TENNIS ETIQUETTE & RULES
WAIT YOUR TURN
Don’t enter the court until your allotted booking time. When your turn comes, let the people before you to finish the game they are playing before taking over the court.
DECISIONS, DECISIONS …
To decide who will serve first, toss a coin or spin a racquet. The person who wins the toss may choose to serve, receive, pick which end of the court they would like or even make their opponent choose.
WARM-UP LIKE A PRO
Keep your pre-match warm-up brief – the pros stick to five minutes, so should you.
SERVE THE RIGHT WAY
Before you serve, make sure your opponent is ready to receive. While the rules say you should take no more than 20 seconds between points, you don’t want to win a point by serving at your opponent’s back.
NO RETURN NECESSARY
If your opponent serves a first-serve fault, don’t hit a return back unless the call was so close that you had no option but to hit the ball.
WALK WITH CARE
Don’t walk behind another court during a point, across someone else’s court while they’re in the middle of a game or interrupt a point on another court to retrieve a ball. Simply wait until their point has finished and then retrieve your ball.
BE CAREFUL OF KARMA
Make line calls clearly and promptly and give your opponent the benefit of the doubt if you’re unsure. Tennis karma is a powerful force and no one wants to give an opponent short shrift only to find themselves deep into a third-set tiebreak with the tennis gods frowning down on them!
IN OR OUT?
While it’s rude to question your opponent’s line calls, if you really think your ball was in, ask once, firmly: “Are you sure?” then move on.
SCORING MADE EASY
If you are serving, call the score out loudly and clearly. It will help to minimise disagreements.
Make sure the server always has two balls at their end of the court. When you are feeding balls up the court, hit or roll them gently within reach of the server.
A TIME AND A PLACE
Be respectful of your opponent. While it’s fine to celebrate your successes it’s not polite to pump your fists, hiss “yes” or high-five spectators when your opponent makes an error.
DO THE RIGHT THING
Apologise if you win a lucky point or if you accidentally hit your opponent with a ball.
FOCUS ON YOUR MATCH
Keep your attention on the court – don’t chat to spectators, interrupt a game to answer your mobile phone, update your social media at change of ends or do anything else that might distract your opponent or delay play.
LEAVE THE TANTRUMS TO THE KIDS
Don’t have a tantrum if things aren’t going your way. This is tennis, not football.
Shake hands firmly and congratulate your opponent at the end of the match.
please leavE the COURT IN BETTER CONDITION THAN WHEN YOU FOUND IT
At the end of play rubbish from drinks or food consumed on the course must be placed in bins provided.
For all the rules of tennis, there’s no better source than the International Tennis Federation (ITF).