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The power of criss-cross blocking.

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    Posted: 07/08/2013 at 6:28pm



Most peculiar and yet effectual playing style to beat the "skilled" youngsters.
Playing criss-cross blocking off the bounce over the table, =cici style, will make the "skilled" guys feel some panic and disturb their game outright.
Most young masters do have too little brain power to answer the "cc" style properly.
I'm a steady upholder and hot gospeller of the style.
Be you an olderman or a sapling, you can happily adopt this style to your better advantage.    

Good luck.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote stiltt Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/08/2013 at 7:27pm
you look pretty good in that red t-shirt igor Clap
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote JacekGM Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/08/2013 at 9:54pm
The title of the clip is " My New Idol", the guy has been playing for only three years and has no coach ("coaches himself"); it also says that he had recent success in the tournament of some kind where he beat a great attacker who later became the champion. 
The comments under the clip say that Alexey (Lyokha) plays pips on one side and antispin on another, and in the past used to play just one side of the racket.
My comment: I am not thrilled with the antispin-pips combo, there are probably good ways to beat this type of player. Suggestions?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote LUCKYLOOP Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/09/2013 at 2:40am
Hip hip Hoorah for another PUSH BLOCKER !
 
Is there any more videos available for him ?
 
What would be his estimated USA rating ?
 
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Whang Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/09/2013 at 8:12am
Originally posted by JacekGM JacekGM wrote:

My comment: I am not thrilled with the antispin-pips combo, there are probably good ways to beat this type of player. Suggestions?



Let's say you loop (not so powerfully) cross court (your FH to his FH), and he blocks it to your backhand side, just simply drop the ball short to his BH side. The principle is that you will force him to open up the opposite side and then that's when you hit a strong loop on the return to the now vulnerable wide FH side.

If down the line (your FH to his BH) and let's say he blocks it back to your FH, simply place it short on his FH side. This will expose the BH side as he tries to run to catch the ball. Then go for a strong loop to the widely exposed BH side of the opponent.

In other words, just open up wide angles before going for the strong loop kill to prevent yourself getting caught on a slow recovery. If you just keep looping it back just for the sake of looping it strong all the time, he will catch you off guard with one of his blocks like when you fail to recover fast enough.

Hope that made sense.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Pondus Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/09/2013 at 8:22am
LOL - that last guy you're playing looks so dejected...

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote cole_ely Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/09/2013 at 8:26am
Yeah, it seems the obvious answer is to take off some pace. Maybe lift some balls with heavy topspin to see if you can get a slower, higher ball back. I used to do this to traditional pen hold bh blockers, but I haven't seen one in years.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote gatorling Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/09/2013 at 10:37am
This style would drive me insane. Although the guy plays with a "junk" style, it looks amazingly effective against attackers. I'd love to see him play against a strong pips player who can block it short and dead as well as good lobbers (Like Adam Bobrow)
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote skip3119 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/09/2013 at 10:43am
Davidwhang said:
 
"Let's say you loop (not so powerfully) cross court (your FH to his FH), and he blocks it to your backhand side, just simply drop the ball short to his BH side. The principle is that you will force him to open up the opposite side and then that's when you hit a strong loop on the return to the now vulnerable wide FH side.

If down the line (your FH to his BH) and let's say he blocks it back to your FH, simply place it short on his FH side. This will expose the BH side as he tries to run to catch the ball. Then go for a strong loop to the widely exposed BH side of the opponent."
============================================
Interesting strategy.  But remember, the guy is fast - he hits the ball early, right off its bounce.
After your serve, the ball may come back to you real quick.  May need a 2000 level player with fast feet to handle that.  (One doesn't know which side he is going to hit - to the left or to the right or to the middle, thus one needs fast feet.)


Edited by skip3119 - 07/09/2013 at 10:52am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote AndySmith Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/09/2013 at 10:56am
This thread should be titled "the power of using unusual equipment to drive opponents insane".
This was a great signature until I realised it was overrated.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote davidz Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/09/2013 at 11:40am

I guess he is about 2000 USATT rating.

A general rule to play with strong blocker is to move your opponent first (to left right, from back front) and have him do PASSIVE blocking. Do not give him much change for ACTIVE blocking. It is the key to have a strong and effective attacking skill if you start attacking (kill blocker with one or two attacking shots).

Based on this rule, you need to have him hit the ball far from the body (he has less control and could not do the active blocking for the ball). You need to vary the spin, because the blocker simply cannot block all balls using one style.  The blocker need to identify the spin first for a strong blocking (you can slow him with spin). The blocker usually does not like slow loop on backhand. 

