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Four Perfect Opportunities To Rush The Net
By Thurston Soros, Lawn Tennis Correspondent, Posted: Friday, April 25, 2008 4:45am CST USA
Four Perfect Opportunities To Rush The Net
You might kiss a good friend at the net. Photo by Life
( When I first started playing tennis years ago as a youngster, I instinctively hit all flat forehands. Not long afterwards I discovered that by running around my backhand to hit all forehands, I was leaving a large amount of the tennis court open. Then I added a flat two-handed backhand.

After losing some friendly matches due to my groundstroke errors, I then practiced and added topspin as an option for my groundstrokes. And like many of you a net game was the last aspect of my game which I developed.

But it doesn't matter if you are a beginning baseline player like I was or you are an experienced player, you can and should rush the net to finish off points. If you can hit a forceful, solid volley from a good position, chances are you will win the point. Think of playing the net as your chance to end points quickly and in style. Here are four perfect opportunities for you to rush the net.

1. When You Can See Your Opponent's Back
If at any time during a point you can see your opponent's back, you should rush the net. This means most likely you've hit a powerful shot or used placement on the prior shot to push your opponent backwards. Your opponent's next shot more often than not will be very defensive. Attack it with good footwork and an aggressive volley to close out the point.

2. If You Get Short Balls
When your opponent hits any ineffective lob or otherwise short ball, you should move forward and attack. I like to hit either a swing volley winner or deep overhead. You may prefer the more traditional punch/block/no swing volley. You can practice your volleys with mini-tennis and a friend before you unleash them in a match.

3. To Mix Up Play During A Match
Mix it up if you're ahead 40-0 or 40-15 in a game and throw in serve and volley or power groundstroke and volley. The drop volley is a great play especially if your opponent is standing far behind the baseline to receive your power groundstrokes.

4. To Throw Off A Serve And Volleyer
If you're playing a serve and volleyer or otherwise any player who likes to volley, you may need to rush the net more often than you normally would to keep your opponent from hitting volley winners which is his strength. If you can take that away from him or at least minimize his volley winners, then you've neutralized his game.

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