Build up to the French Open 2014 Men’s Singles

The French Open excitement is already building with qualifying matches underway for those who are not lucky enough to automatically get through to the finals. The competition starts on the 25th May and runs through to June 8th and so there is not long to wait. The draws have also been announced, making some people already start to speculate about who might win the championships this year.

There is no surprise that Rafael Nadal is the number one seed this year and if you check your favourite tennis odds then he is likely to be bookies favourite as well. His first few rounds of matches do not look to challenging either, although Tommy Haas and David Ferrer could challenge him later on.

His biggest competition could be Andy Murray in the quarter finals, assuming that they both get that far of course. He could then meet Roger Federer in the semi-finals, but he has quite a tough draw with a lot of well-known players in his quarter. They may not be so good at the moment, but could prove themselves under the pressure of the big tournament. The number two seed Novak Djokovic, also has a pretty tough draw with a lot of good players in his quarter as well, as he will need to beat 25th seed Marin Cilic and then Jo-Wilfred Tsonga who is the thirteenth seed and then a semi-final against Roger Federer to get through to the final. Of course most people would like to see him playing Nadal in the final, but there are a lot of matches between now and then and it is pretty hard to know who will get through at the moment.

French Open 2014

Recent form could also help spur on Djokovic who won the Rome Masters recently which put worries about a wrist injury behind him. He beat Nadal in three sets in that final and was his fourth successive win over him so that has to give him confidence. It could also be a grudge match after last years final when he was leading Nadalin the fifth set but was still not able to lift the trophy.

Nadal on the other hand has lost three matches in this season, breaking a ten year record of successive wins. It will also be interesting to see how well Andy Murray fairs having not shown his sparkling form from last years Wimbledon win since having back surgery. Federer is of course always a threat too, but there has been talk of his vulnerability lately and so whether he can push through to the latter matches will be interesting. There is always the chance that someone outside of the top four could do well or even win, it has happened many times before and so it could be a very interesting fortnight of tennis.


Tennis Betting on Your Mind – Get Great Odds Today

Tennis season is in full swing, and that means that you have plenty of ways to add extra cash to your bottom line. No, you don’t have to be a super whiz in order to make money from tennis betting. You do, however, need to get to a source that has great tennis odds. If you do nothing else, this is what will keep you profitable for a long time to come.

Tennis betting is so popular because it doesn’t take much to move your money forward. Tennis is also a sport of great skill. When you bet on a tennis match, you know that each competitor is going to fight as hard as possible to win. That’s not something that you can always say about other sports. So if you have people telling you that tennis is a soft sport, think again. It’s actually more intense than meets the eye.

Tennis Betting

But you want to get your favourite tennis odds, and you need to get them quickly. Don’t settle for tired listings on forums or off in the paper. They’re not going to give you the most current view on things. You need to do to a site that’s devoted to tennis betting. There are plenty of them online, but there are only a few that truly serve players for the long run. We’ve all seen fly by night operations that make you believe that they’re going to be around to give you great odds on matches, but they fade away. Unfortunately, when one of these bad sites fails there’s like three or four that spring up to replace it.

Getting your odds from a site you trust has incredible benefits. When you have great odds, you can go with advanced tennis handicapping methods, or you can use the odds in a “raw” fashion. It’s completely up to you. Some people like to dig into tennis statistics and thoughts about how each player has played historically. But the world of sports in general is full of upsets. You can be the No 1 seed in tennis and still lose to somebody that’s ranked lower than you are. You can also see somebody that’s ranked fairly low turn into the No 1 seed for a while, only to “fall from grace” with bad matches.

Court selection can change the outcome of a game as well. Like it or not, some tennis players just aren’t good on grass versus when they play on harder surfaces. This is where having a deep history of the players helps.

On most quality sites with tennis odds, you will find players that you can speculate with. They may be able to get you up to speed quickly on a tennis player, which beats having to watch hours of footage to make your decision, or pour over a bunch of numbers. Why not check it out today, while it’s on your mind?


Top Three Things to Think About When Buying Running Shoes

Running can really take its toll on your body and so it is very important to make sure that you protect yourself by buying the best possible shoe for you. There are many things that you should consider when buying shoes and the top three things are listed below.


