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The Forehand Slice, Once Disdained, Makes a Comeback

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“Players needs to be practicing the slice and practicing tips on how to defend against that spin,” Shriver, the previous player and commentator, said, citing Ons Jabeur as a player who uses the slice well defensively and offensively.

Shriver and Fissette said it was a super approach shot, especially to an opponent’s forehand, since it kept the ball low and allowed the attacker to hit while moving through the ball, getting her to the online quicker. “Karolina Pliskova has a wonderful down-the-line approach slice,” Fissette added. “I’d prefer to see more women develop that.”

Fissette said that since WTA players were generally less comfortable at the online than men, the slice may be effective to open the court and draw opponents to short shots that could be trickier for them to handle.

That is particularly price trying on balls to your opponent’s forehand, Shriver said. Should you slice to players’ backhands, they could just slice it back and then you definately wouldn’t gain an edge. But on the forehand, you must keep the ball out of the principal strike zone where players can really drive the ball, and lower shots are tougher for a lot of players.

“And the slice often has greater than underspin, it also has a little bit of side spin, which adds one other element for them to take care of,” Shriver said.

Neither Shriver nor Fissette thinks the shot will, or should develop into, as common because the backhand slice.

“You could have to choose the appropriate ball and the appropriate moment,” Fissette said,

The backhand slice is a more natural shot, Shriver said, and “it could actually get really messy” when a player cannot find the texture for the forehand slice. Moreover, switching grips forwards and backwards an excessive amount of can throw a player’s power forehand out of sync.

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