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    Lightbulb Returning deep forehand clears

    Hi all... I've been playing more single games recently and I have some confusions in returning opponent's clears towards my forehand corner.

    For better illustrations/examples, please watch this video ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uBdCcJJLqto ) and seek to 00:16 , 00:26 and 00:50.

    I know that the ideal way is to predict and move to the rear court swiftly but there were times when the shuttle came very fast and deep, and I wasn't fast enough to get behind the shuttle early to put more pressure, or sometimes I was still struggling to recover after the previous shots. I noticed even those top professional single players had this kind of situation quite commonly.

    I'd like to know your suggestions to have some ideas of what kind of return should be played at this situation and what are the factors to consider afterwards.
    I normally play straight or cross-court dropshot because I realized sometimes I can't hit strong enough for a high and deep clear instead

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    Quote Originally Posted by quixilver View Post
    Hi all... I've been playing more single games recently and I have some confusions in returning opponent's clears towards my forehand corner.

    For better illustrations/examples, please watch this video ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uBdCcJJLqto ) and seek to 00:16 , 00:26 and 00:50.

    I know that the ideal way is to predict and move to the rear court swiftly but there were times when the shuttle came very fast and deep, and I wasn't fast enough to get behind the shuttle early to put more pressure, or sometimes I was still struggling to recover after the previous shots. I noticed even those top professional single players had this kind of situation quite commonly.

    I'd like to know your suggestions to have some ideas of what kind of return should be played at this situation and what are the factors to consider afterwards.
    I normally play straight or cross-court dropshot because I realized sometimes I can't hit strong enough for a high and deep clear instead
    I think here's your answer right here. There's no one specific shot you MUST play in that position, it all depends on how fast you can get to the clear and where your opponent is on court.

    Key to your answer is, the faster you can get to the deep forehand corner, the more shot options you have to choose from. You already said this is the ideal way to handle the situation and you're right. There's really no way around it.

    I know that this used to be my problem because once the opponent recognizes you are very weak in your deep forehand/backhand corner and you can only play drops from those positions, all they have to do is play a good attacking clear into these corners and wait at the net for your reply.

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    Name:  0.jpg
Views: 636
Size:  9.3 KB This grip.

    Use a really low stance. Use the scissor steps to get out. Try to time the last step with impact. Up with elbow early and big arm rotation. Remember to be relaxed in the arm and don't stress.
    After impact lock your wrist, just like in backhand. Remember to force your core turn and face forward around impact. Requires some physical fitness.
    This is what I've been taught for drive / clear from deep forehand. I'm not very good at it either, but getting low and using the scissor steps helped me a lot. I used to try to cover the forehand rear with just one step out which made me unable to get help with body, so I could only drop.
    Last edited by lordrogue; 03-12-2013 at 10:00 AM.

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    do you mean chasse or cross-over step? I don't think scissor step applies here.

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    Three returns are possible:
    1) high straight defensive clear
    2) straight shot to forecourt
    3) cross court shot to forecourt

    For those forecourt shots, play it fast with a bit of slice. Aim to make the shuttle just above the level of the net and go past the net to land further into the opponent's court. Doing that reduces the ability of the opponent to play a tumbling netshot and decreases their chance of killing it at the net.

    These replies neutralise your very defensive position. You rarely win a rally with these shots but play them well, and your opponent has to start all over again creating the openings.

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    Quote Originally Posted by amleto View Post
    do you mean chasse or cross-over step? I don't think scissor step applies here.
    Sorry I messed up the terms. I mean when you start with left foot behind your right as to entangle them. What is it called then?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tactim View Post
    I know that this used to be my problem because once the opponent recognizes you are very weak in your deep forehand/backhand corner and you can only play drops from those positions, all they have to do is play a good attacking clear into these corners and wait at the net for your reply.
    Thanks Tactim !
    Some of my regular opponents recognized this and they get me into this position by executing a push from the net area and sometimes if my drop shot return is weak, they can easily play another cross-court net shot or another push to the other side of my baseline. That gives me another pressure indeed.




    Quote Originally Posted by lordrogue View Post
    Name:  0.jpg
Views: 636
Size:  9.3 KB This grip.
    Use a really low stance. Use the scissor steps to get out. Try to time the last step with impact. Up with elbow early and big arm rotation. Remember to be relaxed in the arm and don't stress.
    After impact lock your wrist, just like in backhand. Remember to force your core turn and face forward around impact. Requires some physical fitness.
    I got it but the grip looks a bit strange, noticed that the first finger is having a distance apart from the middle finger and I normally do this for drop shots which require more delicate control instead of those power shots. Have I been doing wrongly ?




