Playing Against a Penholder

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The penhold style is very different from the shakehand style and there are some common strategies that work more on penhold players. Note that every player has his/her own weaknesses and strengths, so these will not all apply.

  1. Play to their Backhand.
    Traditional penhold players cannot attack effectively on their backhand side since they are only using one rubber. Playing balls to their backhands often force them into the defensive. However, the modern penhold style uses a rubber on the backhand side for looping, so this may not apply.
  2. Cramp them to the Backhand Side.
    Penholders often rely on the forehand for their attacks, so in a long distance looping rally, if you keep looping it into the body, they will step around to the backhand side in order to use the forehand. If you keep pushing them further to the backhand side, eventually their forehand side will have a large gap that you can take advantage of.

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