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 Post subject: Issues with receives
PostPosted: 20 Mar 2018, 09:35 
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I've always had issues with good deceptive serves.

Basically against players that are clearly one level above me, I "eat spin" all day. At a recent tourney there were many players 1-2 levels above me. They served mainly pendulum and backhand, and I read correctly that most of them had some topspin. (Trend?)

The blade angle was pretty upright all the way till ball contact and definitely more upright than the serves with underspin I saw on youtube (the good videos by CNT). But still, 1/3 of the time it ended up being underspin and I couldn't figure out why to save my life.

Against guys my level I can guess right at least 70% of the time. There's a penhold player I know (I'm penhold too) with very good serving forms, but not super strong spins. I can tell if it's underspin or no-spin by the ball trajectory - his underspin is a little slower and lower. It also helps A LOT that he doesn't mix in fast serves.

Granted, most of the guys one level above me would crush me no matter what serves, but there are some guys I wish I could read their serves and could well beat them.

Is this ability something that you get through lots of play time, or some kind of coaching? I think I'm not that smart in the spin department...

My strong (read, only decent) serve is traditional backhand side-underspin with rapid waist movement, really strong spin if I do it right. Sometimes I managed to mix in topspin/faking, but it often just ends up making them not spinny.

Funny enough, several guys at the tourney popped up the returns a lot... (overcompensate, or was it topspin?)

I can't read my own spin...

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 Post subject: Re: Issues with receives
PostPosted: 20 Mar 2018, 09:43 
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It's all about watching the ball very carefully on the contact when the opponent serves...it's not something you can master overnight.

I think you could greatly benefit from the ttedge app, because this has a section where you need to pick the spin on serves. It teaches you to focus on the right areas. I found that using the app regularly improved my focus and reading of spin in matches.

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 Post subject: Re: Issues with receives
PostPosted: 20 Mar 2018, 10:07 
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A trend towards top spin is usually either because weaker players tend to push a short or medium length ball and that results in a popped up third ball kill for the server, or the serve return goes long, or its because top spin serve initiates top spin rally and that's what a lot of coaching focuses on, top spin drills so it sets up a rally they are confident with.

Deception at higher level wins more points than heavy spin because better players know how to return spin, at least spin they recognise. Against weaker players deception tends to be wasted as weaker players struggle to identify spin in the first place so disguise is less effective than heavy spin.

I struggle even after years of playing and knowing what to look for to identify spin on serves. There is a lot to take in and little time to do it. One tip I was told is always return as if top spin is on the ball. If you do that and there is side or side and top, you counter the spin automatically and the ball will go over the net with some margin of error. If there is backspin on the ball your return will be lower but it will still be high enough to clear the net. And the bonus is you only have to focus on playing one type of return, top spin, so, less to go wrong and less complicated.


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 Post subject: Re: Issues with receives
PostPosted: 20 Mar 2018, 17:07 
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Ma_Xin wrote:
I've always had issues with good deceptive serves.

Basically against players that are clearly one level above me, I "eat spin" all day. At a recent tourney there were many players 1-2 levels above me. They served mainly pendulum and backhand, and I read correctly that most of them had some topspin. (Trend?)


This will ALWAYS be true. Even when you get better and go up in level, you will ALWAYS have problems returning serves from players above your level and fewer problems with players of your own level. It's the LAW OF THE UNIVERSE. :lol: What can you do other than figure out how to return those serves you are having trouble with now so that you can go up in level?

The really deadly serves are the ones that look like backspin but are really topspin (with quite a bit of sidespin added in). If you misidentify them the ball goes sailing off into the blue yonder or into the net. The racket angle doesn't matter as much as the way it's moving at contact. I can put topspin on a serve with an open racket and make it look like backspin. It's good enough to fool people at my level, and some above it, but it doesn't work for players 300-400 points above. How to get better? Practice. A good coach who can read serves better than you can would help tremendously.

Iskandar


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 Post subject: Re: Issues with receives
PostPosted: 21 Mar 2018, 03:37 
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Try squatting more or getting lower to the table


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 Post subject: Re: Issues with receives
PostPosted: 21 Mar 2018, 13:05 
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haggisv wrote:
It's all about watching the ball very carefully on the contact when the opponent serves...it's not something you can master overnight.

I think you could greatly benefit from the ttedge app, because this has a section where you need to pick the spin on serves. It teaches you to focus on the right areas. I found that using the app regularly improved my focus and reading of spin in matches.


Thanks a lot, it's very cool. I like that it forces me to pick the spin quickly without thinking.

Debater wrote:
One tip I was told is always return as if top spin is on the ball. If you do that and there is side or side and top, you counter the spin automatically and the ball will go over the net with some margin of error. If there is backspin on the ball your return will be lower but it will still be high enough to clear the net. And the bonus is you only have to focus on playing one type of return, top spin, so, less to go wrong and less complicated.


This will only work if the serves are weak. This is how I play against weaker guys...I just assume it has no spin on it, and if it has a little backspin it'll clear the net; if it goes into the net I push next time...nice when they don't vary the spin.

It can suck tho if they have some backspin but don't do the serves consistently, so if I block sometimes it goes into the net, if I push sometimes it pops up :lol:

iskandar taib wrote:
Ma_Xin wrote:
I've always had issues with good deceptive serves.

Basically against players that are clearly one level above me, I "eat spin" all day. At a recent tourney there were many players 1-2 levels above me. They served mainly pendulum and backhand, and I read correctly that most of them had some topspin. (Trend?)


