Article  SV303                                                                                                                                                                                                                    
             

Use your serve more effectively when playing matches.

If you play league tennis or in your club tournaments, you may not have the opportunity to improve your existing serve in the short term.
It is therefore important to use what you have to your best advantage.

The answer is to mix up your serve and to not give the opponent anything on which they can hone their returns.

1/. Vary where you stand to serve. Whilst there are obvious disadvantages in serving from some court positions, there is no reason why
you shouldn’t go there occasionally. By moving to various parts of the baseline (obviously on the correct side), you will be able to change
the angle and placement of your serve. Just be aware that you may have to move more quickly, if your opponent does a good return.

2/. Vary the speed, depth and spin of the ball when serving; reckgnise where your opponent is waiting to receive the serve, if they stand
very deep, occasionally put in a very short serve so they have a long way to run, suprise them.

3/. Occasionally, throw the ball up lower and to the right, put extra spin on the ball, this is a risky serve but it is worth putting in one or
two occasionally, it will take your opponent by surprise and that is half the battle. Although there will be  no margin for error.

4/. You do not have to stand up to the baseline to serve, if the wind is taking the ball long, stand back two to three feet; see how you get
on, you can also use this tactic if the wind is not heavy, just hit the ball a bit harder with more topspin.

5/. If you want to improve your serve generally, it a matter of hitting hundreds or thousands of practice serves.

6/. Pressure is one of the major issues when playing a serious match and that is when every serve begins to unravel.
Play games against your partner where you only have one first serve, no dolly serves. Use pressure games to work on your mind.

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