If you hit your first serve into the net and it rolls a few feet back from the net, do you have to pick it up if your opponent requests (and disrupt your service rhythm) … or can you say, “it doesn’t bother me”?
I was playing practice singles with a USPTA pro (who shall remain nameless, unless he wishes to respond), and he thought he didn’t have to – and if he was forced to, that he would be entitled to a first serve.
Here is the rule:
42. Retrieving stray balls. Each player is responsible for removing stray balls
and other objects from the player’s end of the court. Whenever a ball is not in play,
a player must honor an opponent’s request to remove a ball from the court or from
an area outside the court that is reasonably close to the lines.
And since it is silent on granting a let, I would assume that none is given.
A couple of years back, I was playing a singles tournament match and asked the server to move a ball that was about three feet off the corner of the baseline. He refused, saying “It doesn’t bother me.”
I insisted, saying “It DOES bother me!” He refused again; but when I threatened to go get a referee, he relented and moved the ball.
Opinions or similar experiences?
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