Broke a string stopping an "out" serve - do I get to change racquets?

Discussion in 'Adult League & Tournament Talk' started by tennisee, Nov 10, 2012.

  1. tennisee

    tennisee Rookie

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2004
    Messages:
    257
    Location:
    Australia.
    Edit - maybe I should have made the title "Broke a string stopping an "out" serve - do I get to change racquets and restart the point?"

    This happened to me today. The server's first serve was long, I called it out and put put a racquet on it to stop it, and broke a string. (odd bounce from a grass court - ball hit near the top of the frame)
    I was surprised by the noise, looked and saw my string broken. Before I'd thought about it I'd said, "do you mind if I get a new racquet?" Changed it, returned the first ball and offered the guy a first serve.
    Then as I was about to receive I thought, "am I allowed to do that, or do I have to play the point out with the broken string as it it happened within a point?"
    I asked my opponent who looked at me as if I was a bit deranged and said "of course you can."
    I figured there was no need to hold up proceedings further and went with it, but I looked it up tonight and could not find an answer; I found a reference to the Server breaking a string, but not the receiver.

    USTA Comment 23.2: What happens when there is a delay between
    the first and second serves? If the delay is caused by the receiver
    (such as a broken string or contact lens problem), an official,
    or outside interference, the whole point is replayed. If the server
    caused the delay, such as when the server breaks a string, the server
    gets one serve. Note that a spectator’s call (“out,” “fault,” or other), a
    spectator’s ringing cell phone, or grunting on an adjacent court is not
    basis for replaying the point. Action should be taken to prevent further
    spectator interference.


    So this seems to indicate that if the server breaks a string he can change racquets before continuing, but I'm not sure about the receiver...
     
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2012
    #1
  2. gmatheis

    gmatheis Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2010
    Messages:
    1,565
    Yes you can change it but the server gets to start with a first serve again.
     
    #2
  3. tennisee

    tennisee Rookie

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2004
    Messages:
    257
    Location:
    Australia.
    OK thanks - that seems sensible but I could not find a reference to it.
     
    #3
  4. tennis tom

    tennis tom Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2007
    Messages:
    2,733
    If you break a string, of course, you can change rackets. But just as an aside, if it's a rec match I look forward to breaking a string and playing with it as long as I can. First of all to see how long it takes for my opponent(s) to figure it out and secondly to discover the weird things you can do with a stick that's progressively turning into a colander of macaroni.

    I was practicing once with this hot (but dumb) chick and broke a string and she never noticed forty-five minutes afterwards; I heard she fell off her bike when she was a kid and hit her head. Just a few days ago I was serving on clay down in the desert and broke my gut (right in the center I'm proud to say) without warning--usually gut gives you plenty of warning and I can call the shot I'm gonna' break it on, but this time it caught me by surprise maybe because it was so hot out and the strings were cooking. I mentioned it (shouldn't have) and my partner (don't remember his name) said he had a spare (he came unusually well prepared to a club match). I said thanks and that I had one too and would get it on the change-over. I hit another serve and won my serve. No one else said anything (sometimes they go look at me like I'm crazy--I am) and insist I change rackets--I don't and keep playing until it's better to play with the butt end. I switched to my wet (synthetic string) racket on the change-over.

    The trick is to play center court strategy because the strings will trampoline and the balls will sail. Try it sometime for grins and see what happens. You may be stuck on a desert island Club Med someday with no stinger around. Just doing my share to get the max out of endangered cat-gut, to preserve valuable resources and prevent climate change.
     
    #4
  5. tennisee

    tennisee Rookie

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2004
    Messages:
    257
    Location:
    Australia.
    Well - I'm still not sure; of course it seems sensible, but I'm having trouble finding any reference to it; the only one I can find would seem to indicate to the contrary...


    USTA Comment 26.2: Can a player’s own action be the basis for
    that player claiming a let or a hindrance? No. Nothing a player does
    entitles that player to call a let. For example, a player is not entitled to a
    Let because the player breaks a string, the player’s hat falls off, or a ball
    in the player’s pocket falls out.
     
    #5
  6. gmatheis

    gmatheis Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2010
    Messages:
    1,565
    You are not the player in this scenario, the server is. So if the server breaks a string on his first serve he can switch rackets and then serves his second serve. Since his string broke he caused the delay and is not entitled to another first serve.

    When you as the returner break a string by hitting a serve that was out and need to switch your racket, the server is now entitled to a first serve because it was not anything he did ... it was something you did that caused the delay. It was not the servers actions ... it was your action of hitting ball that was already dead rather than letting it just go by that caused the delay.

    See the difference ?
     
    #6
  7. dizzlmcwizzl

    dizzlmcwizzl Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2010
    Messages:
    2,171
    Location:
    DE
    Interestingly I think woodrow posted something not long ago that an officiated match you would not be allowed to to change rackets. But in a recreational match you certainly can change your racket.

    I Cant quote anything here and I am to lazy to look up the woodrow part.
     
