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Serve from FH corner

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    Posted: 09/11/2019 at 9:09am
What are your thoughts on it?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote notfound123 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/11/2019 at 9:20am
Perfectly normal for lefties ...
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pgpg Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/11/2019 at 9:24am
It can be a decent option for serving short to FH, especially if you hope to engage your own BH on 3rd ball, as some pips players do. 


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote stiltt Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/11/2019 at 10:01am
I find it valid but useless from the following perspective: 
From the bh corner only, we can go short, semi long (double bounce with the 2nd close to the end line) or long. We can do that in the direction of their fh, bh or elbow. We can apply topspin, underspin or no spin.
That’s 27 serves already. All those serves can be done with 2 different rubbers but I’m stretching it if I go to 54 on that one. Then there is tomahawk, pendulum, reverse pendulum...
Point is from The bh corner, there are enough possibilities to serve the element of surprise and building a whole other framework from the fh corner seems like a huge undertaking and the time to do that could better serve the existing position.
Of course there is room for certain players to make it valid if they want to bh topspin the 3rd ball but that’s a niche playing style protecting a fh that’s less trusted than the bh. 

Something I never worked on too much are Ding Ning, Kenta and Dima’s tomahawk from the middle they make  more sense to be ready quicker and to have one base from which all bh and fh serves can happen.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Jackcerry Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/11/2019 at 12:30pm
Fast reverse pendulum longline from there it’s lethal. I always do it
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote NextLevel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/11/2019 at 12:48pm
Originally posted by stiltt stiltt wrote:

I find it valid but useless from the following perspective: 
From the bh corner only, we can go short, semi long (double bounce with the 2nd close to the end line) or long. We can do that in the direction of their fh, bh or elbow. We can apply topspin, underspin or no spin.
That’s 27 serves already. All those serves can be done with 2 different rubbers but I’m stretching it if I go to 54 on that one. Then there is tomahawk, pendulum, reverse pendulum...
Point is from The bh corner, there are enough possibilities to serve the element of surprise and building a whole other framework from the fh corner seems like a huge undertaking and the time to do that could better serve the existing position.
Of course there is room for certain players to make it valid if they want to bh topspin the 3rd ball but that’s a niche playing style protecting a fh that’s less trusted than the bh. 

Something I never worked on too much are Ding Ning, Kenta and Dima’s tomahawk from the middle they make  more sense to be ready quicker and to have one base from which all bh and fh serves can happen.


The argument is clearly parochial.  Lefties (and righties like Ovtcharov or Pitchford or Primorac) serve from there all the time and get return they like.  One could argue that in fact, if you are serving mostly into the short forehand, you are protecting the backhand and exposing the wide forehand.  So the real issue is what you are trying to do with your serve, which is clearly not about imagining what is good and bad about the serve, but about doing whatever you think makes sense for your game.  I suspect that a good high level player could make a living out of implementing this serve strategy consistently (even more than Dima does) as long as he is willing to master playing behind it from early in his career like Dima did.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Fulanodetal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/11/2019 at 1:05pm
Useful. There is some danger inherent in your position since righties are leaving their BH area of the table open when serving. But with a well positioned ball to the wide FH, you will force your opponent out of position and force him to open up their BH side of the table, leaving it ripe for a 3rd ball attack to that zone. 

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote stiltt Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/11/2019 at 2:49pm
Originally posted by NextLevel NextLevel wrote:

Originally posted by stiltt stiltt wrote:

I find it valid but useless from the following perspective: 
From the bh corner only, we can go short, semi long (double bounce with the 2nd close to the end line) or long. We can do that in the direction of their fh, bh or elbow. We can apply topspin, underspin or no spin.
That’s 27 serves already. All those serves can be done with 2 different rubbers but I’m stretching it if I go to 54 on that one. Then there is tomahawk, pendulum, reverse pendulum...
Point is from The bh corner, there are enough possibilities to serve the element of surprise and building a whole other framework from the fh corner seems like a huge undertaking and the time to do that could better serve the existing position.
Of course there is room for certain players to make it valid if they want to bh topspin the 3rd ball but that’s a niche playing style protecting a fh that’s less trusted than the bh. 

