I'm looking for an adjective to describe a forehand shot in tennis that requires a lot of effort (from hard hitter, baseliner, e.g. Thiem, Del Potro...) as opposing to an effortless, elegant forehand shot (e.g. from Roger Federer). I know there're some people who may disagree with my labelling of the tennis players above, but I'm just here to ask for the word. So please bear with me ;)

I've thought of words like physically demanding or demanding, tough... (but they don't sound quite suitable to me); or even effortful (but unfortunately, some dictionaries don't consider it as a correct word).

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    The shot itself would be called a smash, (ie a forehand smash) and this does imply that an extraordinary amount of effort and force has been put into it. This isn't an adjective though. Jun 13 '16 at 8:20
  • Smash actually is another type of shots (when the ball is high over your head, and you're smashing it downward). I'm afraid that's not what I meant to ask for. What I'm trying to convey is the characteristic of the shot that is related to the playing style of the player. For example: Federer's forehand shots are so effortless and elegant that makes me enjoy watching them. While Thiem's involve more power, and somehow, are not as much enjoyable to watch. Jun 13 '16 at 10:24

I think ferocious is a good descriptor here, and I often hear it in sporting contexts ('a ferocious slam dunk' or 'a ferocious slap shot'):

very fierce or violent; very great or extreme

  • Personally, I've never seen the use of this word in the context of tennis matches. However, it fits the description and is the only answer I got so far. So, thank you. ^^ Jun 15 '16 at 1:38

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