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Help me beat a Lefty!

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icontek View Drop Down
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This is FPS Doug

Joined: 10/31/2006
Location: Maine, US
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    Posted: 05/11/2010 at 10:52am
general morning rambling with coffee follows:

I have two opponents with oddly similar styles:
-But one is left handed, one is right handed.
-Both players rely on their opponent to generate pace and spin
-Both block and counter off one wing and use pips on the other wing for passive play and loose ball kills.
-The lefty is "odd", he uses an inverted backhand and an LP FH
-The righty is "normal", he uses inverted forehand and a medium pips BH

So when I am looking at the table, the rubber position (inverted at my left, pips at my right) is similar. The major differences as I understand it, are their body position and angles and the strengths and weaknesses of BH vs FH.

They both play around US1600. I regularly split matches with the righty, and I lose in 3 games to the lefty.

The sum of the parts:
The righty, has a powerful FH (the inverted) and plays off the bounce attacks against underspin or strong counterattacks against topspin. His style works very well against players at or above his level (US1700-1900 players) as he has the touch to open against grooved topspin strokes - he is known for taking over during FH-FH rallies and controlling the point with off the bounce attacks. He doesn't deal well with "junk" balls on his FH side (mix of spin amounts and wider placements).

To beat him - I apply constant pressure to his backhand (the pips) and crossover point. I find his medium pips horribly deceptive, and produce a range of reversal and dead balls depending on how much spin and or how hard you hit them. But if I hit soft dead balls deep to his backhand with a push, I seem to prevent him from taking the offense. At the same time, the weak balls prevent any meaningful spin reversal. I do this with a mix of quick or dead pushes to the body when he is close to the table to setup safe topspin. These shots seem to work well against the medium pips. These tactics both prevent his FH attacks and allow me to utilize a consistent FH loop down the line the the BH to finish To mix it up, I also pin him to BH then exploit the open FH corner.

But against the lefty this all goes to crap.

Maybe because his FH long pips can cover so much of the table, my tactics of using my backhand to place safe balls crosscourt doesn't really allow me to control his position. Unlike the righty who has to constantly move his body to return BH-BH balls, the lefty can get away with reaching. He seems to pushing/blocking and flat smash from a relatively "safe" position on the table.

I find that his BH side (the inverted) is like a wall. Weak topspins are counterattacked. Strong topspins are blocked down. I simply cannot hit through or around his backhand. Using my FH push against his BH push is a recipe for disaster. If I attack or apply pressure crosscourt with my FH, the lefty (due to loads of practice receiving FH drives, loopkills, and smashes) will use his consistency and control to wear me down.

The only "success" (not enough to win games, but enough to win points) that  I have had was to stay away from his inverted backhand, and concentrate on his long pips, and trying to get him to misread or misjudge to pop one up.

Without a backhand loop, I cannot do the push/loop/push/loop that I have seen some of the more allaround players use. So I am currently limited to varying my pushes and flat smashing the weak ball. I might have more success if I step around my BH and use my FH to attack his pips. I'm hesitant to use any sidespin!

What to do?
US1260.RC1042 . Avalox P500 : Tuple 007 Pro + Victas 402DE
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