Something I never worked on too much are Ding Ning, Kenta and Dima’s tomahawk from the middle they make  more sense to be ready quicker and to have one base from which all bh and fh serves can happen.


The argument is clearly parochial.  Lefties (and righties like Ovtcharov or Pitchford or Primorac) serve from there all the time and get return they like.  One could argue that in fact, if you are serving mostly into the short forehand, you are protecting the backhand and exposing the wide forehand.  So the real issue is what you are trying to do with your serve, which is clearly not about imagining what is good and bad about the serve, but about doing whatever you think makes sense for your game.  I suspect that a good high level player could make a living out of implementing this serve strategy consistently (even more than Dima does) as long as he is willing to master playing behind it from early in his career like Dima did.
You are doing a good job preaching to the choir my man, but simplifying does not always mean tunnel vision; a narrower scope from which all possibilities are enough to create surprise make sense. Useless complexity is as bad a sin as an over simplification. Of course I meant to simplify but I surely kept enough serves to create the element of surprise, I am surprised that flew over your head.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote julidean79 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/11/2019 at 4:55pm
i thing from the right corner is better a backhand serve some down and some lateral... i use forehand inverted with lateral down and no effect, also. I use it in doubles matches.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote blahness Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/11/2019 at 5:31pm
I tried it out and I think I understand where it shines now. It's really deadly against ppl who don't have a good FH receive since the wide angle short FH serve really forces them to use the FH receive unless they're willing to expose the deep BH. Also the fast long deep sidespin serves to the FH corner have a He Zhi Wen effect that they pull the opponent wide and force them to run to the FH to loop, which also exposes the deep BH for the next shot. You will get a lot of deep BH balls on the receive so it's perfect for following it up with a strong BH opening loop. Also it reduces the short FH liability since you are closer to the ball, I've even used the chiquita very smoothly from the FH corner following a short receive into my FH short side. It's very hard for the opponent to keep the ball short to the BH side because of the short distance and awkward blade angle, so it's someth ing  you don't need to worry much.

Now that I think about it, the serve from the backhand corner was always the most effective against FH oriented players since they have to pivot to use their favoured FH receive and then it opens up their deep FH corner for attack. And with a sidetopspin serve, it is close to impossible to push it well with the BH so if you invite a weak BH flick it starts the BH diagonal rally which could be to your advantage if you have a better BH. 

I think, my plan now is to serve from the FH corner against ppl with very good BH receive, and from the BH corner against ppl with very good FH receive. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote yogi_bear Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/11/2019 at 5:48pm
If you have a good footwork and response time then that is fine. 

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote julidean79 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/11/2019 at 6:20pm
Originally posted by blahness blahness wrote:

I tried it out and I think I understand where it shines now. It's really deadly against ppl who don't have a good FH receive since the wide angle short FH serve really forces them to use the FH receive unless they're willing to expose the deep BH. Also the fast long deep sidespin serves to the FH corner have a He Zhi Wen effect that they pull the opponent wide and force them to run to the FH to loop, which also exposes the deep BH for the next shot. You will get a lot of deep BH balls on the receive so it's perfect for following it up with a strong BH opening loop. Also it reduces the short FH liability since you are closer to the ball, I've even used the chiquita very smoothly from the FH corner following a short receive into my FH short side. It's very hard for the opponent to keep the ball short to the BH side because of the short distance and awkward blade angle, so it's someth ing  you don't need to worry much.

Now that I think about it, the serve from the backhand corner was always the most effective against FH oriented players since they have to pivot to use their favoured FH receive and then it opens up their deep FH corner for attack. And with a sidetopspin serve, it is close to impossible to push it well with the BH so if you invite a weak BH flick it starts the BH diagonal rally which could be to your advantage if you have a better BH. 

I think, my plan now is to serve from the FH corner against ppl with very good BH receive, and from the BH corner against ppl with very good FH receive. 


Good job. I will try some of your thougts next training session. thanks
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote blahness Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/11/2019 at 6:41pm
Originally posted by Jackcerry Jackcerry wrote:

Fast reverse pendulum longline from there it’s lethal. I always do it

What's your favourite tactics when you're serving from the FH?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote wilkinru Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/11/2019 at 7:37pm
I watch a lot of Seth Pech and he does a backhand serve from the forehand all of the time. He does not do it against lefties, I asked him about it.

