to move forward if your partner hits a strong return or retreat to the baseline if it’s a weak one.

Article by Paul Annacone

My Comment : very informative

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