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supergrunt
Aug 2nd, 2007, 08:31 PM
Has Venus' backhand gotten worse as her forehand has gotten better?

Tavaris22
Aug 2nd, 2007, 08:32 PM
No I think its still her most solid shot......

tennisIlove09
Aug 2nd, 2007, 08:35 PM
No, it's more diverse now. I remember in 2003 during the Wimbledon quarters against Davenport, JMac was saying that he wished Vee would develop a slice one hander so she can reach better when on the run. She has. Her backhand down the line is still one of the most feared shots in tennis. She used it well at Wimbledon.

sfselesfan
Aug 2nd, 2007, 08:36 PM
Why would anyone think that?

SF

Thanx4nothin
Aug 2nd, 2007, 08:40 PM
Someone said it had went backwards which is rubbish it's better than ever now.

AcesHigh
Aug 2nd, 2007, 08:42 PM
It's worse.. outside of Wimbledon, the shot hasn't been great.

The backhand used to be hands-down the best in tennis. Now, I don't think it's top 5. Serena, Henin, Jankovic, and a few others have as good.. if not better backhands.

Thanx4nothin
Aug 2nd, 2007, 08:43 PM
It's worse.. outside of Wimbledon, the shot hasn't been great.

The backhand used to be hands-down the best in tennis. Now, I don't think it's top 5. Serena, Henin, Jankovic, and a few others have as good.. if not better backhands.

I had a feeling you would come in here and say something like that. No offense.

sfselesfan
Aug 2nd, 2007, 08:45 PM
It's worse.. outside of Wimbledon, the shot hasn't been great.

The backhand used to be hands-down the best in tennis. Now, I don't think it's top 5. Serena, Henin, Jankovic, and a few others have as good.. if not better backhands.

You win the coveted...

http://www.sestaluna.com/wordpress/wp-content/smells_like_bullshit.jpg

SF

AcesHigh
Aug 2nd, 2007, 08:46 PM
Well.. I wish Venus would work on it more. This started happening back in 2004-2005 IMO when Venus seemed to give too much attention to her forehand which became more consistent, but her backhand deteriorated. It's still a very good shot, but you will not see her hit as many winners from it as she used to.

It's become more of a defensive shot and less of an offensive one. The forehand has become formidable, and I prefer for her to be solid off the ground on both sides, but I do miss the killer backhand she once had.

sfselesfan
Aug 2nd, 2007, 08:51 PM
but I do miss the killer backhand she once had.

I tell you what. Next time she's on television...try opening your eyes.

SF

schorsch
Aug 2nd, 2007, 08:58 PM
venus has always had and will always have one of the best backhand's there is period. of course a shot doesnt work well each day. sometimes there wont be any rhythm other times it could be due to an injury or mental. but still its rock solid most of the time and huge weapon and thats all you have to care about.

Expat
Aug 2nd, 2007, 09:01 PM
i am sure it isnt the top that belongs to henin
but sure is in top 5 i guess

GracefulVenus
Aug 2nd, 2007, 09:06 PM
I just think her forehand has gotten better, plain and simple! FYI - She and Serena also use the open stance two-handed backhand which gives them more time to recover after hitting the stroke. It also makes it much easier to go down the line!

Thanx4nothin
Aug 2nd, 2007, 09:09 PM
Serena has the best backhand in tennis in my view, and Justine the most attrcative, Venus would be behind the two.

AcesHigh
Aug 2nd, 2007, 09:12 PM
I tell you what. Next time she's on television...try opening your eyes.

SF

:rolleyes: Maybe you should remove ur rose-colored glasses and compare Venus 2007 with Venus 1997-2002

Bijoux0021
Aug 2nd, 2007, 09:13 PM
Well.. I wish Venus would work on it more. This started happening back in 2004-2005 IMO when Venus seemed to give too much attention to her forehand which became more consistent, but her backhand deteriorated. It's still a very good shot, but you will not see her hit as many winners from it as she used to.

