PDA

View Full Version : Change of tactics as one ages



Tono62
03-07-2022, 01:59 PM
I recently had a game against a (much) younger player who would consistently give me long pushes to my BH corner with strong underspin. A few years ago, I would have stepped around and attacked the long push with my FH. My legs have slowed down with age, so I can no longer do the step-around as consistently as I used to. When I did manage to attack with the forehand, my opponent was able to block to my wide forehand, and I could not get to the ball quickly enough. I ended up losing the match by a close margin. The points I did win were by attacking with my BH when my opponent's push was short-ish or just high enough. I also got a few long pushes to my FH side that I could rip to win the point.

What options do I have? I could still try to work on my footwork, but I'm not sure I'll ever be able to have feet as agile as I did 20 years (and 20 lbs!) ago. Or I could just work on consistency on my BH pushes, be patient (I'm rather impatient, I'm afraid), and wait for an opportunity to attack with the BH.

What is the advice for an old-ish attacking player who is going up against consistent all-rounders who are 40 years younger? How should my game evolve with age?

Please be gentle, this is my first post. ✌🖖

Lazer
03-07-2022, 04:37 PM
One thing You have is (most likely) more patience. I would learn better pushing specially if You can choose when to attack. One of my opponents almost never opens up so I can pick and choose when to attack I mostly do it with a backhand flip.

Cheers
L-zr

MK73
03-07-2022, 05:29 PM
I have the same problems. I used to play forehand all the time and made most of the points with 3rd or 5th ball attacks, now I cant do this anymore. I think there are a few things that can be done: improve backhand, improve serve and improve receive game. I‘ve been working on these things quite a lot and it helps to get rid of a one sided forehand dependency. A clubmate has even gone further and has started using long pips on the backhand very successfully.

brokenball
03-07-2022, 05:52 PM
Get long pips or 'frictionless' anti. The back spin will not affect the direction of your return much and the incoming back spin will be returned with top spin so you can make aggressive block.

It is possible to learn how to loop back under spin balls. It takes less energy than moving your whole body. You just need to get the timing right. Wait for the ball. Don't reach forward. Don't reach. Wait for the ball to come to you.

Tono62
03-07-2022, 06:15 PM
One thing You have is (most likely) more patience. I would learn better pushing specially if You can choose when to attack. One of my opponents almost never opens up so I can pick and choose when to attack I mostly do it with a backhand flip.

Cheers
L-zr
Thank you Lazer, this is what I was thinking, along with working on my BH loops.

I refuse to use long pips...at least, for now. Resist the Dark Side! 👴

"When you look at the Dark Side, careful you must be, for the Dark Side looks back." - Yoda

MK73
03-07-2022, 06:30 PM
You can win a lot of points if you improve on serves, if you add new variants to your game. I used to use pendulum and backhand serves a lot (side-/underspin, topspin, empty, long and short). Over the last years I have added hook serve, revers pendulum and tomahak serves. It works.

Tono62
03-07-2022, 06:40 PM
You can win a lot of points if you improve on serves, if you add new variants to your game. I used to use pendulum and backhand serves a lot (side-/underspin, topspin, empty, long and short). Over the last years I have addred hook serve, revers pendulum and tomahak serves. It works.
I believe you! That sounds very doable.

tomahawk11
03-07-2022, 06:41 PM
It sounds like you are not able to consistently loop underspin with your backhand, and that you lose points when stepping around with your FH, since you cant return his block.

So from my perspective it seems like you can do 3 things:

(best) Practise BH loop so you can just open with you BH and take the initiative
(risky) Step around with your FH, but then you have to end the point. Focus on the placement of the ball, so opponent is not able to block it.
(safe) just return his pushes by pushing to his backhand.

Use his own tactic against him. If he steps around, block it wide.
If he opens with bh, you can block or attack.
If he keeps pushing, you just have to be more consistent and patient than him.

