Having focused on how to serve and how to return a serve it is now time to draw attention to the shots that may be played during the duration of a point.
There are many ways to try and outfox your opponent with disguised shots and unexpected selection of shot. This is why tennis is such a superb mental as much as a physical game.
This type of shot is played as you advance “Approach” towards the net. As a result it allows the player to come off the baseline in an attempt to hit a winner.
An approach shot can be either forehand or backhand and normally are p
layed in response to the opponent hitting the ball short allowing you to advance.
The approach shot is designed to put pressure on your opponent and to give you the opportunity to take control over the point.
The passing shot is normally a winner, it is played when your opponent is positioned at the net and you attempt to hit the ball past them without them hitting it.
Passing shots are normally difficult to execute and can put pressure to make a great shot which sometime forces a mistake.
However, played properly they are impossible to return and can leave your opponent despondent stranded on court and unable to play the ball.
The lob is a very flexible shot that allows you to play a return in many different circumstances. If your opponent has taken control of the net this often reduces the selection of shots that you can play.
A lob may be the only shot left available for you to play. A lob can be played either with the forehand or backhand and is simply a high shot played over the head of the opponent that lands deep in court.
Lobs can be a great defensive shot as it allows the opportunity to move the opponent back and give time for you to reposition yourself, therefore easing pressure.
The overhead or smash can often be a winning shot, it is typically the return to a lob. Since the lob throws the ball high in the air it often gives the opportunity to smash the ball with an overhead fast into play and win the point.
The overhead is executed with a very similar action to a serve and is usually played using the continental grip.
One of the more advanced shots, the dropshot is hit when your opponent is at the baseline. They are difficult to hit because they often require disguising and need a lot of control.
A likely scenario for playing the dropshot is that you see your opponent is a little off balance. Once recognised play the ball heavily sliced just over the net with minimum power, so that it lands only a few feet from the net. It does not afford the opponent any time to play a return.
A winner is simply a shot that your opponent cannot return or get to. It can be a passing shot, an overhead, a forehand cross court or a backhand down the line.
All these shots can be played during the game to either win the point or simply to return the ball.
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