Every table tennis player loves to outsmart his opponent. But in order to do that, you need to hit the appropriate shots and there is no shot as confusing as the wiggly shot or also known as the snake shot.Source.
A wiggly shot/ snake shot is a type of shot which is specifically used against a drop shot. It is usually loaded with a heavy spin so that the opponent finds it difficult to counter.
The type of spin can be backspin, sidespin or topspin depending on your choice. Mastering the snake shot requires tremendous composure and footwork.
Here are some tips which might help you in learning this stroke:
- Improve your defence: There is a deep connection between your defence and the snake shot. Remember, that a snake shot can be hit only against the drop shot and the only reason why your opponent hits a drop shot is when he is unable to break your defence. If you are 10 feet away from the table and lobbing every smash being thrown at you, then a time will come when your opponent will try the drop shot. At that moment, you need to sneak like a cat and bamboozle your opponent.
- Quick footwork: You cannot hit the ball if you cannot reach towards the ball. In order to implement the snake shot, one needs to move very quickly towards the table. The drop shot has a very low bounce and one needs to be very fast if he/she wants to try the snake shot.
At the end of the video, you can see World Number 2, Xu Xin, trying the snake shot. Look at his incredible footwork as he glides all around the arena like a cheetah.
- Imparting Heavy Spin- The wiggly shot is incomplete without spin. The different types of spin are as follows: backspin, sidespin and topspin. No matter which type of spin you choose, the wiggly shot should be loaded with that particular type of spin. The opponent won’t get confused if there is less spin.
- Deception: The key component of the wiggly shot is deception. When you are hitting the wiggly shot, your opponent is unable to see your bat. This is when you deceive him with your action. If you are imparting sidespin, then follow it up with a backspin or reverse sidespin action. Make sure that the follow-up action is different from the spin which you are producing.
This video might help you in understanding more about deception:
- Getting ready for the next shot: A wiggly shot doesn’t guarantee you a point, but it gives you a major advantage in the ongoing rally. Many amateur players relax after producing the wiggly and lose the point. The trick is to guess the opponent’s shot according to the spin produced and keep the rally going.
Wiggly shots have entertained a lot of people around the world. It looks simple to the eye but requires utmost patience and practice. So keep practising and don’t stop till you keep fooling your opponents consistently.
Watch how French player Simon Gauzy fooled his opponent in last year’s world cup.