Hall of Famer Albert Apuzzi.
Where there’s a wall, there’s a way to play the “perfect game.” Apuzzi offers 7 Pointers for One-Wall Play.
With much of the country still limited to outdoor activities, we’re hearing of many more one-wall courts (or close facsimiles), that are springing back into action. For four-wallers, one-wall can seem like a different sport, complete with different rules.
Who better to deliver some pointers than one-wall Hall of Famer Albert Apuzzi. Here’s a “primer” on one-wall for the newcomers to this version of the perfect game. Of course, it sounds and seems simple for Albert since he’s been playing and winning for over 50 years (that's eight USHA National Doubles titles with two National Singles crowns)!
Starting with the serve, Apuzzi gives us 7 Pointers for One-Wall Play:
|Attack the wall: It's one-wall so there's not a lot of time to set up...
hit it when it comes to you.
1. In singles, serve low, just over the shortline. Angling your serve to one side or the other will force your opponent far off the court. That makes it more difficult for the receiver to return the ball into fair play and you’ll want to remember to get to the opposite of the court since the receiver’s return will have to travel on the same angle back to the wall. Deep serves are more effective in doubles.
2. It’s better to serve a short or a long (resulting in a fault) than an out on the sidelines (resulting in a hand out).
3. Always move in to “attack the wall,” especially after your serve to pounce on your opponent's return.
Angles: Forcing your opponent off the court will bring the ball back to you and allow you to "attack the wall" for a point.
4. Singles is a game of angles. Properly used angle shots increase the ground your opponent must cover.
5. Doubles is more of a driving game, pounding with power. Since both of your opponents are covering the court, angling shots are less effective.
6. Lefty/righty teams position themselves with the lefty on the right side. This way, both players on the team will be taking most shots with their strong hands AND make the opponents risk hitting the ball out in their attempts to find your team's off hands.
7. Give yourself room for error. As you will learn quickly in one-wall, just a few inches can turn a great shot into an out ball. You’ll be surprised how hard it is to keep the ball inside the lines, so start with trying to keep the ball in play.
Want a more in-depth instructional for one-wall serves? Read Apuzzi's "1-wall Servers Must Learn How to Handle the Angles" article HERE.