Your gait is the way that you run. If you tend to roll your foot over to one side when you are running, then you need a shoe that gives good support around your heel. There are shoes that do this and shoes that do not. In order to find out, it is possible to have a gait analysis done in a sports shop. They will ask you to jog on a treadmill and video your feet so that they can see how you run. Then they will be able to show you which selection of shoes is most suitable for you. If you are buying online, then this could be more difficult, but it could be possible for you to ask a friend or family member to look at your feet while running and check out your gait and then contact shoe sellers and manufacturers to get a list of the shoes that will be best for you.

Buying Running Shoes


Comfort is obviously very important when buying a running shoe. When you are trying on the shoes, make sure that you wear a pair of running socks so that you know exactly how it might feel. Take your time to walk around the shop and feel how the fit is for you. Some shoes may rub on the heels or toes or on the ankle bone so watch out for those areas when you are trying them on. Consider how tightly you will lace them as well and try to replicate this when you try them on. If you lace a shoe too tightly it can give you foot pain but if it is too loose it can slip on the heel and so you need to make sure that you can lace it correctly and still make it feel comfortable.


It is important to consider what type of support the shoe will be giving to your foot. It may feel comfortable, but you also need to consider what it has built in to it to protect your body. Some shoes have special technology in them to help you. It is good to find out all about this and how it could help you before buying the shoe. You could end up paying a lot more than necessary for a pair of very technical shoes when a pair of more reasonably priced running shoes from Millet sports could do the job. Consider what your needs are before you part with your money.

How to Hit a Tennis Backhand

Many beginners think that the backhand ground stroke is a difficult one. However, once the footwork and basics of the stroke are mastered, it becomes a very natural shot and can be a very effective weapon.

Here are some points to remember for the backhand:

1. For the grip, the hand is placed at the top of the handle and the thumb placed either across the back of the handle or wrapped around it.
2. From the basic ready position, turn the upper body so that you are sideways to the net.
3. Take the racket back in a slight looping motion, so that it is about perpendicular to the net.
4. As you complete your backswing, bring the forward foot around in front of you and step towards the ball, keeping your weight on the back foot until you start the forward swing.
5. Use a firm grip and ensure that it is a strong grip as you come to hit the ball.
6.  Make contact with the ball just ahead of your forward hip.
7. Transfer your body weight as you hit so that all your body weight is on the front foot when contact with the ball is made.
8. Continue the follow through after the ball has been hit and let your rear foot come through as you finish the stroke.

The Championships - Wimbledon 2007 Day Nine

Sliced Backhand

The motion described above can be used for the sliced backhand. The racket head will be slightly open and the position of the racket remains high when coming forward to hit the ball. The swing path is from high to low.

Topspin Backhand

For this shot, the racket head is positioned in a more straight vertical position. After the loop back, the racket head is dropped low and the knees are bent as well. The swing path is from low to high.

Two-handed Backhand

For one-handed shots, the player has a choice of using slice (backspin) or topspin. For the two-handed shots, topspin is invariably used because slice is difficult to achieve. For that reason, the racket head will drop low and scrape the back of the ball from bottom to top, thus imparting topspin.

The Tennis Racket

The racket is the tool with which you perform, so you’ll need to select one that you feel very comfortable with and one that feels as much as possible like an extension of your arm and hand. Try to play with a few rackets before you buy, so that you have a good idea of its feel. Many retail shops will let you try out rackets before you buy.

Choosing a good quality racket, even if it means paying a little more. will help to protect yourself from injuries like tennis elbow.

Most standard adult rackets are about 69cm long, with head sizes of between 237 to 275 square cms. The advantage of using a racket with a large head is that the ‘sweet spot’ (i.e. the centre of the racket which propels the ball the the most) is larger. However, rackets with larger heads tend to be more difficult to quickly maneuver to the ball. Most of the professional players use rackets with smaller heads, so they can generate quicker racket speeds.

Tennis Racket

Lighter rackets can be easy to swing and therefore can be maneuvered quickly to the ball but they also may make it more difficult to control the ball when the shot is played, if the weight isn’t sufficient.

Most racket grips sizes are between 11.25 and 11.875cm. You should be able to fit your index finger into the gap between your thumb and the two middle fingers. If the grip is not large enough, you can increase its girth with overwrap tape.

The type of strings and their tension are also important. Most professional players use natural gut but these are rather expensive. Recreational players tend to use synthetic strings. Multi-filament strings have a softer feel when hitting the ball.

