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  1. #1
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    Default service rules questions

    common thread, but hopefully I have some different questions.

    Playing at a club that is very backward, still play old scoring. Service faults are so common that at times I miss returns as I am trying to judge the service rather than hit it.

    Forehand serve in doubles is common here, last night I finally sanpped and called a guy on holding on the end of the backswing, maybe 5sec. to see if I would flinch forewards or backwards. I told him that on completion of the backswing there could be no pause. His reply was that on a forehand serve he had no backward movement, as he started with the racket in that position ie that was his ready position.

    I have since printed out the rules, and I think
    9.1.1 undue delay etc
    cover this but I want to be sure.

    other variations, I want to be sure of. sort of cheaty ways around this rule.

    1. Could you hold the racket nearly all the way back, call that your ready position, hold a bit ( to see if the receiver flinches), then move it back another few mm to complete the backward movement of the racket head, then move it forward to serve as normal.


    2. Could you draw the racket head back very, very slowly, then serve forwards at the time of your choice, ie if the receiver flinches.



    also what is undue delay, I see that after completion of the backward movement of the racket head any delay is to much, but in my two variations especially 2., how slow would a backswing (or pause in 1.) be to be considered undue delay.


    also I was sure there was a rule that you couldn't move before the serve was struck but can't find it, could you point it out to me.

    Just want to be sure of a watertight set of definitions if I go in waving rules about.

    of course they might just argue that the new rules don't apply as they play old rules scoring, but thats another battle

    Nic

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    These are interesting edge cases. Let's take it one step at a time.


    1. Could you hold the racket nearly all the way back, call that your ready position, hold a bit ( to see if the receiver flinches), then move it back another few mm to complete the backward movement of the racket head, then move it forward to serve as normal.
    First, there is no rule that requires a backswing. It's possible to serve without a backswing, either forehand or backhand (from a technique point of view, I don't recommend this, but it's possible).

    If a server wants to serve in this way, then he must be careful to ensure his "getting ready to serve" movement does not look like a serving movement. A simple way of doing this is to keep the shuttle well away from the racket while he is getting ready, and only then get the shuttle into position for the service.

    Basically, if the server makes a backswing from a prepared position in which he could hit the shuttle, then that would be deemed (by an umpire) to have been his backswing for the serve. The following sequence is totally illegitimate:

    1. Server settles into a stable stance, with the shuttle in position ready to be hit
    2. Server makes a backswing, reaching a position from which a forwards swing could hit the shuttle (if it were dropped)
    3. Server stops the backswing
    4. Server claims that THIS position is his ready position



    You're playing without an umpire, but that does not excuse cheating. If an umpire were present, he would call this a fault; therefore it is a fault.

    It is the server's responsibility to ensure that his serve does not fall foul of such grey areas. Doing so is very simple: all he has to do is keep the shuttle well clear of his racket until he is ready to serve.


    2. Could you draw the racket head back very, very slowly, then serve forwards at the time of your choice, ie if the receiver flinches.
    That would be undue delay. In practice, it's very difficult to call. If you do want to call this, then be clear: as soon as you feel you've been waiting too long, simply walk away for a few paces. That makes your point pretty clearly. You can keep doing this as often as you like, and see how the server likes being messed with.

    Another useful trick: if you feel that the server is messing with you by illegitimate timing -- serving before you're ready, or forcing you to wait ages and then serving -- then use the following law:

    9.4 The server shall not serve before the receiver is ready. However, the receiver shall be considered to have been ready if a return of the service is attempted.
    In both cases, you can quite reasonably say, "I wasn't ready" -- either because you didn't have enough time to get ready, or because the undue delay caused you to cease being ready.

    Here's how you do it in practice: as he serves, stick up your right hand (Nic's a left-hander ) and make a "stop" sign by presenting your palm. Do not move your feet or your racket -- make no attempt to play a return. The server must now play the serve again; keep doing this until he stops trying sneaky ways of cheating.

    Essentially, this trick works because both rules, when pushed to the extremes, require interpretation by an umpire. In the absence of an umpire, you use one rule to fight the other.
    Last edited by Gollum; 03-03-2010 at 07:15 AM.

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    Thanks,
    I was hoping to sort it out without having to stop the serves, but it is good to know how to do it 'legally' -culprits are the 'old county dogs' that you have mentioned in earlier threads, with more emphasis on the 'old' in this case and 'dog' in others

    Last night after I called his service his response in the next game was to:

    1. Hold his racket back,
    2. Walk up to the service position,
    3. Hold the shuttle in place,
    4. Pause for a couple of seconds,
    5. Serve.

