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What's the Call: Switching sides in doubles on the service return

March 22, 2016 11:42 AM

Have you ever had a dispute with a fellow player over a call on the court that you couldn’t settle? Or have you ever wondered why a certain ruling was made during a match you were watching? Maybe you’re just curious about how some scenarios, from the common to the ridiculous, are resolved.

The USTA Tennis Rules and Regulations Committee is here to answer your questions. Have a question of your own? Write to What's the Call!

Question: During the first set, the score was 6-6. Before beginning the tiebreak, our opponents changed their service receiving sides (deuce player moved to ad court; ad court player moved to deuce court). Is this allowed as the set was not yet completed? (submitted by Tom S.i)

Answer: No, doubles partners are not allowed to change receiving sides during a set (Rule 15). They are allowed to change receiving order at the beginning of a new set or a match tiebreak.


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