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Water breaks between points

December 15, 2016

Have you ever had a dispute with a fellow player over a call on the court that you couldn’t settle? Maybe you’re just curious about how some scenarios, from the common to the ridiculous, are resolved.

Question: At my daughter’s tennis tournament, her opponent took her water bottle with her onto the court and placed it near the back tarp. Between points she would periodically take a drink, but didn’t delay the game. Is this allowed by USTA rules?

Answer: It is allowed if, when the player was serving, she did not violate the 20 seconds between points and, as a receiver, was following the reasonable pace of the server. As you stated, this action did not delay play so it is permissible. Receiver readiness is covered in Section No. 29 of "The Code".



For the "Friend at Court" handbook and more information on the rules of tennis, visit the rules and regulations homepage.


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