Following the game situation and the tension that a match can generate, it can be difficult to judge whether a ball is good or bad. The level of filet, we will enlighten you.
Impact the ball with the pala beyond the net
You are at the net and your opponents are hitting the ball. You are so close that you hit the ball directly on the other side of the net. Is it regulatory? No.
When the ball comes from your opponents and it has not yet passed the net, you do not have the right to impact it at home.
On the other hand, if your opponents 'ball bounces in your court before coming back to your opponents' court, then you can cross the net (without touching it) to hit the ball.
The rebound on the grid
An opponent's smash bounces in your camp, hits the bottom glass and comes to rest on the side grid at the door. Can I play it or is the point over?
The answer depends on where the ball hits the grid. If the ball hits the grid before halfway, the point may continue. On the other hand, if the ball rebounds after this half of the field, the point is considered to be over.
And on the net post?
Sometimes the ball bounces off the metal part of the net. Imagine the case. You are at the bottom of the track, you hit the ball which hits the place where the net hangs on the post. Your ball then comes to finish its course in the opposing field. Good or bad ?
The answer is that the point continues. The hook from the net to the post is part of the net, so the point will be played in the same way as if the ball were “net”.
However, the rule is different with the post itself. Today, less and less tracks have an extension of the central post towards the grid, cutting the “big” door in 2 narrower doors. But there are still some, and the rule says that if the ball hits that part of the track, it will be considered “out”.
Same thing when you go off the track to play a ball by 3 of your opponents. If you hit the ball and it hits the net post before entering the court, the point will be considered false.
The “let” rule
A “let” is pronounced in many cases, but since we are focusing on net play, we will speak of the “let” on serve.
When you perform a serve and the ball hits the web of the net before bouncing into the corresponding square, there are several possibilities. Either the ball bounces several times (at least 2) in the field after a first bounce in the service box and the service will be replayed, or the ball will bounce once in the service box then will rebound on one of the windows and the point will be replayed, or the ball will rebound once in the service box and then rebound off the grid and the service will be considered false. Last possibility, the ball will rebound in the service box and exit through the gate and the point will be replayed if the exits are authorized, otherwise the service will be false.
The rebound in the net
It is one of the hardest hits to recover, but it exists. Your opponents touch the ball which bounces in your camp then comes to die in the net, on your side. Can I play it? The answer is yes until you hit the ball and it bounces twice. We agree that this maneuver is very difficult but it is doable.
Another variant, much more feasible, is a stroke played by your opponents directly from your side of the net. These blows will be found after going off the track or after a smash on your part that your opponents will impact on your side of the track. The ball comes straight into the net. Can I play it? Of course. It can be played directly, ie without letting the ball bounce, or letting the ball bounce after it hits the net. These shots require a lot of reflexes, technique, and vision of the game… but it is possible.
The rules at the net are diverse but rather simple. The most important thing is to understand whether “off-piste” play is allowed or not. Even if the cases will be rather rare during your games, it is interesting to know these rules in order to avoid animosities, and especially to prepare you to play or not, from balls to complicated bounces.
Julien Bondia is a teacher of padel in Tenerife. He is the founder of AvantagePadel.net, a software very popular with clubs and players of padel. Columnist and advisor, he helps you to play better through his many tutorials padel.