Playing a Cross-court Drop Shot in Squash
A Cross-Court Drop is a good alternative to the Straight Drop if played now and again. While they can be a bit more risky, when played well they can be a deadly outright winner.
If you have enough time on the ball, you should aim for your Cross-Court to hit the ‘nick’ – the juncture where the side wall (or back wall) meets the floor which causes the ball to roll out or bounce funny if hit – or aim for it to bounce twice before the far side wall.
When playing a Cross-Court Drop, you should use the all of the same basic steps used when playing a Straight Drop, although there are two significant differences; hitting it early and using a high to low swing where possible.
Play a good Cross-Court Drop shot in a few quick steps:
- Get down low – make sure you get down low so that you have more stability and control.
- High/standard backswing – as you line up for the shot, make sure your racket is in the same position as it would be if you were going to play a Drive or a powerful shot. This disguises your Drop and prevents your opponent anticipating it easily.
- Open racket – Make sure you have an open racket face. If your grip is correct, you should already have an open racket face. Read about checking your grip here.
- High to low swing – This can also be dependent on how much time you have and the height of the ball. As you are playing Cross-Court, you will find the ‘nick’ is open to you more than it would be for a Straight Shot and so you should swing your racket from high to low. This will bring the ball downward and allow for a nick shot if the angle is right
- Hit the ball early – if you have time on the ball, hitting the ball early when it is out in front of helps a lot with getting the direction, as the ball will go Cross-Court with ease.
- Long connection – Make sure you feel and guide the ball into the corner, keeping the ball in contact with your strings for as long as you can. Do not rush the contact, even if you hit the ball slightly harder than you’d like to at first.
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