Calling a let on a ball that doesn't even come onto your court?

Discussion in 'Adult League & Tournament Talk' started by jonnyjack, Nov 2, 2013.

  1. jonnyjack

    jonnyjack Rookie

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    I tried searching but didn't have any luck.

    Last night I watched my teammates playing our combo match on courts with short fences separating courts. My friend hit an ace and then the receiver claims he was distracted by a ball that was headed to their court by was stopped but the fence between the courts.

    On one of the other courts, same thing happened except it was my teammate who was distracted by a ball but that ball didn't make it onto their court either.

    Are players allowed to call lets in these two scenarios even though the ball never made it onto their court? I personally didn't see these two events but was told by my teammates of the situation and in both instances they did end up playing a let.

    If you can point to the rule addressing this , I would be very grately as well. Thanks!
     
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  2. shazbot

    shazbot Semi-Pro

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    What...People actually call this a let and the opposing team allowed it be called a let?!? haha

    So every court has a fence separating it from the other courts. The ball hit the fence (stayed on the correct court) and they called a let? LOL
     
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  3. jonnyjack

    jonnyjack Rookie

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    I know, right? I said to them, did people not expect a tennis ball to hit the fence ever during a tennis match?

    For the record, my friend allowed the let and proceeded to ace him again, haha.
     
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  4. IA-SteveB

    IA-SteveB Professional

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    A let can also be called if a speck of fairy dust enters the court. You get a "take four" on those.
     
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  5. rufus_smith

    rufus_smith Professional

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    As far as I know from reading the rules and the code, a ball that doesn't enter your court is never a hindrance and never deserves a let. Those players seem overly-sensitive. Ever play a match next to a court where someone is feeding 100 balls to a bunch of beginners?
     
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  6. v-verb

    v-verb Hall of Fame

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    OP, those guys are cheating in my opinion
     
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  7. cll30

    cll30 Rookie

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    I've seen instances where it looks like a wildly hit ball from one court is gong into the adjacent court and everyone sees it coming and is distracted by it, but the ball surprisingly hits the top of the low dividing fence and bounces back into the court that it came from.
     
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  8. precision2b

    precision2b Semi-Pro

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    i agree. with v-verb "just cheating"
     
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  9. RetroSpin

    RetroSpin Hall of Fame

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    How could they have even seen it if they were returning serve? I'm focussing on the server, not the adjacent court.

    Even then, they have to get their hand up and call the let before the serve is hit. They can't wait and see it is an ace then try to call a let.

    Come on, you don't even argue this. You laugh and walk to the other side.
     
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  10. precision2b

    precision2b Semi-Pro

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    yes, i agree, this was bulls)(**t
     
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  11. Orange

    Orange Rookie

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    I called a let once for a ball that didn't end up entering the playing area. I really thought it was about to do so, but it stopped before it reached our court. I apologized and told the opponents that it was their point.

    There is no provision in the Rules or the Code for calling a let for a ball that doesn't enter the playing area. It is hard to prove a negative, but here is the relevant section of the Code that allows calling a let for a ball entering the playing area. The second part also applies in case of an ace, as it is an unreasonable delay to wait until after the served ball has bounced twice to call the let.

    18. Let called when ball rolls on court. When a ball from another court enters the playing area, any player on the court affected may call a let as soon as the player becomes aware of the ball. The player loses the right to call a let if the player unreasonably delays in making the call.
     
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  12. MauricioDias

    MauricioDias Rookie

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    I think that The focus should be on returning the serve. If they were warried about what was hapenning in the side court obviusly the let is absurd, if the ball crosses the curt is necessary to evaluate if it really invalidates the point. In this case the ball stills in the other side! Nonsense.
     
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  13. Fintft

    Fintft Hall of Fame

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    Not so sure about this type of situations either: i.e. this weekend, during a league match, my neighbour stopped a ball from coming into my court, close to my service line, just as I was serving...

    It clearly distracted me and I've doubled faulted, but didn't say anything.
     
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  14. thehustler

    thehustler Rookie

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    You can't call a let for something that might happen. I've played where airplanes are flying over me, but I've never bothered to call a let because I thought a plane might crash into us and I want to get a safe distance away. Heck I've never called a let for when I thought a car might honk its horn or a kid might scream. Sorry but they cheated and aren't very good players either.
     
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  15. Fintft

    Fintft Hall of Fame

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    ^^^^^
    Well for people with good peripherial vision (i.e. having played basketball), anything that happens in your field of vision (be it close to your court), it's a hindrance/distraction....
     
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  16. IA-SteveB

    IA-SteveB Professional

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    Meh. I don't agree with the above. My feeling is that if people are that easily distracted then what can you do. Call a let, I guess. :) You'd think if a person had "sports vision" and were aware of their periphery, they would be less able to be distracted, not more.
     
