Wimbledon starts next week. What would be the best tactic for Roger to add to his trophies?
Although this grass is slower than decades past, an attacking player will still have the advantage.
Rather than trading groundstrokes and waiting for the opportunity to go to net, Roger could attack constantly, wrecking havoc in his opponents.
And rather than waiting for the latest matches to get in the mood to attack, it is best to do it from the first round.
Show your mettle and make yourself known. Cut the rhythm, disturb the pace and the peace, instill fear in the opponent’s heart, instill fear in the whole field.
Get used to it, make points short. Put immense pressure. Dismiss a few passes as the norm and count your winning percentage.
Pete Sampras did it for years to perfection. Roger has the same ability. He just does not apply himself to this attacking mood.
It would be good to get used to volley crosscourt and short as well. Less risk and more effective. More court to hit, more distance for the opponent to cover, and surely more skid on the ball.
It should become a habit by the time he faces the big guns. More likely than not, he’ll intimidate any opponent, the way Sampras did. If Roger gets used to do it early, he’ll become faster and faster, a net blanketer of awe.
Why make a match longer, a grind, a toss-up?
Paul Anacone, Roger’s coach, charged the net like a bull after a red cape, over and over. He had wins over players ranked well above him and over John McEnroe, once twice in a row.
Wimbledon is the perfect stage for this tactic, and Paul could counsel Roger to work on that this practice week and get used to this frame of mind: attack on every occasion and at all costs.