Re: Agassi NOT greatest serve returner?
Ultimately it's all about percentages. By standing so close, Agassi risks getting aced by a serve with great pace and placement, but he's essentially saying "fine, ace me, but you're going to have to do it over and over, and if you can't hit it with great placement and speed, it's going to come back at you with interest, maybe even before you've finished your service action follow-through." That puts a lot of pressure on the server. If Andre gains control of 2 points on the return for every point where he gets aced, the numbers are in his favor. In him prime, it took a really great server to outserve Agassi --- Sampras being the most obvious example. And there were many matches where Agassi got through even while absorbing a huge number of aces, because on many points he was also imposing intimidating pressure on the return. (Sampras AO2000, Ivanisevic Wimb1992, J. Johansson AO2005...)
Federer's returning philosophy is also quite valid, and it really works for him. But you know, Federer is far more athletic and quick than Agassi at this point in his career. He can afford not to take charge of the point right from the start. Agassi needs to use his strength right from the start, even if it means taking the risk of aces.
Last of the moon-and-volley specialists.
I believe in luck. How else can you explain the success of those you don't like? ---Jean Cocteau
Last edited by MisterQ; 06-14-2006 at 04:35 PM.