    Quote Originally Posted by Cheung View Post
    Three returns are possible:
    1) high straight defensive clear
    2) straight shot to forecourt
    3) cross court shot to forecourt
    For those forecourt shots, play it fast with a bit of slice. Aim to make the shuttle just above the level of the net and go past the net to land further into the opponent's court. Doing that reduces the ability of the opponent to play a tumbling netshot and decreases their chance of killing it at the net.
    These replies neutralise your very defensive position. You rarely win a rally with these shots but play them well, and your opponent has to start all over again creating the openings.
    Thanks Cheung, will keep that in mind. That means I have to aim to drop the shuttle behind the opponent's service line ? How about a tight drop shot to the center ? Will it help to minimize the agle of opponent's return ?
    All in all, I think I need to start working on the stronger and deeper clear to get more option for the return. I was advised to whip my wrist stronger for more power but some other tips I found mentioned about the pronation of the forearm to generate power. Which one is the correct one ? Or is it the combination of both

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    To make things clear, there are two types of clears. The defensive type and the offensive type. The one you describe sounds like the offensive type, where your opponent shoots a flat, fast and hard to reach by just jumping from your current position clear. These are best used when you want to press your opponent backwards and is supposed to be a shot I make your opponent run more.

    My take on this is that if you are late you should respond by clearing back as you'd want to recover. If you are fast enough, a stick smash might surprise the opponent or a cross court drop shot. Variation is the key here though and you need to decide which tactic is the most appropriate one at the time.

    Also, once you've made the shot, I recommend chasse step and not scissoring. If you scissor and your opponent plays back to the forehand corner or the backhand corner you'll find it hard to return these in a good way. Generally, I only use scissor at the forehand corner when I want to do a deciding smash. Otherwise always chasse.

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    I think a specific shot in this situation is nonsense and useless. Why? Because your opponent can predict your shots in this situation. Every good to advance player should try to read the game of his opponent and his patterns of returning shots, but be careful and don't use this to obviously, because you can be fooled, which is also some tactical thing to use.
    If you feel under pressure in this situation, I would clear, longline to get time or crosscourt to get more time.
    Try to do some drills, lose weight, get quicker and increasing overall fitness are the answer and not the shot, which you should perform.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ucantseeme View Post
    I think a specific shot in this situation is nonsense and useless. Why? Because your opponent can predict your shots in this situation. Every good to advance player should try to read the game of his opponent and his patterns of returning shots, but be careful and don't use this to obviously, because you can be fooled, which is also some tactical thing to use.
    If you feel under pressure in this situation, I would clear, longline to get time or crosscourt to get more time.
    Try to do some drills, lose weight, get quicker and increasing overall fitness are the answer and not the shot, which you should perform.
    He's not asking for a "specific shot" which he's supposed to use everytime, but tips on which types would be useful.

    And I beg to differ about what you are saying in the end. Getting quicker is just a PART of the answer. It doesn't matter how high your fitness level is, there will be situations where you will be pressed, be it a professional or amateur, and you HAVE to decide which shot you want to make. This is a part of the tactical thinking which every player must have in order to play well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Wingu View Post
    He's not asking for a "specific shot" which he's supposed to use everytime, but tips on which types would be useful.

    And I beg to differ about what you are saying in the end. Getting quicker is just a PART of the answer. It doesn't matter how high your fitness level is, there will be situations where you will be pressed, be it a professional or amateur, and you HAVE to decide which shot you want to make. This is a part of the tactical thinking which every player must have in order to play well.
    But he was asking for what "kind of return", which I understand as a "specific shot" in the 1st post. What should it mean else?

    To the rest I agree.
    At least we don't know his level of play and everything about this situation he gets in, where he stands, move and acts. Yes, this could happen to everybody, in every level, but we don't know and we cannot say if it's in a pretty normal way or a weakness, due bad footwork or something like that.
    Last edited by ucantseeme; 03-17-2013 at 03:04 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by quixilver View Post

    I got it but the grip looks a bit strange, noticed that the first finger is having a distance apart from the middle finger and I normally do this for drop shots which require more delicate control instead of those power shots. Have I been doing wrongly ?
    No, it's a grip that generates more power than the neutral grip forehand, the index finger is supposed to be there in that grip.

    Anyway regarding the footwork. What I meant was obviously cross over step sorry I got the languages mixed up. I feel that the cross over step is better for defensive forehand than any other step since it covers more ground quickly, and it's easier to keep your balance point low with it. Chasse is (to me at least) a more explosive step when the lift is relatively high, it's often accompanied with a jump. Cross over when you have to take the ball very close to the ground.

