Wednesday, April 27, 2011

USPTA Tip of the Week

This week's tip features the strategic component, which involves a player's overall game plan and usually incorporates two or more of the tactical elements. Strategies may change during the course of a match, so a player must learn how to adjust his strategy in certain situations based on outside variables such as an opponent's style of play, the physical environment and the particular game or match score.
The seven strategic subcomponents are: repetition, recognizing strengths, game style, surfaces, game situations, match situations and tournament situations.

Repetition is the ability to reproduce tactics that have proved successful against the opponent. The player needs to be able to recognize and identify which tactics are working and make adjustments when needed.
Recognizing strengths – knowing your own strengths and weaknesses and how to use them in developing a game plan or tactics against the opponent's strengths and weaknesses.
Game style – a player's game style depends on his personality, strengths and weaknesses. These traits determine the strategies and tactics he implements in competition.
Surfaces – knowing all types of playing surfaces with their individual characteristics and the ability to adapt to each one of them appropriately.
Game situations are conditions that exist in a game such as the score, whether the player is serving or returning, winning or losing, environmental conditions such as sun, wind, etc. A player's ability to handle and adapt to different situations is critical.
Match situations involve adapting to situations that unfold during a match such as when to change a losing strategy, starting the match during the day but finishing at night, playing a morning versus an evening match, the score – whether it is an eight-game pro set or best-of-three sets, etc.
Tournament situations – adapting to the variety of challenges that occur in the normal course of a tournament, such as if a player will be playing one or two matches per day (sometimes more if doubles are involved), if it is a weekend tournament or a week-long tournament, draw size, rain delays, etc.

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