Return winners are a line item in our sport – meaning someone sits on the side of the court and counts them at Grand Slams.
At Wimbledon in 2019, the men hit 445, and the women hit 381. So the men won that battle by 64 winners.
At the 2020 Australian Open, the men hit 430, and the women hit 446, so the women come out on top Down Under by 16.
Return winners are rarely, if ever, practiced – and they should be. Why not take 15 minutes in your next lesson and tell your coach to please lay in some weaker second serves so that you can be aggressive and dictate right from the very first return shot you hit.
So what’s the right way to go about hitting return winners? Glad you asked…
- Attack with the hands AND the feet.
Standing back and taking a big swing trying to land return winners is tough to do. It’s much better to step inside the baseline, attack with the feet first, and then be quick with the racket. The video below highlights return winners from Petra Kvitova, ideally showing how she attacks with her hands and feet to crack forehand return winners.
2019 Wimbledon Channel – Forehand Winners / Forehand Return Winners