USAR Official Rules & Regulations

VARIOUS RULE MODIFICATIONS

The following sections (4.0 through 11.0) detail the additional or modified rules that apply to variations of the singles game described in Sections 1 through 3.

4 – Doubles

The USAR's rules for singles also apply in doubles with the following additions and modifications.

Rule 4.1 Doubles Team

(a) A doubles team shall consist of two players who meet either the age requirements or player classification requirements to participate in a particular division of play. A team with different skill levels must play in the division of the player with the higher level of ability. When playing in an adult age division, the team must play in the division of the younger player. When playing in a junior age division, the team must play in the division of the older player.

(b) A change in playing partners may be made so long as the first match of the posted team has not begun. For this purpose only, the match will be considered started once the teams have been called to the court. The team must notify the Tournament Director of the change prior to the beginning of the match.

Rule 4.2 Serve in Doubles

(a) Order of Serve. At the beginning of each game, when the first server of the first team to serve is out, the team is out. After that, either partner can serve first each time the team steps in to serve. Both players on each team shall serve until there is a handout and a side out -- i.e. both players are out. The referee must make sure that neither partner serves again after that partner had previously lost a rally while serving.

(b) Partner's Position. On each serve, the server's partner shall stand erect with back facing the side wall and with both feet on the floor within the service box from the moment the server begins the service motion until the served ball passes the short line. Any violation is called a foot fault unless the server's partner enters the safety zone before the ball passes the short line in which case the server loses service.

(c) Changes of Serve. In doubles, the side is retired when both partners have lost service, except that the team that serves first at the beginning of each game loses the serve when the first server is retired.

Rule 4.3 Fault Serve in Doubles

(a) The server's partner is not in the service box with both feet on the floor and back to (but not necessarily against) the side wall from the time the server begins the service motion until the ball passes the short line.

(b) A served ball that hits the doubles partner while in the service box results in a fault serve.

(c) In one serve play only, if a serve hits the non-serving partner while standing in the box, the server will be allowed one more opportunity to hit a legal serve. Hitting the non-serving partner twice results in an out. Also consecutive faults – such as (i) a screen serve followed by hitting the non-serving partner or (ii) hitting the non-serving partner followed by serving while the receiver is not ready -- results in an out.

Rule 4.4 Out Serve in Doubles

(a) Out-of-Order Serve. If either partner serves again after that partner had previously lost a rally while serving, the penalty is an immediate out for that team.

(b) Ball Hits Partner. A served ball that hits the doubles partner, while outside the service box, results in loss of serve.

Rule 4.5 Return in Doubles

(a) The rally is lost if one player hits that same player's partner with an attempted return.

(b) If one player swings at the ball and misses it, both partners may make further attempts to return the ball until it touches the floor the second time. Both partners on a side are entitled to return the ball.