This is an interview with the current World No. 30 WTA Doubles Player, and a rising doubles star, Erin Routliffe.
I spoke with Erin about her improvement (especially in terms of mindset), her practice and match routines, and all things doubles.
In this conversation we talk about:
- The importance of college tennis for her career & her opinion on if players should go pro or to college at 18.
- How she went from being a top-100 doubles player to a top-30 doubles player.
- The special way she starts every practice to improve her touch and feel at the net.
You will also hear how she got into tennis, what she has been doing in the off-season, and of course, what we can do to make doubles more popular.
Interview Notes from this Podcast
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- Follow Erin: Twitter | Instagram
- What have you improved on in the last couple of years?
- She has learned to deal with losing better since the season is long and only one team can win.
- She has also worked to become a more consistent server and returner while improving her net game.
- What moments do you think led to your breakthrough?
- During the summer of 2021, she felt like her title in Palermo and a scary accident with her little sister gave her confidence and a new perspective.
- Turning pro or going to college?
- She thinks it depends on the person, their personality, priorities, what coach they would have, and things like maturity.
- The transition from university to pros is tough because you lose several resources so it’s important to stay positive and find a good crowd.
- What does the off-season look like?
- Tournament Preparation
- Leading up to a tournament, she likes to do two sessions a day on the court and one in the gym.
- She generally knows what she wants to work on but lets her coaches communicate and form a plan.
- During a tournament, she likes to warm up around 3-4 hours before the match by hitting lots of balls in several situations.
- What are her plans for 2023?
- What is your ideal doubles partner like?
- She would prefer someone who likes to be at the net, is crafty, and brings a lot of energy.
- In fact, players like Hsieh Su-Wei, Barbora Krejcikova, and Katerina Siniakova have made this pairing of a crafty player with a power player work well.
- Related Podcast: Barbora Krejcikova & Katerina Siniakova Interview
- Do you prefer to play to your strengths or your opponents’ weaknesses?
- She prefers to focus on herself because it gives her confidence in big moments and helps her avoid regrets.
- She also thinks that consulting her partner during big points helps her focus.
- How do you play with a weaker partner?
- She thinks you should ask your partners what they are good at and put them in those situations.
- Special training tools?
- When warming up, she starts by not letting the ball bounce through the first few drills to help with her touch.
- She also likes drills that work on volleys and overheads while moving up and back.
- How does your game change in mixed doubles?
- Position: Server
- Play: Serving T in I-formation on the deuce side and having your partner put the volley away.
- Tennis Book: Winning Ugly by Brad Gilbert