Coach CornerTechniquescountering-topspin-drive-from-sa-distance-behind-the-table
Nomad asked 4 months ago

Hi guys
Nice to see you back in action. I watched the video with Harimoto backhand style which looks impresisve I have a short bachand  approach with snappy wist and  follow through which gives the opponent not a lot of time to teply when close to the table. In a recent game however my opponent took a few steps back from the table and played heavy fast topspin to my backhand side which I could only block and so I lost the initiative speed wise. Should I have taken a few steps back from the table to be able to counterspin his return on my backhand from a distance. If so how would that change the Harimoto bachand action  further back from the table. Would the bat angle still be relatively open for example or would the wrist action change?  Moving back would also give me more time to run round and take the fast topspin on my forehand..
Great videos by the way with excellent breakdown of the technique in every case. Looking forward to your next ones.

1 Answers
Dan Academy Coach answered 4 months ago

Hi Alex, Glad you enjoyed the recent videos and are finding them helpful. In the long term you will be able to stay close to the table and still counter these fast heavy topspin shots with this same Hariomoto action. It just needs the correct timing and feel to control the incoming speed and spin but can be done. To begin with I would say taking a small step away but not to far is a good way to gradually learn this. The stroke will be the same as long as you don’t step back too far which I wouldn’t recommend as it’s tricky to get back in and this shot is effective fairly close. So start with a focus on keeping the stroke short still and using the pace on the ball from your opponent. Make sure you still keep your body forward and don’t get upright. If there is a lot of spin and speed you will need to close the bat angle slightly and brush over the top a bit more to stop the ball going long.

A great way to practice this is get someone to fast topspin to your backhand and you block it but then gradually add in a little Harimoto type counter attack, this will help you get used to transition from the block to a more attacking shot. Dan

replied 4 months ago

Thanks Dan.
Will try that in the next practise session.
I tried to use another tactic for returning heavy topspiin to my backhand which was to keep the bat angle closed and take the ball immediately after the bounce. By moving the wrist slightly to the left the ball came off the bat for an outright winner down the opponent’s forehand. This kept me close to the table but very tricky for consistency and success depended very much on anticipation and timing as well as judgement of the speed and spin of the opponent’s topspin in a fraction of a second.
Thanks again for your advice.
I will let you know how I get on.

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