Analysis of Serve and Serve-Return Strategies in Elite Male and Female Padel
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Racket sportsPerformance analysisGame-actionsStroke
Sánchez-Alcaraz, B.J.; Muñoz, D.; Pradas, F.; Ramón-Llin, J.; Cañas, J.; Sánchez-Pay, A. Analysis of Serve and Serve-Return Strategies in Elite Male and Female Padel. Appl. Sci. 2020, 10, 6693. [https://doi.org/10.3390/app10196693]
This aim of this study was to analyze serve and return statistics in elite padel players regarding courtside and gender. The sample contained 668 serves and 600 returns of serves from 14 matches (7 male and 7 female) of the 2019 Masters Finals World Padel Tour. Variables pertaining to serve (number, direction, court side and effectiveness), return of serve (direction, height, stroke type and effectiveness) and point outcome were registered through systematic observation. The main results showed that the serving pair had an advantage in rallies, under 8 shots in women and under 12 shots in men. Statistical differences according to gender and court side were found. Female players execute more backhand and cross-court returns and use more lobs than men. On the right court, serves are more frequently aimed at the “T” and more down the line returns are executed when compared to the left side. Such knowledge could be useful to develop appropriate game strategies and to design specific training exercises based on actual competition context.