By Bob Maison
With sport always evolving, new
terms or buzz words often emerge, for example, “marginal gains”. Another that
has been around for a while is TCUP – thinking clearly under pressure.
So where could this apply to our squash matches? Well, we might often lead in games only for the opponent to come back to win the set. When this has happened a few times, it can easily play on the mind such that even if you are still in the lead you can start thinking about losing- and then losing becomes a self-fulfilling prophesy.
This can and has happened to the very best and Gaultier and Shorbagy losing in world finals from “winning” positions comes to mind.
This is where your “mind-set” at critical points is SO important (TCUP). So, what do you do at 8-6 for example? Play “steady- no mistakes? Is your opponent going to do that? No, he/she has to attack and apply more pressure. So, you must be ready and make the rally REALLY hard and if you have attack opportunities then you MUST go for them.
If you win the rally, fantastic do it again. Maybe even harder. Even if you lose the rally you will have still put a massive amount of work into his/her legs and you will still be leading!
The key then is to take a little longer to breathe and remind yourself (TCUP) that you are still and leading that you will make the next point even harder (and no silly tins hit in anger!)
TCUP after losing1st set to follow