For the tournament, I was using my Wilson Blade 98 18×20 with Luxilon ALU Power Spin strung at 53 lbs. The Blade provides me with a perfect blend of modern power and forgiveness with traditional precision and feel. ALU Spin gives me the ultimate in responsiveness for a polyester string with the sharp edges to bite the ball and boost my spin potential.
I was wearing Asics Gel Solution Speed 2 shoes because it’s my favorite match day shoe. They are super lightweight, fast-feeling and comfortable with plenty of support and stability. The slightly slicker outsole allows me to aggressively slide on hard courts easily.
As for strategy, I like to keep it simple. I just wanted to play solid and smart and find the cross-court patterns that suit me best as quickly as possible.
Since I can’t serve and volley in Shotgun 15 (sad face) my tactic was to not miss. I played defensively throughout and picked my moments of attack carefully. I tried to move my opponents by hitting to safe targets and used high percentage plays when attacking. When defending, I tried to keep my slice low off the backhand to force my opponents to have to lift the ball up over the net and hopefully force them either to use less pace or miss. On my forehand I tried to use depth and placement to prevent my opponents from attacking.