He mostly serves short to the forehand. Often he will not even move from his position, expecting a return to the forehand. Depends on what the player is doing he told me. This advice stopped me from always running back to the backhand side in fear of being exposed. Truth is one can just pretty much stay put and wait for the ball much of the time.

Here is a change up, going down the line.

It's remarkably effective in club play. I do it all the time with solid success and my long serve is not good - the surprise itself is the key. Just need to sell the idea that it can and likely will go short to the forehand.

In summary, watch his youtube matches and you will learn so much about this serve. If you have a good/great backhand serve it's worth learning. It's like adding a whole new serve to your game with little effort.



Edited by wilkinru - 09/11/2019 at 7:38pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote NaanAvana Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/12/2019 at 12:20am
Originally posted by blahness blahness wrote:

What are your thoughts on it?

Good if you are a rightie serving to a rightie but  I see lot of players even lots of professionals  make the mistake of serving from forehand corner against all opponents lefties & righties) .
  If you are a righty playing against a lefty (& vice-versa) , you want to serve from your backhand corner
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Baal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/12/2019 at 6:22am
Depends on how well you open with your BH.  See Ovtcharov.

Most people are not like Ovtcharov (and even he doesn't actually serve from the corner).


Edited by Baal - 09/12/2019 at 6:23am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (2) Thanks(2)   Quote NextLevel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/12/2019 at 7:10am
Well vs a left handed player, you need to be more like where Dima is to have a good angle into their forehand
  This whole discussion reminded me of this video...

I like putting heavy topspin on the ball...
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote KomiTTa Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/12/2019 at 2:26pm
Originally posted by NextLevel NextLevel wrote:

Well vs a left handed player, you need to be more like where Dima is to have a good angle into their forehand
  This whole discussion reminded me of this video...


Holly ...
Who'd expect that surprise serve was coming short 'n opposite to receiver's movement. Did anyone notice watching at normal speed, Vik used black FH rubber. I didn't.
Amazing !  thank you very much NextLevel


Edited by KomiTTa - 09/12/2019 at 2:33pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (2) Thanks(2)   Quote Jackcerry Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/12/2019 at 7:19pm
Originally posted by blahness blahness wrote:

Originally posted by Jackcerry Jackcerry wrote:

Fast reverse pendulum longline from there it’s lethal. I always do it

What's your favourite tactics when you're serving from the FH?

I serve from Fh and I go left very fast to make a killer forehand. Usually the opponent receive the serve in the middle of the table

Like this at 1.14



Edited by Jackcerry - 09/12/2019 at 7:28pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tinykin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/15/2019 at 5:40am
Originally posted by Baal Baal wrote:

Depends on how well you open with your BH.  See Ovtcharov.

Most people are not like Ovtcharov (and even he doesn't actually serve from the corner).


I think this says it all. As Next Level pointed out, "and righties like Ovtcharov or Pitchford or Primorac", These are all players who are very comfortable using their backhands.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tinykin Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/15/2019 at 5:42am
Originally posted by Jackcerry Jackcerry wrote:

Originally posted by blahness blahness wrote:

Originally posted by Jackcerry Jackcerry wrote:

Fast reverse pendulum longline from there it’s lethal. I always do it

What's your favourite tactics when you're serving from the FH?

I serve from Fh and I go left very fast to make a killer forehand. Usually the opponent receive the serve in the middle of the table

Like this at 1.14



Oh to be as young, flexible and fast as you are LOL
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote NextLevel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/16/2019 at 7:47am
Originally posted by Tinykin Tinykin wrote:

Originally posted by Baal Baal wrote:

Depends on how well you open with your BH.  See Ovtcharov.

Most people are not like Ovtcharov (and even he doesn't actually serve from the corner).


I think this says it all. As Next Level pointed out, "and righties like Ovtcharov or Pitchford or Primorac", These are all players who are very comfortable using their backhands.

All top players are comfortable because they have good backhands.  Xu Xin does it for example and no one would say he is very comfortable in the same sense as Dima.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (2) Thanks(2)   Quote larrytt Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/16/2019 at 12:10pm
There's a simple way to decide whether to serve from the forehand side. Try it, and if it is effective, use it. If not, don't. There are many players, mostly righties, but also some lefties, who have trouble with this type of serve. For example, a righty's tomahawk serve deep into a lefty's extreme backhand can give him difficulty if he doesn't have a strong backhand loop, and often sets up an easy third ball. 