The long tricky service combined with a strong third ball attack works well against a blocker. Blocker does not like long balls.

Worst playing styles vs. blocker are:  try to play blocking, service simple (side) topspin balls, play weak topspin balls with weak looping and attacking, and return high short ball.


Originally posted by LUCKYLOOP LUCKYLOOP wrote:

Hip hip Hoorah for another PUSH BLOCKER !
 
Is there any more videos available for him ?
 
What would be his estimated USA rating ?
 
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Whang Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/09/2013 at 12:10pm
Originally posted by skip3119 skip3119 wrote:


Interesting strategy.  But remember, the guy is fast - he hits the ball early, right off its bounce.
After your serve, the ball may come back to you real quick.  May need a 2000 level player with fast feet to handle that.  (One doesn't know which side he is going to hit - to the left or to the right or to the middle, thus one needs fast feet.)


That's why you give slow balls at first, so that the blocks wouldn't return insanely fast at you. If you notice in the video, the opponent is looping very hard, partly the reason why the blocks are coming in so fast as well :) But yes, you'd have to have good feet and ball placement for the strategy to work :)
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote cole_ely Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/09/2013 at 12:29pm
Also he's looping to the fh corner, which puts them right into the blockers pattern.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote nathanso Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/09/2013 at 4:12pm
It must be human nature because I see many players making the same tactical error when faced with such a placement-oriented player: They tend to return the ball right to the blocker's center court over and over, as if it can somehow "re-balance" the kooky rally! All this does is make it far easier for the push-blocker as he doesn't have to move at all (many have poor footwork to begin with) and he can continue to attack every ball right off the bounce.

Fight this tendency and place the ball to the corners.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote skip3119 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/09/2013 at 5:00pm
Originally posted by nathanso nathanso wrote:

It must be human nature because I see many players making the same tactical error when faced with such a placement-oriented player: They tend to return the ball right to the blocker's center court over and over, as if it can somehow "re-balance" the kooky rally! All this does is make it far easier for the push-blocker as he doesn't have to move at all (many have poor footwork to begin with) and he can continue to attack every ball right off the bounce.

Fight this tendency and place the ball to the corners.
============================================
 
For that kind of pushblocker (PB) playing style, the PB always gets to the ball early and strike it right off the bounce - each and every point.  It is their style and their habit, they are used to and good at it.
 
Place the ball to the different corners trying to move the PB?  I afraid that oneself may get moved, rather than moving the PB.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote bonggoy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/09/2013 at 5:07pm
Originally posted by davidwhang davidwhang wrote:

Originally posted by JacekGM JacekGM wrote:

My comment: I am not thrilled with the antispin-pips combo, there are probably good ways to beat this type of player. Suggestions?



Let's say you loop (not so powerfully) cross court (your FH to his FH), and he blocks it to your backhand side, just simply drop the ball short to his BH side. The principle is that you will force him to open up the opposite side and then that's when you hit a strong loop on the return to the now vulnerable wide FH side.

If down the line (your FH to his BH) and let's say he blocks it back to your FH, simply place it short on his FH side. This will expose the BH side as he tries to run to catch the ball. Then go for a strong loop to the widely exposed BH side of the opponent.




How do you drop short a long ball? Other than blockers with Anti or Long Pips, I've never seen this done before.


Edited by bonggoy - 07/09/2013 at 5:09pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote cole_ely Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/09/2013 at 7:01pm
It doesn't have to be super short. It's a big plus if there's no topspin to allow him to lift the ball, and no pace to use. A low, flat knuckle buster with no spin and minimal pace could be considered a drop shot of sorts.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote LUCKYLOOP Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/09/2013 at 7:47pm
I played a guy who plays similar with either anti or LP on one side - has 2 different paddles. He uses inverted on his 4H with serious offensive firepower. He uses a Seemiller grip. This player if you make a weak TS or BS shot he kills it. He also kills some serves in his zone. I can beat him but I have to be methodical.
 
Make sure you are using a brand new ball when playing a Push Blocker, which should be a given, but in some clubs they play with used balls.


Edited by LUCKYLOOP - 07/09/2013 at 7:53pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote JacekGM Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/09/2013 at 8:00pm
I would say, because of his agility and good anticipation, he is probably even better than US 2000.
I wonder how he would manage against a good hitter, or against a chopper. 

