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    Unhappy Partner not playing good

    In doubles, what should be the best approach when the partner is not playing good?
    I get upset and try to correct partner, loosing my concentration and screwing my shots.

    This happens often when we play mix and match games.

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    Regular Member visor's Avatar
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    Such situations are very common. I usually just play safe shots that I can cover easily. And I set myself a goal for 12-16 points knowing that we won't win the game.

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    Quote Originally Posted by power_smasher View Post
    In doubles, what should be the best approach when the partner is not playing good?
    I get upset and try to correct partner, loosing my concentration and screwing my shots.

    This happens often when we play mix and match games.
    The last thing a partner wants is to be corrected during a game. Not only is it annoying, it puts extra pressure on him and lessens his enjoyment. You need to concentrate on your end of the game and maybe execute shots that make returns predictable for your partner. Discuss corrections and tactics in between games.

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    As a player who is more often the weaker partner in a pair than not, I really appreciate it when the corrections are saved for after the game is done, and am really spurred on when my partner shows confidence when I get a difficult shot right. It is really encouraging when my (more skilled) partner continues to show interest in the game even if it's not going great for our side, and I'm glad to have friends to play with who are like that.

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    Maybe get a coach?

    So both of you will get info about your play and how about to correct it.
    And get tips on where to be, shots to make, doubles strategy, etc.
    Partner may be less offended if he/she thinks both of you are making strides to improve your doubles game.

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    It's a hard question, you can remain silent and not say anything but if you are normally talkative and say things like "good shot" and "unlucky" then when you go silent your partner will know you're not happy. The best plan is give supportive feedback, don't correct them, but just say things like "unlucky" and "forget it and move on" show them you know they aren't playing well but you trust they will pick it up.
    I think we've all been in your situation at some point and in the poor players situation too.

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    I give encouragement as and when as I can. But a couple of times I got semi-angrily rebuffed by my wife when we were playing XD cos she keeps lifting to the mid-court area, presenting the opponents with an easy kill!

    My tone wasn't rude or condescending, just to point out to her to either lift to the backcourt or play a net-shot (if she's tired).

    Needless to say, I learnt to shut my trap after that, as after all we play recreationally, though we do keep score.

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    Quote Originally Posted by axl886 View Post
    I give encouragement as and when as I can. But a couple of times I got semi-angrily rebuffed by my wife when we were playing XD cos she keeps lifting to the mid-court area, presenting the opponents with an easy kill!

    My tone wasn't rude or condescending, just to point out to her to either lift to the backcourt or play a net-shot (if she's tired).

    Needless to say, I learnt to shut my trap after that, as after all we play recreationally, though we do keep score.
    Haha, playing with a significant other is a dangerous thing. And you should know the guy can't win in these situations

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    Agree that encouragement is the way to go. Your partner is probably feeling a little discouraged by not playing that well. A simple pick-up like "let's go" or a big "yessss" after he's made a good shot can help his mindset.

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    It's very important to control emotions during a match, it often determines the outcome

    If partner is generally not as good as you, nothing can be done of course to change the result. But train his fundamentals so he can catch up to you, because in doubles is about balance, otherwise your opponents will target him and won't let you hit assuming you are a level on top of him

    If the partner is as good or better than you, but just having a bad day. Try to encourage him, when he wins a point say "good job" give him a thumbs up or say "good shot", and if he loses a point tell him not to worry and try lift his spirit because he would be down on losing the point too. If he isn't playing seriously then it's a bigger issue and try talk him into trying, but if he is trying hard but not keeping up with the game then give him pointers and tips in a sincere and controlled manner. If you are aggressive towards him or show signs of frustration, it will be likely he will feel the same and you will have communication problems in rallies and ultimately losing points.

    Also, don't always think about the partner. Also think about yourself. Think about what you are also doing wrong that is losing the points, as doubles about both players than just one. See what you can do to change your game as well, since you can't control the body of your partner

    So it's important you maintain a positive attitude no matter the situation. If your opponent sees you are partner arguing, they'll take advantage of it

    This is assuming you are playing a tournament of course, if you playing social then no need to be too worried about it

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    If you are playing with a partner less skilled than other 3 in the court, don't expect to win many games. But that does not prevent you from having an enjoyable game. It is an opertunity for you to improve your defence and attack. Here are my tips.

