, Salem, MA


July 5, 2013

These Lobsters are ready to rock Pro tennis team out of Manchester begins season Sunday

There’s a lot to absorb in any given tennis match. Sometimes, even the most experienced fans are left just following the ball back and forth.

In Mylan World TeamTennis, the format is different and even more up-tempo than the average match. There’s no-ad scoring, five shortened sets and a running, final score that includes every game won throughout each set.

The Boston Lobsters, who begin play this Sunday against the New York Sportimes (6:30 p.m.) have a new home (the Manchester Athletic Club), some new faces and a hunger to move up the standings and get back into the playoffs this season.

Here’s a look at who’ll be taking the court for the Lobsters this summer:

Marquee player Mark Philippoussis has a booming serve and a great first return. His size (6-foot-5, 230 lbs.) and length allow him to get great extension. Watch for how relaxed he is during his serve and how he accelerates the racquet. If all these things are lining up for Philippoussis, the former No. 8 player in the world, expect him to have a big serving night.

Doubles specialist Eric Butorac’s strength is getting really tight on the net, cutting balls off and putting them away. Pay attention to when his partner hits a good first serve or solid return of serve; when either happens, the left-handed Butorac will look to be aggressive and move forward.

Singles player Jill Craybas is an extremely effective defender. Watch not only how hard her opponent has to work to win points, but also how much her opponent gets frustrated when she can’t do it. Craybas can get to a lot of balls most players wouldn’t, and her ability to put those balls into play can create a mental edge over her opponent as the match goes on.

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