One of my doubles opponents has exercise-induced asthma and coughs constantly during our matches. It is quite distracting, not only to me and my partner, but to our teammates on other courts. Could we have addressed this in some way, or called a hindrance?

— Kellie Carbone, Ann Arbor, MI

Courtesy and good sportsmanship are underlying principles of tennis. Try to ignore your opponent’s coughing. She’s doing the best she can. If it truly interferes with your stroke, you can stop play immediately for an unintentional hindrance, and replay the point (Rule 26).


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

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