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The Tennis Business Discussion Forum Archive


From: Mike Rush <>
Date: Sat 23 Sep 2000 08:17:13 -0500

There are several good reasons to hit DTL approach shots. The one that
makes the most sense to me is a matter of steps to the golden spot. The
golden spot is, of course, that spot from which you will not only hit the
winning volley, but from which you can also defend your court from the
passing shot. If your approach is DTL, you will be in the golden spot in
3 to 5 steps. You will not have to race to the net to do it either. If
your approach is cross court, then it will require many more steps to get
to the golden spot. If you don't make it then you will get to the net
just in time for a really good view of a nice passing shot. If you
increase your speed to the net and your opponent lobs, then you will have
to postpone your "retreival retreat" by first counterbalancing the
forward momentum that your charge has created, making you feel like a 200
ton cargo plane that has just put on the breaks. The reason that came in
second place would be that hitting out of a corner on the run and under
pressure isn't fun especially if it's on the backhand wing. The DTL
approach in the backhand corner intensifies this challenge to your
opponent. Your approach will land in your opponent's court quicker,
because it's a shorter shot, and if it has backspin or severe top spin it
will stay low to the court causing the reply to be hit up so that you can
make one of those TV put away shots. Your cross-court approach will
travel the hypotnuse of the imaginary triangle (the legs of the triangle
being your opponent's base line and the DTL approach). That cross court
approach will give your opponent more time to get to the ball, prepare
for the return, track your position on the court, and most importantly,
spot the corner where her DTL passing shot will land. For more
information about tactical tennis I encourage a look at the article
"Euclidian Tennis: The Geomtery Of The Game" which can be found in the
archives of Ron Waite's 'Turbo Tennis' at Happy

Mike Rush
Conway, Arkansas

[Note from Moderator: The Turbo Tennis article is at: ]

Return-Path: <>
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Message-ID: <008d01c02515$a4480c60$a988b3d1_at_oemcomputer>
From: "Greg Fowler" <>
To: <>
Subject: Re: Why D-T-L on the approach shots
Date: Fri 22 Sep 2000 21:20:39 -0700

Regarding your question on "why go down the line on approach shots",
there are a number of good reasons to use this as a general rule;
1. You give your opponent less time to set up when you go down the line.
2. Because you are "approaching" the net, you are anticipating another
shot to be hit. You need to place yourself in the best position
possible at the net. When you go down the line, you are already on the
side of the court you should be covering at the net. When you hit
crosscourt on the approach, you have to move to the opposite side of the
court to cover your opponents passing shot, (assuming you even have
enough time to get there)!
3. If you are stretching forward and to the side for the short approach
shot, it is easier to execute a shot in the direction of your body
momentum. "Go with the mo" (mo for momentum) is an axiom I use with my
students. This is also why when you are stretched at the baseline, the
down the line becomes the easier shot to execute. This might also shed
some light on why you should cover the line after you hit the approach
shot. If you have hit a nice approach shot into the corner, the
opponents likely shot is more down the line in the direction of her

As a couple of footnotes, don't always go down the line on the approach
shot! You will be too predictable! Good times to deviate from the down
the line rule is when you are ahead (2 points or more ahead is ideal to
break the rule). Lastly, the down the middle approach shot is very
effective, especially with very quick players who can get to the corners
quickly. Use the down the middle approach to eliminate the angle
opportunities your opponent has in the corners.
Greg Fowler

Received on Sat Sep 23 2000 - 08:17:13 CDT

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