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PostPosted: 22 May 2018, 02:03 
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A recent match from Steel City Open. I got outclassed, but managed to land a lot of my attacking shots.

Good things:

1) I picked up a lot of half-long serves
2) Managed to land a bunch of backhand loops against backspin on the table
3) Quite often I can play a straight-arm forehand loop against a slow ball which looks nice

Bad things:

1) I probably back up off the table too much
2) As the result of 1), I often get caught by quick blocks to my FH
3) When the ball goes into my middle, I play really awful forehands
4) I don't receive long sidespin/topspin serves with my BH well

I will probably post the video of U1600 finals once I get it, the opponent there was way closer to my level there obviously.



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PostPosted: 22 May 2018, 02:55 
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fastmover wrote:
A recent match from Steel City Open. I got outclassed, but managed to land a lot of my attacking shots.

Good things:

1) I picked up a lot of half-long serves
2) Managed to land a bunch of backhand loops against backspin on the table
3) Quite often I can play a straight-arm forehand loop against a slow ball which looks nice

Bad things:

1) I probably back up off the table too much
2) As the result of 1), I often get caught by quick blocks to my FH
3) When the ball goes into my middle, I play really awful forehands
4) I don't receive long sidespin/topspin serves with my BH well

I will probably post the video of U1600 finals once I get it, the opponent there was way closer to my level there obviously.


I feel your pain. I completely understand your misses and mistakes. I don't know how to train to fix them. Do you think it has to do with just not expecting the ball to come back? I get caught looking sometimes.

It's interesting us TTedge members tend to end up with similar issues.

The grandmaster needs to return.


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PostPosted: 22 May 2018, 03:04 
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wilkinru wrote:
fastmover wrote:
A recent match from Steel City Open. I got outclassed, but managed to land a lot of my attacking shots.

Good things:

1) I picked up a lot of half-long serves
2) Managed to land a bunch of backhand loops against backspin on the table
3) Quite often I can play a straight-arm forehand loop against a slow ball which looks nice

Bad things:

1) I probably back up off the table too much
2) As the result of 1), I often get caught by quick blocks to my FH
3) When the ball goes into my middle, I play really awful forehands
4) I don't receive long sidespin/topspin serves with my BH well

I will probably post the video of U1600 finals once I get it, the opponent there was way closer to my level there obviously.


I feel your pain. I completely understand your misses and mistakes. I don't know how to train to fix them. Do you think it has to do with just not expecting the ball to come back? I get caught looking sometimes.

It's interesting us TTedge members tend to end up with similar issues.

The grandmaster needs to return.


I actually don't feel bad about this match. I do feel about U1600 finals that I lost :D A lot of my mistakes in the video happened due to my opponent's ability to make insanely quick blocks and counters off the bounce even if got OK spin on the shot. I think some of the blocks, the ones that went to FH, even had sidespin on them. Which is probably why I couldn't get to the ball even with cross over steps.


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PostPosted: 22 May 2018, 03:13 
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But one thing I notice is that I never paid attention to defending my middle. The result is that once I am in an open rally and the ball goes to my middle, the game is over. I either miss, or lose balance and can't get to the next shot. For example look at the rally starting at 9:26. I get the first attack, the second shot is OK, then two land into my middle and I play two random forehands. In theory I should be able to a play pivot-like motion that I know how to do (thanks Brett), but it is not integrated in my game yet.


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PostPosted: 22 May 2018, 03:17 
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You played well. You should have gotten a game. Your placement and anticipation off your placement needs work. So does your ability to focus on imparting spin for the sake of spin.

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PostPosted: 22 May 2018, 03:34 
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And this is my horror movie.



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PostPosted: 22 May 2018, 05:41 
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fastmover wrote:
But one thing I notice is that I never paid attention to defending my middle. The result is that once I am in an open rally and the ball goes to my middle, the game is over. I either miss, or lose balance and can't get to the next shot. For example look at the rally starting at 9:26. I get the first attack, the second shot is OK, then two land into my middle and I play two random forehands. In theory I should be able to a play pivot-like motion that I know how to do (thanks Brett), but it is not integrated in my game yet.


I have to imagine the woman you played has seem countless better forehands than yours. Well I always tell myself this.