KM1976
03-07-2022, 06:50 PM
I recently had a game against a (much) younger player who would consistently give me long pushes to my BH corner with strong underspin. A few years ago, I would have stepped around and attacked the long push with my FH. My legs have slowed down with age, so I can no longer do the step-around as consistently as I used to. When I did manage to attack with the forehand, my opponent was able to block to my wide forehand, and I could not get to the ball quickly enough. I ended up losing the match by a close margin. The points I did win were by attacking with my BH when my opponent's push was short-ish or just high enough. I also got a few long pushes to my FH side that I could rip to win the point.What options do I have? I could still try to work on my footwork, but I'm not sure I'll ever be able to have feet as agile as I did 20 years (and 20 lbs!) ago. Or I could just work on consistency on my BH pushes, be patient (I'm rather impatient, I'm afraid), and wait for an opportunity to attack with the BH.What is the advice for an old-ish attacking player who is going up against consistent all-rounders who are 40 years younger? How should my game evolve with age?Please be gentle, this is my first post. ✌🖖
Buddy, if you are decent in pushing the ball back ( I am sorry but I haven't seen you play) then you can try this. When you return a push by a push then sometimes try to hit to ball more closer the handle in the same motion. This return from you should either go slow, meaning not giving any speed so that opponent has to lift the ball with a loop or has to go really fast so that opponent just puts his paddle to push it back. What will happen with this approach is that your push will go dead or with very less backspin. You also need to consider the placement of this shot so that it is not in the kill zone of your opponent. If you can make this stroke correctly and deceive your opponent then the next ball will either go out or will rise up which you can backhand punch or forehand flat hit.

IB66
03-07-2022, 07:01 PM
2 wing attacker may be the way to go!!, fast footwork over shorter distances required, rather than fast footwork over more distance, but you would be able to get in position, set and execute using both BH and FH.
Learn to play quality BH topspin v backspin open ups with consistency, and then confidence will grow in your BH, of course you can still improve your BH push as well and as Lazer said be patient.
With a 2 wing attack style, it really asks questions of your opponent. If you can successfully attack with both BH and FH then where do they go??
Sure, you are likely to have one wing stronger than the other to start with, but you can work on that with coaching and training.

Dominikk85
03-07-2022, 10:44 PM
Play like he zhiwen:).

pingpongpaddy
03-09-2022, 01:37 PM
I recently had a game against a (much) younger player who would consistently give me long pushes to my BH corner with strong underspin. A few years ago, I would have stepped around and attacked the long push with my FH. My legs have slowed down with age, so I can no longer do the step-around as consistently as I used to. properly focused practice can fix this

When I did manage to attack with the forehand, my opponent was able to block to my wide forehand, and I could not get to the ball quickly enough. why didnt you aim to his wide bh breaking the sideline?
I ended up losing the match by a close margin. The points I did win were by attacking with my BH when my opponent's push was short-ish or just high enough. I also got a few long pushes to my FH side that I could rip to win the point.

What options do I have? I could still try to work on my footwork, but I'm not sure I'll ever be able to have feet as agile as I did 20 years (and 20 lbs!) ago. Or I could just work on consistency on my BH pushes, be patient (I'm rather impatient, I'm afraid), and wait for an opportunity to attack with the BH.

What is the advice for an old-ish attacking player who is going up against consistent all-rounders who are 40 years younger? How should my game evolve with age?

Please be gentle, this is my first post. ✌🖖

hi tono
Plenty of options as mentioned above. Analysis is your friend: for every instance where you feel you are losing out, look at the stroke or sequence of strokes you executed before and be prepared to be self critical and creative


you mentioned using your bh more effectively against his push, also consider options to prevent his push (topspin serve, pushing to where his push is weaker ) I suspect learning to place the ball better when you do step around will be very beneficial
good luck

Brs
03-09-2022, 01:58 PM
Could you develop a safe, slow, spinny bh open against those heavy pushes? Many of the euro players who are not so fh-dominant seem to use that tactic and it works out for them.