Let Please

based on the 2001 rules, effective 30-Apr 2001

Refereeing is a thankless but necessary task. Knowing the Rules and using the correct calls is expected of referees, but the really difficult part is making decisions when one of the players appeals for a let. Below is a summary of the thought process a referee should go through when asked ‘Let Please‘…
The Question … The Answer …
1. Did interference occur ?


The striker has four basic rights, and interference has occurred if the opponent fails to provide him with any of these, even if he has made every effort to do so:


Unobstructed direct access
to the ball after completion of a reasonable follow-through
A fair view of the ball on its rebound from the front wall

Freedom to hit
the ball with a reasonable swing

Freedom to play
the ball directly to the front wall

If no interference has occurred, or the interference was so minimal that the player’s view of and freedom to get to and play the ball were not effected, then it’s NO LET, otherwise move on to no.2

2. Could the obstructed player have reached the ball and made a good return ? And was he making every effort to do so ? If either answer is NO, then it’s NO LET,
otherwise move on to no.3
3. Did the obstructed player move past the point of interference and play on? Or create the interference in moving to the ball? If the answer to either question is YES, then it’s NO LET, otherwise move on to no. 4
4. Did the obstructing player make every effort avoid the interference ? If he didn’t, then it’s a STROKE, otherwise move on to no.5
5. Did the interference prevent the player’s reasonable swing? If YES, then it’s a STROKE to the player, otherwise move on to no. 6
6. Could the obstructed player play a winning return? If YES, then it’s a STROKE,
otherwise it’s just a LET unless no.7 applies.
7. Would the obstructed player have struck the opponent with the ball going directly to the front wall or, if going to a side wall, would it have been a winning return? If either answer is YES, then it’s a STROKE to the player.

Turning a full circle before hitting the ball

Turning is when you rotate 360 degrees about a point, i.e spin one revolution around. The rule regarding turning has been changed in the 2001 rules. Turning is allowed, but now if the opponent is hit with the ball after the striker has turned the stroke is awarded to the opponent. However, if the opponent makes a deliberate movement to intercept the shot then the stroke is awarded to the striker. In general if you want to turn and do not know where your opponent is, you should hold your shot and appeal for a let which should be granted. If you are sure that your shot after turning will miss your opponent then you are entitled to continue with the rally and no penalty applies. If you find that in playing your shot after turning your swing is interfered with by the opponent not moving out of the way, you can request a let for interference. The let should be granted.

Remember that this is a simplification – read the rules thoroughly.

The over-riding principle of the rules is to ensure a fair result for both players.