It's become more of a defensive shot and less of an offensive one. The forehand has become formidable, and I prefer for her to be solid off the ground on both sides, but I do miss the killer backhand she once had.
Don't forget that her left wrist was injured and had to have surgery.

AcesHigh
Aug 2nd, 2007, 09:16 PM
Don't forget that her left wrist was injured and had to have surgery.

I actually forgot.. but the good thing about that was, I hope she's working on her backhand slice. A few times at Wimbledon, she tried to chip and charge. I'd LOVE to see that from Vee. She could be racking up Wimby crowns into her early 30s.

sfselesfan
Aug 2nd, 2007, 09:25 PM
:rolleyes: Maybe you should remove ur rose-colored glasses and compare Venus 2007 with Venus 1997-2002

I have. The backhand I see today is just as fast, well timed, deep, and more accurate. The backhand of old had a tendency to hit a lot more errors.

Funny how that works.

SF

friendsita
Aug 2nd, 2007, 09:28 PM
Has Venus' backhand gotten worse as her forehand has gotten better?

No, her back is ok ;)

K-Dog
Aug 2nd, 2007, 09:29 PM
Venus' backhand is still her more solid shot and the shot she prefers to hit from the back of the court. The forehand has become more solid and less out-of-control like it was from about 2000-2004. Even in her dominating years, the forehand was very irratic and a "all or nothing" type of shot. Either it was there or it wasn't, and her attempts to take pace off the ball really didn't work because she would still miss and when she didn't, her balls landed too short and were easy to attack. The forehand is a cleaner shot and the swing is much more compact now. The swing isn't as flawed and likely to break down and when it does, it is more of a mental thing than anything.

The backhand looked better at Wimbledon. She was more smooth and finally began closing her stance and stepping into the ball. Venus' backhand is/was so good because Venus has so much talent in her hands and she's able to feel the shot so well and use her hands to do whatever she wants when she gets a backhand. I still feel like she muscles the ball too much now and hits too many balls open-stance. Open-stance is great when rallying or on the defense, but not on the attack. You can't get as much shoulder turn on the ball with an open-stance, which causes the ball the fly. So to answer the question, yes, the backhand has gotten worse, but it is slowly coming back to where it was.

AcesHigh
Aug 2nd, 2007, 09:30 PM
I have. The backhand I see today is just as fast, well timed, deep, and more accurate. The backhand of old had a tendency to hit a lot more errors.

Funny how that works.

SF

Just as fast??? What are you watching, highlights?? She hits it with more topspin, it often is hit short.. she doesn't go for much on it..

She will more often go for the kill with her forehand. I've seen so many times lately when she could go for an approach shot or a winner and she just hits it back in the middle of the court.

Watching matches from 1997-2002 the backhand was more error prone but it was also more feared and more lethal.

V's a star
Aug 2nd, 2007, 09:33 PM
the past 2 years she rely went 4 it on the backhand wenever she cud cus she didnt want to use her forehand but thats changed

Venus+Serena#1fan
Aug 2nd, 2007, 09:36 PM
Venus' backhand is probably the best 2 hander out there, period.

sfselesfan
Aug 2nd, 2007, 09:39 PM
Just as fast??? What are you watching, highlights?? She hits it with more topspin, it often is hit short.. she doesn't go for much on it..

She will more often go for the kill with her forehand. I've seen so many times lately when she could go for an approach shot or a winner and she just hits it back in the middle of the court.

Watching matches from 1997-2002 the backhand was more error prone but it was also more feared and more lethal.

First of all, I think you're being very selective with the backhands you're choosing to remember. If Venus' backhand was as "lethal" as you remember, it wouldn't have taken her until mid-2000 to win her first slam...and she would have won a few more. It was an error-prone shot (not as bad as her forehand), because she constantly went for winners.

