Return a short backhand sidespin serve

Table Tennis Service Return

Last updated 9 years ago

kinikachi igwe

kinikachi igwe Asked 9 years ago

Hello coach, please I have a challenge when my opponent is serving a short bh side/topspin serve and bh side/back spin serve to my forehand. Please can you help me with some tips on how to receive both serves? Thanks


Alois Rosario

Alois Rosario Answered 9 years ago

Hi Kinikachi,

The ball will be curving away from you.  Try to get closer to the ball to allow for the swing on the ball.  I find a good cue to help is to try and get your nose closer to the ball.  This gets you to move to the ball.

If the ball has topspin then you can try to flick the return.  If the ball has backspin then it is best to push the ball back.


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Siddhartha Raja

Siddhartha Raja Posted 9 years ago

sir i have the same problem but my opponent serve long this backhand sidespin serve


Alois Rosario

Alois Rosario from PingSkills Posted 9 years ago

Hi Siddhartha,

For this, you should use the Forehand Topspin Off Backspin shot.  You just ned to allow for the sidespin.  If you brush it fast enough you will counteract the spin on the ball.

Also take a look at this previous video response to a question on Ask the Coach. How to return a long sidespin serve


Paul Yuan

Paul Yuan Posted 9 years ago

Hi Coach,

"Try to get closer to the ball to allow for the swing on the ball." I am still not sure the timing to counter side/top spin. To flick the ball at top point (after the ball curving)?  Not to brush the ball when the the ball rising?


Alois Rosario

Alois Rosario from PingSkills Posted 9 years ago

Hi Paul,

For the short serve, ideally try to get it at the top of the bounce.  This will give you the best chance to get the ball over the net and with the most accuracy.


Paul Yuan

Paul Yuan Posted 9 years ago

Hi Alois,

Yes, try to be patient. I took a half hour to think about your two instructions. I found I did something over my ability when I played.

Your training is really helpful!

Thank you!



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