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What are the rules of table tennis?

similar cubes with rules inscription on windowsill in building

Table tennis, also known as ping-pong, is a popular racquet sport played on a rectangular table that is divided in half by a net. The game is played with a small, lightweight ball and paddles, also known as racquets or bats. The objective of the game is to hit the ball back and forth across the net, trying to prevent the opponent from returning it. Points are scored when the opponent fails to return the ball within the bounds of the table or when the ball hits the table on the opponent’s side and the opponent is unable to return it.

There are several rules and regulations that govern the game of table tennis. The table must be rectangular and have a smooth, level surface. It must be 2.74 meters long, 1.525 meters wide, and 76 centimeters high. The net must be 15.25 centimeters high and extend over the full width of the table. The ball must be spherical and have a diameter of 40 millimeters. It must weigh 2.7 grams and have a bounce of 53-58 centimeters when dropped from a height of 30.5 centimeters.

The rules regarding serving and returning the ball are also very specific. A player must serve the ball so that it lands on the opponent’s side of the table, and the opponent must return the ball by hitting it back over the net and onto the serving player’s side of the table. The serve must be initiated with the ball resting on an open palm and thrown up at least 16 centimeters without spinning. The ball must then be hit by the racquet before it bounces on the table. If the serve is not executed properly, the opponent is awarded a point.

There are also rules governing the use of the racquet. A player must hold the racquet with one hand only and may not touch the playing surface with any part of the racquet other than the blade. The blade must be made of wood or other approved material and may not have any sharp or abrasive surfaces. A player may not deliberately distort the shape of the blade or use any substance on the blade to affect the ball’s trajectory or speed.

In addition to these rules, there are also specific rules governing the scoring of points. A game is typically played to 11 points, but can be played to 21 or even higher. A player must win by at least two points, so if the score is tied at 10-10, the game continues until one player has a two-point lead. A player must also serve for two points in a row to win the game, so if the score is 11-10, the serving player must serve again and win the point to win the game.

Overall, the rules of table tennis are designed to ensure that the game is played fairly and competitively. By following these rules, players can enjoy the game and compete at the highest level.

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