During a singles match using singles net sticks, my opponent was pulled wide and hit a shot that struck the net cord outside of the stick. The ball landed in and was irretrievable. I claimed the point, as this part of the net is not in play. She claimed the point as hers. Who was correct?
— Frank Miller, Wallkill, NY
It takes a keen eye to make this call on a ball passing the net close to the singles stick. And in your situation, it takes two rules and The Code to enforce it. Rule 2 states that, “in a singles match played with a doubles net and singles sticks, the net posts and the part of the net outside the singles sticks are permanent fixtures.” Rule 24.d then says a player loses the point if her shot, before it bounces, “hits a permanent fixture.” Finally, The Code, #5, gives you the responsibility to make the call on any shot “landing on or aimed at” your side of the net. You were correct to claim the point.
Except where noted, answers are based on the ITF Rules of Tennis and USTA's The Code.
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