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    Default Shifting from Front/Back to Side/Side - Situations?

    Textbook badminton situation.

    I serve low, and the opponent lifts to the back (intermediate-level play). As the server, I move back slightly (to mid-court) and prepare to cover the straight block.

    Under what circumstances do I shift to cover the cross return? Here are some hypotheticals - are the answers correct?


    1. My partner clears cross: he moves to the cross, I move backwards to cover the “new cross”.
    2. My partner clears straight: I chasse to the opposite side to cover the cross
    3. He has a weak smash: I quickly move to the side and backwards to try and cover a cross return
    4. He smashes straight: I stay and cover the front, both straight and cross blocks. If opponent lifts cross, that is still my partner’s shot.


    Basically, I would like to know when to shift from attacking, front-back to A-B formation aside from my partner clearing to the back. Any comments or videos that cover this strategy is greatly appreciated.

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    its often hard to tell where to move
    as a standard we always split to side by side when a partner clears, but in a driving situation i always try to take a large stride back to help cover more court, as you are stranded in the front ( especially if youre not a strong net player)

    generally a weak smash has a postive return and you would avoid giving your opponents that chance to counterattack.

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    Quote Originally Posted by exalted View Post
    Basically, I would like to know when to shift from attacking, front-back to A-B formation aside from my partner clearing to the back. Any comments or videos that cover this strategy is greatly appreciated.
    When a short lift/clear goes to your partner then he will come forward to the midcourt and you should rotate out.

    http://badminton.isport.com/badminto...n-in-badminton

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V4tzo4dHBUM

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mKZ4HezNh3g

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    There are 3 main situations where you adopt a more side-by-side formation:

    1) The opposition are able to hit downwards. I.e. you or your partner have lifted, cleared or played something loose.

    2) In a flat, driving rally where the opposition aren't too close to the net. If they play a slow block, you have time to kill it, so you don't need to be on the service line. Please note, you can usually cover the x-court from a base which is central in your court.

    3) If your partner has a smash or kill in your fore-court. As amleto has said, you should rotate out if your partner is coming onto a short return. However, if your partner is right in a fore-court corner, the opposition can sometimes squeeze the kill out x-court, costing you the attack and even the point. Consider covering the x-court fore corner. Obviously, you have to weight up the possibility that the opposition could get a decent lift in. Also, if your opposition are in real trouble (e.g. an attacking clear has got behind them), consider a defensive formation, but with both of you closer to the net.

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    If you clear, usually you drop to defensive position. And it's not strictly side-side. There're some details I won't get into here.

    However, if you can cause them to play backhand, as soon as the player's body turns, both you and your partner should get ready for straight/cross drop shots (assuming intermediate level, with no/poor backhand clears). Depending on your knowledge of your opponent's' capability, you can anticipate, and adapt an appropriate position.

    If your partner smash, depending on the quality of his smash, and ability and preference of your opponents defense, you may be able to anticipate different responses. In either case, as soon as your opponent lifts, you should follow the shuttle to the same side and step backward ready for your partner's smash. If your partner's smash is flat (in general), and your opponent uses predominately forehand defense, you need to be ready well beforehand for a cross court drive. You need to cut this off. Also, talk to your partner to not smash straight from his left hand side to opponent's forehand in this case, as you'd be inviting troubles.

    If your partner's smash is decent/good, you should guard the straight block first, as you're already position to do so. You'd have more time for crosscourt blocks. From the deeper front/mid-court position, you're also in better position to cut off drives. You may not be able to cut off both sides. If you want to play more defensively, then watch for the cross, and let your partner take care of the straight, as he's already in position. If you want to play more aggressively, then take the straight. You may not get anything if you try to cover both sides if the return is fast. If your opponent has a habit of returning cross (or straight), well, then you know what to anticipate. Take advantage of their habits.

    If your partner has a weak smash, or drops all the time, he may be subject to the tactic of isolation, being moved from side to side. If you play with someone that tends to have this problem, you need to get ready to help early, and move back to the other corner (in the coming next shot), even though it's a lift that we're talking about. It could be difficult for your partner to run from side to side for more than 3-4 shots, esp. if the next shot is going to his backhand side. Pragmatically, he should seriously consider a clear in that case. Dig up an video by Lee Jia Bok on helping rear court player.

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    Consider this scenario: Your side was defending side-by-side. The opponents cleared to you partner's backhand, the shuttle has gone behind him and he is struggling to return the suttle. One of your opponents has detected that your partner is in trouble and he is moving forward to kill any weak return from you partner.

    In this situation what would you do - constinue to stay in the side-by-side defensive position or move forward to take front-and-back attacking postion?
    Last edited by vinod81; 08-29-2013 at 12:43 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by vinod81 View Post
    Consider this scenario: Your side was defending side-by-side. The opponents cleared to you partner's backhand, the shuttle has gone behind him and he is struggling to return the suttle. One of your opponents has detected that your partner is in trouble and he is moving forward to kill any weak return from you partner.

    In this situation what would you do - constinue to stay in the side-by-side defensive position or move forward to take front-and-back attacking postion?
    In this case, probably too bad. Front player might not have enough time to retreat from front to side, and the rear player might be too late to recover. If front player withdraws from the net, a simple net reply from your opponent would finish the rally.

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    I'd like to also add that, at intermediate level (where most club players are), if your partner's clear is good enough in quality, your opponents might not be able to reply aggressively. A drop or clear may be expected. In that case, you don't need to revert to side-side defense; just stay front back. Don't over do it though (starting with the clear as a reply), depending on your opponents ability. They can also anticipate your formation, and smash at your face. Even though that's a relatively weak smash, with you standing close enough to the net, it could still cause you problems.

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    Quote Originally Posted by faiyazk View Post
    its often hard to tell where to move
    as a standard we always split to side by side when a partner clears, but in a driving situation i always try to take a large stride back to help cover more court, as you are stranded in the front ( especially if youre not a strong net player)

    generally a weak smash has a postive return and you would avoid giving your opponents that chance to counterattack.
    i agree, if it's drive shots, then you are not actually completely parallel but staggered, meaning you are next to him, but maybe a step closer to the net to get the cross drive.

    in terms of weak smashes it depends if he's generally weak or just that one, if it's that one, and your opponent just cross drive, there isn't anything you can do. if he's generally a weak smasher then just prepare yourself for a cross drop, anything else coming back from a weak smash will be your opponent's responsibility.

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