Secondly, just because she doesn't pull the trigger on every shot does not mean that her backhand is less effective. She could play that way if she chose to, but that would be less effective. She definitely works points more than she used to. When Venus is ready for a winner, she hits backhands that make her circa 1999 backhands look like child's play. It took her way to long to figure out that she doesn't have to turn every shot into a winner...and now that she's learned that lesson, she has to hear from people saying "she's lost her power."

If you're patient and wait for it, like Venus does, you'll see the same powerful shot that was always there...just at the right time now.

Sharapova needs to do the same...don't "make every shot a power shot" and you might have a shot at beating the WS.

SF

Andrew Laeddis
Aug 2nd, 2007, 09:46 PM
no it hasnt gotten worse. it was great at wimbledon and she hasnt played much since then for me to say it has gotten worse. i dont think venus played her best at fed cup (getting bageled by petrova) so i can base it upon her fed cup matches. i stil think it is her big weapon and to me it is tied for the best backhand with henin. i dont think she hits it any softer i just think she waits for the right times to unload and just because she adds topsin during long rallies doesnt mean she isnt hitting it hard it means she is hitting it smart. this keeps her erros down and even with the top spin she is still one of the hardest hitters on tour and it is clear that her opponents power doesnt affect her. i think venus can finally get the consistentcy in her game that she had in 2002 and teh second half of 200 and 2001 along with the periods where she wasnt injured in 2003

AcesHigh
Aug 2nd, 2007, 09:57 PM
First of all, I think you're being very selective with the backhands you're choosing to remember. If Venus' backhand was as "lethal" as you remember, it wouldn't have taken her until mid-2000 to win her first slam...and she would have won a few more. It was an error-prone shot (not as bad as her forehand), because she constantly went for winners.

Secondly, just because she doesn't pull the trigger on every shot does not mean that her backhand is less effective. She could play that way if she chose to, but that would be less effective. She definitely works points more than she used to. When Venus is ready for a winner, she hits backhands that make her circa 1999 backhands look like child's play. It took her way to long to figure out that she doesn't have to turn every shot into a winner...and now that she's learned that lesson, she has to hear from people saying "she's lost her power."

If you're patient and wait for it, like Venus does, you'll see the same powerful shot that was always there...just at the right time now.

Sharapova needs to do the same...don't "make every shot a power shot" and you might have a shot at beating the WS.

SF

It depends. I agree with you as of Wimbledon 2007. Before then, I think you can't be as selective or defensive when you are the less consistent player and spraying errors. That's the Venus backhand I'm talking about as a frustrated fan who wished that if she was going to go down making a ton of errors, at least go down swinging for winners.

The Dawntreader
Aug 2nd, 2007, 10:01 PM
I just think it's a smarter, more efficient shot. It seems to improve yearly IMO. At Wimby, the angles she created were just superb. Much more safety on the shot now but still with huge force behind it.

Also, i do think the forehand has improved. It was really her key shot at Wimby, especially against Sharapova and Kuznetsova:)

sfselesfan
Aug 2nd, 2007, 10:07 PM
at least go down swinging for winners.

I guess that's where we depart ways as fans. I say, go down swinging for smart winners.

SF

Paneru
Aug 2nd, 2007, 10:10 PM
It's interesting that the few slamming her backhand seem to
forget she just came off of surgery less than a year ago. and
her wrist had been bothering her since the frnech of last year.

IMO, Venus still has the best two-handed backhand out there.
And just because she isn't going for the kill shot on it
everytime doesn't mean it isn't there. If anything, the
wrist injury has helped her to introduce some more variety
to the shot, mainly the slice.

We saw her only going to the slice last fall injured where
she had played that one tournament losing to Aga Radawanska.
she hit on or two great slice shots, but because she rarely
used it, it wasn't effective. However, now she is using it
more effectively and it helps to keep her in and win points.
We saw how good that backhand slice was at Wimbledon. JMac was impressed by it, which is saying a lot!

