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Court of Appeals: Clean Your Court!

My opponent’s first serve hit the net and stayed in her service box during her second serve. After the point, I asked her in the future to please remove stray balls from the court. She told me she didn’t have to if she didn’t want to. I said she had to remove them if I requested. Who’s right?—Maria Patron

You are. The Code, Item 42, states that “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.” This is reiterated by USTA Comment 25.2.

Except where noted, answers are based on the ITF Rules of Tennis and USTA's The Code.

Source: tennis.com


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