I've been playing a lot more mixed doubles against many pairs who favour front-back formation so much that they never actually play side by side outside of the serve phase. For some reason, such a formation confuses me more when I receive a bad lift, ready for me to smash, than smashing against a sides formation. Take the scenario of a bad lift to my forehand rearcourt. I can get behind it, jump up and ready myself to play a full smash. My opponents are both near the centreline (though completely in my side of court), perhaps 0.5-1m towards my side of the court. On first impression, given the narrow coverage and the wide court, I feel that my strongest option is down the tramlines. However, it seems that hitting it directly at the front player is more effective - the front player can't realistically get out of the way, and the rear player can't see the shuttle. Note that although tramline smashes aren't as effective, they are still effective - they certainly don't lose me points on the next stroke, but they are more often returned. So my questions are: - why is are the tramline smashes less effective? Is this because of my power/accuracy, or is it simply because the straight attack is stronger? - should I feel bad for intentionally aiming it at the front player? If I do such a smash, I really have to aim it at their shoulder or head - if it's slightly wider within their reach, it is more likely to come back. Any other ideas in attacking a pair who defend front/back?