Basic Principles Of The Previdi System

March 15, 2016
Basic Principles Of The Previdi System!

Basic Principles of “The Previdi System”

There are many reasons why players struggle tactically in doubles and continue to lose to “the lobbers” or players they feel are inferior to them. They feel like things keep happening to them instead of for them. Most players don’t take ownership of the fact that they continue to cause their own problems by setting up the wrong team.  Almost all of the reasons this happens can be successfully addressed with positioning, tactics and shot selection. Here are some of the issues we seek to solve with our system.

  • Poor positioning and overlapping responsibilities. In our system, there is no point where the responsibilities of the partners overlap. Everyone understands their role and what shots are theirs to take as well as where they should be hitting their shots.
  • The Previdi System addresses the most challenging shots the opponents hit against us.
  • Lobs, especially crosscourt lobs. ( Helper is responsible for all deep lobs).
  • Down the middle shots. ( Hunter has first chance, if not Helper player will back them up). Opportunity (Hunter) and responsibility ( Helper).
  • Sharp angles ( Helper)
  • Alley shots. ( Hunter)

We don’t lose matches because our opponents hit a million winners. We lose matches because we make too many errors, we are indecisive and don’t play smart. Having a system gives us the confidence to do the right thing in all situations, which will put us in a position to be successful.

In any team sport it is imperative that all players know what is going to happen, where to be and what they should do with the ball. You will minimize and eventually eliminate poor choices once you have parameters. No more indecision or bad decisions. In doubles, there tends to be much too much randomness, relying on great shots instead of great setting up of points. Here are some advantages to having a system.

  • Much less is left to chance. You know where you are supposed to hit the ball in any situation so there is less hesitation and far fewer poor choices.
  • Your partner can anticipate your next shot and begin to get into position before or while you’re hitting. This is invaluable and makes us much less vulnerable to being out of position.
  • You only need to make minor adjustments against each opponent you play. The system is always in effect.

Principles of The Previdi System and Definition of the Players and their Roles.

  • The player closer to the ball is always closer to the net. This player is called “the Hunter”.
  • The distance the Hunter gets to the net is determined by where the baseline opponent is. The closer the opponent, the closer the Hunter.
  • The Hunter turns and points their toes to the ball. They move toward the ball rather than laterally. They must be in the center of all possible shots in their area of responsibility. The Hunter cannot just “cover their alley.” They must cover their part of the middle, otherwise the Helper has too much court to cover and is vulnerable.
  • The Hunter looks to pick off volleys at the net when their partner sets them up. They must , however , cover some overheads. The Hunter must be able to go back four steps for an overhead but only if they can hit it aggressively. If they can’t get to the lob comfortably enough to go aggressively short to short ( at the other net player), their partner takes the ball. The Helper covers ALL deep lobs over the Hunter’s head. Note. For 2.0- 3.0 players it’s better to say 2 steps or back to the service line. Stronger , more athletic players (3.5-4.5) can go back up to four steps. It is also imperative that if you’re going to take a lob as an overhead you call it immediately and loudly so that your partner doesn’t start running behind you to get it. Remember, the Hunter only takes lobs that they can hit aggressively with overheads.
  • The Hunter hits short to short on high volleys and overheads. This means they are hitting in the direction of the other net player.
  • The player who is opposite the ball( diagonally across) comes to the service line and plays from that area. This player is called the Helper.
  • The distance the Helper gets from the net is determined by the distance of the baseline (opposite side) opponent. The closer the opponent gets, the closer the Helper gets but they are always in proximity to the service line. This should eliminate or severely minimize the effects of the crosscourt lob. Crosscourt player does not close in! They are responsible for all deep lobs.
  • The Helper always keeps the net strap directly between themselves and the crosscourt ball. This eliminates vulnerability to sharp angles. They point their toes toward the ball and stand in the center of all possible returns to their side.
  • The only time the Helper closes in is on a short ball that pulls them toward the net. In this situation, if the ball is a high floater the Helper hits the ball directly in front of themselves ( down the line)  and becomes the Hunter. Their partner drops back to the service line and becomes the Helper. This maintains the balance on the court. If, however, the Helper is pulled in for a low short ball, they hit a short angle touch volley in front of their partner ( cross court) who holds their ground since the ball is in front of them. Even though the helper is close to the net, the fact that they’ve hit a short touch volley minimizes the possibility of a lob and they will only need to adjust to the net strap as their opponent charges in.
  • Helper hits deep to deep on approach shots and volleys. They keep the ball in front of their Hunter and continue to set up points.


Shot Selection and Setting up Points

  • The best type of ball to hit in order to set up your team is short, angled and low (SAL). A return of serve that lands near the service line and singles sideline will severely limit your opponent’s options while giving both of your players a great chance of getting a ball that can be attacked. Here’s why.
  • Regardless of whether your opponent is staying back or coming in, this type of ball forces them to move laterally and hit up.
  • Since the player is halfway to the net, lobbing is more difficult and much riskier.
  • Both the Hunter and Helper will be able to move closer to the net than if the ball was hit deep.
  • The opponent will likely hit the ball more slowly because it will reach them with much less pace and height. This will give the Hunter a better chance of having time to read and pick off the shot. It will also create a huge gap between the partners.
  • Once you have established the short angled ball, your other shots will become more effective, especially the down the line lob because it has to be covered by the same player.
  • If the opponent starts to cheat in, the lob or a deep hard drive will keep them off balance and create errors.
  • You will be hitting a lot of balls that are difficult for the opposing net player to get. You are isolating one partner.
  • Don’t be afraid to hit a hard return at the net man to keep them honest. Just make sure you do it when you’re winning or even.
  • Helper hits “outside to outside” and “inside to inside” on volleys.” That means an angled ball goes back with angle and a middle ball goes back to the middle.  This will put you in perfect position for their return since you are already in the area you are setting them up to hit it to. It also preempts their partner from picking off your shot.

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