    #7
  8. West Coast Ace

    West Coast Ace G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2005
    Messages:
    13,476
    Location:
    So Cal
    Do you mean 'can't without getting a delay warning/penalty'? Because anyone can take more time than is allowed - as long as they are willing to suffer the consequences. On the ATP tour the chair would certainly allow it - and give the server a first serve.

    As others answered - it's easy. In a regular non-officiated match you can switch but have to give the serve a first serve.
     
    #8
  9. kylebarendrick

    kylebarendrick Professional

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2006
    Messages:
    1,042
    Location:
    Northern California
    If you as the receiver break a string on the first serve and quickly pull another racquet off the top of your bag, it may not even warrant a new first serve. Virtually everyone would offer one though.
     
    #9
  10. gmatheis

    gmatheis Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2010
    Messages:
    1,565
    It doesn't matter how fast you do it, acording to the rules it is a first serve for the server.

    just to end this:

    USTA Comment 13.2: What happens when there is a delay between the first and second serves? If the delay is caused by the Receiver (such as a broken string or contact lens problem), an official, or outside interference, the whole point is replayed. If the Server caused the delay, such as when the Server breaks a string, the Server gets one serve. Note that a spectator’s call (“out,” “fault,” or other), a spectator’s ringing cell phone, or grunting on an adjacent court is not basis for replaying the point. Action should be taken to prevent further spectator interference.
     
    #10
  11. tennis tom

    tennis tom Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2007
    Messages:
    2,733

    Only 43 days, 16 hours, 12 minutes, 4 seconds, until Christmas. How have your calls been this year?
     
    #11
  12. woodrow1029

    woodrow1029 Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2012
    Messages:
    2,653
    I never would have said that. If I did say it, it would not have been when I was sober. :)

    Of course you can change rackets. If you do, the server gets a first serve.
     
    #12
  13. dizzlmcwizzl

    dizzlmcwizzl Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2010
    Messages:
    2,171
    Location:
    DE
    My apologies ... must have been some other circumstance. But I remember at the time it surprised me.

    Now I might actually have to look it up.
     
    #13
  14. woodrow1029

    woodrow1029 Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2012
    Messages:
    2,653
    #14
  15. tennisee

    tennisee Rookie

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2004
    Messages:
    257
    Location:
    Australia.
    Thanks everyone - If I'd been able to read properly I wouldn't have needed to ask; the answer was right there in my first post!

    Oh well, I hope no one was harmed in reading this - even so, it's part of our lives that we'll never get back.
     
    #15
  16. dizzlmcwizzl

    dizzlmcwizzl Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2010
    Messages:
    2,171
    Location:
    DE
    Yea ... that was the one. I guess it surprised me that in professional tennis it would be illegal to start a point with a broken string.
     
    #16
  17. Rjtennis

    Rjtennis Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2009
    Messages:
    1,826
    Why do you re-string your rackets if your so content to play with broken strings? If I was your opponent I would encourage you to play with a broken string, it would only lessen your control and help me.
     
    #17
  18. bukaeast

    bukaeast Rookie

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2007
    Messages:
    104
    Location:
    ny
    Well, if you insist on using them, we can excuse that, but it does seem unusual.:)
     
    #18
  19. Sakkijarvi

    Sakkijarvi Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2007
    Messages:
    505
    My reply to this entire thread:

    "Life's Been Good"

    I have a mansion
    Forget the price
    Ain't never been there
    They tell me it's nice

    I live in hotels
    Tear out the walls
    I have accountants
    Pay for it all

    They say I'm crazy but I have a good time
    I'm just looking for clues at the scene of the crime
    Life's been good to me so far

    My Maserati
    Does one eighty-five
    I lost my license
    Now I don't drive

    I have a limo
    Ride in the back
    I lock the doors
    In case I'm attacked

    I'm making records
    My fans they can't wait
    They write me letters
    Tell me I'm great

    So I got me an office
    Gold records on the wall
    Just leave a message
    Maybe I'll call

    Lucky I'm sane after all I've been through
    (Everybody sing) I'm cool (He's cool)
    I can't complain but sometimes I still do
    Life's been good to me so far

    I go to parties
    Sometimes until four
    It's hard to leave
    When you can't find the door

    It's tough to handle
    This fortune and fame
    Everybody's so different
    I haven't changed

    They say I'm lazy but it takes all my time
    (Everybody sing) Oh yeah (Oh yeah)
    I keep on going guess I'll never know why
    Life's been good to me so far baby,
    inside the Sad Cafe.
     
    #19
  20. kylebarendrick

    kylebarendrick Professional

    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2006
    Messages:
    1,042
    Location:
    Northern California
    Per rule, it is up to the receiver to decide if the interruption was sufficiently long to warrant a first serve. If I can grab another racquet faster than I could clear a ball that rolled onto the court (per rule, this does not warrant a first serve), then I don't agree that they were hindered.

    That said, I already agreed I'd give them a first serve. I just think people whine too much about needing new first serves.
     
    #20
  21. Big_Dangerous

    Big_Dangerous Legend

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2010
    Messages:
    6,007
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    While it is your own decision I can say it's not so good for your frame to play with a broken string.
     
    #21

Share This Page