Tennis Tactics Lesson – How To Dominate The Net In Singles
Finishing the point at the net is one of the most effective ways to win points in tennis matches. By attacking the net, you reduce the time your opponent has to react and hit the ball, plus they now have to deal with someone standing closer to them, reducing the amount of court they can hit in to. Yet many tennis players struggle when they come to the net in singles matches, most likely they are making one of three common errors:
- Mistiming or not doing a split-step
- Approaching crosscourt without a valid reason
- Being in the wrong position when they reach the net
Any of these three errors will cost you points at the net.
In this lesson, coach Simon Konov of Top Tennis Training will show you some footage of amateur tennis players making these three errors and how it costs them the point. We will then show you the correct way to do it, improving your chances of winning more points at the net and hopefully help you to dominate the net in singles!
Common Net Errors with Solutions:
- The split-step – by using a well-timed split-step, landing around the time your opponent makes contact with the ball, you’ll be giving yourself the best possible chance to reach the next shot. If you’re late with your split-step, the ball will already be traveling towards you when you land, costing you vital time. If you don’t do a split-step at all, you won’t be balanced and ready to move in any direction.
- Where to approach? The passing shot that we have to be most aware of, and cover, is the down the line pass. This is because we have the least amount of time to react to it, the ball never has to cross our body’s line and the ball is always the same amount of distance away from us.
When your opponent hits a passing shot crosscourt, the ball has to cross over your body’s line, allowing you the chance to step across and reach the ball. When you’re at the net, you should always be covering the down the line pass, so whichever side the opponent will hit the ball from, you should be on the same side. That’s why hitting your approach shots down the line, around 80% of the time, is the best option if you want to dominate the net in singles.
If you hit your approach shot crosscourt, you now have more distance to cover in order to cover the down the line pass.
- Where to position? When you’re at the net, you should try to always be on the same half of the court, that the ball is on. By being in the right position, you’ll cut down the space your opponent has to hit in to and make the court feel smaller for them. Knowing the correct zone to move into is essential to being a good net player in tennis.