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Published: 29 Apr 2007 - 00:08 by daveamour

Updated: 25 Sep 2008 - 20:31

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I had a scenario in a game where I thought I was entitled to at least a let but was not awarded this and wanted to get other peoples thoughts on this.

I was on the T and my opponent had just played a cross court shot from the back right corner.  I intercepted and volleyd this to the front left corner and it bounced off the wall quite short such that my opponets direct line to reach the ball was to run through where I was standing.  Now instead of stopping and appealing for a let or stroke, or running around me, my opponent pushed me out of the way with his hand in my back.  He then played his shot and I made no effort to return the shot but appealed to the referee as I had been pushed and was off balance.

My thinking is that pushing the opponent is not allowed whatever the reason - if a player is in your way you should stop play and appeal.   Pushing sinmply isn't allowed as far as I can see when I read the rules.

What do people think about this?



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From rippa rit - 30 Apr 2007 - 07:49

dave - good thinking.
Honestly, I have tried all sorts of strategies trying to meet Refs and opponents head on and all I have done is upset my own game and focus on all the wrong things.
Once you lose focus, and start concentrating on something you do not have control, you are sure to get beaten.

Focus on the strategies that will overcome the situations you do not like and you will play better, and enjoy the game more.  Game tactics can be a great challenge.

Good luck

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From raystrach - 30 Apr 2007 - 07:48

hi dave

one thing that i did not see in rita's response was the fact that it is your primary responsibility to give your opponent a clear path to the ball. there are two issues:
  1. did you deliberately, inadvertently or neglectfully block your opponents path to the ball
    • deliberately:
      • after the rally, warn you to give your opponent a clear run to the ball - if not - stroke to opponent
      • warn the opponent to not push and call a let for interference
    • inadvertant:
      • you tried to get out of the way but there was interference anyway
      • warn the opponent about pushing
    • neglectful:
      • you were too lazy to get out of the way
      • warn both players
  2. if you were out of the way did the opponent push you just for the sake of it
    • warn the opponent for the first occasion, after that, stroke against opponent
if the opponent did not  push you, but there was some entanglement in the opponent trying to get to the ball and you were left disadvantaged,
  • you would not be able to call a let because it is always your responsibility to get out of the way
  • it is only the one who is about to strike the ball who can call for interference
the pushing situation can only be taken care of with unnecessary physical contact as rita suggests or even a code of behaviour violation

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From daveamour - 29 Apr 2007 - 22:16

Ok thanks

Its very confusing I must admit.  On reflection I think the best thing to do is not let this kind of situation happen in the first place and if it does maybe best to just not bother arguing and get on with the game!

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From rippa rit - 29 Apr 2007 - 21:32

dave - all calls should be made at the point of interference (which is immediate), not 2 strokes later on.  Once interference has passed you cannot go back, if you get me.

This is what makes our rules so difficult to interpret for the average player.   One rule alone cannot usually be applied, eg in your example above, the pushing bit applied to the opponent and the other to you.  If the Ref felt you were in the way, not clearing the ball, he can call "stroke" (and it is all over), and the pushing probably may have been avoided.
If interference did not occur, in the opinion of the Ref, the pushing should have had a "conduct warning" or "conduct stroke" (which I mentioned above).

If there was no Ref, tough cheddar.  You cannot really argue, but be honest and polite, or you lose friends. If you are in the way, concede the stroke. If the player is playing the player and not the ball, hit the ball away from yourself to prevent the situation as far as possible.

You are not alone in this, as we all have had this problem in our games that is for sure.

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From daveamour - 29 Apr 2007 - 20:43

Ok thanks

When you say that the two rules should be applied simultaneously do you mean that rule 12 should be applied to my opponents shot or when it was my turn to hit the ball?  If you mean for my opponents shot then I thought if a player players a shot then they forfeit their right to then ask for a let - am I wrong in thinking this?

I've actually had this kind of pushing happen a few times in the past and no one ever beleives they are doing something wrong when I tell them.  How should you deal with opponents who don't know the rules but believe they are right when you do not have a referee?  I'm temped to take a rule book on court with me in future!




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From rippa rit - 29 Apr 2007 - 07:52   -   Updated: 29 Apr 2007 - 08:17

dave - from your description these are the two rules the Ref would have had to apply simultaneously:-

12.12.1 - Pushing

  • Pushing an opponent is considered to be dangerous play (unnecessary physical contact).
  • If this persists the Referee should stop play and issue a "Conduct warning" to the offending player.
  • If pushing continues the Referee shall award a "Conduct Stroke".
  • If the pushing is deliberate and excessive and persistent the Referee, at his discretion, shall award a stroke, or game, or match.
Rule 12 Line of Reasoning
    • 1.Could the Striker have made a good return, if NO - NO LET.
    • If YES, was there any interference, if NO - NO LET.
    • If YES, was every effort made, if YES - YES LET - unless
    • 2.Could the Striker have made a winning return, then STROKE TO THE STRIKER.
  • If every effort was not made, then, STROKE TO THE STRIKER.
Yes I can understand and sympathise.
I guess the hardest thing for a Ref to do is when this has not happened previously during the match, and this then occurs on Match Ball.  I know of an Aust Championship final right in the front of the court (Match Ball) where the Ref awarded the match to the non-striker for the incoming striker pushing to get a hit at the ball - what an anticlimax that was. To me it also showed lack of confidence in the Ref to want to have a crack at the ball instead of asking for a let, knowing a stroke should be awarded.
Normally during the course of a match the Ref will/should give a conduct warning; however, if this has been happening and no action taken during previous points it is unlikely anything will be done in this instance, probably due more due to lack of the knowledge of the rules.
From the opponent's point of view (have to be fair here), if the Ref has not been interpreting the rules correctly, and basically doing the job of keeping the score, frustration can create all sorts of problems. Some say it evens out in the end, maybe!  To me, the contentious decisions seem to always happen at a critical time.

It would be so good if all players really studied the rules - and then practice diligently at being a Ref. as there is only a split second to apply the specific rules to each situation.
Then, ever tried to play a comp match without a Ref?  That's crap too.!

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