Played again, just got back. Here's my report. Quotes of advice given by you guys (as echoed in the first post of this thread) in bold
. The way I go about this hopefully helps others too.
I applied Nothing to lose. Let go and you could play better.
..which didn't magically seem to produce results. Not doing this would probably inhibit results, though. It did help me relax much more during the afternoon, while preparing to go to the club. That's worth a lot. Whatever was going to happen, was going to happen and I was OK with that.Singles match 1 - lost 0-3
I played very badly. Handed my opponent an unhealthy amount of unforced errors.Take notes on HOW and WHY you lost a match.
Too many unforced errors. I lost this one due to my strokes not being engraved enough into my muscle memory in order to produce the shots in less than perfect circumstances, in the broadest sense. I have a year or two of serious practise drills to do, a good number of hours a week, in order to get to the same level of consistency of playing standard, as the players I'm up against. In this particular match my opponent played close to the table and was very fast. I didn't move back from the table when perhaps I should have. But all in all he just had more training. I need to practise flips with my short pimples. I kept flipping his weak underspin serves, with good results but my BH short pips flick is very unrealiable. This cost me so many points but I kept doing it because I knew it was the right thing to do for my style. I mean, easier opening of a point is part of the reason I use pips on backhand in the first place. Train block, push, flip/flick
, anyone? Doubles match - lost 1-3
Especially in the doubles match I simply couldn't hit a ball right, they were all over the place. I'd get one right occasionally but almost every shot was a direct error on my part. My partner was playing very well today, but I was terrible and there was nothing he could do about it. I also had trouble with serve return, see "singles match 3", same opponent.Take notes on HOW and WHY you lost a match.
It was lack of practise... Need more training to become more consistent, to make my "bad game" a "still decent" game. Need to not miss practice in the weeks I have matches, and practise serve return.Singles match 2 - lost 1-3
I was up against a good allround player. I still wasn't hitting the ball well AT ALL. I won one set, because I temporarily managed to hit enough of them well enough and he made some silly (serve) errors too.Take notes on HOW and WHY you lost a match.
Just like in the first match and doubles match, my strokes were all over the place.
It was nothing (mainly) psychological. I didn't get a chance to train this week due to a chronic illness that had a bit of a flare-up. But it's about more than just this week's practise, because as I see it, I just have a good year or two of serious training drills to do in order to get my strokes solid enough to be able to perform them more consistently, and not be good one hour and bad another.Singles match 3
- lost 2-3
I got my swing back, I was very offensive and my attacks were landing on the table, even at really good angles. I Staid aggressive, unafraid to attack toward end of set/match.
My serving game was varied and effective, even though I never really practised serving. My opponent had trouble reading when I had topspin on the serve (I do that a lot, so many players pop the ball up repeatedly I'm still amazed they don't read it better). I scored a few points by attacking his elbow. It was effective against this guy but I was too preoccupied by everything else to think of applying that tactic more often. (Lock in on your opponent's elbow and keep hitting it there.)
My concentration was strong, better than it had been. (Focus, focus, focus.
) Of course when you hit the ball better, it's easier to stay focused because you don't have a reason to get frustrated with yourself.Take notes on HOW and WHY you lost a match.
Serve return. My opponent had VERY good serves. Harder to return and read than mine. I wasn't the only one having trouble with them, but I was the one who had the most trouble. I was the better player apart from the serve receive. His serves earned him most of his points. Two points almost every time. I would definitely have won this one if I'd returned serve better. I was stronger in the rallies. I dug deep but I simply couldn't make up for the serve receive problem. My opponent verbally expressed being a little impressed with my attacking abilities. When I'm hitting my forehand well, I never miss many smashes and loops once I have the initiative and I tend to find the angles the defending player can't get to. It's amazing I even got to 2-2 (by coming back in set 3 and wining it 12-10 - great control of nerves due to Set longer term goals and forget about losses in the interim**.
) and the last set was a good battle too (lost it regardless of staying aggressive, unafraid to attack toward end of set/match
, due to him serving from 8 and getting to 10). ** My long term goal is to score at least 33% in the "division" below the one I currently compete in. 50% would be great, but I'll be satisfied with 33%. Note that this is very specific, and measurable, which helps.
After this match, my teammates felt I had done very well and made up for my bad performance earlier. Of course they saw that I couldn't return this guy's serves, that I was doing soooo well in the rallies to compensate, and how hard I was trying, but alas...no cigar.
I'm not disappointed even though I have now lost 18 singles matches in a row, because I honour Set longer term goals and forget about losses in the interim
and the team we played today is in the top 3, so losses were likely to happen. The final score was a 3-7 loss for my team.
And of course, Consider all of your losses as part of your training.
I probably beat my opponents on that one, this time around.
This sums up today's "learning from my losses" points of note.
1. Serious practise drills for a year or two, a good number of hours a week for consistency
2. Try not to miss practice especially if I have matches later that week
3. Practise flips (with my short pimples)
4. Learn when to move back from the table and do it
5. Train serve return and serve with coach
6. Again, two words: serve. return.
7. Lock in on your opponents elbow and remember to repeat this
Lost match 1 because of 1,2,3,4
Lost doubles because of 1,2,3,6
Lost match 2 because of 2,1
Lost match 3 because of 6
In short: practice drills a lot to increase consistency + practice the serve return a lot plus flips.
I might just ask that player who is good at serving for a serve and receive practice session. He also had some trouble with my serves, so the benefit would be mutual to some degree.
It's difficult to keep believing in myself given the losing streak, any pieces of advice on that?