Today we are going to discuss something i learned from another player i have competed with as a partner. He taught me this concept 5 years ago or so.
First off let me
say as a precursor to this tip. If you are the receiving team, the
partner NOT doing the receiving needs to be ALL THE WAY UP AT THE NVZ. I
see at least a dozen or so players that when their partner is receiving
the ball ,they are standing back near the rear of the court. WHY?????
Ok, now that we have gotten that basic concept out of the way. On with the tip.
partner is about to return the serve. I am standing at the NVZ. When i
am standing at the NVZ waiting for my partner to return the serve, i
like to be have my outside foot about an inch from the NVZ and my inside
foot back about a foot and a half behind the NVZ. What this does is a
couple of things. One, i am able to watch the serve and let my partner
know if the serve is good or not. My returning partner is concentrating
on returning the serve. So it is harder for them to call a ball out if
it is out by only an inch or so. I am just standing there watching where
the serve hits the court, so it is much easier for me to call an out
Second, my outside foot ( my right foot if i am on
the right side of the court, my left foot if i am on the left side of
the court ) acts kind of like a pivot foot in basketball. It lets me get
close to the NVZ line as possible and still know what my position is so
i dont violate it.
Now for the actual tip. After my
partner returns the serve, the middle is now MY RESPONSIBILITY on the
next shot. It doesnt matter whether it is my forehand or back hand. I
have the best position if the ball comes down the middle. I am just
standing there, but my partner has just returned the serve and is
busting butt to get up with me to the NVZ. Hence, when that ball comes
back to us a second time, he may still me running forward. When he is
running forward , he cant control the shot as well as i can when i am
just standing there. So most third shots that come back to my partner
and i down the middle, it should be the RECEIVERS PARTNER, NOT THE
RECEIVER that should cover the middle.