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2013
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  17. thehustler

    thehustler Rookie

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    Yeah I've played basketball, football, baseball, etc. I have good peripheral vision. If anything that happens in your field of vision is a hindrance or distraction then how does anybody play tennis? There's courts next to you, people walking behind fences, etc. It may be a personal hindrance/distraction (meaning you're easily distracted) but it's not an actual hindrance.
     
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  18. Fintft

    Fintft Hall of Fame

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    To me it's a distraction, as I've been coordinating defenses on both basketball (and handball before that) courts for a long time....Especially in the so called zone defense used in bball in Europe, something that might not be as common in North America.

    Anyhow, I'm not calling a "let".
     
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  19. RetroSpin

    RetroSpin Hall of Fame

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    I agree that it can be distracting, but it's just something you have to deal with. Not every match can be played on center court. I really don't like playing matches on courts with no dividers between adjacent courts, but sometimes you have to do that.

    ps. We invented zone defenses. Also, the more sophisticated cousin, the match-up. Every American kid grew up playing zone on playgrounds or at the rec center.
     
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  20. tennis tom

    tennis tom Hall of Fame

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    Center court is no rose garden either, some are so big they give you four balls to compensate. Some "players" don't like playing on center court because you have to walk SO far to fetch a ball from the backstop--maybe they should supply skateboards or golf carts to speed things up.
     
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  21. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    What if the server is about to serve and a ball is on its way from the adjoining court to the returner's court and it is only a matter of a second before it shows up on this side? Or a wild shot on the adjoining court looks like it is going to clear the separating fence and head straight towards you at full speed?

    Common sense dictates that injuries must be prevented first.

    Pros often wait if a ballperson is rolling the ball from one side to the other. They even refuse to play if someone is moving in the stands. Just this morning, the WTF was stalled because one of the electronic billboards was flashing out of control.

    You guys think you are better than the pros? Or that following the "rules" will help pay your medical bills if you slip on a ball and break your head?
     
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  22. Fintft

    Fintft Hall of Fame

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    I see...Although being the guy in the center(or on the semi circle in handball) of the bball zone (trying to coordinate) for almost 20 years, makes me even have eyes in the back of my head.

    Anyhow we have no dividers between our courts, they are 4 in a row, no big deal - my emotions are a worst factor.
     
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  23. RetroSpin

    RetroSpin Hall of Fame

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    No one is saying you have to play on in those situations. If you see a ball coming, just raise your hand and stop the server. What you can't do is attempt a return, then claim interference.
     
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  24. SCRAP IRON

    SCRAP IRON Professional

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    The only advice that I can give you is to establish a ground rule before the match is played. As long as everyone has the right to claim a distraction then no one should be upset. Alternatively, if the group agrees that a let will only occur if a ball rolls within the boundaries of the court, then just be consistent with that approach.
     
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  25. jussumman

    jussumman Semi-Pro

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    Related "stupid" question.. why is this called "let" when it touches the "net".. I've always been confused about that.

    I know the other tennis terms when I first came aware of them sounded strange too.. ie Love, 15-30-40 Duece, but this let thing haven't looked into it, maybe someone can explain. :mrgreen:
     
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  26. chatt_town

    chatt_town Hall of Fame

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    This can be a distraction though. Any ball in that is distracting you should be able to be called a let. I've seen balls bouncing behind the other player that I couldn't tell if they were coming on court or not. A guy called one a couple of weeks ago when I was playing him. I look at it like this. I'd rather play a let then have a ball roll back under my feet. My thing is if it's in their vision it might as well be on the court. You are trying to focus on two balls at that point.


     
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  27. Brian11785

    Brian11785 Hall of Fame

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    But there has to be a better line to draw than "in their vision." If not, I could see people abusing the rule when they're down in a point. Couldn't a ball in play on another court be considered "in their vision"? Can he call a let because the other court has a really good point going?
     
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  28. spot

    spot Hall of Fame

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    I am quick to call a let. Once I see a ball and I have to decide whether or not that it is going to affect the point then I am already affected by it and I call it. I won't get irritated for other people calling it even if the ball doesn't end up affecting anything- how I see it the risk of turning an ankle is simply not worth it. Call the let and play a new point. Maybe at some point I'll face someone who tries to exploit this but doing it this way has been a complete and total non-issue for me.
     
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  29. JRstriker12

    JRstriker12 Hall of Fame

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    From the Code: "Let called when ball rolls on court. When a ball from another court enters the playing area, any player on the court affected may call a let as soon as the player becomes aware of the ball. The player loses the right to call a let if the player unreasonably delays in making the call."

    No let. If you can call a let for any distraction, including a balls on other courts, anything could be a let. "The sun was in my eyes... a bird flew by and I was distracted...."

    I could see if he tried to stop your serve before you swung, but after getting aced, seems a bit late to me.
     
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  30. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    Problem is that if you see a ball about to enter the playing area but hasn't, are you supposed to continue playing and also monitoring the ball and call a let as soon as it has penetrated 1 mm into the area? Isn't it logical to just call a let as soon as you have a high probability of the ball entering?
     
