Playing Defensively and Micro Rallies

Playing Defensively and Micro Rallies
 
The better you get at squash, the longer the rallies. Better players make less mistakes, both mentally in shot selection and in the execution of the shots themselves.
 
What you will notice if you watch professionals play is that during some rallies one player seems to be in complete control and then all of a sudden it’s back to stalemate.
 
I call these micro-rallies. SquashTV presenters call it “Rally-Reset”.
 
Essentially, they are mini rallies within one larger rally.
 
It *can* happen in lower levels of squash, but not as often.
 
What is going on then?
 
Put simply, the player who is under the pressure manages to play a good defensive shot that takes the control away from the other player. This is often a deep, tight drive along the wall or possibly a lob but not always.
 
What tends to happen with lower levels of players is that the player under pressure is rushed into playing a “Do or Die” shot. If it works, they are a hero, if it doesn’t they lose the point. I bet you can guess which happens way more often. The problem is you remember the hero shots for a long time and very quickly forget the other 20 shots you missed.
 
What you, as a club player, needs to do, is learn when and how to play defensively. Slow the ball down. Use the full height of the court. Anything that takes the other player’s advantage away from them.
 
DO NOT smack the ball as hard as you can – that rarely works.
 
Playing defensively at the appropriate moment is a habit that you will need to develop over time, because you don’t have a lot of time to think about it.
 
Start today and make every shot count.
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