Why does Federer use the slice on clay? [Archive] - MensTennisForums.com

Why does Federer use the slice on clay?

marcRD
04-30-2009, 03:29 PM
If the slice doesnt work on Nadal and Federer himself knows it doesnt work on Nadal since he never uses the slice against Nadal on clay, why bother practising the slice on avarage players? specialy he should practice returning those 2nd serves without the slice, his returns of 2nd serves against Nadal on important points have been terrible.

Federer should have a coach who could make him more determined to play the right tennis to have a shot against Nadal against every opponent. He should think of having Nadal across the net against every opponent he faces on the way to the french open. Hard angled crosscourt backhands, good returns on 2nd serves, dropshots and a super aggresive forehand is what he should be practising against every opponent on the way to facing Nadal or else he will be slaughtered.

I remember a match in a french open semifinal when Federer sliced Davydenko to death and then when facing Nadal he didnt have a topspinbackhand to push Nadal around, he needs to get rythm on his backhand without the slice in every match on clay.

finishingmove
04-30-2009, 03:34 PM
why does karlovic slice every backhand?

same answer to a different question.

rafa_maniac
04-30-2009, 03:34 PM
I think focusing purely on ways to beat Nadal on clay (pretty much a waste of time at this stage) is probably one of the big reasons why he's now struggling to beat everyone else :shrug:

leng jai
04-30-2009, 03:35 PM
WHy does Federer use the topspin backhand on any surface?

marcRD
04-30-2009, 03:35 PM
why does karlovic slice every backhand?

same answer to a different question.

It is not the same, I have seen Federer have excellent rythm without using the slice on his backhand. Even in Australian open final this year his backhand was firing at moments against Nadal.

Bernard Black
04-30-2009, 03:36 PM
If the slice doesnt work on Nadal and Federer himself knows it doesnt work on Nadal since he never uses the slice against Nadal on clay, why bother practising the slice on avarage players? specialy he should practice returning those 2nd serves without the slice, his returns of 2nd serves against Nadal on important points have been terrible.

Federer should have a coach who could make him more determined to play the right tennis to have a shot against Nadal against every opponent. He should think of having Nadal across the net against every opponent he faces on the way to the french open. Hard angled crosscourt backhands, good returns on 2nd serves, dropshots and a super aggresive forehand is what he should be practising against every opponent on the way to facing Nadal or else he will be slaughtered.

I remember a match in a french open semifinal when Federer sliced Davydenko to death and then when facing Nadal he didnt have a topspinbackhand to push Nadal around, he needs to get rythm on his backhand without the slice in every match on clay.

So he should change his natural game against all other opponents because of Nadal?

I think I know why Federer is a top tennis player and you aren't.

marcRD
04-30-2009, 03:37 PM
I think focusing purely on ways to beat Nadal on clay (pretty much a waste of time at this stage) is probably one of the big reasons why he's now struggling to beat everyone else :shrug:

I have said before Federer has 2 options, either he plays the clay season if he belives he has the slightest chanse of beating Nadal on clay or he prepares to Wimbledon and gets an advantage against Nadal and other players to win his 6th Wimbledon.

morningglory
04-30-2009, 03:37 PM
It's not the slice that's been bad... it's his low % 1st serve as of late

marcRD
04-30-2009, 03:38 PM
So he should change his natural game against all other opponents because of Nadal?

I think I know why Federer is a top tennis player and you aren't.

On clay, yes. On other surfaces, no.

finishingmove
04-30-2009, 03:39 PM
if you are watching his match now, u might've noticed he just used his topspin backhand and made a kid in the crowd happy, giving him a souvenir

Rafa#Uno:-)
04-30-2009, 03:40 PM
well tennis is about using different tactics against different players
well he should stop using slice against Rafa and other players which can dig it up with huge top spinn
so stupid to play like it is rafa on the other side when playing Roddick for instance.....
if he does that he has stopped being creative

marcRD
04-30-2009, 03:41 PM
It's not the slice that's been bad... it's his low % 1st serve as of late

You are missing the point, his slice is good but no slice is good enought against Nadal on clay. Federer can barely play the slice on grass against Nadal.

marcRD
04-30-2009, 03:45 PM
well tennis is about using different tactics against different players
well he should stop using slice against Rafa and other players which can dig it up with huge top spinn
so stupid to play like it is rafa on the other side when playing Roddick for instance.....
if he does that he has stopped being creative

Well, tennis is also about rythm. If his slice works against every player except Nadal and he uses his slice to get to finals against Nadal on clay, then when he gets to play Nadal his topspin backhand has no rythm, he is dependent on his slice but still cant play the slice, so he is forced to play a topspin backhand on all these awkward positions where he usually just plays a sliced backhand, he is forced to play a tennis very different from his natural game.