IMO, what Venus has seemed to finally learned all-around is that
she doesn't necessarily have to kill every shot. She is more patient and she mixes it up.Yet, she will use the power at every opening she gets.

So, I feel Venus uis just becoming a more well-rounded player.


People are going to complain regardless. Such an issue has
been made of her forehand and as soon as she works on it
and begins to improve it, immediately they have to dig at
something else. Oh well, whatever

I'm simply pleased Venus is still growing as a player
even at this stage in her career, which has and can
only help her.

Paneru
Aug 2nd, 2007, 10:14 PM
I guess that's where we depart ways as fans. I say, go down swinging for smart winners.

SF

I agree.

I'd rather see her play smarter and lose,
than play wildly and lose.

Yet, IMO the smarter she plays the harder
she is to beat because of what she can do.

We've seen how Venus can play aggressively within
herself going for shots, but being smarter about it.

I akin itto her getting into net more. During the 06'
AO she was coming to net like never before, but the
problem was she wasn't coming in behind good approach
shots. I feel she comes in now, but is wiser about knowing
when and how to. And I think it's beginning to translate into
othuer parts of her game.

AcesHigh
Aug 2nd, 2007, 10:17 PM
Well, just to be clear.. i'm speaking of pre-Wimbledon. Often times, even her shots that were meant to be defensive were going long or wide. Or her opponent would just wait for her to hit an error.

Venus is not a defensive player and never will be. She needs an offensive weapon and at Wimbledon it was mainly the serve. When the serve wasn't working, there was no go-to killer shot for her IMHO. That should've been the backhand.. a shot she could just whack away with and create free points with.

You can afford to be selective when you're not giving away service games or shooting yourself in the foot with terrible UFE's. Fortunately, neither of those are happening now as Venus seems to have found the perfect combo.

The Dawntreader
Aug 2nd, 2007, 10:22 PM
I agree Paneru, she's made subtle but essential changes to her match-play recently. During the clay-court season, i just felt when she was coming in, she was very central and so succeptible to the pass. However at Wimby, she was coming in with so much depth which is always the key for Venus, as depth usually gives her a weak reply off her opponent.

Looking at the serve too. At RG in particular, wasnt changing up that serve direction well enough and was too predictable. At wimby however, she was able to flatten it out down the middle and use that wonderful slice-serve out-wide which gave her so many options.

I think Venus is becoming a great all-rounded player and just has a clear game-plan now:)

sfselesfan
Aug 2nd, 2007, 10:23 PM
Venus' backhand has always been, and continues to be, an offensive weapon. I bet Justine, Serena or Sharapova would trade backhands with Venus in a New York minute if they could.

Also, Venus has always been a good defensive player. That's what makes her so unique, she can play defense offensively.

SF

vwfan
Aug 2nd, 2007, 10:26 PM
It's worse.. outside of Wimbledon, the shot hasn't been great.

The backhand used to be hands-down the best in tennis. Now, I don't think it's top 5. Serena, Henin, Jankovic, and a few others have as good.. if not better backhands.but you only named three people!;)

Justine has a good slice backhand, but I am not so impressed with it as a power shot. I don't see Serena's bh has substantially better than Venus'. I agree with Jankovic, though.

Thanx4nothin
Aug 2nd, 2007, 10:39 PM
:lol: Jankovic does not have a better backhand than Venus Williams, it's good, but that's going over the top.

vwfan
Aug 2nd, 2007, 11:24 PM
:lol: Jankovic does not have a better backhand than Venus Williams, it's good, but that's going over the top.Well, I don't know her game that well. But I went back and watched her match against Venus in Wimbie 2006 and she was like nailing the bh dtl!:eek: Even Venus couldn't get to it.