    This is different to the 'totally illegitimate' scenario you are talking about, so I was wondering whether the undue delay scenario stood, or 'any delay is undue delay' is the case.

    scenario 1. Are you saying that a backswing that is capable of being hit counts as being the backswing regardless of if it does go back a bit further later? so 'any delay is undue delay' stands.

    lets say I normally hold my racket 10cm from the shuttle in my ready position, then backswing another 30 and immediately serve forwards a combined 40cm -obviously legal.

    what about 20+20 =40
    or the extreme I was talking about of 39+1 =40

    we have a backhand server that is pretty close to this.


    scenario 2. I must confess this is an extreme version of a serve I do at another club to counteract somebody who was in the habit of rushing my serve as soon as I started my backswing, I found that a slow ( not very,very slow) backswing made it apparent to him that it wasn't a good time to rush me. I was wondering how far it could be taken legally.

    This is why I was looking for the rule that defines when a receiver can start to move.

    Nic

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    Quote Originally Posted by forgeron View Post
    Thanks,
    I was hoping to sort it out without having to stop the serves, but it is good to know how to do it 'legally' -culprits are the 'old county dogs' that you have mentioned in earlier threads, with more emphasis on the 'old' in this case and 'dog' in others

    Last night after I called his service his response in the next game was to:

    1. Hold his racket back,
    2. Walk up to the service position,
    3. Hold the shuttle in place,
    4. Pause for a couple of seconds,
    5. Serve.

    This is different to the 'totally illegitimate' scenario you are talking about, so I was wondering whether the undue delay scenario stood, or 'any delay is undue delay' is the case.

    scenario 1. Are you saying that a backswing that is capable of being hit counts as being the backswing regardless of if it does go back a bit further later? so 'any delay is undue delay' stands.

    lets say I normally hold my racket 10cm from the shuttle in my ready position, then backswing another 30 and immediately serve forwards a combined 40cm -obviously legal.

    what about 20+20 =40
    or the extreme I was talking about of 39+1 =40

    we have a backhand server that is pretty close to this.


    scenario 2. I must confess this is an extreme version of a serve I do at another club to counteract somebody who was in the habit of rushing my serve as soon as I started my backswing, I found that a slow ( not very,very slow) backswing made it apparent to him that it wasn't a good time to rush me. I was wondering how far it could be taken legally.

    This is why I was looking for the rule that defines when a receiver can start to move.

    Nic
    I think you're over analysing this personally. What it comes down to, and Gollum did mention this, is the server s deamed to be ready when he holds the shuttle in the position from which it will be struck. It does not really matter what happens before that but as soon as you put that shuttle out there then any "undue delay" is a fault.

    9.1.1 neither side shall cause undue delay to the delivery of the service once the server and the receiver are ready for the service.

    The first forward movement of the racket is considered the actual serve and you must continue it in a smooth motion but there is nothing on how slow or fast your backswing must be. Keep in mind that "undue delay" is very subjective.

    Personally, I think anyone who depends on their service to this type of degree in social games should find better things to do. I understand that the service is important but I wouldn't play games like this in competition play and see absolutely no reason to do so in social play.
    Last edited by druss; 03-03-2010 at 10:25 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by druss View Post
    I think you're over analysing this personally. What it comes down to, and Gollum did mention this, is the server s deamed to be ready when he holds the shuttle in the position from which it will be struck. It does not really matter what happens before that but as soon as you put that shuttle out there then any "undue delay" is a fault.

    9.1.1 neither side shall cause undue delay to the delivery of the service once the server and the receiver are ready for the service.

    The first forward movement of the racket is considered the actual serve and you must continue it in a smooth motion but there is nothing on how slow or fast your backswing must be. Keep in mind that "undue delay" is very subjective.

    Personally, I think anyone who depends on their service to this type of degree in social games should find better things to do. I understand that the service is important but I wouldn't play games like this in competition play and see absolutely no reason to do so in social play.
    I'm sure your right, it should be a lot simpler than I am making it. However when I brought it up last night I realised that they wouldn't happily accept what I am saying. The rules seem to give them wriggle room. If I am the only one in the hall that keeps putting my hand up and halting their service I will become unpopular quickly. Agree absolutely about what you say about serves in general, I don't like cheap points.
    Nic

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    I think that what it comes down to is that he thinks he's right and you think you're right... in reality it doesn't matter who is right since there is no umpire present. I play against a lot of older players that I think cheat to a greater or lesser degree. Whether service or line calls or just plain not knowing the rules. I just don't care too much, if they want a point that badly then so be it... I usually win anyway.

