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LOBBING STRATEGY
HOME > TIPS > ADVANCED TIPS > LOBBING STRATEGY
Rich Maier
08-12-2002
As a teaching professional, I am commonly asked questions on basic lobbing strategy. In general, the back-court players have - -.- -- options to lob down the line or cross-court. There are clear benefits and appropriate times to hit each lob. Here is what I have learned over the years.
1. The player down the line from you is closer to you, so they have less reaction time when you lob it over their heads. Conversely, the opponent cross-court from you is further from you and therefore has more reaction time to cover the lob.
2. If your opponents are constantly hitting overhead after overhead to your corner (the pick and stick strategy), you must be lobbing cross-court. If you lob down the line, they can't hit to your corner without giving you a chance to attack the ball with a forehand drive. This is because your opponents a forehand drive. This is because your opponents have to hit the ball straight to you. They can't hit it to you at an angle anymore.

3. If your opponents at net are playing the "T" strategy, you can rip them apart by lobbing down the line. The only way the "T" works is if you lob cross-court. To play the "T," the player at the net who is close to the side of the court where the ball is, positions himself very close to the net and, straddling the singles line on that side of the court, is responsible only for balls that are driven. The partner at net who is cross-court from the ball has backed up a number of feet from the net (number of feet to be determined by the person teaching this strategy) and is responsible for all overheads. If you lob down the line on a team that plays the "T" and the "T" player covers the overhead, you now have two players on the same side of the court. If they hit it back to you, they can't get it to your side screen. Be ready to drive the ball to the open court (cross-court). If the "T" player hits the ball cross-court to your partner, he should be ready to drive down the line.

4. When you lob down the line, where is the most logical place for your opponents to hit their overheads? They would most likely hit it cross-court, and since most teams don't shift properly (unless they hit a great overhead that you can't drive), there are a lot of gaps through which you can drive the ball.
5. If you lob down the line and your opponents hit a good cross-court overhead (which your partner cannot drive), your partner can then chose to lob down the line. Just think of the movement that you're getting from your opponents. You will be amazed at how often they get out of position.
1. If you have a difficult screen shot and are just trying to get it back, lob it high and cross-court so you have more court for which to aim.
2. If you are playing a lefty-righty team and they have their backhands in the middle.
3. If you lob the ball down the line and your opponents hit the ball cross-court to your partner who misses too many screen shots, then you should lob cross-court.
4. If the player cross-court is the weaker player and is more likely to make an error.
5. If the player cross-court happens to be closer to the net than the player down the line.
If you can aim your lobs well, lob a greater percentage of them down the line and you will see weaker overheads coming back at you, creating many more opportunities to attack the ball.
 

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