Thursday, May 29, 2008

2nd serves?

As most of you know, my service is not my forte. In fact that was something my coach never really showed me how to do when I was a kid growing up. My 1st serve is a flat banger, I basically go for broke with power and I can usually land it about 40% of the time with that mentality. I have no 2nd serve and i'm embarrased to even call "it" a serve; I would refer to as a "Dink" serve. I know I should have a kick serve as a 2nd serve, but saying is easier than doing. I've been spending about an hour a day for a couple weeks working on it and thanks to Fuzzy Yellow Balls and some related threads on this forum, I'm starting to get the hang of it. I can land it in about 60-70% of the time now. It not great but its a start. My question is at what point do I begin to incorporate it as my 2nd serve. Crunching some numbers, at this current point with:

a 40% 1st serve and a 60% (worst case scenario) 2nd serve, I would be double faulting 24% of the time.

Assuming with due diligence I can get my 1st serve to about 50% and my kick serve into the 70% range that would yield only a 15% double fault %

...or should I wait until I hit a 60% 1st serve and a 80% 2nd serve for an 8% double fault %?

At what point should I be moving toward the kick serve as a 2nd serve? I understand most people will spout off things like "till your 2nd serve is 100%" or something but I'm a tad more realistic. I mean assuming I serving 5 times in a game (6-4 or 4-6) and each game has a mean of 7 points per game for a total of 35 serves in a set. with a:

double faulting 15%, I'd DF ~ 5 times in a set
double faulting 8%, I'd DF ~ 3 times in a set

The thought analysis is that if i'm serving 35 times in a set, should i give up 5 or 3 points automatically in order to have a better chance at winning the other 30-32 other serves (ie: not get crushed by throwing up a dink)?

Actually in the mean time I've toyed with the idea to do an underhanded topspin 2nd serve. I actually started doing these after seeing HR Kid's video of his drop ball forehands in his basement and I started doing the same on the courts to practice hitting against shots with no pace (which i sometimes have trouble with). I think that it would be a good replacement to my dink serve so my opponents don't crowd the service line and kill me on my 2nd serve.

These are just some thoughts and numbers I've crunched in my head since I get bored at work. Any comments and thoughts would be awesome. Thanks in advance.

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