If you are experiencing pain in your arms when you hit the ball, try a slightly lower tension. On the other hand, if you are losing control of the ball too often, a higher tension may be required.

American Open Mens Preview

The American Open starts on the 26th August and the very best players will be trying to win the title. The men’s contest is extremely interesting. Nadal won the French, Djokovich the Australian and Murray Wimbledon. It could be argued that this will be the decider between the top three players.

Murray is the most recent winner and is the defending champion as well and so this could be seen as his title to lose. However, he could be coming down after the climax of winning the Grand Slam that he has always dreamed of winning and he may just not have the strength to pull it together for this one. The first few matches may give away some more clues as to how well the number three seed will be likely to do, but with Michael Llodra of France as his round one opponent, he could be up for a tough challenge from the start. Llodra is the number 49 in the world and the last three times they have met, he has won. Some might say things will not get tough until he meets Djokovich in the quarter finals, but as a professional, he would never assume that it will be easy to get there. He would have to potentially beat Berdych to get there.

American Open

However, assuming that Djokovich, the number one seed will get to the quarter finals may also be a big assumption. He will have to best Del Potro who won in 2010. Djokovich has looked in fine form, has not made any surprising mistakes or had any injuries, unlike the other top players. This means that he could be a massive threat.

That is not to dismiss number two seed, Rafa Nadal who gets what would be seen as easy first round match against Ryan Harrison the 97th in the world. However, although his injury comeback has looked almost miraculous, it does not mean he is yet up to top form. To make matters worse, he is set to play Federer in the semi-final and then Ferrer or Gasquet in the semi-finals if he gets that far.

It could be exciting stuff so you will need to place your bets now before you get so carried away with watching the matches that you forget! Who will you be placing your money on, one of the favourites or an outsider?

Betting on an upcoming tennis game

Certain sports today have become not only popular as spectator sports but they also are the focus of numerous sports bets. One sport that has become more popular on which to place sports bets is tennis. Throughout the year, many different high profile tennis events occur that are appealing for bettors. This would include events such as Wimbledon, the French Open and the Davis Cup. While bettors don’t have to be tennis fans, it does help to have some knowledge of tennis when betting your money.

The most obvious kind of bet to place on these tennis events would be which player will win a specific match as well as the overall tournament. Many bettors make the mistake when making this wager of reading the odds incorrectly. Prior to a match, the bookmaker will post the odds of each player to win. For example, a match between Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic may have odds posted with Nadal’s listed as 5/7 and Djokovic’s shown as 6/4. When betting on Nadal, every £7 bet would result in a profit of £5. Whereas a wager on Djokovic would mean a £4 bet would yield a profit of £6. In this scenario, Nadal is the favourite to win.

tennis game

Most people place their sports bets prior to the actual tennis match occurring which leaves them some time to experience other tennis related excitement at Lucky Nugget online slots. Here tennis fans can find slot machine games that have incorporated their favourite game into them. For example, one possible choice would be the Tennis Stars Slot Machine. The game has a total of 40 paylines on which players may place their wager. Another aspect of this game which appeals to the player is the broad range of wager denominations available, which go from .01 to 2000. The largest payout with this game is a lofty 500,000.

Return Of Serve – Get A Great Tennis Return

The return of serve is the second shot in any point, and once finely tuned with certain tips and techniques, a player will find that he has a chance at every point! A tennis players whole confidence and morale gets a boost from FREE points and once we cut out those missed or weaker tennis returns…

They will suddenly feel under a lot more pressure. Andre Agassi certainly put an enormous emphasis on the tennis return where he spent hours a day practicing his tennis returns! This ultimately achieved one of the most difficult players to beat in the world.

Preparation For Return of Serve

Know what you are to do before the opponent serves. Do not just react to whatever happens! You simply do not have enough time to hit a good tennis return like that. So, clarify with yourself exactly where to hit your tennis return when you step up to the line. For example, think… If it comes to my forehand I hit cross court, if it comes to my backhand I hit down the line. Players find this helps to reduce the element of surprise which comes with trying to return a good serve.

Andre Agassi

Tennis Return – Footwork and Swing

Ok, so when to split step? You should split step when your opponent has tossed the ball. That way when he makes contact with the ball, you land ready and balanced. Then next thing depends largely on your opponents serve.

If it is a first serve? Then a short take back will suffice and rather than swinging at the ball just move forwards. The serve has plenty of pace on it all ready! On top of this, if you swing at it then the chances of hitting the perfect contact point becomes minimal.

