Last updated 3 years ago
Hi Alois. Ken here in Victoria, Canada. I've been a subscriber for a couple of months and love your site. Thankyou!! I'm a 72 year old who played table tennis in high school as a teenager and won high school championships. I decided to return to the sport last March and have made good progress since (for my age) I belong to a club, have a coach and practice with a robot I purchased a few months ago. Last month, I played a man who plays at about the same level as I do. However, I came away so frustrated, I haven't had the initiative to pick up a racket since. He plays a tomahawk serve that can spin either clockwise or counterclockwise. My only hope of returning it without your help is to guess which spin it has and counter it accordingly. I have a 50% chance of guessing correctly, and if I don't, he wins the point. I can pick up a topspin or backspin and react well. Also, if a sidespin is well telegraphed, I can react well. However, this man disguises the left and right spin of the tomahawk so well, I don't process what I'm seeing quickly enough to react accordingly. Your input to my quandary would be greatly appreciated.
The first thing to watch for is which side of the bat he hits it with. If he hits it with the backhand side it will spin off to your right. If he hits it with his forehand side it will spin off to your left. The idea then is to watch really carefully the contact point of the server.
To return the ball just use the angle of your bat to guide the ball back. If the ball wants to spin to your right, angle the bat to face the left and vice versa.
It sounds like a complex process but it will start to become automatic with time and exposure to the serve a few more times.
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