One of the quickest ways to get a few free points from a "top" player is to do a forehand pendulum serve from the forehand side - they see it so rarely that they have great difficulty the first few times. (After that it loses its effectiveness, so it's sometimes a "trick" serve to be used occasionally.) It's sometimes more effective if the server has a strong backhand, but he can also follow up the serve by stepping to his left. It's rarely done at the world-class level, but below that it can give even strong players fits. I remember watching the 1850 level JJ Hardy, former Orioles shortstop that I coached, give fits to a 2450 player at my club who had never seen forehand pendulum serves from the forehand side, which is what JJ kept doing! 

Kanak Jha is a classic example. He has very good receive, especially with his backhand. Many players make the mistake of serving from their backhand side short to his forehand, which Kanak not only is used to, but gives him the option of either forehand flipping or stepping over and backhand receiving - and this variation can mess up servers. It's better to serve from the forehand side where you have an angle into his short forehand (or a surprise serve deep to the backhand), and so can force him to receive forehand. It's not that his forehand receive isn't good, it's just that relative to his very high level of play and his backhand receive, his forehand receive is a little weaker. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Baal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/17/2019 at 4:02am
Originally posted by larrytt larrytt wrote:

There's a simple way to decide whether to serve from the forehand side. Try it, and if it is effective, use it. If not, don't. There are many players, mostly righties, but also some lefties, who have trouble with this type of serve. For example, a righty's tomahawk serve deep into a lefty's extreme backhand can give him difficulty if he doesn't have a strong backhand loop, and often sets up an easy third ball. 

One of the quickest ways to get a few free points from a "top" player is to do a forehand pendulum serve from the forehand side - they see it so rarely that they have great difficulty the first few times. (After that it loses its effectiveness, so it's sometimes a "trick" serve to be used occasionally.) It's sometimes more effective if the server has a strong backhand, but he can also follow up the serve by stepping to his left. It's rarely done at the world-class level, but below that it can give even strong players fits. I remember watching the 1850 level JJ Hardy, former Orioles shortstop that I coached, give fits to a 2450 player at my club who had never seen forehand pendulum serves from the forehand side, which is what JJ kept doing! 

Kanak Jha is a classic example. He has very good receive, especially with his backhand. Many players make the mistake of serving from their backhand side short to his forehand, which Kanak not only is used to, but gives him the option of either forehand flipping or stepping over and backhand receiving - and this variation can mess up servers. It's better to serve from the forehand side where you have an angle into his short forehand (or a surprise serve deep to the backhand), and so can force him to receive forehand. It's not that his forehand receive isn't good, it's just that relative to his very high level of play and his backhand receive, his forehand receive is a little weaker. 
-Larry Hodges (currently in Berlin)

This of course assumes that the server has practised this enough to have a decent serve and reliable third ball when serving from there .  There's definitely value in being a bit different.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote NextLevel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/17/2019 at 7:29am
Originally posted by Baal Baal wrote:

Originally posted by larrytt larrytt wrote:

There's a simple way to decide whether to serve from the forehand side. Try it, and if it is effective, use it. If not, don't. There are many players, mostly righties, but also some lefties, who have trouble with this type of serve. For example, a righty's tomahawk serve deep into a lefty's extreme backhand can give him difficulty if he doesn't have a strong backhand loop, and often sets up an easy third ball. 

One of the quickest ways to get a few free points from a "top" player is to do a forehand pendulum serve from the forehand side - they see it so rarely that they have great difficulty the first few times. (After that it loses its effectiveness, so it's sometimes a "trick" serve to be used occasionally.) It's sometimes more effective if the server has a strong backhand, but he can also follow up the serve by stepping to his left. It's rarely done at the world-class level, but below that it can give even strong players fits. I remember watching the 1850 level JJ Hardy, former Orioles shortstop that I coached, give fits to a 2450 player at my club who had never seen forehand pendulum serves from the forehand side, which is what JJ kept doing! 