LUIS9
Aug 2nd, 2007, 11:51 PM
It's definitely not as consistent or steady. Over the past 18-24 months it's looked very shaky and I don't ever recall her hitting those kind of silly errors of her best wing and her vintage stroke. I guess it's mainly due to lack of match toughness because of the injuries and her time off the court. Nevertheless, it is still a top 10 shot and when on it's second to none.

I don't think her forehand is better, it's just steadier and more consistent as of late. It is still a shot prone and vulnerable to break down, the technique is sometimes questionable. Nonetheless, her phenomenal athletic abilities make up for those minor glitches.

vwfan
Aug 3rd, 2007, 12:00 AM
Nevertheless, it is still a top 10 shot And who are the nine other players with a better bh? :eek:

venusallday
Aug 3rd, 2007, 12:20 AM
I don't believe this thread. AcesHigh, you are missing the importance of consistency. I have watched Venus more than any other player throughout the years, and yes she has changed a lot. However, most of it has been for the better. Her backhand is much more versatile than it used to be, and that makes it a better shot. In my opinion, Venus possesses the best backhand in the history of the game. Her return of serve on that side cannot be rivaled by Henin's backhand return of serve. Now that her forehand is better, Venus quite frankly shouldn't lose unless lil' sis is able to take advantage of Venus' only weak shot: the second serve.

In The Zone
Aug 3rd, 2007, 12:54 AM
:rolleyes: Maybe you should remove ur rose-colored glasses and compare Venus 2007 with Venus 1997-2002

I know all Venus fans are saying the backhand is still great but we need to be honest. The backhand has deteriorated. Is it still top 5? Is it still awesome? Yes. But it has been more lethal and dangerous in the past than when compared to today. Her backhand used to be her bread and butter and now, her angled forehand cross court is clearly her best shot.

SV_Fan
Aug 3rd, 2007, 01:06 AM
Tennis magazine said she has one of the best backhands in the business and I agree she has a seles backhand sometimes. Did you notice people hit to her forehand because it breaks down but both shots are now beoming stronger.

sfselesfan
Aug 3rd, 2007, 01:14 AM
I think those of you who think that Venus used to have a better backhand must not have watched tennis circa Y2K and before. Venus' backhand has strong but unreliable. Now it's equally strong, but reliable.

SF

Geisha
Aug 3rd, 2007, 01:30 AM
It's worse.. outside of Wimbledon, the shot hasn't been great.

The backhand used to be hands-down the best in tennis. Now, I don't think it's top 5. Serena, Henin, Jankovic, and a few others have as good.. if not better backhands.

I agree. I mean, in '00 and '01, Venus used to rip backhands - on the run, with her feet stamped, dropshots, etc. She doesn't do that anymore.

Venus wins matches these days by playing very controlled and hitting deep and hard, not necessarily hitting her backhand with explosiveness. And she wins by running and running.

SV_Fan
Aug 3rd, 2007, 01:30 AM
I think those of you who think that Venus used to have a better backhand must not have watched tennis circa Y2K and before. Venus' backhand has strong but unreliable. Now it's equally strong, but reliable.

SF


Thank you. At first it was real-real strong and power but not reliable but now it is awesome.

Geisha
Aug 3rd, 2007, 01:31 AM
Well, just to be clear.. i'm speaking of pre-Wimbledon. Often times, even her shots that were meant to be defensive were going long or wide. Or her opponent would just wait for her to hit an error.

Venus is not a defensive player and never will be. She needs an offensive weapon and at Wimbledon it was mainly the serve. When the serve wasn't working, there was no go-to killer shot for her IMHO. That should've been the backhand.. a shot she could just whack away with and create free points with.

You can afford to be selective when you're not giving away service games or shooting yourself in the foot with terrible UFE's. Fortunately, neither of those are happening now as Venus seems to have found the perfect combo.

Great post.

akosijepoy
Aug 3rd, 2007, 02:25 AM
maybe it has something to do with her left wrist injury...
she's not hitting it as hard to prevent too much shock on the wrist