The ball is coming back at you very quickly and it's hard to do these big shots over and over and over. When I'm really on my game and run into this situation I tell myself "more spin" and really get the ball to kick. Since it seems like there is just no way to apply enough power to get past some blocks/counters but I find extra spin will create those 'edge/finger' misses plus it can give me more time to set up for the next shot. Against good ball control players this seems to be plan B for me.

Watch some Timo Boll match before playing too. He gets so much spin. It's crazy, even compared to other pros. Even at the cost of speed he applies so much spin it creates issues for anyone (well, except for this other guy on the German team...).


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PostPosted: 22 May 2018, 06:35 
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Your backhand looks great, especially in the first match. Your forehand not so much. Sometimes you got good spin and they blocked it long, but mostly the fh didn't have a lot of quality. Particularly if you are going to pivot, like at the end of the nightmare match, it has to be a stronger ball.

In the first match you did all the attacking. Maybe she attacked 4 or 5 balls the whole match. Do you know her game, that you can't wait and make her attack sometimes? It wasn't clear if she is so good that she can win just pushing and blocking, or what would have happened if you were patient too, and she had to attack. Don't get me wrong, it's good that you took the initiative every point. But I'm assuming your goal was to win, so it might have been interesting to see if she can finish a point other than by blocking you out of position.

In the nightmare match you had more trouble with his serves than he did with yours. He was able to make some short and wide returns to your fh for winners. It just looked like your fh went away, and it's possible to lose to almost anyone when that happens.

From both matches I am curious, do you do any drills on transition from bh to fh? There is one we did a lot at the B75 -- player a bh hits or loops to player b's bh, randomly player b moves a ball to a's fh, then back to bh-bh, repeat. Or there is a variant where either player can move a ball to the fh, and then the drill goes free.

In the match with Sandy you hit so many good bhs, and then were completely unable to recover for the fh, so it seems like a reasonable drill to comsider.


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PostPosted: 22 May 2018, 06:54 
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BRS wrote:
Your backhand looks great, especially in the first match. Your forehand not so much. Sometimes you got good spin and they blocked it long, but mostly the fh didn't have a lot of quality. Particularly if you are going to pivot, like at the end of the nightmare match, it has to be a stronger ball.

In the first match you did all the attacking. Maybe she attacked 4 or 5 balls the whole match. Do you know her game, that you can't wait and make her attack sometimes? It wasn't clear if she is so good that she can win just pushing and blocking, or what would have happened if you were patient too, and she had to attack. Don't get me wrong, it's good that you took the initiative every point. But I'm assuming your goal was to win, so it might have been interesting to see if she can finish a point other than by blocking you out of position.

In the nightmare match you had more trouble with his serves than he did with yours. He was able to make some short and wide returns to your fh for winners. It just looked like your fh went away, and it's possible to lose to almost anyone when that happens.

From both matches I am curious, do you do any drills on transition from bh to fh? There is one we did a lot at the B75 -- player a bh hits or loops to player b's bh, randomly player b moves a ball to a's fh, then back to bh-bh, repeat. Or there is a variant where either player can move a ball to the fh, and then the drill goes free.

In the match with Sandy you hit so many good bhs, and then were completely unable to recover for the fh, so it seems like a reasonable drill to comsider.


In the first match I genuinely believed I could have won by attacking. I saw that she blocked some of my openers off the end of the table so I knew I could do it in principle, at least sometimes. I think I was even leading 10-8 in the third game. But maybe I should have slowed down and played more push/block too. In the last several months I spent a lot of time trying to loop every possible serve hoping to become good at it, so it became a sort of no-brainer.

With regards to BH/FH switching, the most common drill I did in last 3 weeks was when the blocker put the ball randomly on the whole table and I looped at a fixed point. I think you have to give some credit to the quality of her blocks. Look at the point at 13:31, for example. She doesn't just block, she brushes the ball on the side and the ball fades away from me, even if it is not that wide.


Last edited by fastmover on 22 May 2018, 07:08, edited 3 times in total.

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PostPosted: 22 May 2018, 06:57 
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His forehand keeps going upwards rather than forwards and over the ball. It's an old criticism but I dont think it will make a difference since he had his reasons for keeping this form despite all the criticisms of it. When you see his opponent in the 1600 final using his forehand you can see the difference in quality as the spin and the power are in the same direction.

