The Easter Bunny Test (41)

Once, my assistant Bob Owens had just been hitting ground strokes to one girl after another, corner to corner. Imre Kwast, a Dutch player, came close to me and said “That’s what the gulls like!” And it’s true, they like to be directed. I batted my head against the wall, trying to encourage them to design their own practices, but “they are different” this way.

One day I asked Imre, “Do you have Easter in Holland?
“Why certainly” she said, surprised.
“Do you have the Easter Bunny?” I asked
“Sure,” she giggled, “We have the bunny too.”
I asked the team, “What’s the best thing that could happen to you in an Easter egg hunt?”

Where was this going was the look on their faces. Finally one girl answered:

“If you know where the eggs were hidden it would surely help!”
“Exactly” I replied.
“I’ve watched teams for forty years, I know where the points are, and I’ll tell you.”

From then on they called me the Easter Bunny. When I’d see them execute a point I’d advised them on, I’d whisper “bunny point”. Other men coaches contended: “They’ll practice all week on something I’ve taught them, but come to match time they forget it.” I’d smile to myself every time I got to say “Bunny point.”

This test was given to all team members. Richard Dutton always won.

Here are some “hidden points”. Fill out and return. Limit your answers to 35 words or less except for numbers 3, 12, 13, 39, and 40. Best papers, men and women, will be rewarded.

The page numbers in parentheses indicate where the question is answered in “Play is Where Life Is”. Several, questions 20, 22 and 36, are explained on the test.

Answer in 35 words or less, based on fall practice:
• “Hone your return” (page 296)
• “Churn and Burn” (page 213)
• 7 volley spots (page 313)
• Use your legs to volley (overhead) (page 313)
• “Recoil” (page 313)
• “On the rise” (page 315)
• “Andy Moll” Drill (page 328)
• “2 and in” (pages 276 and 314)
• “Shank” target (pages 226 and 276)
• going in (pages 226 and 276)
• backing up (pages 226 and 276)
10. Which knee is down on a low backhand volley (right handers)? (The left.)
11. “Hit-turn” serve (0verhead) (pages 312 and 329)
12. “Doubles is a 1-2 game” (pages 296 and 299)
13. “Duties of all 4 doubles players” (pages 298 and 299)
14. Where is the under spin ball best used (which shots)? (page 276)
15. “Touch and tighten” (page 276)
16. Short corner (significance) (pages 298 and 299)
17. Cardinal sins in doubles (page 300)
18. “Chip and Charge” (page 322)
19. “Chip and Rip” (page 323)
20. They approach cross court. Your response: (Down the Line)
21. “Spot specific” on volleys (too!) (page 328)
22. “The most important ground stroke” (Cross Court Backhand, if both players are right-handed)
23. Get the return out of “the hole” (page 323)
24. “The Cagey Cage” (page 309)
25. The values of hitting on the rise (pages 321 and 277 Item#6)
26. Borg’s speech (page 325)
27. Don’t change the “line of the ball” (page 295)
28. Who serves first for us in doubles? (The server who gives our team the best chance to win. This may not be the best server.)
29. Double faults are: (page 297)
30. Know when to “pull the trigger” (page 330)
31. “The harder they hit it, the… ” (Easier you swing…page 313)
32. “Z” shaped return (page 332)
33. Compare the “hit spot” for a backhand two-hander to a one-handed backhand slice (page 311)
34. “Pulling the top spin backhand” (page 327)
35. “Learn the court” team policy on dropping a questionable ball (pages 332 and 333)
36. Two rally suggestions: (1. Hit ground strokes off the first bounce only. Second bounce hits are not legal, plus make you hustle to the ball and hit some awkward shots. 2. There is no need to hit balls that are out of bounds. Just knock them down, or let them go, and start a new in-bounds rally.)
37. Recommended technique on backhand overheads (page 329)
38. High volley – down and at an angle (pages 324, 329 and 358)
Low volleys – straight and deep and they get to hit it one more time
39. List what helped you this fall.
40. List what you need work on and how you plan to work on it.

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