Mississippi College

The Choice of Ends and Serves

  1. The choice of ends and the right to serve or receive first in a match shall be decided by P-I-N-G. This is a rally in which the winner receives the first serve.
  2. When one player or pair has chosen to serve or receive first or to start at a particular end, the other player or pair shall have the other choice.
  3. After each 5 points have been scored the receiving player or pair shall become the serving player or pair and so on until the end of the game, unless both players or pairs score 20 points, in this case each player shall serve for only 1 point in turn.
  4. The player or pair serving first in a game shall receive first in the next game of the match, and in the last possible game of a doubles match the pair due to receive next shall change their order of receiving when first one pair scores 5 points.
  5. The player or pair starting at one end in a game shall start at the other end in the next game of the match.

Service

  1. A. If there is no Assistant Umpire, and the umpire is doubtful of the legality of a service he may, on the first occasion in a match, warn the server without awarding a point.
    B. If subsequently in the match a service by that player or his doubles partner is of dubious legality, for same reason or for any other reason, the receiver shall score a point.
    C. Whenever there is a clear failure to comply with the requirements for a good service, no warning shall be given and the receiver shall score a point.
    D. Exceptionally, the umpire may relax the requirements for a good service where he is satisfied that compliance is prevented by physical disability.
  2. As the ball is falling, the server shall strike it so that it touches first his court and then, passing directly over or around the net assembly touches the receiver's court. In doubles the ball shall touch successively the right half court of the server and receiver.
  3. From the start of service until it is struck, the ball shall be above the level of the playing surface and behind the server's end line, and it shall not be hidden from the receiver by any part of the body or clothing of the server or his doubles partner.
  4. It is the responsibility of the player to serve so that the umpire or the assistant umpire can see that he complies with the requirements for a good service.
  5. If, in attempting to serve, a player fails to strike the ball while it is in play, his opponent will be awarded a point.

Good Return

  1. The ball, having been served or returned in play, shall be struck so that it passes directly over or around the net assembly and touches the opponent's court, either directly or after touching the net assembly.
    A. If the ball, having been served or returned in play, returns with its own impetus over the net, it may be struck so that it touches directly the opponent's court. 

The Order Of Play

  1. In singles, the server shall first make a good service, the receiver shall then make a good return, and thereafter, server and receiver alternately shall each make a good return.
  2. In doubles, the server shall first make a good service, the receiver shall then make a good return, the partner of the server shall then make a good return, the partner of the receiver shall then make a good return, and thereafter, each player alternately in that sequence shall make a good return.

A Let

A serve is a let:

  1. If in service the ball, in passing over or around the net assembly, touches it, provided the serve is otherwise good or is obstructed by the receiver or his partner.
  2. If the service is delivered when the receiving player or pair is not ready, provided that neither the receiver nor his partner attempts to strike the ball.
  3. If, the failure to make a good service or a good return or otherwise to comply with the Laws is due to a disturbance outside the control of the player.
  4.  If play is interrupted by the umpire or assistant umpire.
    A. To correct an error in the order of serving or receiving or ends.
    B. To introduce the expedite system.
    C. To warn or penalize a player.
    D. Because the conditions of play are disturbed in a way which could affect the outcome of the rally.

A Point

Unless the rally is a let, a player shall score the point:

  1. If his opponent fails to make a good service.
  2. If his opponent fails to make a good return.
  3. If, after he has made a good service or a good return, the ball touches anything other than the net assembly before being struck by his opponent.
  4. If the ball passes beyond his end line without touching his court, after being struck by his opponent.
  5. If his opponent obstructs the ball, except as provided in Rule 9.1.
  6. If his opponent strikes the ball twice successively.
  7. If his opponent strikes the ball with a side of the racquet blade having an illegal surface.
  8. If his opponent, or anything he wears or carries, moves the playing surface.
  9. If his opponent, or anything he wears or carries, touches the net assembly.
  10. If, in doubles, his opponent strikes the ball out of sequence established by the first server and first receiver.
  11. As provided under the expedite system.
  12. If the umpire assesses a penalty point against his opponent.

A Game

  1. A game shall be won by the player or pair first scoring 21 points unless both players or pairs score 20 points, when the game shall be won by the first player or pair subsequently gaining a lead of 2 points.

A Match

  1. A match shall consist of the best of three (3) games.
  2. Play shall be continuous throughout, except for authorized intervals

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