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PostPosted: 22 May 2018, 11:57 
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It's very hard to tell how good a block is on video. She is clearly a stronger player, and giving her the attacks would probably only have made things worse. I was just curious since you couldn't loop through her, if you thought about trying it. There are some players who can't or won't attack.


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PostPosted: 22 May 2018, 18:39 
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Apologies for my obvious neglect of this thread. It has been a very busy time for me with lots of travel and commitments, however I definitely need to do better. I'm going to go back through the thread and comment on things.

Over the last couple of weeks I have posted LTT96 and LTT97. I think LTT97 is a significant video and I think it's worth understanding.

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PostPosted: 22 May 2018, 19:09 
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wilkinru wrote:
Enough is enough with this thread not being talked on. :swear:

I bring you video because I finally got around to editing one. I'd like to say I'm a lot better now than I was when I played this a whole 2 months ago but we know that's all BS.

On this match it was obvious to me that my opponent couldn't read my serve to his forehand very well and I kept at it all match. He had long pips on the backhand side.



From my experience in this tourney, mostly from other matches I am noticing that my backhand loop off of block or backspin isn't good enough. I'm been working on improving that.


Hey Russ,

I know I'm late!

I think you did really well in this match. This type of opponent has often played TT for 30+ years and it's so easy to dismiss them as bad because of their very poor technique. If I were you, I'd be happy to take the win and focus on the positives to come out of the match.

For starters, you were able to make loops off both sides again awkward play in a match situation. This may be easy enough for a 2000 type player, but it's a great effort for someone playing at your level, with your experience.

I'm going to post Barfly's comments below as I agree with him. I think that Barfly and I tend to see TT in a similar way. I'll highlight the things I strongly agree with. I'll also include a video below to support Barfly's comments about using the body more on the forehand. I know how much you enjoy 80s classics!

"My humble opinion is that your backhand loop works very well, pretty sure you won 2/3 of the points when you opened with a backhand topspin, problem seems to arise when you try to reach and try to do to a safe counterhit and just bump the ball over the net, LTT92 and starting to bend the waist the moment you identify ball coming to your backhand should be the cure for that.

Similarly, you also try to play it safe sometimes with your FH by doing a half stroke just trying to bump the ball up on the table or by slowly guiding your arm over the ball instead of driving with your body and snapping the elbow which results in slow arm speed and spin with the ball sailing long.

Lastly, I have had a bit of success with receiving serve a bit further from the table- extended arm and bat distance and by bending more- this allowed me more space and time to loop fast long serves, difficult to judge your distance from the table from that angle but you seemed sometimes a bit on defensive and rushed while receiving long serves and opted for push or half stroke and maybe more distance would give you time for full swing topspin?

Anyway, I really enjoyed watching your match and you had some great points, cool editing skills btw "


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Last edited by Brett Clarke on 22 May 2018, 20:11, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: 22 May 2018, 20:10 
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fastmover wrote:
And this is my horror movie.



Up to 14:44, I thought you played fantastic. After 14:44, you started to make a lot of errors.

I think it's important to understand the difference between technical errors and your state of mind. After the 14:44 point, your desire to win tipped over the edge. The mistakes were all linked to your state of mind. and not your technique. You were very lucky to win the 15:03 point, based on your emotional level. Watch LTT51 for a better explanation.

I think it would be a mistake to examine every technical error you made after 14:44 because you would be missing the point. You had already demonstrated up to 14:44 that you have good shots. You were playing amazing. You are capable of playing well.

Please watch the match again and see if you can see the downswing after 14:44. Your reaction at 14:48 is an important part of the story.

It is always extremely unpleasant to lose with a high emotional level. That's why you call this video a "horror movie". If your emotional level was too low, then you could easily say "I couldn't be bothered".

Once you understand the relationship between emotional level and playing level, it's important to not overthink it and start worrying about worrying. Doing some LTT58 can help.

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PostPosted: 22 May 2018, 20:24 
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fastmover wrote:
I feel like the key to high quality looping of junk serves is to use the body as much as possible, as banal as it sounds. When the ball is half-long and I am not 100% about the spin, I tend to use the arm too much to just guide the ball, on both BH and FH. Nowadays I try to force myself to not hesitate: no matter how awkward it feels, I have to involve the body with the fullest motion possible. If it is forehand, I have to make a massive turn of my shoulders


Don't forget to use some LTT93 stomach and back muscles. They are very strong muscle groups and help to propel backspin up over the net.

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