How to prevent a one-handed backhand from degrading during match play?
Hi everyone. I finally joined the forum and first wanted to say hello. I am a 38 year-old 3.75 player, having taken up the game about 11 years ago at about the time Pete Sampras beat Corretja in that epic US Open quarterfinal match. Maybe being a Pete fan has been a curse, because, like him, I like attacking tennis and short points but the talent isn’t always there to back it up. Anyway, here’s my question, and thanks in advance for your help.
I have a one-handed backhand. In practice, or during lessons, I can hit respectable topspin drives. And I understand the mechanics of the shot. But in match play, even if I’m not nervous, my racquet speed drops, I don’t uncoil through the shot, and the result is an unimpressive and rather flat slow shot that soon becomes a liability. Or, I fall back to using the slice. I can’t tell if this is a result of not having confidence or is due to a fitness issue since the shot requires getting low and using good footwork, which can be difficult when fatigue sets in. Or maybe it's a lack of flexibility that lets me down.
Regardless, it’s driving me mad because I know what I am capable of, but can’t seem to deliver the goods nearly as often as I’d like. If anyone has any tips or advice to prevent this bad habit, I’d sure appreciate it.