Look what igorponger has done again ...Big smile 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote ikaros Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/09/2013 at 8:41pm
those others players were loosing against themselves. Ir might sound weird but sometimes the key to beat these kind of players is to play a simple game rather than your own. serve long and flat,change the pace, loop with half power but with lots of spin and if he reverse it be ready to push the ball instead of re loop and you can also punish  his serve in this case it was very long.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote smackman Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/09/2013 at 9:02pm
Firstly ;I would tell him he can't do volley ball serves, by tossing the ball forward and moving to the ball
secondly ;I only saw one short serve to him and he popped it up , the long serves never seemed to work
thirdly ;you need to keep playing players like him and try harder pushes and as Nathan said good loops to the corners especially backhand
fourthly ;the anti is making "your" shots drop so a higher lift is important
fifthly ; take your time and plan between serves, he is speeding the game up 
 
 I do like how he plays, as in his serving for a reason and constantly attacking the angles etc, 
many would find him style hard to adapt to
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote JacekGM Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/09/2013 at 9:46pm
... to be fair to Lyokha, he posted the clip with a goal in mind: by the end of his clip he has a little rumble where he advertises his style as a better alternative to the defensive style with long pips..." If you are a beginner and over thirty, have no coach but are 20-40 pounds overweight, yet still have the desire to win - you do not have to play long pips, hold the ball, wait for opponent's error and defend - come on, there is an alternative!" he says. I kinda agree... I would rather do this than the long pips...

On a related note, from personal experience and as others recommended here, when playing Seemiller-style blockers don't give loose balls to these guys, they will place the return superbly... Use good surprising serves, move them, make them block when way out of position...
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote bonggoy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/09/2013 at 10:35pm
Originally posted by cole_ely cole_ely wrote:

It doesn't have to be super short. It's a big plus if there's no topspin to allow him to lift the ball, and no pace to use.


No topspin and no pace? The ball must not be moving then :D.

Originally posted by cole_ely cole_ely wrote:

A low, flat knuckle buster with no spin and minimal pace could be considered a drop shot of sorts.


Again, how do you execute this against Igor? He rarely blocks or pushes passively. He is very good at using angles to his advantage. He constantly moves the ball. I would argue that a short balls, even not so short ball like you mentioned will get be to Igor's advantage. He seems to like it even. He is able to jab/push when ball is short especially in the middle.

The only weakness I see that I can take advantage of is in his forehand side. He is relatively weak there. I noticed a few missed blocks and a few missed serve return.

I would play him like how I play Seemiler type blockers. Spin deep to wide angle. Wide FH then to wide BH or wide BH then wide to forehand. I will rarely place any ball in the middle as he likes to work the angles from here.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote JacekGM Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/09/2013 at 10:41pm
Igor, speak up: is it you or Lyokha (Alexey)?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Pongz Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/09/2013 at 10:45pm
Originally posted by JacekGM JacekGM wrote:

My comment: I am not thrilled with the antispin-pips combo, there are probably good ways to beat this type of player. Suggestions?


Just regarding the strategy, the issue that I find is that the push blocker controls the rally left and right without him need to move much... he is pretty much in the center.. In my club, there is a short pip penholder playing very much like this...

I found that if my placement is not deep and wide, he will control the rally... so maybe concentrate first to return serve or loop deep and wide    

If you return in the middle, no good.. he will get the angle and control the rally...

Secondly, try pinch him on one corner... rather than following his rythm left and right.. 

Otherwise, your return will be weaker start going to the middle and again he will control the rally..

Against the player in my club, I return everything deep and wide into his backhand... and he stops taking me out of extreme angles... only cross court to my backhand and down the line to my forehand... 

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote LUCKYLOOP Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/09/2013 at 10:51pm
 
The Push Blocker Style has emerged in different ways with the ERA of the 40 mm ball.
 
I am even trying different paddle combos emulating these guys for fun, variation and to see if I can compete playing their style. Since I play shake hand then I twiddle a lot to take advantage of situations.
 
I hit one shot the other day with LP OX Crop Circles that was like a capital L shape at the end of the stroke breaking about one foot in the air before hitting the table. I have never seen a shot like that happen in all my days. My opponent obviously didn't get it back as he was setting up to hit it since it was about a foot high above the net. I didn't miss hit the ball it was solid contact. We got a big laugh out of that shot.
 
In my opinion, all the variety makes this hobby even more fun, win or lose.
   