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  31. corbind

    corbind Professional

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    Jonnyjack, the short fence runs the whole length of the court? In that situation where there's a fence that will certainly stop the ball it seems a let could not be called. If there were no fence then I'd say the opposite.

    I know there are rules and we need them to guide us in our rec tennis. Yet beyond the rules there has to be some on-the-spot logic used. Why use reason when there's a giant book of code covering all the rules? Because we don't get paid to play and I'd rather be safe calling a let on a ball that doesn't physically touch the court than not call it and have a guy plant his face in the cement. I'm not bothered by lets as long as they are not called to get an advantage.

    I think we're similar in outlook.
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2013
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  32. Fintft

    Fintft Hall of Fame

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    I had people (not balls) going in the corners of my court (by the wall, trying to pick up their balls) during at least 3-4 points last night...I called let once, when I was running back due to a lob.
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2013
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  33. JRstriker12

    JRstriker12 Hall of Fame

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    This (10 char):
     
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  34. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    What if the point is ongoing and you see a ball in your peripheral vision about to come into the court but hasn't? What if the ball is going to go to another player first who hasn't seen what you have seen and might trip on it if you waited too long to call a let? Personally, I am more careful about others' safety than my own, being a very caring person.
     
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  35. Fintft

    Fintft Hall of Fame

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    All of those are distractions for me and false alerts...
    Some of the worst hapening just when you serve.
     
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  36. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    They are not false alerts if the ball does come over. It is not going to announce itself loudly once it is in the playing area (though in the future such technology is possible). Till then, a good prediction is all we have to maintain safety. We rec players don't have umpires and ball boys looking to keep balls away from us.
     
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  37. Fintft

    Fintft Hall of Fame

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    Sometimes is a false allert though: i.e. I had my coach's coach (from the nearby by court) catching his own ball close to my service line ....

    Also the case I was mentioning in the above post when people go into your field of vision and actually the corners of your court, by the back wall etc.
     
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2013
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  38. West Coast Ace

    West Coast Ace G.O.A.T.

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    +1. Those people should be bowling - oh, but if they're on lane 3 and someone on lane 24 is about to....

    When I saw this thread I was thinking: 'no fence between courts; someone stopped the ball at the last minute...' - but since that's not the case, this is sad. OP needs to advise his partner to leave his Charitable work for some other more worthy venue...
     
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  39. jonnyjack

    jonnyjack Rookie

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    This exact scenario is mentioned in the most recent TENNIS magazine. No let if the ball doesn't go onto your court, haha.
     
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  40. Brian11785

    Brian11785 Hall of Fame

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    I saw that and thought of this thread.
     
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  41. chatt_town

    chatt_town Hall of Fame

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    Exactly...You have to use some discretion with these rules. As long as it is in good faith. I've called them when balls were rolling from behind the other players. Some have gotten upset about it because "they" couldn't see the ball, but had you kept playing and they end up stumbling over the ball...then they get upset because they feel you did see the ball. So I'd rather be safe than sorry.


     
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  42. chatt_town

    chatt_town Hall of Fame

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    Well again...You are always going to run into people that are going to bend the rules. I'm speaking of people acting in good faith. I will call a let on a ball rolling behind you whether it rolls on the court or not. I will not call a let on a ball that I just saw being served on another court. Again...with this I'm assuming people are acting in good faith. I will even honor a let on bees flying in the face of a person while I'm serving. Obviously you shouldn't have matches all the time with the same person where bees are flying through as you are hitting an ace.

     
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  43. chatt_town

    chatt_town Hall of Fame

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    Yea, but they can kick rocks. If I see a ball rolling into the court I will call a let every time. I was playing at the state once and was in a third set breaker in a mixed match...it's 7-7 and the guy blows his achilis(sp). There was no ball rolling on the court but It's not a pretty sight. It would have really bothered me had he tripped over a ball that I saw rolling into the court and decided not to call it for fear of arguing over a rule. People's safety should always over ride anything else, especially a bs rule like this.
     
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  44. dizzlmcwizzl

    dizzlmcwizzl Hall of Fame

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    I habitually call any ball that I think may enter our court as a let. I also encourage anyone I am playing with to do the same. I do not want to get hurt for a silly reason ....

    .....................

    However, this does remind me of a story from about 6 years ago. Playing a USTA match and I am simply crushing this guy.

    I was winning 6-1, 4-0, 40-15 when I saw a ball roll behind him. I called a let. But by the time he turned around the ball had gotten caught in the drainage trough at the back of the court.

    He immediately started cursing at me. His point of view was that he was finally ahead in a rally and I had called a let just when he was about to take control of the point. He got more and more angry going forward and "he fell apart after that". I won the next two games to close things out.

    After the match this guy (5-2, 105 pounds and 65 years old) starts telling every one that will listen how he should kick my tail for making that call. He was an old little man.
     
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