This will ALWAYS be true. Even when you get better and go up in level, you will ALWAYS have problems returning serves from players above your level and fewer problems with players of your own level. It's the LAW OF THE UNIVERSE. :lol: What can you do other than figure out how to return those serves you are having trouble with now so that you can go up in level?

The really deadly serves are the ones that look like backspin but are really topspin (with quite a bit of sidespin added in). If you misidentify them the ball goes sailing off into the blue yonder or into the net. The racket angle doesn't matter as much as the way it's moving at contact. I can put topspin on a serve with an open racket and make it look like backspin. It's good enough to fool people at my level, and some above it, but it doesn't work for players 300-400 points above. How to get better? Practice. A good coach who can read serves better than you can would help tremendously.

Iskandar


Very good points. My views on serves and returns were a bit simplistic. I was thinking either you know how to return good serves 80% of the time or you eat spin all day. This probably stemmed from watching world class players too much...of course they are fine most of the time because nobody can be one level above them.

I have definitely seen the deadly serves you mentioned. Not too many at my last tournament tho. Like I said at least 2/3 of serves were topspin (that often looked like topspin), and no one served really strong backspin. I actually missed a lot of long-ish serves to my backhand that I read correctly - I was maybe a bit too close to the table (half a step back), I got jammed and couldn't do my TPB correctly to keep the ball low.

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 Post subject: Re: Issues with receives
PostPosted: 21 Mar 2018, 13:16 
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Ma_Xin wrote:
I actually missed a lot of long-ish serves to my backhand that I read correctly - I was maybe a bit too close to the table (half a step back), I got jammed and couldn't do my TPB correctly to keep the ball low.


definitely possible. Remember to always leave yourself space for a fh/bh loop/hit/etc against a fast serve. It's much faster and easier to step in against a short serve than to move back against a long.

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 Post subject: Re: Issues with receives
PostPosted: 24 Mar 2018, 14:16 
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Got the full ttedge app. I can read pendulum/backhand/punch serves pretty well now. No-spin is harder.

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 Post subject: Re: Issues with receives
PostPosted: 25 Mar 2018, 08:38 
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By play for top spin, I meant play a top spin return irrespective of your opponents service spin. No blocked or pushed returns. Just top spin returns.


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 Post subject: Re: Issues with receives
PostPosted: 26 Mar 2018, 08:08 
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Debater wrote:
By play for top spin, I meant play a top spin return irrespective of your opponents service spin. No blocked or pushed returns. Just top spin returns.


Still sounds hard..if it's a short serve with strong downspin we can only push at lower levels

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 Post subject: Re: Issues with receives
PostPosted: 26 Mar 2018, 09:31 
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Don't be passive on receive. Then the spin controls the return. Punch block hard, push hard, loop hard. Don't just stick the bat out there. :devil:


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 Post subject: Re: Issues with receives
PostPosted: 26 Mar 2018, 10:06 
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Like others have said, this will be always be a problem.

My suggestions-
1. If playing inverted and it is off the table-loop. A good loop can overcome a misread
2. If there is one serve that you cannot figure it out just hold out your paddle and see where it goes. You lose one point but may gain many more.
3. On short serves, if the ball stops coming to you its underspin, if it keeps traveling to you or jumps to you its topspin.
4. Pay attention. You should be able to figure out most players near your level by game 2
4. Pay attention B-if in a round robin how do your opponents do against each others serves. I remember one tournament that one player was doing a shovel motion and it looked like light underspin or at most dead, but the opponent kept putting it in the net. When I played him I just overcompensated and played it heavy underspin and it was not an issue.
5. Play as many players as you can. Even players well below you may have serves that give you trouble. Work on that part of the game when you play them


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 Post subject: Re: Issues with receives
PostPosted: 28 Mar 2018, 14:24 
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vanjr wrote:
Like others have said, this will be always be a problem.

My suggestions-
1. If playing inverted and it is off the table-loop. A good loop can overcome a misread
2. If there is one serve that you cannot figure it out just hold out your paddle and see where it goes. You lose one point but may gain many more.
3. On short serves, if the ball stops coming to you its underspin, if it keeps traveling to you or jumps to you its topspin.
4. Pay attention. You should be able to figure out most players near your level by game 2
4. Pay attention B-if in a round robin how do your opponents do against each others serves. I remember one tournament that one player was doing a shovel motion and it looked like light underspin or at most dead, but the opponent kept putting it in the net. When I played him I just overcompensated and played it heavy underspin and it was not an issue.
5. Play as many players as you can. Even players well below you may have serves that give you trouble. Work on that part of the game when you play them


Very good points. Definitely found several of these to be true.

Right now the biggest problem for me is concentration. Either concentrate enough on their moment of contact, and how I'm going to receive..executing my move correctly...or be able to identify spins so well that I don't have to focus quite as much.

I personally find receive a bit odd and out of place in TT as it feels more like math in that I have to think pretty hard. Another sign I'm low level. I heard real TT is a lot about tactics like chess.

Speaking of which, I am pretty good at chinese chess, but not until I did a lot of checkmate exercises to be able to sniff out chances for a kill and to execute it based on similar past moves. Maybe receive is the same. Gotta practice a lot against good serves then I'll start to get it.

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 Post subject: Re: Issues with receives
PostPosted: 03 Apr 2018, 03:45 
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