If it is a second serve? And you have time then move in on the return of serve. Split step, then step in a bit (with left leg if forehand) or (right leg if backhand) and put pressure on the opponent with your closed stance.

No need to go for a winner on the line, one of the best tennis return strategies is to go to the center and therefore jam the opponent. If you miss, you will have still made them doubt their serve! Continue reading

Three Tips To Nail A Fast Serve

#1. Relax. Go to your happy place, think about being on the beach with a cocktail! In fact do whatever except “Trying to hit the fastest tennis serve.” It will tense too many muscles which impedes the swing speed. Don’t believe me?

Try snapping your wrist as hard as you can, tense your muscles and give it your all. How fast was it? Now, try relaxing your wrist… and snap it again. Hopefully, the latter is much quicker!

To improve tennis serve? It is not only the wrist, but the muscles ALL the way down your arm that can impede you swing speed! Learning to relax into your serve is VITAL for speed. Check out the learning to play tennis article for this approach to learning to play tennis.

#2. Rhythm. The best servers have rhythm. Rhythm is essential for consistency and improvement of your tennis serves. After all, if you are hitting serves with different rhythms, you are hitting different serves. Its like trying to improve several serves instead of just one. On top of this, a good rhythm can be used to your advantage in gaining YOUR fastest tennis serve!

If we watch a Andy Roddick serve. We will see that there rhythm transfers their weight from their front foot onto the back foot. Once all this weight that is loaded onto the back foot… It is exploded back forwards and into the serve at the striking point!

That is where the power comes from! BAM, a server that has learnt to do this, has just gained a couple hundred pounds of moving weight behind his serve and is gaining his fastest tennis serve. You can feel the ball knock you back a bit kind of like a tennis overhead … if you return it!

Practice using your weight effectively by rocking your weight back onto your back foot, and transferring it forwards and through into the court when you hit! The details are your personal serving style, everyone has different preferences.

#3. Technique. They have good technique. While this statement may not win any noble prizes for originality. The cold truth is that if there is some funky technique in your tennis serves, you are probably not letting yourself hit the ball to your full potential. As this is a very personal area, I suggest you get your tennis serves checked out by your local coach. However, here are the three most common technical errors. That through coaching and playing, I have seen many times. That once adjusted can allow you to improve tennis serve power and technique.

1) Lack of bending of the legs. Your upper body must be loose when serving. So where does the raw power come from?

The legs. You have to get low with your legs and explode, catapult, or push off upwards. Look at all the photos of the famous tennis players pros serving. They all bend their legs to a great extent.

2) Shoulder and arms not in line. By this I mean… When you toss your ball up and are waiting to hit it. Your left hand in the sky should run straight all the way down to where your right elbow bends.

3) Stance too open. Many people do not realize how closed the Pros really are… This creates power through rotation into the ball. Pete Sampras arguable one of the best servers ever lived, is a classic example of this. Andy Roddick Serve is another great example, but we have all ready mentioned that a little 🙂

Hope you have enjoyed the tennis how to serve fast page, feel free to look around other tennis strokes , tennis drills or any other pages on the site… you get the idea 🙂

The Lob


The stroke which sends the ball above the head of the net player. A high lofted ball which goes higher than the reach of the net player to land near the baseline.


The lob is an underestimated stroke used ineffectively by the majority of players. Matches could often be won by effective lobbing at the right time and are often lost through lobbing too infrequently and inaccurately.

1. In singles the lob is used to give the player time to recover correct court position when driven off the court. Also it is used to give the player time to recover her breath during a hard fought rally.

2. It is used as a point winner in singles, when the opponent is unable to run back and return the lob.

3. In doubles and singles it is used to drive the opponent back from the net.

4. In doubles the lob is used to mix up the team work of the opponents in addition to driving them from the net.

tennis Lob

Types Of Lobs

In general there are two types, the offensive and the defensive lob. The offensive lob is hit just out of reach of the opponent and does not give her time to run back and hit it on the first bounce. This lob is very difficult to accomplish successfully and is an advanced stroke, safe only in the hands of an expert. The defensive lob is hit very high, and the opponent may have time to go back and return it, but only if there is a goodly space behind the baseline. When there is little backcourt space the defensive lob is also a point winner. There is some question as to the fairness of lobbing in this situation, however. Continue reading