Har-Tru
04-30-2009, 03:47 PM
because it's much safer than his utterly crappy backhand

Bernard Black
04-30-2009, 03:55 PM
Well, tennis is also about rythm. If his slice works against every player except Nadal and he uses his slice to get to finals against Nadal on clay, then when he gets to play Nadal his topspin backhand has no rythm, he is dependent on his slice but still cant play the slice, so he is forced to play a topspin backhand on all these awkward positions where he usually just plays a sliced backhand, he is forced to play a tennis very different from his natural game.

I see what you're saying, but players would constantly target his backhand if they knew they'd get the weak topsin response each time, just like Nadal does. He uses his slice to mix the pace and move his opponent around and eventually make room for the big forehand.

You have to remember Federer is using the one hander as well, it's not comfortable to hit over the top of balls hit with pace and depth to that side, and he'd shank a lot more balls than he already does if he followed your advice, quite frankly.

marcRD
04-30-2009, 03:58 PM
I see what you're saying, but players would constantly target his backhand if they knew they'd get the weak topsin response each time, just like Nadal does. He uses his slice to mix the pace and move his opponent around and eventually make room for the big forehand.

You have to remember Federer is using the one hander as well, it's not comfortable to hit over the top of balls hit with pace and depth to that side, and he'd shank a lot more balls than he already does if he followed your advice, quite frankly.

Well, it is up to Federer if he wants to defend points and win no tournaments or risk losing these points to get a better shot to win tournaments on clay.

prima donna
04-30-2009, 05:08 PM
(pretty much a waste of time at this stage)
You just can't resist, can you ? If it's so obviously a waste of time, then why does it even bear acknowledgement ?

rafa_maniac
04-30-2009, 05:12 PM
I have said before Federer has 2 options, either he plays the clay season if he belives he has the slightest chanse of beating Nadal on clay or he prepares to Wimbledon and gets an advantage against Nadal and other players to win his 6th Wimbledon.

:retard: In order to beat Nadal on clay he'd sort of need to get far enough in the tournament first. That might mean using the slice against other opponents.

habibko
04-30-2009, 05:13 PM
If the slice doesnt work on Nadal and Federer himself knows it doesnt work on Nadal since he never uses the slice against Nadal on clay, why bother practising the slice on avarage players? specialy he should practice returning those 2nd serves without the slice, his returns of 2nd serves against Nadal on important points have been terrible.

Federer should have a coach who could make him more determined to play the right tennis to have a shot against Nadal against every opponent. He should think of having Nadal across the net against every opponent he faces on the way to the french open. Hard angled crosscourt backhands, good returns on 2nd serves, dropshots and a super aggresive forehand is what he should be practising against every opponent on the way to facing Nadal or else he will be slaughtered.

I remember a match in a french open semifinal when Federer sliced Davydenko to death and then when facing Nadal he didnt have a topspinbackhand to push Nadal around, he needs to get rythm on his backhand without the slice in every match on clay.

http://i100.photobucket.com/albums/m39/bluenazareth/whut.jpg?t=1240716403

rafa_maniac
04-30-2009, 05:16 PM
You just can't resist, can you ? If it's so obviously a waste of time, then why does it even bear acknowledgement ?

That one was meant with you in mind :kiss:

marcRD
04-30-2009, 05:28 PM
:retard: In order to beat Nadal on clay he'd sort of need to get far enough in the tournament first. That might mean using the slice against other opponents.

He did that last year, he did that 2 years ago, he did that 3 years ago....

So, this season things can only get worse, right? How about some gamble, some risktaking?

