Easily Forgotten & Obscure Rules in Tennis!

Even the most experienced player can get a bit stumped when it comes to the more obscure rules. Hopefully this post solves a few arguments on court!


Can you hit the ball when it's on your opponents side of the net?

You can only play the ball on your opponents side of the net if the ball has bounced on your side first and spun back over. If you leave the ball then your opponent wins the point. However, if you can lean over the net (without touching the net) and hit the ball into your opponents side of the court or the net and they don't get it - you win the point!

Who would win the point if a player swings their racket over the net?

This all depends on where the contact point happened. If you make contact with the ball on your side of the net, but your follow through goes over the net into your opponents side, it is considered as a legal shot. If however, you make contact with the ball before it has reached your side of the court, you lose the point.

Can you hit the ball around the net?

Yes you can! In fact, if you have please tell me all about it. Ive only managed it once!


Who serves first in a Tiebreak?

This one is a must to remember if you play competitively. It is the player who last received to make the score 6-6 .

Who serves after a tiebreak?

First of all, make sure you change ends after the tiebreak. The player who received the first point of the tiebreak is the next player to serve.

What about tiebreaks in doubles?

You follow the service pattern of the set. So whoever was to serve the next game will start the tiebreak from the right side. From there the next player due to serve in the set on the opposite team will serve twice from the left and so on.


Can you hit the ball twice?

Unfortunately tennis is not like volleyball, we only get one chance to hit the ball. But, if you make contact with the ball twice in a single swing, it is allowed.

Can you serve underarm?

You sure can! I wouldn't recommend it though unless you have a shoulder injury.

Are you allowed to purposefully hit your opponent with the ball?

This is always a topic which comes up every Parks League season in Brighton & Hove. Technically, yes you can. I would always try to play a different shot though, or make sure there's a bit of space between the player and the ball.

My only exception to this is when it's a high standard of play, and the person you are hitting at has the skills and the reactions to potentially get their racket behind the ball.

Tom Honeywood, Tennis Coach

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