Match-up discussion - Sakura

Let’s get a Sakura thread going. Personally, this is one of my most problematic match-ups (under Dhalsim, E. Honda, and El Fuerte.) Sakura has a lot of great options against Dudley and she has a great mixup game that can give Dudley quite a hard time. So, let’s get some discussion going on this, shall we?

The more I see Sakura’s play, the more I’m convinced that she’s basically an all or nothing character. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a really hard matchup, especially against smart players, but Sakura has weak defenses. IMO, this is a good example of the way Dudley has to play most, if not all, of his matchups in SSF4: Pick the spot, and then BOOM! Lights out.

If she gets in you’re going to have a really hard time so Keep her out with anti airs and punish her whiffs. If she does get in, be very patient and wait until she’s far enough away to start taking the momentum. I would really only use ex cross counter on obvious cross ups since you can eat a nasty combo if she empty jumps. Your best option is going to be just blocking most of the time.

It’s not too wise to jump in on her with how good her anti air is. You’ll have to judge how good your opponent is at anti airing before you get all jump happy.

I feel like this and the Cody matchup really test how good a Dudley players defense is. It can be really tough if you’re constantly trying to rush her down.

I hate this match.

Her focus goes below Dudley’s ducking straight so you can’t use that to break her armor.
Her cr. MK and st RH are annoying.
Dudley has to sit there and take it when she gets going.

Sakura has to sit there and take it when Dudley gets going though.
Dudley’s damage output is higher so you need to guess less than Sakura to win.

s hk and cr mk from her are so good in the footsie game and why the hell does her cr hp auto correct? really good normal AA.

However, when u do knock this girl down, there is literally no reversal option aside from ex shooken which will never be thrown out. this matchup in my eyes is about winning the footsie battle (hard) getting the knockdown (hard) and then making the guess (50/50) on oki.

We were talking about Sak vs Dudders today in this topic:

Here is a copy paste on what I’ve noticed on the match up from Sakura’s point of view and what she should watch out for:

I used to main Dudders for a bit. I have 86% win rate against him online playing as Sakura. Dudley is like Sakura he is best up close. Only reason alot of Dudley players hang back is so they can MGB to punish you for whiffing specials and long recovery normals or for pacing back and forth. ex MGB can punish you jumping backwards so be aware of that. Sakura has the better normals so she wins in footsies here. You can keep him out or rush him down but be careful not to let him get the upperhand. My best advice is to play keep away as long as you can and only engage him upclose if you have to or you have figured out the player or he is knocked down.

Here is how I fight Dudley:

Full screen to mid screen spam s.lp/c.lp. It will beat any MGB. Not even ex MGB has invincibilty on it. That move is completely punishable before it hits. If he does MGB into your c.lp then hitconfirm into shouoken from there.

c.hp beats his so don’t worry about that. Be careful not to do hadokens too close cos he will duck through them. Don’t use focus attack either unless you are countering his focus attacks or if he is a Dudley that likes s.hp/f+hp alot.

This match is hard for Dudley if you just keep him out. Watch for his sweeps he has two of them. Both are slow on start up but if he can’t get to you through jump ins, ducks and MGB he’ll probably try to knock you down if he gets into sweep range with or

Try not to get knocked down whatever you do cos once he is inside or has you cornered you will eat alot of glove. If he knocks you down and stands right over you on your wake up he will most likely go for his meaty overhead (f+hk) which can combo into pain. If you see this coming then block high on wake or backdash.
If cornered you can kara tatsu out if you see a chance just be careful to not get hit by cos that can juggle into all sorts of pain.
Other than that just be patient wen cornered. Sometimes its better to eat a throw than a counter hit leading into Ultra for dudley.

If he uses Ultra 1 don’t throw any fireballs from any range once he has ultra unless you are willing to fadc it. A good dudley can duck or dash from full screen and if you throw a hadouken at that moment his ultra 1 will catch you.

When you have Dudley knocked down don’t do jump in attacks unless meaty. His cross counter has a start up of 3 frames. ex counter is 1 frame start up. His cross counters do not work on low attacks so a good tactic is empty jump or empty cross up into hitconfirm or go for throw. If he whiffs cross counter at a distance do not fall for the bait. Each version of his cross counter has a different amount of active frames. Only punish it if he does it upclose (sort of like gouken’s counter). If he hits you with ex cross counter he can tac ultra 2 to the end of it.

Don’t fear his dp unless its as anti air or its ex. He can combo into ultra from anti air lp dp just like ryu and he can combo into super from everything lol.

The ex Jet Upper dp is the only one with invincible frames. so feel free to pressure him on wake up with low attacks when he has no meter.

If Dudley lands lp or mp MGB on you hit or block best thing to do is backdash or wait. He can frame trap with lp MGB>s.lp xx MGB over and over if you try to press anything. USe the invincible frame on backdash to escape. If he catches on to your backdashes then just wait. Sometimes its better to eat throw than dp leading into Ultra 2. Sometimes they mix in cross counter aswell against people who like to mash c.lp up close.

His ex MGB is -8 on block so it can be punished if you are quick. I wouldn’t advise you try to punish with anything unless you are really quick or already mashing ex shouoken or something. If you wait he might mash out an ultra or ex dp after anyway and you can just punish that instead.

Never try to punish lp MGB or mp MGB. The recovery on those is like -2, -4. Don’t get trapped!

His short swing blows can all be grabbed out of on start up if he does them too close. If he sees you are grab happy and he does it at the right ranges you will take damage. ex ssb is very dangerous. he can fadc ex ssb on hit into U2 if he catches you with that in the corner. Also note that he can fadc out of ssb and his ducking upper, ducking straight, jet upper and thunderbolt moves.

Thunderbolt is really really bad. If he uses this move it’ll most likely be to chip you. It can cross up so be sure to block the right way. It has no invincibility sohe can be hit out of it anytime. The move is sometimes punishable even on hit since it doesn’t always knock down. Very punishable by us on block or on whiff.

EX cross counter starts in 3 frames and has no invincibility. If I were a Sakura player I would just go for meaty crossups up close, and from afar, keep him out with her awesome normals. Her pressure up close is just as scary as Dudley’s.

You know this isn’t a frame trap on block right? Jab MGB is -2 on block and Dudley’s jab has 3 frame start up so you can actually hit Dudley clean with either crouch jab or crouch strong if he tries to jab again.

Apologies. My knowledge on Dudley is really rusty. I must have mixed up his ex counter with Juri’s. Thanks for reminding me about that frame trap only being on hit with the light version. If you guys quote me for your index feel free to edit my post accordingly.