He surely cant do what he has been doing every season now (unless he wants to beat the record on clay runner ups in the open era, actually I think he already got that one), how about he tries to gamble by changing his game drasticaly just to beat Nadal on clay? Another gamble would be to just not care about clay season and put his mind on wimbledon and USOPEN already.

Is Federer the kind of player who wants to defend points and play it safe or someone who wants to win big titles? He surely wont win any titles playing like he did the last 3 years.

Whatever new strategy he will like to test against Nadal this year he should try to get rythm against other player before. If he wants to serve and volley on 1st serves he should practise it before facing Nadal, if he wants to cut down the slice and get more rythm on his topspin backhand he should not start to test that against Nadal in a potential final.

Federer getting to finals on clay only to get beaten by Nadal is a foolish idea and will make his selfconfidence go way down when going to Wimbledon. I just dont see any idea behind Federers tennis at the moment.

prima donna
04-30-2009, 05:31 PM
That one was meant with you in mind :kiss:
You're too kind.

You know, we really ought to invest in some form of protection, otherwise we're destined to have little mutts (50% Fedtard/50% Rafatard) running around this forum in no time.

rafa_maniac
04-30-2009, 05:36 PM
He did that last year, he did that 2 years ago, he did that 3 years ago....

So, this season things can only get worse, right? How about some gamble, some risktaking?

He surely cant do what he has been doing every season now (unless he wants to beat the record on clay runner ups in the open era, actually I think he already got that one), how about he tries to gamble by changing his game drasticaly just to beat Nadal on clay? Another gamble is to just not care about clay season and put his mind on wimbledon and USOPEN already.

Is Federer the kind of player who wants to defend points and play it safe or someone who wants to win big titles? He surely wont win any titles playing like he did the last 3 years.

Whatever new strategy he will like to test against Nadal this year he should try to get rythm against other player before. If he wants to serve and volley on 1st serves he should practise it before facing Nadal, if he wants to cut down the slice and get more rythm on his topspin backhand he should not start to test that against Nadal in a potential final.

Federer getting to finals on clay only to get beaten by Nadal is a foolish idea and will make his selfconfidence go way down when going to Wimbledon. I just dont see any idea behind Federers tennis at the moment.


Changing his game drastically won't help him beat Nadal on clay (he's already tried pretty much everything there is to try and it hasn't worked), it will only further help him lose to players he should not be losing to. That will do worse things for Federer's confidence than another expected loss to Nadal in a clay final and will cost him ranking wise, which will in turn hurt him even more in the future.

marcRD
04-30-2009, 06:14 PM
Changing his game drastically won't help him beat Nadal on clay (he's already tried pretty much everything there is to try and it hasn't worked), it will only further help him lose to players he should not be losing to. That will do worse things for Federer's confidence than another expected loss to Nadal in a clay final and will cost him ranking wise, which will in turn hurt him even more in the future.

I would say Federers confidence would not be hurt as much if he lost to lets say Verdasco in a French Open qf than it would if he gets ripped apart by Nadal in the final.

LinkMage
04-30-2009, 06:48 PM
The question is why doesn't he use the slice BH against Nadull on grass?

marcRD
05-01-2009, 12:19 AM
The question is why he doesn't use the slice BH against Nadull on grass?

The slice to the Nadal backhand is a good way to set up his forehand or get to the net, but the crosscourt slice is too risky as Nadals forehand drive gets really low and he eats slices up for breakfast with that forehand. People forget that the slice is a defensive shot and that the crosscourt slice is the only natural way to defend with your onehanded backhand, the slice down the line is nice but you cant use it consistantly as is the case with the crosscourt slice. Nadal taking away the slice from Federers game is something which too few times is discussed in my opinion, Federer may have the greatest slice in the game and he cant use it against Nadal which causes all kind of troubles to Federer as his backhand without the slice is kind of avarage.

Mechlan
05-01-2009, 12:29 AM
At this stage in his career, he's got to focus on improving the rest of his game against everyone, not focusing on Nadal. His margin isn't so great anymore that he can try going out of his comfort zone and still expect to win in straights. He'll probably end up losing way more and never even end up playing Nadal like that.

Why he doesn't do the things that everybody on the planet knows he should do against Nadal, that's a different question.

