so I've been playing squash for about 16 years and I don't have
the bottom layer of the squash skills pyramid. It would therefore
appear that I have a problem. Having allowed the bottom to fall
out of my squash world, the all knowing coach proceeded to sort
me out in the usual fashion
by allowing me to clearly demonstrate
what I was doing wrong so that he could identify it and I could
then correct it.
the initial warm up game, just to get the muscles warmed up and
the T-shirt drenched in sweat, we moved on to picking out this
weeks learning point - it was at this moment that the revelation
of my basic inadequacy was highlighted - "You've got no base
game." To show exactly what this meant we played a game in
which every shot had to be played above the cut line. I found
myself continuously stuck at the back of the court behind the
coach, who casually kept me pinned in the back corners with a
gentle array of easy lengths. I however still found myself charging
about back and forth just to keep the ball alive and invariably
I seemed to have to dig the ball out with ugly boasts in order
to stay in the rally. In a usual game with the coach this would
have felt acceptable but in this game, with every ball played
above the cut line, I felt that I shouldn't have been under nearly
so much pressure. I lost nearly every point through my error -
either putting the ball out or down or by failing to keep the
ball above the cut line.
analysis of the above game revealed the fault and the remedy.
The fault, sorry I meant faults were:
Over hitting the ball when playing the length. The bulk of my
shots were over hit to the extent that they hit the back wall
before they hit the floor. This gave the coach plenty of time
to amble over and hit his return.
Play a better length ensuring that ball lands well before the
back wall and behind the service box. This strategy will deny
the opponent time, forcing him to take the ball much sooner and
therefore forcing him to work harder. By working the opponent
harder, through the improved length, he will eventually falter
with a weaker boast or error.