Below are a few key points that are essential to playing effective doubles:
Serve-Two areas of importance about the serve in doubles are first serve percentage and serve location.
First Serve Percentage-Having a high first serve percentage is important because it puts you and your partner on the ascend in the point. The returning team gains confidence if they are seeing a lot of second serves. A high first serve percentage generally leads to more poaching opportunities, which is what doubles players want.
Serve Location- I touched on serve location in my previous article. Remember that serving to the body increases poaching chances, and limits the returner from creating angles to work with. It is generally a good idea to mix up your serve location, but a higher percentage of body serves in doubles is advisable.
Return of Serve-Being aggressive on the return of serve, when given the chance, is important for the returning team to take control of the point. As a returner, it is advisable to step in and be aggressive on a second serve to you, the returner, to get to the net. Be aware of mixing up your returns, however, cross court is the better percentage directional.
Get to the Net-I truly believe if you and your partner get to the net, you have a much higher chance of winning matches. There is so much pressure created on your opponent when getting to the net. You can create many different angles and you can open up the court to put volleys away. There is a very low percentage chance that your opponent will be able to hit quality lobs throughout an entire match.
Communication-This goes without saying, however, communication with your partner on and off the court is essential. Talking with your partner between points is highly recommended for positive reinforcement and assessment of what is happening on the court. This can also be a good way to reduce nerves when playing a match. Consult with your pro/coach about effective strategies to discuss positive reinforcement and assessment with your partner.