How is important is left-handedness in tennis? Does playing with your left hand really have benefits? Statistics reveal that the percentage of left-handed Slam winners is very high when compared to that of left-handers in the world population.
In his recent autobiography, Rafael Nadal has debunked the myth that he was forced to start playing left-handed, even though he is right-handed. The development was more natural, according to him, but it has obviously paid off.
Regardless of the truth or falsity of the left-handed "legend," it is still widely believed that left-handed players have an edge over their right-handed counterparts.
The blow more enhanced by the game left-handed, is undoubtedly the external service, which is to urge the other side (usually blame weaker) right-handed opponent, thus making it more difficult to answer. Tennis players who prefer the left hand also have the possibility of finding of the most exasperated and put it this way in great difficulty opponents have the right side dominant. In reality, there is a scientific reason, according to which the right-handed could not use the same angles exploited by the left-handed, on the other side of the field (although left-handers can use the preferred rotation on the service points equal, generally more important in the economy of a game), by the way seems that players who prefer the right hand is not able to obtain the same benefits.
Most likely this difference of trajectories does not really exist, but since lefties are only 10% of the world population (eleven in top 100), right-handed players are not used to manage the angles and rotations generated by the latter , that for this seem to be so monstrously more effective than those generated by the "normal" players.
To see if indeed, left-handedness is more weapon to win tennis matches, we can ask for help in the statistical analysis. Since 1968, the beginning of the open, have been played a total of 179 Grand Slam (Roland Garros from 1968 up to the U.S. Open this year). Among men, lefties took home the title for 40 times (22.3%), while among women this event occurred in 28 occasions (15.6%). Both percentages are very high, if weighted at the human beings who have left in your dominant hand, as we have already mentioned is around 10%.
There are many reasons that can be found to explain these percentages. First, with regard to men, it is necessary to note, that in forty slam "left", 27 were won by Nadal Mcenroe and Connors, three of the greatest players in history, while among the women of the 28 majors, well 18portano signing the great Martina Navratilova and nine of the equally great Monica Seles. However, opening our point of view and taking into consideration the pre-open era, the percentage not to deviate too much from that of the period of professionals, as in the past left-handers (Rod Laver in the first place) took home major tournaments with great continuity.
An interesting fact revealed by the statistics on Slam , is what shows that in the twenty years 1985 - 2005, among men there were only three winners (out of 77) of major-handed: Andres Gomez at Roland Garros in 1990, Thomas Muster in Paris in 1995 and Goran Ivanisevic at Wimbledon in 2001. Among women, there was rather a long period of fasting for tennis players with dominant left hand, which lasted from 1996 (the last Slam Seles) to 2011 (victory Petra Kvitova at Wimbledon).
Among women recently have emerged as top ten, Angelique Kerber and Petra Kvitova . For the future, the names "left" to bet on strong seem to be those of Laura Robson and, why not, Gianluigi Quinzi. As for the current season, so far, in the ATP circuit were five left-handers to bring home titles (Nadal, Nieminen, Melzer, and Klizan Bellucci), while in the WTA have made it in only two (Kvitova and Kerber). A figure that shows a strong growth compared to 2011, when the only left-handed titrated were Rafa and Petra.This trend can be explained by the general transition from grass to concrete and progressive slowing down of surfaces, since the field is more faster and the ball squirts, making lethal trajectories outside of left-handers. Probably, however, the trend can also be explained by general no samples left-relevant periods. Since Nadal started to win his slam tournaments (2005), seems to be start an opposite trend compared to the previous two decades.
Probably we’ll never obtain one irrefutable proof that lefties are actually an advantage in the game of tennis , but the fact that Nadal, Connors, Mcenroe, Laver, Martina Navratilova and Seles, six of the greatest performers in the history of our sport, play and have played with the left hand, is surely significant. Or not?