The Racquetball Screen Serve FAQ
What exactly does the rule say?
Rule 3.9 (h) Fault Serves Screen Serve – “A served ball that first hits the front wall and on the rebound passes so closely to the server, or server’s partner in doubles, that it prevents the receiver from having a clear view of the ball. The receiver is obligated to take up good court position, near center court, to obtain that view.”
When Does a Screen Serve Occur?
Screen serves normally occur during fast serves, since slower serves allow the receiver a view and time to see where the ball is moving. With rare exceptions, screen serves may also occur after hitting a side wall.
Who Makes a Screen Serve Call?
Only the “receiver” (or referee) may call a screen serve. The receiver, or referee, may make a slow or no call if the serve becomes playable off the back wall. The receiver may not play a serve, then because of a poor return shot, ask for a “screen serve” call.
The Ball Must Be How Far Away From the Server?
There is no designated distance the ball must pass the server by, since it is difficult to measure while playing.
What Determines a Screen Serve?
The server is allowed to hide the ball from the receiver during contact to and from the front wall. But the ball must be in clear view to the receiver as the ball passes next to the server inside the service zone. Good serves are sometimes hit so fast that the receiver may not have time to react and argue for a screen call. Situations may be resolved by determining the path of the ball between the front and the back wall in relation to the server’s position.
How Does One Make a Screen Serve Call?
The receiver should “signal” by raising their non racquet hand above their head during the
serve return, but still attempt a return, if possible, unless they believe they may hit the opponent.The signal tells the server (referee) that you will be requesting a screen serve, or any other service rule call like a foot fault, short or long serve. Screen serves are faults.
Special thanks to WEB Racquetball for the screen serve diagrams.