Which is More Important: Serve or Return of Serve? - TennisForum.com
View Poll Results: Serve or Return?
The Serve is the most imporant weapon in tennis 26 76.47%
The Return of Serve trumps the serve every time. 8 23.53%
Voters: 34. You may not vote on this poll

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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old Mar 23rd, 2003, 07:41 PM Thread Starter
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Which is More Important: Serve or Return of Serve?

MJ brought up an interesting point. Is the serve or return of serve the better shot to have?

There are very few women with a great serve and fewer still with a great second serve. Serena williams has both, Iroda, lindsay, venus, kim, daniela all have good strong serves while on the other hand the return of serve is infamous on the women's side. so which is better?

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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old Mar 23rd, 2003, 07:51 PM
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is Agassi the better play or is Sampress the beter player?

well, it's hard to say, but they win Slams
or dominate Slams on different surfaces,
so i guess it depends on the surface,

but on WTA, the surface is less of a factor,
so serve becomes more important than return,
so i say it's the serve......
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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old Mar 23rd, 2003, 08:09 PM
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The serve is the first advantage you can get in the point. It sets up the entire point. You hit nice and deep and fast, advantage server. If you hit it slow, and short, advantage returner. Most times it is what decides the point.

Even if you have a GREAT return, but the opponent has a GREAT serve, the server normally wins, as in the case of Sampras / Agassi.

Conclusion: Serve


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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old Mar 23rd, 2003, 08:30 PM
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The Serve - A No-brainer

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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old Mar 23rd, 2003, 08:39 PM
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The Serve - An ABSOLUTE No-Brainer.

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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old Mar 23rd, 2003, 08:43 PM
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serve is more important
andy can't return at all and he is still in the top 10

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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old Mar 23rd, 2003, 08:49 PM
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i guess you could look at it in 2 ways. 1) if you have the serve then you should be able to hold serve and 2) you need the return of serve to break them so you can win. i'd say return of serve is more important to be a top player.

to put it this way you don't need a brilliant serve (you just need a mediocore one) to hold serve. but if you aren't good at return of serve then it is almost a given that your on the beck foot straight away when you are recieving. how are you supposed to break them? sure if you have a good serve you can take everyone to tie breaks but you still need to get a mini-break to win the set so i'd say that return of serve is more important.

Last edited by Gowza; Mar 23rd, 2003 at 09:03 PM.
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old Mar 23rd, 2003, 08:53 PM
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Serve for sure.
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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old Mar 23rd, 2003, 08:58 PM
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I really can't say. Remember that pre-stabbing, Seles had a pretty mediocre serve and it was her return which took her to the top of women's tennis. Steffi was the better server in their rivalry, but Monica was the better returner. Monica won 3 of the 4 major finals they played.

Return of serve, I'd say.

I'm still undecided though!

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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old Mar 23rd, 2003, 09:10 PM
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for the men's game, i'd say the serve.

for the women's i vote for the return-of-serve.

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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old Mar 23rd, 2003, 09:10 PM
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i think the return of serve. i mean look at it, if you suck big time at serving then what are you gonna do. if you suck at returning then you have to be a damn good server. for instance lets say there's 2 players, one good at serving and bad at returning, the other the total opposite. well the one who returns good has a better chance of breaking than the one with the bad return. i seriously have no clue, but i would rather have an amazing return and an ok serve, IMO.

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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old Mar 23rd, 2003, 09:20 PM
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If you suck at either you're going to be screwed no matter what... bad at serving = always broken. bad at returning = never breaking yourself.

I'd rather have the security on my own serve. I think serving is a much more high pressure thing than returning, so IMHO if you've got the serve sorted, you're closer to tennis nirvana than if ur return is sorted.
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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old Mar 23rd, 2003, 09:23 PM
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Well it depends how you look at it.

If you have an awesome serve but a crappy return....you'll hold serve every time and can't break worth shit. You need that one break to win the set.

If you have a fantastic return but a shitty serve...you'll break every time but can't hold to save your life. You'll need that one hold to win the set.

So it's equal in that way. But still, it turns out that you don't need that great of a serve to hold serve in general..especially in men's tennis. The serve is an added initiative.

As such, in the end I'd have to go with: SERVE

The server gets to pick where and how to start the first point. The returner, as a great as he/she may be has to always react to the serve and is at the server's whim.

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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old Mar 24th, 2003, 03:03 AM
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The serve is nearly always an attacking shot.

The return is generally defensive. Think of the shock when someone makes a winner off the return. It's so rare.

A really good server can dominate and win their serve-games easily, saving energy for the opponent's serve game. Then, even if they aren't that great a returner, they can wait for their opponent to mess up on serve - and get the break. Holding easily is also a great psychological advantage.

The poor server/good returner, on the other hand, always has to fight for her service games, using a lot of valuable energy. And against a really good server, even the best returners flounder.


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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old Mar 24th, 2003, 03:08 AM
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they are basically just as important as each other. there are aspects of a great serve that can make things easier but there are also aspects of a good return of serve that can make things easier.

when it all comes down to it i think it is the individuals decision because someone might hate serving and love to receive while another person maky like the opposite and these different attidudes change the way each player plays in both their receiving and serving games.
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