TOURNAMENT RULES

Full  GLTA rules of play.

The ranking cutoff is 14 days from the end of a tournament to the start of the next tournament.

NB  Knowingly entering a tournament in the wrong division or using an assumed title tocircumvent rankings or allocation to the appropriate division can result in disqualification without refund of fees pays. Players may also be suspended from playing in GLTA tournaments

Attire: Proper tennis attire required. Non-marking shoes required. Shirts required.

Warm-up: 5 minutes. Strictly enforced.

Being Late: 0-5 min=loss of toss and 1 game; 5-10 min=loss of toss and 2 games; 10-15 min=loss of toss and three games; 15 minutes or more=default

Check-in: required 15 min before match time. Early check-ins may be asked to play early. Any appeals will be decided by the tournament director.

Rest Breaks: 20 seconds between points (not counting tracking down balls; 90 seconds on changeovers; 2 minutes between sets.

Players are allowed a reasonable amount of time for bathroom breaks.

Scheduling: Consolation matches will be scheduled as courts become available. Please check with the match desk for the consolation schedule. Tournaments may opt for following the draw or may create a new draw with all the consolation players.

After completing a singles match a player is allowed up to 30 minutes before being required to play again, 15 minutes after a doubles match.

Substitutions: only if a first match in a certain event is not played yet. It is always the descretion of the tournament director.

Scoring: Main draw singles and doubles matches will be best of 3 sets, with a standard 7-point (first to seven by two) tiebreak at 6-all in games, unless the tournament coordinator or site desk manager deems it necessary to shorten the match because of time constraints, at their discretion. Possible alternative formats include, but are not limited to:

1.    best of 3 sets, but if a third set is necessary it will be replaced by a standard 10-point (first to 10 by two) tiebreak, or

2.    an 8-game proset (first to 8 games by two) with a standard 7-point tiebreak at 8-all in games.

Consolation matches (except consolation finals) will normally consist of one of these two options, at the discretion of the site desk manager.

Line Call Disputes: If disputes occur, you can request a line judge from the tournament desk, though this is not a guarantee. Any line judge assigned to a court will rule only calls that are questioned. The judge’s ruling is final.

Score Disputes: If players cannot agree on the score, resume play at the last point all players recall and agree.

Miscellaneous: The GLTA rule book will apply for all match situations. The maximum time between sets is 2 minutes, or a reasonable bathroom break, as deemed by the site desk manager. The maximum time allowed between change of ends is 90 seconds. The maximum time allowed between points is 20 seconds. No extra time will be allowed for a player to recover condition. A player is allowed one injury timeout per match of 3 minutes for a treatable medical condition. A player’s first offence for time violation during a match will cause the offending player to receive a warning. The second offence will result in loss of game for the offending player, the third offence will result in loss of the match. For example. player A twists an ankle during a match and asks for an injury timeout. The allowed 3 minute period begins at the moment the player asks for the timeout or when the player fails to return to the court (whichever comes first) after the 20 seconds between points or the 90 seconds between games, as applicable. If after 3 minutes the player fails to return to the court, the player will receive a warning. If after an additional 20 seconds the player has still not returned to the court, the player will lose a game. If after yet another 20 seconds the player has still not returned to the court, the player will forfeit the match. Any player who has received a registration packet will be considered to be informed of this policy.

 

Issues not covered in the Rules of Tennis, but addressed in the Code of Tennis

Spectators have no role in making line calls and should not be asked to do so.

It is both the obligation and prerogative of a player to call all shots landing on their side of the net.

Players should help their opponents make calls when the opponent requests it.

When a player does not call an out ball against themself when they clearly see it out -- whether they are requested to do so by their opponent(S) or not -- they are cheating.

When making calls, keep in mind that the opinion of a player looking down a line is much more likely to be accurate than that of a player looking across a line.  A player who stands on one base line and questions a call concerning a ball that landed near the other base line is probably being ridiculous.

In doubles when one partner calls a ball out and the other one good, the doubt that has been established means the ball must be considered to have been good. The reluctance that some doubles players have to overrule their partners is secondary to the importance of not letting your opponents suffer from a bad call.

Normally, asking for a replay of a point is a sign of failure to exercise line-calling responsibilities, and should occur only on rare occasions. One of these is as follows. Your opponent's ball -- a serve or otherwise -- appears out and you so call, but return the ball to their court. Inspection reveals that your out call, which stopped play, is in error. Since you actually returned the ball a let is authorized. Had you not returned the ball the point would have been your opponent's.

When you are hindered attempting to return a shot that you could not have returned even had there been no hindrance, a let is not authorized.

A request for a let does not mean that the let is automatically granted. For example, a request for a let because you have tripped over your own hat should be denied.

Once an out, fault, or let call is made play stops, regardless of what happens thereafter.