Kanak Jha is a classic example. He has very good receive, especially with his backhand. Many players make the mistake of serving from their backhand side short to his forehand, which Kanak not only is used to, but gives him the option of either forehand flipping or stepping over and backhand receiving - and this variation can mess up servers. It's better to serve from the forehand side where you have an angle into his short forehand (or a surprise serve deep to the backhand), and so can force him to receive forehand. It's not that his forehand receive isn't good, it's just that relative to his very high level of play and his backhand receive, his forehand receive is a little weaker. 
-Larry Hodges (currently in Berlin)

This of course assumes that the server has practised this enough to have a decent serve and reliable third ball when serving from there .  There's definitely value in being a bit different.

This can be true. But sometimes, the receiver can struggle enough that you don't need a great serve and third ball relative to what you usually practice.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote GeryMerke Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/17/2019 at 7:40pm
Originally posted by larrytt larrytt wrote:

For example, a righty's tomahawk serve deep into a lefty's extreme backhand can give him difficulty if he doesn't have a strong backhand loop, and often sets up an easy third ball. 

Yes, assuming a righty receiver (which I assume you meant also) This statement is true ONLY if the receiver in general has trouble with any deep side-spins but otherwise , in terms of spin orientation , this statement is MOSTLY incorrect.

Right server & righty receiver assumed for this discussion

Because since the tomahawk side spin serve spins the ball away from the server (towards his right)  but towards inside of receiver, the problem is that the receiver will naturally angle his racket towards the left of the server, because that is where most of the table is located. Thus this racket angling negates (or at least greatly minimizes)  the side side spin direction of tomahawk serve. 

On the other hand a reverse tomahawk would give more trouble because unless the receiver angles the racket towards server's forehand side to negate (minimize)  the side spin.  But if the receiver angles his / her racket towards the most of the table to his right , the side-spin will pull the ball even farther towards sever's left and possibly out of the table,  since most of table is located on the right of the receiver (which is towards the left of the server).

If Larry has trouble understanding this, let me explain a little more.  Let us assume the server serves a tomahawk serve. Let us assume the receiver (does not compensate for any side spin or backspin or topspin) but just blocks the ball with racket angle vertical and also parallel to the sideline (as if the server served with no receiver but the receiver side of table backed against a wall) .
Tell me where the ball will go :- Towards the right of the server or towards his left ?  

 Let us assume the server serves a reverse tomahawk serve. Let us assume the receiver (does not compensate for any side spin or backspin or topspin) but just blocks the ball with racket angle vertical and also parallel to the sideline.
Tell me where the ball will go :- Towards the right of the server or towards his left ?  

Have a nice day

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Baal Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/17/2019 at 7:55pm
Originally posted by NextLevel NextLevel wrote:

Originally posted by Baal Baal wrote:


This of course assumes that the server has practised this enough to have a decent serve and reliable third ball when serving from there .  There's definitely value in being a bit different.

This can be true. But sometimes, the receiver can struggle enough that you don't need a great serve and third ball relative to what you usually practice.

Against a "top" player (per last Larry's comment) the serve is going to have to be reasonably good, and the next ball too.  Otherwise you will fare poorly.  It is worth having it in your tool bag but if it is not a pattern you ever practice it's very risky.


Edited by Baal - 09/17/2019 at 7:57pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote NextLevel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/17/2019 at 8:04pm
Originally posted by GeryMerke GeryMerke wrote:

Originally posted by larrytt larrytt wrote:

For example, a righty's tomahawk serve deep into a lefty's extreme backhand can give him difficulty if he doesn't have a strong backhand loop, and often sets up an easy third ball. 

Yes, assuming a righty receiver (which I assume you meant also) This statement is true ONLY if the receiver in general has trouble with any deep side-spins but otherwise , in terms of spin orientation , this statement is MOSTLY incorrect.

Right server & righty receiver assumed for this discussion

Because since the tomahawk side spin serve spins the ball away from the server (towards his right)  but towards inside of receiver, the problem is that the receiver will naturally angle his racket towards the left of the server, because that is where most of the table is located. Thus this racket angling negates (or at least greatly minimizes)  the side side spin direction of tomahawk serve. 