    As for the forearm vs wrist, I think it's the wrong way of looking at things. If you can, you should utilize all the muscles in your body. But if you're pressured I don't think you can pronate the forearm enough, so you'll be forced to use the wrist. It's the same thing as when you do a (desperate) backhand shot when the ball is far ahead of you right? You can't use your arm or even underarm in that situation, all you have is your wrist to generate power.

    As for the drop to the middle. I think it's valid, but it needs to be a quick drop and you need to get back into court really fast.

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    I'm curious lordrouge, aren't you mixing things up? The way you're describing things sounds as if you're pressured by an attack lob rather than a clear. Remember that you're often at mid-court or almost mid-court when a clear comes, be it defensive or flat and fast. I'd understand your reasoning if you for an example would play a hairpin and then your opponent would do a fast lift / attack lob deep into your forehand or backhand corner.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Wingu View Post
    I'm curious lordrouge, aren't you mixing things up? The way you're describing things sounds as if you're pressured by an attack lob rather than a clear. Remember that you're often at mid-court or almost mid-court when a clear comes, be it defensive or flat and fast. I'd understand your reasoning if you for an example would play a hairpin and then your opponent would do a fast lift / attack lob deep into your forehand or backhand corner.
    Well, yeah I was speaking more generally about being pressured into deep forehand corner (including lobs over your head). My bad!
    If you are in the middle and already prepared, a clear shouldn't be a difficult shot to return even if it's an attack clear. I think the issue in such a situations is in the underlying factors... like if your previous clear was short, that you were deceived by his stroke, or that the opponent is a lot faster than you back court. Don't you agree?

    And yeah, chasse step is a lot more logical in this situation. Now I see why you guys argued against me haha. When you see pros get pressured 'a little bit' by a clear to their forehand, chasse out and cross court slice is very common and can also put you ahead in the rally. I don't think you have to use that much underarm or wrist in the shot, it's mostly about timing and intercepting the shuttle early.
    Last edited by lordrogue; 03-17-2013 at 07:18 PM.

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    Thanks Cheung, will keep that in mind. That means I have to aim to drop the shuttle behind the opponent's service line ? How about a tight drop shot to the center ? Will it help to minimize the agle of opponent's return ?
    All in all, I think I need to start working on the stronger and deeper clear to get more option for the return. I was advised to whip my wrist stronger for more power but some other tips I found mentioned about the pronation of the forearm to generate power. Which one is the correct one ? Or is it the combination of both
    Aim for the shuttle to go above the net around 6 to 8 inches. It has to have a flatter trajectory as this trajectory is harder to kill for the opponent. It must land past the service line. They also cannot play a tight netshot with a good percentage. They have to return to the forecourt around your service line, drive or lift the shuttle. Any of these reduce the amount of court you have to cover. If you play the tight netshot, the opponent will play a tight netshot in return and you need to scramble with an extra step further into your forecourt to receive the shuttle.

    After you play this shot, the foot work is quite interesting. Your dominant leg should come round towards the net. However, you do not need to run to the net. By hanging back slightly, you have closed the option s of the opponent to hit to your rear court. You then focus on the forecourt area and can accelerate to it much better (since you do not have to think about covering the back court so much). In fact, even though you are further back in the court, your speed to the forecourt can be much faster because you anticipate the forecourt return.

    Peter Gade, Xia Xuan Ze, Hendrawan play this shot quite clearly. I would go for the older videos with 15 point games for examples.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ucantseeme View Post
    But he was asking for what "kind of return", which I understand as a "specific shot" in the 1st post. What should it mean else?
    To make things clear, I wasn't asking for "the only" given option as in one specific shot for this kind of situation everywhere and everytime. What I really need are some ideas before I execute the return, I am expecting some suggestions with logical reason/consideration behind. Just like the one that you suggested me to return a straight clear or crosscourt to get more time to recover from the pressure, I do appreciate that, thanks !

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    Quote Originally Posted by Wingu View Post
    My take on this is that if you are late you should respond by clearing back as you'd want to recover. If you are fast enough, a stick smash might surprise the opponent or a cross court drop shot. Variation is the key here though and you need to decide which tactic is the most appropriate one at the time.

    Also, once you've made the shot, I recommend chasse step and not scissoring. If you scissor and your opponent plays back to the forehand corner or the backhand corner you'll find it hard to return these in a good way. Generally, I only use scissor at the forehand corner when I want to do a deciding smash. Otherwise always chasse.
    Thanks for your tips Wingu, I can do a stick/check smash if the attacking clear is not deep enough towards my baseline and whenever I have a stamina of course.

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