    1. Do not try for one shot wonders to finish the rally-play proper shots and stay in the rally till some body make a winning shot or fault.
    2. Do not go for covering the partner-you both will devolope bad strategy which can affect cordination in future games with others.
    3. Make it difficult for the opponets to play a winning shot and make it easier for your weaker partner to defend. Eg. Your lift can go to the straight corner so that opponents will be forced to smash at you again. If they want to attack your partner, they need to risk cross court from a corner which is very difficult.
    4. If you have a good smash, encourage your partner to charge the net and kill the replies
    5. Try very tight net shots which can force a short lift which your partner may be able to kill.
    6. When your partner plays a week reply, try your best to defend-for a moment, think that you are Lee Chong Wei against FHF at midcourt.

    It is a big challenge to play with an inferior player. You can either stand up to it or succumb to the pressure-choice is yours.

    NP

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    The best thing to do is to accept that fact that you really might have no chance of winning with him. But you should play with much effort. The people around you would already know the reason for your defeat so there's no reason of trying to prove anything. Being upset and correcting your partner while on court would just make people dislike you and is totally inappropriate. This also gives your partner so much pressure that he may commit even more errors. Remember that no one is born a professional athlete so maybe you should start considering that and try to have more patience. Everyone was once a newbie and everyone has their ups and downs, even you.

    Since it seems that this is a club your playing at, then it really does matter what others may think of you. Continue that attitude and after 1 year people would hate you behind your back. Proven.
    Last edited by Timz :]; 11-03-2011 at 05:37 AM.

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    teach your partner the ways of playing, this is just a game but if u get too upset, u could strain the relationship.

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    Quote Originally Posted by power_smasher View Post
    I get upset and try to correct partner, loosing my concentration and screwing my shots.
    This is the wrong approach and attitude. Focus on your own game. Even getting annoyed at urself wont help when ur game is going bad nevermind being annoyed at ur partner. Ive been on the end of this myself and it makes me not want to play with that person because it is very ignorant.

    Remember your partner is trying their best which maybe isnt good enough. Words of encourgement is great and small advice is good like play a few net shots or keep it away from so and so.

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    in doubles, your partner plays better when you play better. (and vice versa).
    so are you going to let him lead and fall to his level? or are you going to be the leader and bring him up to yours?

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    Quote Originally Posted by power_smasher View Post
    In doubles, what should be the best approach when the partner is not playing good?
    I get upset and try to correct partner, loosing my concentration and screwing my shots.

    This happens often when we play mix and match games.
    What is meant by mix and match?

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    Some interesting advice going on here. Phil is spot on - get your attitude right. Urameatball has also made an excellent point - lead from the front!

    When I play with someone who is struggling, I make sure that all team talk between us is including BOTH of us. I say things like "we need to make sure we hit a good length on our clears, because when we hit it short, they are winning lots of points" and "let us try blocked defence instead of driven defence". This is regardless of what I was doing personally, it is the simple things that I want my partner (and me) to do well. As of this point, I am then quick to point out during the game when that tactic (good length/blocked defense) is working well for us, and to point out when we didn't get that thing right, leading to us losing the point. This is to help reinforce the fact that keeping it this simple is going to help us to win the game.

    I will make sure that i am as solid as I can be, making no mistakes with simple game play - I do the things I want them to do. After a few points, I normally find that this has helped to focus my partner - they now have a goal ("hit a good length") - it is the only thing on their mind. And I always find that they begin to play really really well, sometimes rising above themselves and making some great shots when they can. We can now build on top of our game, gaining confidence as a pair.

    Be very careful if you want to be more specific about direction e.g. if your partner struggles in defence, make sure that you avoid telling them that you think they are struggling. Tell them you are really comfortable in defence at the moment, and that you would like to try and keep their attack on you the whole time. In this way, you instruct your partner, and give them confidence at the same time, giving them a new tactical focus.

    Hope you enjoy your games!

    Matt

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