Court of Appeals: Towel Time

by: Rebel Good May 09, 2013

Illustration by Wesley Bedrosian

Over the years, several opponents have taken towels to their side of the court and placed them near the back wall behind the baseline at the center of the court. If I asked them to move the towels, would rules require them to?—Bill Morton, Bellevue, WA

The rules, no. But The Code, which is the written “unwritten rules” of tennis, is on your side. The Code, Item 46, says “towels are to be placed on the ground outside the net post or at the back fence.” This is interpreted to mean towels at the back of the court should be placed in a corner.


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

Got a question? Email it to: courtofappeals@tennis.com

More Stories

Welcome to the new TENNIS.com!

Enhanced scores. New tournament view. And much more.

All 102 courts at USTA National Campus to be outfitted with PlaySight technology

Live-streaming technology, analytics and multi-angle video analysis will be available across the breakthrough facility.

VIDEO: Turn defense into offense

A well-placed lob can turn a doubles point around.