This question came in from a friend: “During the third set of a close semi-final match at a recent USTA Senior Sectional Tournament (not my match), player A was serving & faulted on his first serve. Before he could hit the second serve, a ball rolled on to his court from an adjacent court. This ball was retrieved & returned to the other court, but the receiver did not offer to “play two”.
“I understand the exact same situation occurred earlier in the match with the same result, i.e., no offer to “play two”. After the match, which the server in question lost, he confronted the receiver about the two situations & the receiver maintained that the USTA rules absolutely do not call for two serves in those situations. Is he correct according to the USTA rules? If he was technically correct, how about proper tennis etiquette?”
I told my friend: I believe the rule is that the server would get to Play Two if his service motion or timing were interrupted; but if didnâ€™t interfere with either (example: he knocks the ball back as he is walking back to the baseline after missing his first serve and coming to the net), there is no reason to play two. What’s your opinion?