When a player is injured in an accident caused by his opponent, it is the player who must suffer with respect to the match, not the opponent. For example, A accidentally throws his racket and incapacitates B so that B is unable to resume play within the time limit; even though A caused the injury, it was accidental, and B must be defaulted, not A.

In returning service the partner of the receiver should call the service line for them, with the receiver calling the center line and the side line, although either partner may make an out call on any shot (service or other) that they clearly see out.

Returning a first service that is obviously out without an out call in an attempt to catch an opponent off guard is cheating.  At the same time, if the receiver in good faith gives the server the benefit of the doubt and returns an out ball, the server is not entitled to refuse the benefit of the doubt and ask for a let on the basis that since they saw the serve out the return caught them by surprise.

When you feel that your opponent, a net rusher, is foot-faulting but their violations are not sufficiently flagrant for you to be sure and to call, the situation can be irritating. Compliance with the foot fault rule is very much a function of a player's personal honor system. Habitual foot faulting, intentional or careless, is just as surely cheating as is making a deliberate bad line call. Even if no ethics were involved, from the practical view it behooves a player to avoid foot faults. It is not uncommon in a match having officials for a chronic foof faulter to become so upset by the frequent foot fault calls against them that their whole game disintegrates.

 With respect to a player moving when a ball is in play or about to be in play, in general, they are entitled to feint with their body as they wish. They may change position on the court at any time including while the server is tossing the ball to serve. Movements or sounds that are made solely to distract an opponent, such as waving the arms or racket, stamping the feet, or talking are prohibited.

In the area of common courtesy and consideration for others on adjoining courts, don't spoil the game for your partner, opponents, and others by losing your temper and using vile language or throwing your racket.

Wear proper tennis attire and tennis shoes.  Tank tops and fogging shoes are not allowed. Also, don't place towels or clothing over the net or on the court.

 If there is a clothing, shoes, equipment or racket malfunction during a point, the point will be finished before any corrective action is taken.

Neither the server nor their net partner should make an out call on a first service even though he thinks it is out, because the receiver, not being sure of the ball, may give the server the benefit of the doubt and then hit a placement. However, either the server or the net partner should volunteer a call on any second service they clearly see to be out for their call terminates the point.

In doubles the net partner is usually in the best position to hear a service touch the net, though custom supports the calling of a let in singles or doubles by any player who hears an otherwise good serve touch the net. For a call of a service let to be valid, it must be made prior to the return of serve either going out of play or being hit by an opponent.

Calls involving a ball's touching a player, a player's touching the net, a player's touching their opponent's court (invasion), hitting an opponent's return before it has passed the net, and a double-bounce, can be very difficult to make. Any player who becomes aware that they have committed a violation in one of these areas should announce the violation immediately in order to avoid unnecessary expenditure of energy by their opponent(s).

In all of the above areas the prerogative of decision belongs to the player or team involved. To illustrate, A thinks B's shot is a double- bounce, catches B's shot and claims the point. B, however, feels sure there was no double-bounce; since B has the prerogative of decision the point is B's. On occasion even though B thinks there was no double-bounce they will defer to A's judgment because A was in a better position to see what happened.

During warm-up, you should make a special effort to hit your shots directly to your opponent. Courtesy dictates that you not practice your service return when your opponent practices their serve.

A player wishing to practice serving must do so during the warm-up, not just before serving.  Once a match has started there is no basis for further practice or warm-up.

 The receiver's indication of being ready is tantamount to indicating that their team is ready. While no server should serve if they see either of their opponents is not ready, they are not expected to check both opponents before each serve. It is the receiver's responsibility to signal ready only when both they and their partner are ready.  Likewise, the server should check their partner's readiness before they serve, for their serving is an indication that their team is ready.

When a server requests three balls to be in their hand prior to each point they are to serve, the receiver should comply with this wish when the third ball is readily available. Since only two balls are normally needed for a service, the receiver should not be required to get the third when it is some distance away, nor, under the continuous play rule, should a server during a game be permitted to retrieve a distant third ball himself. The distant balls should be retrieved at the end of a game. When a tournament specifies a new can of balls for a third set, it is mandatory that the new balls be used unless all the players agree to use the old balls.

To eliminate arguments about the score the server should announce, in a voice audible to the players and spectators, the set score prior to his first serve in each game, and the game score prior to serving each point.

If you feel that your opponent is a chronic staller, foot faulter, or makes a larger number of what you feel sure are bad calls, you may call for an umpire and refuse to continue until the umpire arrives. Both players are still required to call their own lines and keep score.  The Umpires will simply confirm or overrule lines calls when requested to do so.

GENERAL GUIDELINES

USTA Regulation I.V.II. authorizes the Referee to switch to No-Ad scoring before the start of any round without prior notice ... after inclement weather or other factors cause the tournament to fall behind its published schedule.

USTA Regulation I.V.4 authorizes the use of the Set Tie-Break or the Match Tie-Break in lieu of the third or final set.

The Referee may suspend or delay play at any time as may be necessary and appropriate.