Nebraska-born Jack Sock (*92 / USA) came, after his rather difficult Summer of 2017, which was highlighted solely by his semifinal appearance at the Citi Open in Washington, to the top form at the end of the year when he captured with the 2017 Paris Masters his biggest title yet. This win (together with Jack’s great results in the first 3 months of the year 2017) catapulted him into the ATP top 10 for the first time and secured him also his premier ATP Masters qualification. Needless to say, the almost weird mass absence of players like Novak Djokovic, Andy Murray, Kei Nishikori, Stan Wawrinka, Milos Raonic, Tomas Berdych as some others was surely helpful for Jack, but achieved is achieved… and the history mostly forgets circumstances…
From my point of view, the cooperation with his new personal coach Jay Berger, which began just a few months ago, is starting to bear fruits. As it seems to me, they partly cleaned up Jack’s forehand, which started to get on the backswing part of it rather a bit over-complicated and thus partly vulnerable (more about Jack’s forehand in my previous article here), they also made some improvements on Jack’s backhand as well as on backhand return 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) a few weeks ago already, just before the above mentioned Paris event. The photos below are from Jack’s match against Robin Haase (NED) during Basel’s Swiss Indoors. His services clicked speeds over 200 km/h = 125mph quite often in this match.
As can be seen in the photo rows below, Jack has mastered the skill of the body energy unloading against the target going over the optimal form of the”targeted pronation”, which is then the typical sign of the greatest servers. In the comments below, I am mentioning some of the details from the Tennis 3.0 Code for the Service 3.0, which help accomplish this task. At present, I see the biggest weakness of Jack’s service in his rather unstable toss, which has some subtle but important stabilization elements missing. It is mainly in the cases of the “out of the sync” tossing (left) arm motion when his unloading qualities can’t be fully played out.
This article covers certain aspects of Jack Sock’s service as well as tennis service in general only! Further photos and more detailed information about his service 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 top tennis performance are being discussed also in the seminar “TENNIS 3.0 – Future of the Game”, which is available worldwide upon request – www.tennis30.cz
Photos (August 2017 & October 2017) & text (November 2017) copyright by Dr. Martin G. Baroch. Any further publication of either any of the photos and/or texts with the written permission of the author/copyright owner only!!