Recognising short and long serves

Table Tennis Service Return

Last updated 7 years ago

Abhiroop Bagchi

Abhiroop Bagchi Asked 8 years ago

Hi Alois,

I can return a short or a long serve, but there is a major problem i face. i cannot judge whether the serve done would be a short one or a long one. It is until the ball comes to my side of the net that i understand the length of the ball; which many a times would be too late to give a strong return.

Is there is a way to determine the length of the ball before it comes to my side of the net? If there is please help.

Alois Rosario

Alois Rosario Answered 8 years ago

Hi Abhiroop,

Try to watch and track the ball all the way.  Follow it in flight and follow it with your bat.  Then if it drops off the table on the second bounce you can attack it.

It is not something that you can fix straight away but your judgement will get better.  The better players can tell off the servers bat whether it is going to be short or long.  I guess it is another part of experience.

Notify me of updates
Add to Favourites
Back to Questions

Thoughts on this question

Abhiroop Bagchi

Abhiroop Bagchi Posted 8 years ago

Thank you.Will definitely give it a try on my next sessions.  

Bill Callaham

Bill Callaham Posted 7 years ago


  You are the better player. Tell us what you see to that gives you the extra time. Do you watch the 1st bounce on the other side

of the table? Please add to your answer.

Alois Rosario

Alois Rosario from PingSkills Posted 7 years ago

Hi Bill,

I watch the ball all the way and I think as you receive more, you start to see the cues in the backswing and the contact.  You even hear the differences in the contact.  The more spin has a softer contact.  Then you see the differences in the flight of the ball.  All this together gives you the information.


Become a free member to post a comment about this question.