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One handed backhand breathes a sign of life at Australian Open

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Stanislas Wawrinka's victory in the Australian Open tennis championship was not only a win for one of the "other" guys, it was also a reminder that maybe the one handed backhand is not yet extinct.

Rafael Nadal, runner-up at the Australian Open, and Novak Djokovic, the number one and two ranked players are leading the new age of the two handed backhands which are definitely more dominant in today's game. On the men's side, there are only 12 players in the top 50 who use the one handed while the women have just three in the top 50.

Much of the reason for the two handed backhand rise can be attributed to the more physical nature of modern tennis and to the new strings and rackets which make it the preferred stroke. Until Wawrinka's latest showing, Roger Federer has been the lone one handed backhand to win a Grand Slam in the last decade.

Most youngsters today are taught the two handed backhand which is easier and more suited to the current state of tennis. So while the one handed backhand becomes even scarcer, look at some of today's masters of the stroke.

Roger Federer of Switzerland plays a backhand in his semifinal match against Rafael Nadal
Roger Federer of Switzerland plays a backhand in his semifinal match against Rafael Nadal (Photo by Matt King/Getty Images)

Roger Federer of Switzerland plays a backhand in his semifinal match against Rafael Nadal

Since Federer has won only two majors since 2010 there is evident limitations in his classic style of play, most of the fault being the backhand Nick Bollettieri, a famous American coach, thinks Federer could have had even more success two-handed.

Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria
Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria (Photo by Scott Barbour/Getty Images)

Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria

The Bulgarian beat No. 11 seed Raonic in four sets in Australian Open 3R…Reached his first QF at his 14th Grand Slam, beating Raonic in 3R before losing to Rafael Nadal in four sets.

Tommy Robredo of Spain
Tommy Robredo of Spain (Photo by Chris Hyde/Getty Images)

Tommy Robredo of Spain

The Spaniard beat No. 9 seed Gasquet in four sets in Australian Open 3R; lost to No. 8 seed Wawrinka in 4R.

.In 2011 received ATP Aces for Charity Grant for the work he does with “The Tommy Robredo Foundation” who helps allow sports training for people with a disability and holds an international wheelchair tennis tournament

 Richard Gasquet of France
Richard Gasquet of France (Photo by Renee McKay/Getty Images)

Richard Gasquet of France

As ninth seed, he lost to Robredo in Australian Open 3R.

Finished in Top 10 for 2nd year in a row, 3rd overall, and as top Frenchman for 1st time since 2007. Won 3 titles for 1st time since ‘06 and a personal-best 50 matches

Tommy Haas of Germany
Tommy Haas of Germany (Photo by Chris Hyde/Getty Images)

Tommy Haas of Germany

The oldest player in Top 20 and top German. Haas retired in the first round of the Australian Open this year. Began playing at age four with his father, Peter, who is Austrian and a former European champion in judo and ex-schoolmate of Hollywood star and former Governor of California Arnold Schwarzenegger

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