FlameOn
05-01-2009, 12:38 AM
I'm not a fan of Fed's return of serve either. I'll probably get flack for this but when it comes to return of serve, WTA > ATP.

marcRD
05-01-2009, 12:44 AM
At this stage in his career, he's got to focus on improving the rest of his game against everyone, not focusing on Nadal. His margin isn't so great anymore that he can try going out of his comfort zone and still expect to win in straights. He'll probably end up losing way more and never even end up playing Nadal like that.

Why he doesn't do the things that everybody on the planet knows he should do against Nadal, that's a different question.

I dont get it, what does a player like Federer gain in aiming to become runner up in clay tournaments?

Either he just forgets clay season completely and sets up for grass season or he starts changing his game to improve his chanses in a potential final against Nadal.

luie
05-01-2009, 12:44 AM
It could have some positive effects on his game,my only addition is that he tries that strategy in Casablanca & Estoril ,not @ MC&Rome against these types of players.

cool bird1
05-01-2009, 12:51 AM
Federer is mental beaten by Nadal before they leave the locker room. So it dont matter what Fed trys slice hit over net game. It comes down to mental streath and Federer does not have that on any surface at the moment. Its a fact

Bazooka
05-01-2009, 12:54 AM
It doesn't work that way, what he does the last 4 days is not determining what he can do in the final. He can slice one day, topspin the next. Slice is more natural and less prone to UE, so the answer to your question is obvious. Plus on wet, cold conditions like we have, slice is pretty effective.

His BH is only slightly worse than it used to be, what has dropped down from "Godly" to "Above Average" is his running FH and overall movement, so really he should not worry about his BH if he can't fix that.

the graduate
05-01-2009, 01:37 AM
Federer looks preggars like his girlfriend..oops sorry wife,he has a belly really looking fat and slow.
He is really taking this eating for two thing to a whole new level:tape:he even has jowls tehehe!

Federerhingis
05-01-2009, 02:30 AM
I'm not a fan of Fed's return of serve either. I'll probably get flack for this but when it comes to return of serve, WTA > ATP.

Sorry mate that's because most women can't serve strong enough or consitently enough to hold comfortably like the men. The only emulatable serve on the WTA is Serena's. :o

moon language
05-01-2009, 02:36 AM
The question is why doesn't he use the slice BH against Nadull on grass?

Nadal eats slices to his forehand like delicious tapas. Slices to Nadal's backhand Nadal just slices back and the play never moves out of neutral.

bobbynorwich
05-01-2009, 02:36 AM
Because a slice dies on clay, very hard to pick up, thus a very effective shot.

Forehander
05-01-2009, 05:29 AM
In some cases you are out of position and especially as a one handed backhand player you must slice the ball.

Clay Death
05-01-2009, 05:55 AM
In some cases you are out of position and especially as a one handed backhand player you must slice the ball.

this really boggles my mind. there has to be a contest going on here for the dumbest possible thread of the year. this one needs to be entered in that contest.

he uses the slice for the same reason a dog licks his balls. because he can. and because it is a required part/component of one`s arsenal on the court. you pick and choose your spots as to when, where, and why to employ it to your advantage.

or also as Forehander puts it, it can help you get into the point again if you are caught in a defensive position.

moon language
05-01-2009, 06:07 AM
this really boggles my mind. there has to be a contest going on here for the dumbest possible thread of the year. this one needs to be entered in that contest.

he uses the slice for the same reason a dog licks his balls. because he can. and because it is a required part/component of one`s arsenal on the court. you pick and choose your spots as to when, where, and why to employ it to your advantage.

or also as Forehander puts it, it can help you get into the point again if you are caught in a defensive position.

Yeah obviously it's traditionally used to buy time or mix up the pace but Federer overdoes the slice at times. It was such a weapon for him in his prime when he used to use it to set up and toy with people like a cat torturing a mouse, but now it's become like a safety blanket that he seems to hit out of indecision and habit a lot of times. Nadal was overdoing it with his slice for a while too but he has started to become a little more selective about it.

marcRD
05-01-2009, 12:01 PM
this really boggles my mind. there has to be a contest going on here for the dumbest possible thread of the year. this one needs to be entered in that contest.

he uses the slice for the same reason a dog licks his balls. because he can. and because it is a required part/component of one`s arsenal on the court. you pick and choose your spots as to when, where, and why to employ it to your advantage.

or also as Forehander puts it, it can help you get into the point again if you are caught in a defensive position.

