Court of Appeals: All Tangled Up

by: Rebel Good | February 26, 2013

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I was watching a doubles match when one of the women ran into the netting that divides courts while she attempted a return. One foot got tangled up and she hopped frantically on the other, trying to return the next shot. She couldn’t free herself and missed the shot. Shouldn’t they have agreed to play a let? —Gena Fite,  Elmhurst, IL

No. Rule 26 giveth and Rule 26 taketh away. It first allows for a replay for a player hindered by “something outside the player’s own control,” but then adds parenthetically “(not including a permanent fixture).” The netting between courts is a permanent fixture under Rule 2.

Except where noted, answers are based on the ITF Rules of Tennis and USTA's The Code.

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