Tactics against Dr. Evil rubber

Table Tennis Match Strategy

Last updated 3 years ago

Margie Hadden

Margie Hadden Asked 3 years ago

Hello Alois,

I think I am a premium member? I definitely was anyway. I have a competition tomorrow. I will be playing against some players who have Dr. Evil on their backhand. I don’t think they twiddle. I do also have an opportunity to train against them in future. I have tried to look up tactics against this rubber on the internet.

I play with ordinary rubber (spiny rubber) Here is what I think I need to do:


Plenty of serves long to backhand and play as I like to forehand with more short ones to forehand.

If playing to the backhand:

push long to back hand.

I need to move forward towards ball when it’s  coming from the backhand, as the ball won't come to me, so I need to move in and then out.

keep the ball low. 

Play wide angles. 

There was also talk about racket angles but I wouldn't be able to take those on board with everything now.

my questions are: 

Are all Dr. Evil rubbers short pips with added unpredictability? Or are there medium pip versions or does it matter?

Does short pip Dr. Evil reverse spin just like long pips so should I alternate backspin and topspin as I would against long pips?

should I try to give heavy spin to the ball, when playing to backhand or put a few dead balls in (I'm not sure what dead ball means? I suppose a kind of gentle no spin return?&nb

The last question is how do you execute wide angles? (just try to aim more to the edge of the board? )

It is all very complicated. 

I think you are in lock down now as I type, I hope you can find some positives from not rushing about. I look forward to your reply. Margie

Alois Rosario

Alois Rosario Answered 3 years ago

Hi Margie,

You certainly are a Premium member.

Dr Evil looks like an interesting rubber.  It is a short pips rubber with some reversing properties but not as much as Long Pimples.

The tactics that you have come up with are sound.  It seems they will not be able to attack much with that rubber so going there will tend to give you a predictable response.

If you start to feel comfortable against the rubber then you can play more balls there.

Also see what type of attack they have with the forehand side and what you can get away with there.  If you can play softer balls to the forehand then you are not under as much pressure.  If they attack well with the forehand then the softer balls need to find their backhand side.

I don't think angles are necessarily the best option because this will also open cup angles for them to move you around.  I would tend to only play wide if you feel you are able to move faster and better than your opponent.  you can also think about playing wide on a finishing ball.

I think the most important thing is to learn as much as you can tomorrow and then try to practice against the rubber a few times to get the feel of what it does and to see the reaction against your different shots.

Good luck.


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Margie Hadden

Margie Hadden Posted 3 years ago

Wow Alois, thanks a million for your reply and I have it in plenty of time for the competition! This is very reassuring to have a definite plan. There seems to be very little on tactics against the rubber on the internet, it’s all about playing with it, so it is great to know from you,  that I am on the right track. My forehand isn’t strong, so it suits me fine to play to their back hand and learn how the rubber reacts. The players are all way younger than me and one in particular is lightening fast so not necessarily doing wide angles is fine,  except on a winner. Thanks again. I am really looking forward to today. 

Alois Rosario

Alois Rosario from PingSkills Posted 3 years ago

Let us know how things go. 

Margie Hadden

Margie Hadden Posted 3 years ago

Hi Alois, brilliant really, thank you, in that I was able to see clear as crystal what happened when I hit a short ball to backhand, it was anialated! Whereas the long ones were merely returned. The general tactics helped me against a long pips player too. What I totally don’t get is this idea of going forward to meet the ball. I didn’t experience moving forward at all. I don’t get the idea of moving forward to a ball flying towards you. I had some very close matches. Very happy to have a plan for each rubber but maybe I need to work on switching play returning a ball from their forehand hit back to their backhand, it’s difficult against strong forehands coming fast but something I could practise on in training matches. 

Alois Rosario

Alois Rosario from PingSkills Posted 3 years ago

Hi Margie,

Good to hear you learned a bit.  The movement forward only needs to happen on the ball that really has the reversing effect and drops short.  Usually when you have made a topspin stroke into the long pimple rubber.

If they attack well with the forehand you don't need to do too much.  Maybe think about just blocking the ball back to their backhand side.

Margie Hadden

Margie Hadden Posted 3 years ago

Oh excellent Alois, thank you! That is very clear! Very helpful! 

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