Once again this doesnt answer my question, why does Federer get used to relying on his slice to defend and get out of discomfortable positions when he cant and wont use it against Nadal on clay? Is Federer aiming to be runner up and be demolished by Nadal in clay finals again? Is there any thought at all from Federer going into clay season this year?

ORGASMATRON
05-01-2009, 12:33 PM
Once again this doesnt answer my question, why does Federer get used to relying on his slice to defend and get out of discomfortable positions when he cant and wont use it against Nadal on clay? Is Federer aiming to be runner up and be demolished by Nadal in clay finals again? Is there any thought at all from Federer going into clay season this year?

Thats my question as well, will he change something this year? Surely after last years demolition he must try something different this year. What happened last year was always going to happen and he utterly deserved it. He better realize this year that he cant slug it out form the baseline with NAdal. Ive said this for years, which means i am smarter then Federer when it comes to tennis.

Collective
05-01-2009, 12:57 PM
Slice to Nadull's backhand gave Roger plenty of points @ AO, that is basically blue clay.

FlameOn
05-01-2009, 01:01 PM
Sorry mate that's because most women can't serve strong enough or consitently enough to hold comfortably like the men. The only emulatable serve on the WTA is Serena's. :o
What you say is true. However not all the men have strong second serves either. Well, not so strong you have to slice them in each and every time. I'd say a lot if not most of the men's second serves are weak enough that a player as good as Federer could smack them away like Serena does.

marcRD
05-01-2009, 02:50 PM
In Rome so far his approach shots have been very safe, every approach shot I saw him play today would mean a passing shot for Nadal. He is not serving aggresively enought, he isnt using the dropshot enought, his forehand is not a killer shot anymore and he has no good rythm with his topspin backhand. What does Federer think will happen when he plays Nadal in a potential final?

Arkulari
05-01-2009, 03:05 PM
why would Roger bother going all out on players that he can beat without sweating much? :shrug:
he hasn't used his whole A-game in here, let's sit and wait to see if Djoker can bring that out of him ;)

sammy01
05-01-2009, 03:21 PM
his slice could be useful on clay against nadal if he hit it 90% of the time dtl to nadals backhand, but he doesn't he slices it low crosscourt to nadals forehand and nadal thinks 'thank you, the low bounce dosen't bother me off the forehand and i can whip it back towards federers weakness, the backhand, with very little trouble, heck if im confident i might even rip one dtl with heavy spin'

so basicaly the slice crosscourt plays into nadals stength his forehand, but if federer sliced dtl more it would play into nadals slightly weaker side but more importantly if nadal wants to hit crosscourt of it he would be doing so to federers stronger side the forehand.

marcRD
05-01-2009, 04:37 PM
his slice could be useful on clay against nadal if he hit it 90% of the time dtl to nadals backhand, but he doesn't he slices it low crosscourt to nadals forehand and nadal thinks 'thank you, the low bounce dosen't bother me off the forehand and i can whip it back towards federers weakness, the backhand, with very little trouble, heck if im confident i might even rip one dtl with heavy spin'

so basicaly the slice crosscourt plays into nadals stength his forehand, but if federer sliced dtl more it would play into nadals slightly weaker side but more importantly if nadal wants to hit crosscourt of it he would be doing so to federers stronger side the forehand.

The dtl backhand slice is not a very pratical shot, 1st it is difficult to make that shot from a defensive position (which is the greatest strength of Federers slice, he saves himself from trouble with that slice alot of times!). Also you need to understand that it is difficult to make a slice dtl from Nadals topspin balls up the shoulder on Federer, he also needs to make sure it is good enought so Nadal cant run around it with his forehand. Other than that I think he should use the slice dtl against Nadal from time to time, but he must surely mainly rely on his crosscourt topspin backhand beeing aggresive and to create great angles.

sammy01
05-01-2009, 04:41 PM
The dtl backhand slice is not a very pratical shot, 1st it is difficult to make that shot from a defensive position (which is the greatest strength of Federers slice, he saves himself from trouble with that slice alot of times!). Also you need to understand that it is difficult to make a slice dtl from Nadals topspin balls up the shoulder on Federer, he also needs to make sure it is good enought so Nadal cant run around it with his forehand. Other than that I think he should use the slice dtl against Nadal from time to time, but he must surely mainly rely on his crosscourt topspin backhand beeing aggresive and to create great angles.

oh yeah im totaly with you on that, but what i meant was if hes going to hit 20 slices in a match 18 should try and go dtl as the crosscourt slice unless on the defense is useless against nadal. if hes trying to use it to change up pace then surely trying to do this to nadals backhand corner is best. yes its a tough shot but heck when you've lost so many times on clay to the same guy you've got to at least try these things.

