In doubles pickleball, there will be times when you need to work with an opposite-hander as your partner. Results of studies vary, generally revealing that between 10 and 12 percent of the population is left-handed. In fact, according to at least one source, the actual number is 11.11%. If you happen to be a left-hander, then working with an opposite hander will be common for you.
With opposite handers, there are two weak areas.
When both of the players’ dominant hands are facing away from the middle, then the middle is vulnerable.
The main thing is communication. Not just “I go” or “You go,” but communication before the game starts. If one is stronger than the other at backhands or switching hands, that person might volunteer to cover the middle. If the partners are equally skilled, then they might decide that whoever is on the right – or the left – will be the one to cover the middle. Life is so much better if you have agreed on a plan at the beginning.
Knowing when your partner is going to cover the middle, it is your job to stay away from the middle. This prevents crashes, confusion, and leaves you to cover the alley or lobs if needed.
The other vulnerability is the sidelines. When both partners’ dominant hands are facing the middle, a player will have to move way to the outside edge of the court, maybe even beyond the sideline, to handle a diagonal. The partner ought to be aware of this, and ready to cover the middle as needed.
If you happen to be a left-hander, you can take advantage of the fact that many opponents will try to hit to your left, out of habit, because they have been successful placing balls to the left in the past. You will be able to surprise your opponents by returning these shots easily.