One of the most ethereal sights in tennis is watching Roger Federer charge up the court and put away a volley. The Swiss is arguably one of the best at the art, alongside the greatest serve-and-volley players of all time like Pete Sampras and Stefan Edberg.
Roger Federer and his former coach Stefan Edberg recently came together to discuss the future of serve-and-volley during a video chat hosted by famed racquet manufacturer Wilson. As Wilson recently launched a new-look racquet for Roger Federer, they spent some time discussing the evolution of racquets over the course of time.
However, the most important topic that was touched upon by Roger Federer was the aspect of serve-and-volley. The Swiss star spoke at length about how coaches as well as tournament directors had a role to play in its revival on the tour.
Roger Federer says coaches and tournament directors can help bring back more serve-and-volley
Tennis has evolved a lot over the past couple of decades. What was once a net play-dominated sport now sees a huge amount of baseline rallies.
There has been more emphasis on the defensive side of things recently, but Roger Federer believes that is not the only way to play the game. Arguably the best ‘attacking’ player of his generation, Federer highlighted the importance of going forward to the net.
“If you do not move forward eventually the other guy will do it and find their way into the point and then you're going to be struggling," Federer said. "And in defense you can only get out of defense that many times.”
Roger Federer also thinks that it is the responsibility of coaches to inculcate the art of serve and volley in their wards' games.
“I think that number one it's the coach - and I hope that a lot of coaches watching this video are actually going to think about how to progress their player at the net as well, and not just at the baseline," the Swiss added.
Serve-and-volley is a strategy that requires a strong, fast serve that can put the opponent in a defensive returning position. That, in turn, needs a fast surface - much like Wimbledon - where players are afforded lesser time to return the delivery.
Roger Federer argued that it is on the tournament directors to ensure faster courts that can benefit this style of play.
"They [tournament directors] have a big impact on how the game is going to go, because if all the tournament directors are going to say we want it slow, then forget about having serve-and-volley," Federer added.
Federer continued by saying that he would prefer more variety in court speeds, rather than them being one-dimensional in nature.
"If you want a serve-and-volley game again, you need to speed up the court, and I think some have done it," Federer continued. "I think it would be nice to have more variety in speeds. I'm not saying I want fast all across the board but I think having some really fast some very slow and seeing the players adapt to to it. I think that's the beauty for every fan."Published 02 Oct 2020, 17:49 IST