Forehander
05-01-2009, 05:31 PM
I remember last year during the post match interview after the RG final Federer said something along this line:

"He was simply too strong for me today. His footwork is like no others on this surface. He hits the backhand on open stance so naturally. I don't know if it's because he's ambidextrous or he's trained to do so... but It's as if I'm playing against two forehands."

Without being biased as to which one is better, but what Federer said clearly implied something about the difference between a two handed backhand and a one handed backhand. If you start off playing with a two handed backhand as a boy, you will learn that your defensive stroke that comes naturally is not the one handed slice, but a double handed block back that's hit on the run with an open stance. Whereas with a one handed backhand you wouldn't have a choice but to hit a slice if you're out of position. Sure, it's possible to hit marvelous one handed backhands too with maybe a semi-open stance or even open stance, but that depends on the PHYSICAL difference of different people. Not everybody is Richard Gasquet. Federer's backhand wing simply doesn't have enough brute power (especially now that his footwork is nowhere as good anymore) and is forced to vary it by applying the slice... which obviously doesn't work very well against Nadal's forehand or backhands of Andy Murray.

Quadruple Tree
05-02-2009, 03:01 PM
If you watched the match today, I think you have the answer to your question. His topspin backhand is a free point generator for his opponent. Pretty much guaranteed if he hits more than two of them in a row, he will either hit one out or drop one short for an easy put away.

marcRD
05-02-2009, 03:03 PM
If you watched the match today, I think you have the answer to your question. His topspin backhand is a free point generator for his opponent. Pretty much guaranteed if he hits more than two of them in a row, he will either hit one out or drop one short for an easy put away.

Well, he better get a coach then to get that problem fixed, or dont play on clay. I am kind of relieved that he wont face Nadal now, he would be absolutely destroyed by Nadal in this form.

crude oil
05-02-2009, 03:11 PM
the slice isnt as much of a problem as the chip. federer chipped so many bhs today and got punished.

BaselineSmash
05-03-2009, 02:14 AM
I've always been curious as to why Federer always ensures his shoelaces are tied before the commencement of a Grand Slam final.

Any thoughts?

finishingmove
05-03-2009, 02:16 AM
I've always been curious as to why Federer always ensures his shoelaces are tied before the commencement of a Grand Slam final.

Any thoughts?

perhaps he is a superstitious person

BaselineSmash
05-03-2009, 02:21 AM
perhaps he is a superstitious person

And just so we're clear, Nadal arranges his water bottles so particularly to block the evil brain waves of all those that are out to get him.

finishingmove
05-03-2009, 02:22 AM
And just so we're clear, Nadal arranges his water bottles so particularly to block the evil brain waves of all those that are out to get him.

and nole's cat.

CyBorg
05-03-2009, 05:07 AM
I think that the answer may be deceptively simple. Roger's backhand is pretty poor at this point, so the slice allows him to make up for it somewhat against most players. I think Roger knows very well that he has no chance against Nadal at this point. Federer is just doing his best to survive and pick up points in general. Preparing for Nadal is not even in the conversation - no matter what Roger says to the media.

Lee
05-03-2009, 05:23 AM
I've always been curious as to why Federer always ensures his shoelaces are tied before the commencement of a Grand Slam final.

Any thoughts?

This deserves a new thread! Don't you think so?

and nole's cat.

:rolls:

Halba
05-03-2009, 11:51 AM
fed's got a lot of chances in fast courts, as the backhand is more of a timing/angle thing on the faster courts. its just landing too short on clay, now hes old. wawrinka destroyed his short balls with smashing 1handers and djokovic did too with full array of strokeplay(in 2nd and 3rd sets i watched).