Ying-Ying Duan (*89 / CHN) can be at her age of 27 years hardly considered as a young tennis prodigy, but this relatively new entrant into the WTA top 100 could eventually become a factor in the women’s tennis. At her height of 186cm (6’1”), the service can be considered as her biggest weapon. Her service surely has already quite some potential, but certain improvements could bring Duan even better serving efficiency and higher margins. The deficiencies shown and mentioned below are then quite typical for many, mainly female tennis players.
The 1 st service from the ad side shown above – OUT on a down the T attempt, is from Duan’s winning 2nd round qualification match during the 2016 US.Open qualification. Subsequently, she made it all the way to the 2nd round of the main draw, where she eventually lost to the young tennis prodigy Naomi Osaka (JPN). The video shows quite solid well-controlled preparation, perhaps with slightly too limited body coiling as well as with a rather stiffer hitting arm and the toss going a bit too much to the right (this limits the power and gives also an early information about the direction of the service to the opponent). These factors might then be at the root of the rather limited pronation shown here, which is missing the distinct decisive “follow through 1” element increasing the efficiency and the margin, mainly of the first service. As the racket goes after the impact rather on a bit flatter/straighter curve/line than what would be ideal, Duan’s first service percentage is often not very high for her size as she lands quite a substantial number of the 1st serves a bit long or in the upper portions of the net. Should she be able to improve this element and also to relax her hitting arm a bit, Duan could, in my opinion, become really a serious top 100 player.
Below, are shown details of Duan’s 1st service (both deuce and ad sides) from her quite intense 2016 US.Open 2nd round main draw match against Naomi Osaka (JPN). Here, Duan is making quite solid pronation (on the ad side even overpronation), but she is going with her racket hold in a rather too stiff arm on a bit too flat curve/line again and her center of gravity is even kicking a bit back after the impact in both cases. She is missing one distinct elbow position based regulatory element typical for the Service 3.0 (from the Tennis 3.0 portfolio), which would help her to better incorporate the energy from her center of gravity into the stroke and thus also significantly improve her 1st service margin.
Ying-Ying Duan (*89 / CHN) – 1st service in a match – deuce side – 2 of 7 – toss – beginning of the weight transfer, the rather stiff hitting arm is starting to uncoil a bit too early (instead of eventually going even a bit more behind the back of the player in this part of the service motion) – 2016 US.Open – New York / USA – August 2016
Ying-Ying Duan (*89 / CHN) – 1st service in a match – deuce side – 3 of 7 – loading while transferring from the platform to the pinpoint stance, the toss goes very high and this is mostly a factor leading to lower margins as well – 2016 US.Open – New York / USA – August 2016
Ying-Ying Duan (*89 / CHN) – 1st service in a match – deuce side – 7 of 7 – follow through 2 – rather limited arm relaxation on the non-dominant side, this leads mostly to a certain limitation of the body energy unloading – 2016 US.Open – New York – August 2016
This article covers certain aspects of Ying-Ying Duan’s service and service in general only! Further photos, more details about her service (including improvement possibilities) and other strokes as well as about the strokes of other players are available upon request at drmgb11(at)gmail.com. Some significant details of this kind, necessary for a top tennis performance as well as for a sustainable tennis training/development in general, are being discussed also in the seminar “TENNIS 3.0 – Future of the Game”, which is available worldwide upon request – www.tennis30.com / www.tennis30.cz
Photos & video (August 2016) & text (October 2016) copyright by Dr. Martin G. Baroch. Any further publication of either any of the photos/video and/or texts with the explicit written permission from the author/copyright owner only!!