The net, you’d think, is an unavoidable fact of tennis. As a ball approaches you, there are many interesting decisions you are free to make—where to play it, what kind of spin to apply, how hard to strike—but one decision is already made for you: you have to hit it over the damn net.
But there are exceptions. Usually you’ll see it in doubles, where the courts are widened with doubles alleys and where you can afford to take a gambit chasing a ball into the stands, knowing there’s a partner still on court. There you’ll find new angles of play basically alien to the singles game.
Sometimes, if you’re lucky, you might get to hit the ball around the net post, as low to the ground as you’d like, for a clean winner. That’s exactly what Jack Sock while sliding through the clay in his second round match at the Madrid Open, eliciting an “Oh my god! [muffled expletive]” from his partner Nick Kyrgios.