07 March 2011


A lovely rally from 2007 with Thierry Lincou still near to his top form and speed. If in my previous post I said that often it's better not to aim to copy the top players, then he is the living contradiction of that thesis: anything he does you are welcome to try to copy, movement, shot-preparation, shot-selection, anything. Watch this rally, every single shot has a purpose and except maybe one or two they are all executed with a very high accuracy level. Let's have a look at them one by one.
0:04 off a very good serve from Ramy it was a tough-to-play and very good defensive high tracked response that caught the side-wall sufficiently deep to get out of trouble.
0:08 fantastic deep drop, totally unattended by Ramy
0:11 faking a cross-court kill with a big swing to hit a straight drop that Ramy just managed to scrap off the angle
0:14 a great 'invisible' cross-court off an uncomfortable situation as Ramy's save came right in the middle of the front-wall and Lincou had to change suddenly his racket-preparation from forehand to backhand - outstanding wrist work too (this one will be tough to copy though for us;)
0:16 great forehand kill faded into the side-wall, however Ramy replies excellently with a wide and deep ball that nearly stacks around the middle of the back-wall
0:19 Lincou manages to avoid to get under pressure by replying with - instead of a conservative high and deep straight drive - a risky but very well executed cross-court that made Ramy twist and turn (into defense again)
0:21 excellent volley played from very low and dying almost in the left back corner
0:23 very advanced 'T' position to hit a deep cross-court volley, not a prefect one but still sufficient to keep Ramy under pressure
0:25 exquisite reaction volley drop, observe his impeccable balance
0:27 very similar to the 0:14 shot, Lincou again had to swap from forehand to backhand near to the front-wall in the middle; he holds the shot and choses this time to play it straight - again a considerable wrist flick included
0:29 the first time Lincou misses a shot in this rally, he had time to prepare for the shot, but the straight drive ended up having a poor length. He was lucky that Ramy's counterattack was even poorer.
0:32 he won't hit two bad shots in a row, so there you are with an immaculate drive faded into the side-wall around service-box depth
0:34 perfect width and depth at this cross-court
0:37 and here comes the second slightly weaker shot that costs him the rally; the volley drop is not soft/short enough and also a bit loose off the side-wall to allow Ramy to counterattack.
0:39 even going down in a spectacular split was not sufficient to save Ramy's trademark cross-drop and the rally was lost. Still what a demonstration of accuracy from Thierry, and of retrieving and genius by Ramy who didn't ask more than twice to win a rally where in 90% of the time he was clearly dominated.