On the other hand a reverse tomahawk would give more trouble because unless the receiver angles the racket towards server's forehand side to negate (minimize)  the side spin.  But if the receiver angles his / her racket towards the most of the table to his right , the side-spin will pull the ball even farther towards sever's left and possibly out of the table,  since most of table is located on the right of the receiver (which is towards the left of the server).

If Larry has trouble understanding this, let me explain a little more.  Let us assume the server serves a tomahawk serve. Let us assume the receiver (does not compensate for any side spin or backspin or topspin) but just blocks the ball with racket angle vertical and also parallel to the sideline (as if the server served with no receiver but the receiver side of table backed against a wall) .
Tell me where the ball will go :- Towards the right of the server or towards his left ?  

 Let us assume the server serves a reverse tomahawk serve. Let us assume the receiver (does not compensate for any side spin or backspin or topspin) but just blocks the ball with racket angle vertical and also parallel to the sideline.
Tell me where the ball will go :- Towards the right of the server or towards his left ?  

Have a nice day


The forehand naturally compensates for reverse tomahawk or pendulum sidespin in practice..  This is why your argument is incomplete. 
I like putting heavy topspin on the ball...
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote NextLevel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/17/2019 at 8:15pm
Originally posted by Baal Baal wrote:

Originally posted by NextLevel NextLevel wrote:

Originally posted by Baal Baal wrote:


This of course assumes that the server has practised this enough to have a decent serve and reliable third ball when serving from there .  There's definitely value in being a bit different.

This can be true. But sometimes, the receiver can struggle enough that you don't need a great serve and third ball relative to what you usually practice.

Against a "top" player (per last Larry's comment) the serve is going to have to be reasonably good, and the next ball too.  Otherwise you will fare poorly.  It is worth having it in your tool bag but if it is not a pattern you ever practice it's very risky.

Everything is level appropriate.  I consider all strategic musing to assume similar levels of players but with the potential for relative strengths and weaknesses.  What I mean is that even a good player can have a relative weakness that falls below their level sufficiently for you to play against it even if it isn't something you practice playing against on a regular basis.  But it is level relative advice - I would not beat Kanak no matter even if he returned serves badly because the rest of my game has no chance.  But let us take for example a player like Quadri who serves with his backhand from the middle of the table and not so much deom the corner.  Let's say he served from the forehand side with his backhand and got poor returns (level appropriate) from Kanak.  Should Quadri not deploy those serves because he doesn't practice them?

Another example is someone like Harimoto whose forehand transition is slow but is still better than most mortals.  Even if you prefer to rally with the backhand and practice doing this' you would still be advised to play against Harimoto's forehand. Not because it is your best play or what you practice but because it is likely where to find success vs Harimoto.
I like putting heavy topspin on the ball...
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote larrytt Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 09/17/2019 at 8:28pm
Originally posted by GeryMerke GeryMerke wrote:

Originally posted by larrytt larrytt wrote:

For example, a righty's tomahawk serve deep into a lefty's extreme backhand can give him difficulty if he doesn't have a strong backhand loop, and often sets up an easy third ball. 

Yes, assuming a righty receiver (which I assume you meant also) This statement is true ONLY if the receiver in general has trouble with any deep side-spins but otherwise , in terms of spin orientation , this statement is MOSTLY incorrect.
Actually, I wrote very specifically, "...into a lefty's extreme backhand..."

Many players don't naturally aim their receive "where most of the table is located," but instead naturally go crosscourt, and have to adjust for going down the line. If a righty server serves from the forehand corner and gives a tomahawk serve short to a righty's short forehand, most of the table is located to the server's left, but many receivers have trouble taking this ball down the line as it's more natural going crosscourt, meaning the server often gets a forehand follow. The same is true when serving to a lefty, though it's not as extreme as a higher percentage of players have less difficulty aiming their backhands down the line than on the short forehand side. As I said, it comes down to using what works, and that means having the tactical tools to find those things that work. 

Not everyone is the same. As I wrote in my tactics book, most players have more trouble with serves that break away from them, but some have more trouble with the opposite. This means when you play players who are the opposite, you are handicapping yourself if you haven't developed the basic tactical tools to play into their weaknesses. I used Kanak Jha as an example as I've coached against him a number of times when he was a kid and had players who had not developed the basic serves that would give Kanak trouble. 
-Larry Hodges
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