Tennis Tip from Coach Kwong

Are you taking advantage of your opponent’s weak serve or groundstrokes (less pace, friendly, non-challenging)? Attacking the ball return and coming in behind it (approaching) to attack and dominate the net, especially when playing doubles, can be a game-changer. When you have the formation of one up-one back, there is too much distance between a player and the net. One must start advancing to join their partner for a stronger team unit, not allowing as much spacing for opponents to hit (except for being lobbed). Doing so will cause them to rush and limit where they can return their balls back on the court. From personal experience, I started off, as most players, playing singles and was strictly a “baseliner,” rarely coming in, only when forced to or at the end of the match to shake hands.

After being introduced to doubles, I found myself in my comfort zone of staying on the backcourt area, but that gave my opponents the opportunity to take advantage of my weak positioning. I was eaten alive!

I now understand singles and doubles are completely different games with different strategies. I had to get out of my comfort zone and approach the net more to join forces with my teammate and apply more pressure and diminish time for them. All in all, you must learn to adapt and make adjustments depending on the factors of who your partner is the day of play, as well as who you are playing against.