Label:service

Jack Sock – Service 3.0

....they also made some improvements on Jack's backhand and then some serious work has been done on Jack's service, which can be considered as quite a weapon now. In this article, I would like to focus on some qualities of this "new Sock service", as he showed them at the ATP 500 tournament in Basel (SUI) few weeks ago already, just before the above mentioned Paris event....

Ernesto Escobedo – Suboptimal service & forehand combination

But in both cases shown here, Ernesto didn't create an optimal space to be able to throw his elbow and racket away from the body against the target and the result was in both cases just a mediocre forehand, which was not putting the opponent under significant pressure. The main reason behind the suboptimal spacing might then not be primarily in the poor footwork capacity, but much rather in...

Martina Hingis – Service over the course of the time

For many years, the service could have been considered as Martina's biggest weakness, mainly due to a suboptimal form of the pronation with the elbow staying rather too low and the racket traveling rather too much on the horizontal plane after the impact. Over the course of the years, Martina was able to improve it a bit and her pronation did look much better later in her career. With the elbow.....

Kayla Day – Solid service 3.0

The very well developed essential elements of a good service are here mainly a well-controlled toss, excellent eye control of the ball, a good build-up of a tension in the body and a sound understanding of the targeted pronation channeling energy against the target in the first part of the follow through. Such a solid Service 3.0 is an excellent base for further growth and shows that good developmental technical work on service was done with Kayla in the past.

Casper Ruud – Basic Service 3.0

Photos below show Casper's service during 2015 Orange Bowl. Even thought that his service was not that dominant back then, the most important basic characteristics of the Service 3.0 were already there at that time and provided a solid base for further development/improvement. The most important among them is the proper understanding of the "follow through 1" with a well-executed (well-pronounced) targeted pronation.

Gael Monfils – Sound Service 3.0

Gael belongs to the best servers on the pro tour and his service mostly perfectly fulfills the highest Service 3.0 criteria of body energy dominance of the stroke. A typical sign of this is Gael's excellent targeted pronation in the "follow through 1". He appears to have discovered the essential aspects of the TENNIS 3.0 CODE for the service.

Radek Stepanek – Sound and efficient Service 3.0

This former top 10 player in both singles and doubles as well as twice Davis Cup Champion with the team of the Czech Republic belongs to the best servers on the Tour from the technical point of view. Despite his just average body size of 185cm (6'1''), he has a quite high career ace probability of 51% per game played.

Roger Federer – Efficient Service 3.0

Roger's service has more pronounced pronation and he spends a higher percentage of the service energy on the dominant (=right) side of the body than Andy. Over his entire career on the tour (data until mid-January 2017), Federer has the 1st service percentage of 62% (Murray 58%, Djokovic 65%, Nadal 69%) on which he won 77% of the points (Murray 75%, Djokovic 73%, Nadal 72%)...

Andy Murray – 1st service with rather lower margin

The above numbers tell us that Andy's service margins are mostly (besides aces) quite below the ones of his closest competitors. It's mainly his excellent return and rally game that make him to such a successful player he is. From the technical point of view, as I personally see it, a limited pronation and a rather unclear distinction between the follow through 1 and follow through 2 are the reasons behind Andy's lower service margins. Interestingly enough, Ivan Lendl (1st serve 56%, overall service points won 66%) had similar issues in his career.

Mirjana Lucic-Baroni – Service 3.0 then a now

Already in the late 90's, Mirjana belonged to the most dominant serving female players on the WTA Tour as she was one of the first of them who really understood the efficient use of the pronation. On the photos from 1998 shown below is well visible how fast she was able to pronate with the integration of the body energy already in the age of 16 years