Rules of the Game
Adding up the points:
The winner of a match is the one who wins the first THREE or FOUR games (according to the
A game consists of 11 points
There must be a gap of at least two points between opponents
If the score is 10-10, the game goes into extra play until one of the players has gained a lead of 2
The point goes to the player who successfully ends a rally
The score of the server is always announced first
During rally play:
If the ball touches the table surface, it is declared in
If it touches the side of the table, it is declared out
A player is not allowed to strike the ball in volley, unless the opponent’s ball leaves the table
and I strike the ball in volley behind the table, in which case the point would be given to me.
A player scores a point when his opponent commits one of the following errors:
He isn’t able to return the ball.
He returns the ball outside the opposite side of the table.
He lets the ball bounce more than once in his own court before returning it.
He touches the ball several times successively.
He strikes the ball in volley (without it bouncing on the table) above his side of the table.
He moves the table during play.
He touches the net or a post.
His free hand touches the table.
He makes a bad service (see service)
The initial order of serving is decided by lot. Service changes every 2 points, except during
periods of extra play where it changes each time. Service must adhere to the following rules:
The ball rests freely on the open palm of the hand.
The hand holding the ball must be above the level of the table
The ball should be projected upwards (at least 16 cm)
The ball should be struck when it is falling and behind the table.
The ball should first bounce in one’s court, then in the opponent’s court.
Service can be diagonal and also in a straight line in singles
Service can be replayed when the ball touches the net or the supporting posts before touching
the opponent’s side of the table (a let), when the ball touches the net then is struck in volley by
the opponent without it touching his court or when the reciever is not ready at the time of service
Service in Doubles:
Service must be diagonal, from the right half court (marked by a white line) to the opponent’s
right half court.
After that, play can cover the whole table, but each partner must take his turn.
A1 serves to B1 (2 services),
B1 then serves to A2 (2 services),
A2 then serves to B2 ,
B2 serves to A1 and continuing in this way for every 2 services.
Following service, each player takes turns to return the ball.
In addition to the aforementioned cases in singles, a doubles team scores a point when its doubles
opponents make one of the following errors:
At service, the player lets the ball bounce on the left half court, on either side of the court.
A player strikes the ball when it is not his turn.
Obstruction is not an acceptable claim for players of the same doubles team.