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 Post subject: Serve return question
PostPosted: 29 Apr 2018, 20:19 
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When served a pendulum serve with moderate back/side top/side, is it possible to return the ball with the same push.

I'm thinking that if you push reasonably firm it could both return the spin of a backspin serve or continue the spin of a topspin serve.

The are a couple of players in my league that seem to return the ball with the same shot no matter the serve. Note that my competitionl is not that high (700-1000 RC) and the spin would be low to moderate.

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PostPosted: 29 Apr 2018, 20:56 
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Sounds questionable. I doubt anyone can return a backspin and a topspin serve with grippy inverted and the same action. A moderate topspin you'd have to chop pretty hard down into the table.

If you're receiving it well off the table, that's a different matter...

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PostPosted: 01 May 2018, 05:14 
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It probably just looks like a similar service return, but can be different momentum and slight different angle, and also when the shot is made, meaning how long after the bounce. If it actually a good amount of topspin on the serve you would have to let the ball travel more before pushing it, and would look more like a chop, yeah?


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PostPosted: 04 May 2018, 01:27 
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Try it with the robot (or with a partner who can serve consistently) and find out if it's possible. I don't think it's possible with exactly the same stroke, but you could do it by modifying the blade angle. There's this penholder (the one who uses the bare wood on the back of the blade) who has some pretty spinny side-top/side-back pendulum serves, which he can do in either direction. I've gotten quite good at pushing them back, returning the sidespin, but I don't even know how I do it.. it's become instinctive. I can keep the returns fairly low and short, too, and will occasionally attack them. These serves cause the others in our group quite a bit of trouble. Two others in the group now play with long pips (Robert's fault.. :lol: ), so long pips bothers everyone a lot less than it ordinarily would for players of this level (fairly low). Those serves are deadly, though, when returned with long pips - not to the opponent but to the player himself or especially his doubles partner.. :lol: He hasn't learned to serve less-spinny balls into long pips yet (and no one seems to want to tell him). He himself returns MY serves with the bare wood, so I serve to him accordingly. Long, fast dead serves seem to cause a lot of trouble to those of us who play with long pips.

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PostPosted: 04 May 2018, 02:38 
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It would require very soft hands.

I return hard chop serves especially with side spin by reaching out with a forehand chop/block just as the ball bounces on my side. My have a very soft hold so I try to absorb as much of the action of the ball as possible and let it go back of its own accord, angling the racket just enough to keep it low and keep the ball on the table. Most of my returns go down the backhand line of the opponent when I do it correctly.

Now with a lot of top spin this would result in popping up the ball and players will eat it alive. But if I am soft enough and I judge the spin such that I change the angle of the racket enough it is not so bad as one might think. Not the bnest approach for that server but it might keep me in the point.

The two serves should be handled differently enough that my return should look radically different for each, but the softness I apply (if it means something to apply softness- LOL) reduces how different they have to be.

Now if the players you are talking about don't have a lot of spin on either their chop or their top spin, the that would reduce the difference between the two serves as well, so they might even start to look the same if you don't peer to closely.

Long story short, I think those who return the two different serves in what appears to be the same manner might just be using very soft hands during the return push.


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