“If you know how to play doubles, then you can gel as a team.” – Martina Navratilova
I watch tennis on television. I like the drama, the tension, the strategy, whether it’s singles or doubles.
Also, I tune in to the Hall of Fame commentators for their unique perspectives on the matches. Post-match interviews of the players are also of high interest to me. I seek to understand the mindset of an accomplished tennis player. There’s lots of good food-for-thought in those interviews.
If we watch and listen (really engage), one of those Hall-of-Famers will hand us a tennis nugget worth our while.
Well, recently, I was watching a televised doubles match. It was a great match: Impressive execution, terrific shot selection, and flawless court movement. Martina Navratilova, one of the great doubles and singles champions in tennis history was one of the commentators for the match. At the beginning of one of the changeovers, Martina was praising the quality of the match. And, among her comments, she said, “If you know how to play doubles, then you can gel as a team.”
Well said Martina. It’s true.
You and your partner must understand the game of doubles.
You and your partner must know exactly how you plan to win.
And, if you’re losing, then you and your partner need to know how to make the proper adjustments.
You and your partner must be on the same page.
Your tactics must be the gel that binds your overall strategy.
It’s a relationship. You always gotta work on it.
That’s why I’m not much of a fan of having multiple doubles partners. A tennis orgy. Not good for your doubles game. But it does improve your social life.
The takeaway – if you wanna improve your doubles:
- Limit the number of doubles partners you play with (3 max)
- Take clinics together – you’ll learn the same language
- Be compatible – go to lunch, socialize other than on the tennis court
Just keep working on that relationship.
A fact – enriching doubles relationships are rare indeed. Kinda like life itself. But, when you find that special doubles chemistry (which to me is a special alchemy), you’ve struck gold. Cherish it. Enjoy the ride.
In my tennis doubles journey, I’ve been fortunate to strike gold.
I’m grateful for those precious few times.
Stay thirsty my friends.