Edited by LUCKYLOOP - 07/09/2013 at 11:04pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tt4me Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/09/2013 at 11:46pm
Originally posted by ikaros ikaros wrote:

those others players were loosing against themselves. Ir might sound weird but sometimes the key to beat these kind of players is to play a simple game rather than your own. serve long and flat,change the pace, loop with half power but with lots of spin and if he reverse it be ready to push the ball instead of re loop and you can also punish  his serve in this case it was very long.
I agree.  The punch blocker plays a very simple game and plays it well.  Just about every stroke is a bunch block.  Even his serves are bunch block like serves.  There is no doubt he is better than the two opponents he played.  His opponents didn't every seem to get into the match.  The blocker got the pace up quickly with his punch block serve.  His opponents were rarely hitting the ball faster than the blocker.

I am surprised that there were few attempts to attack the punch blocker's serves.  They were usually fast and long.  You know there can't be much spin on the ball if the punch blocker is serving with anti or LP.  I would start by attacking the serves.  On my serves I would serve short.  The reason for this is that it is hard to open up the paddle the way the punch blocker is holding it.  If the serve is kept low the punch blocker would have to hit the ball up and then it is third ball attack time.

I think the opponents were right to try to slow down the rallies by lofting the ball a little but do it in the corners.  That would make the punch blocker move.  There is a limit about area in front of the punch blocker where he can actually punch block.  If the ball can be hit wide the punch blocker will have to swing at the ball.  I bet the punch blocker isn't as good make swing type of strokes.  It would be interesting to use Cory Eider type of high serves ( remember the Cory Eider vs Pushblocker match  ) to see what the punch blocker would do with them.  Maybe this is unrealistic or unfair because Cory Eider is much better anyway and could risk a fast return. 

I have what I call my safety shot.  It is a slow spinny loop into the opponents BH corner.  I would make use of them a lot.

Punch blocker reminds about Pushblocker and Amilie Solja.  They play awkward styles and try to force their game on their opponents.

For only three years of playing I think this punch blocker is doing well but the next video should be against better opponents.  The punch blockers are much more aggressive than passive blocking with LPs or anti.
     
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote bonggoy Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/10/2013 at 10:04am
Originally posted by tt4me tt4me wrote:

 It would be interesting to use Cory Eider type of high serves ( remember the Cory Eider vs Pushblocker match  ) to see what the punch blocker would do with them.  Maybe this is unrealistic or unfair because Cory Eider is much better anyway and could risk a fast return. 

I have what I call my safety shot.  It is a slow spinny loop into the opponents BH corner.  I would make use of them a lot.

Punch blocker reminds about Pushblocker and Amilie Solja.  They play awkward styles and try to force their game on their opponents.

For only three years of playing I think this punch blocker is doing well but the next video should be against better opponents.  The punch blockers are much more aggressive than passive blocking with LPs or anti.
     


The high serve tactic Cory Eider used against pushblocker (PB) only worked because PB covers 95% of the table with his backhand. They have two different style. PB is a pushblocker (tada!!!), while the guy in the video is more of a punch blocker like you said. He pounced on anything short and slow. Usually at tough angle. The only time I see him play a safe shot is when something is looped to his forehand.

A deep low spinny loop is probably the best against him. You will have a better chance as long as you are dictating the pace of the game.

If I am not so ingrained with the style I have, I would be a push blocker.


Edited by bonggoy - 07/10/2013 at 10:12am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote NextLevel Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/10/2013 at 10:27am
Originally posted by bonggoy bonggoy wrote:


If I am not so ingrained with the style I have, I would be a push blocker.
 
Coach McAfee was once a two-winged looper, and now he is short pips forehand and long pips backhand.  So don't be shy, you can do it!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote blahness Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07/10/2013 at 10:36am
I seriously don't understand why so many inverted players like to take the ball so late, they seem to like taking the ball when it is at the dropping phase, then spin the ball up high, waiting for an off the bounce reply from their opponent to a difficult angle which will make them run....Dead. Perhaps if they spent a few months playing some hardbat off the bounce countering, hitting and blocking, they would improve tremendously. 

This type of criss-cross blocking will always happen, when one player consistently hits the ball later/shorter than his opponent, which has nothing to do with the equipment that one uses. This would open up angles for the other player to easily exploit. I would have exploited his opponents using criss-cross blocking easily (i'm an inverted player), considering how slow the pace that his opponents played at and the general lack of power of their strokes and poor footwork. 

To be honest, sometimes a quick off-the-bounce push against a long ball, when kept low, placed at a difficult angle and reasonably fast is more effective than a slow loop, because they give their opponent less time to react and get them out of position. IMO the most effective loops should be done like counters, with minimal arm backswing, maintaining good body balance, taking the ball early, not taken late like lots of inverted players like to play. 






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