You Make the Call!
Here’s the Scenario:
You attempt a volley. However, the ball hits you just above the wrist while you’re holding the paddle. The ball goes in. Your opponents stop playing and claim they win the rally because you didn’t hit the ball with your paddle. What’s the call?
Luckily, this scenario is explicitly addressed in Rule #7.H of the 2019 International Federation of Pickleball Official Tournament Rulebook. In the above scenario, you were hit above the wrist on your paddle hand. Because you were hit above the wrist — and not below the wrist — a fault should be declared. Unfortunately for you, in this case, your opponents were correct.
Likewise, had the pickleball had hit you in any place other than below your wrist on your paddle hand, a fault should be declared — even if the ball goes back over the net and into the opponent’s court from being hit. Let’s look at the official rule applicable to this scenario.
2019 International Federation of Pickleball — Official Tournament Rulebook
[A fault will be declared if…] The ball in play strikes a player or anything the player is wearing or carrying, except the paddle or the player’s paddle hand below the wrist…
Need More Pickleball Rules Clarifications & Interpretations?
Please reference our pickleball rules page and make sure to subscribe to our newsletter so that you receive additional pickleball rules clarifications and interpretations for many of the common — and not-so-common — scenarios that happen on the pickleball courts. By subscribing to the newsletter you will also receive pickleball tips, strategies, tournament recaps, and more.