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Henman vows to switch tactics

June 11, 2005 13:13 IST
British number one Tim Henman promised to overhaul his grasscourt tactics after his quarter-final defeat by Swede Thomas Johansson at the Stella Artois Championships.

Third seed Henman was beaten 6-4, 6-4 by the Swede on Friday after being out-thought and said afterwards that he had lost because of his rigid adherence to a serve-volley game against one of tennis's best returners.

"I was disappointed with my performance, I never gave myself the opportunity to put pressure on him," said the 30-year-old, who has reached the semi-finals of the Wimbledon grasscourt grand slam four times.

"I do think there was a valuable lesson today. I haven't done a very good job of being as decisive with a game plan on grass as I have on other surfaces.

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"I
need to be a little bit more selective. I was forcing my serve and that has a knock-on effect.

"That's something I'll take on board and make damn sure that I do a better job of it at Wimbledon.

"It (serve-volleying) is a mindset that's probably been ingrained about grasscourt tennis having watched it and played it so long.

"I have options to my game and if I'm honest I don't use them as well on grass as on other surfaces."

The Wimbledon grasscourt grand slam starts on June 20 and Henman will once again shoulder British hopes of a first homegrown men's champion since 1936.

Last year he reached the semi-finals of both the French and U.S. Opens, played on clay and hardcourt respectively.

"If I can do it (adapt) on a clay court as I have then it should be a lot easier to do it on this surface," he concluded.

Bill Barclay
Source:
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