    I guess what it comes down to is that I want to be there to play and enjoy myself, if I spent all my time worrying about whether the other team was cheating then I wouldn't enjoy myself. Does that make what they're doing right? No, it doesn't. But as in most things in life, worry about your own actions first, if they can look in the mirror and justify what they're doing then nothing you say is going to change their minds.

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    Default serve and receive

    just a short comment to serve / receive:

    1. the beginning of the serve is the first movement of the racket forward
    2. movement of the racket should be smooth, without any delays in any position (specialy not between backswing and beginning of the serve)
    3. the speed of the backswing is irrelevant, but it has to be constant all the time of the (back)swing, the same goes for serve (movement forward)
    4. both, server and receiver must be with both feet (or at least part of it) in constant touch with the ground until the racket hits the shuttle

    as receiver you have to learn to be pationed ... the server can take a few moments (seconds) before the start of the serve, but when he has started the procedure of the serve (means beginning of backswing) he is not allowed to stop or delay it for any reason (except if receiver is not ready or shuttle from other court lands in or if something else distruct him)

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    Quote Originally Posted by matt30mb View Post
    3. the speed of the backswing is irrelevant, but it has to be constant all the time of the (back)swing, the same goes for serve (movement forward)
    That is certainly false, as it implies you cannot accelerate the racket during the forwards swing.

    For one thing, that would make it impossible to play a flick serve.

    There's nothing in the laws about constant speed, either for backswing or forwards swing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gollum View Post
    That is certainly false, as it implies you cannot accelerate the racket during the forwards swing.

    For one thing, that would make it impossible to play a flick serve.

    There's nothing in the laws about constant speed, either for backswing or forwards swing.
    Yes Gollum, technicly you're right, of course you can accelerate the racket during forward swing ... Sorry for my not precise English !

    what I meant was that there are not allowed any stops, twitches, slow downs etc... during forward swing (and back swing, except you have to slow down and stop the racket for a 0,0001 second before you start the serve)

    I hope we all know what I mean by that

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    I think you meant "continuous" not "constant".

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    Quote Originally Posted by druss View Post
    I think you meant "continuous" not "constant".
    hehe THANK YOU ... that was the word I was looking for ...

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    Quote Originally Posted by forgeron View Post
    Forehand serve in doubles is common here, last night I finally sanpped and called a guy on holding on the end of the backswing, maybe 5sec. to see if I would flinch forewards or backwards.
    A useful practical criterion is whether his behaviour is consistent. If you know that he's going to wait 5 seconds every single time then you can just count to three before readying yourself to receive his serve. His behaviour might still be illegal, but at least you can save yourself the stress of trying to hold a 'ready' position for a long time. But if he's varying the timing, then it's a bit harder to deal with...

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    Thanks for the replies, on reflection I have decided that I will follow Druss's advice and let it go.

    turning point came when I experienced the following: short, backhand serve:

    Server pulled back the racket and held it, fault 1 - continous movement.
    then held for another few seconds, fault 2-undue delay, finally decided to go for her speciality serve, cross court to the tramlines, to get this movement her hand goes down and she flicks the racket head up, past horizontal, fault 3 and in doing so brought the point of impact above her waist- fault 4.
    I was having difficulty keeping count at this point and fluffed the return

    Was about to say something about this when a friend of hers playing three courts down the hall shouted loudly, and pointedly 'nice serve'

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    Quote Originally Posted by forgeron View Post
    Thanks for the replies, on reflection I have decided that I will follow Druss's advice and let it go.

    turning point came when I experienced the following: short, backhand serve:

    Server pulled back the racket and held it, fault 1 - continous movement.
    then held for another few seconds, fault 2-undue delay, finally decided to go for her speciality serve, cross court to the tramlines, to get this movement her hand goes down and she flicks the racket head up, past horizontal, fault 3 and in doing so brought the point of impact above her waist- fault 4.
    I was having difficulty keeping count at this point and fluffed the return

    Was about to say something about this when a friend of hers playing three courts down the hall shouted loudly, and pointedly 'nice serve'
    Ya... the problem is that even if you prove you're right no one will thank you. I mean they've probably been doing whatever they're doing for years and no one else has complained.

    What's happening is that it's a crutch, it's "their" shot that gets them a few points every match. They will fight tooth and nail for it.

    Try to follow the rules as much as possible but in reality it's not worth arguing in a social game because there are no consequences to losing. I follow the rules for my own actions because I know them. I'm not going to spend a bunch of time trying to educate the other players there on the rules that they aren't going to remember or follow anyway. If that loses me a few points a match then I don't really care.

    The only times I'll make a comment are when there is danger of damaging equipment.

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