Call of the Week

Watch the rally and make the call with the US Squash Call of the Week officiating series. Enter your votes below to test your knowledge of the rules. Tune into @USSquash on twitter to vote on the newest clip before the decision is revealed.

Call of the Week 2.8.21

What is your call?
93 
Call of the Week 2.8.21 Explanation
The rules state, ‘after completing a shot, a player must make every effort to clear so their opponent has unrestricted direct access to the ball, and the space to make a reasonable swing.’ Both of these were prevented in this case. Massaro’s loose shot back to the place that she occupied, prevented both her ability to clear and Beddoes’ ability to make a return. Massaro is penalized with a stroke as a result.
Call of the Week 2.1.21

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50 
Call of the Week 2.1.21 Explanation
Elias is behind in the rally, trying to recover. Elias is stretched and off balance as he tries to recover a well-struck ball in the back corner. Elias has unobstructed access to the ball behind Gawad. The contact in this case is caused solely by Elias’ left arm wrapping around Gawad as he’s heading to the back corner. Because of Elias’ movement and the placement and pace of the shot, the decision is a no let.
Call of the Week 1.18.21

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37 
Call of the Week 1.18.21 Explanation
Elias hits a short shot, however it comes off the side wall back to the center of the court. The placement of Elias’ shot and his clear lack of effort to provide access put him the direct and only path for Gawad to reach and play the ball. Because the ref deemed Gawad could have reached the ball to make a good return, Elias is penalized with a stroke as a result of the placement of his shot and inability to provide that access.
Call of the Week 1.11.21

What is your call?
29 
Call of the Week 1.11.21 Explanation
Massaro hits the ball to the center of the court, which is controlled by Beddoes. Massaro traps herself behind her opponent, and anticipates an attacking shot toward the front corner. Beddoes’ shot comes too far back and off the side wall to warrant a no let. Massaro’s position, and anticipating quick foward movement, prevents Beddoes’ ability to clear out of the way, so the decision is a Let.
Call of the Week 1.4.21

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21 
Call of the Week 1.4.21 Explanation
Because the ball is coming straight down the side wall and Elias is clearing to the right, there is visible direct access to the ball. The rules say that if the striker had direct access, but took an indirect path, and then requested a let for interference, a no let is allowed. Gawad’s movement directly to the middle of his opponent instead of to the position of the ball, indicates he chose an indirect line to the ball causing interference solely caused by him. Therefore the decision is a No Let.
Call of the Week 12.18.20

What is your call?
19 
Call of the Week 12.18.20 Explanation
This situation starts with Massaro hitting the ball to the center of the court, which is controlled by Beddoes. Massaro traps herself behind her opponent, who is attacking the front corner. Massaro reads the play early, and is moving forward to cover the shot. Because the ball comes out towards the center, and Massaro could have reached it and made a good return, the decision is a Let. 
Call of the Week 11.30.20

What is your call?
14 
Call of the Week 11.30.20 Explanation
Because El Welily hits a shot, she’s off balance and isn’t able to clear as quickly. The ball comes back toward her, almost going right over her head. The ball is not tight to the wall, and Kawy is prevented from making a good return. Because of El Welily’s shot and her position on the court when Kawy is able to strike it, Kawy is not able to move forward and take the ball on the volley. El Welily is therefore penalized with a stroke. 
Call of the Week 11.23.20

What is your call?
10 
Call of the Week 11.23.20 Explanation
Waters hits a loose ball in the middle of the court, she moves forward to cover a short ball. Serme is holding her position and draws Waters in to cover the front court. Then Serme hits a heavier shot down the wall, which requires Waters to go up, forward and around as a result of her initial forward movement. Because of this, coupled with the location of the ball, the call is a no let.
Call of the Week 11.16.20

What is your call?
12 
Call of the Week 11.16.20 Explanation
Ghosal is anticipating a wide crosscourt that comes directly into his feet. As the video shows, Ghosal is not ready to play the ball. ElShorbagy’s shot into the middle of the court is intentional and catches Ghosal off guard. The rules say “if there was interference, but the striker would not have been able to make a good return, a no let is allowed.” So in this case the decision is a no let.
Call of the Week 11.9.20

What is your call?
132 
Call of the Week 11.9.20 Explanation
There is an incorrect assumption that hitting a good shot eliminates a player’s requirement to clear out of the way. ElShorbagy hits a ball tight to the wall. Even though Elshorbagy hits a ball that’s tight, Ghosal’s path to the ball is directly abstructed on a ball he could have reached. A stoppage in play occurred directly as a result of ElShorbagy’s movement off the ball, therefore he should be penalized with a stroke.
Call of the Week 10.29.20

What is your call?
86 
Call of the Week 10.29.20 Explanation
El Welily moves to the right first then changes direction, which she is entitled to do. There might be slight contact with her feet, but Perry has done nothing wrong. More importantly, her proximity to and the location of the ball is more important, and she would not have reached it. So the decision is a no let.
Call of the Week 10.22.20

What is your call?
191 
Call of the Week 10.22.20 Explanation
Elias stops because as he’s moving in to play his shot, James’ arm hits his headband, which moves it slightly down his head. In this case, the contact was minimal and did not affect his shot, and Elias should not have stopped the rally unnecessarily. So the decision is no let.
Call of the Week 10.15.20

What is your call?
168 
Call of the Week 10.15.20 Explanation
Serme’s shot goes to the back of the court, Gohar is coming in front of Serme to make a return. Gohar is in a good enough position to reach the ball, however, as she’s coming through there’s contact on her hip that knocks her off balance. There is no interference with her swing, but there was enough contact to put her in an unfair position. As a result the decision is a let.
Call of the Week 9.17.20

What is your call?
140 
Call of the Week 9.17.20 Explanation
In this video Willstrop is striking the ball down the left wall, but is caught off guard when it pops off towards the center. As we slow it down you can clearly see that Coll catches Willstrop with his racquet on the back swing and in fact stops play at that point. He is unable to make a full back swing. This contact is evidence that Coll’s swing was prevented. So the decision is a stroke.

 

Call of the Week 9.10.20

What is your call?
102 
Call of the Week 9.10.20 Explanation
In this case Gohar hits a good drop shot that is tight to the wall and has slow pace. She clears laterally along the front wall, which gives Serme the opportunity to move in and make a good return. As you see Serme comes through to hit the ball, the interference is minimal, and she does not reach the ball till the second bounce. The decision is No Let.

 

Call of the Week 9.03.20

What is your call?
182 
Call of the Week 9.03.20 Explanation
In this instance Willstrop moves the ball forward into the front corner. Coll hits a counter shot but then stands up directly in the path of Willstrop, and prevents him from making a good return. So the decision is a stroke.

 

Call of the Week 8.27.20

What is your call?
122 
Call of the Week 8.27.20 Explanation
If there is interference but it did not prevent Perry from seeing and getting to the ball to make a good return then it is minimal interference and no let is allowed. In this example Sherbini hits the ball with pace to the back corners Perry moves through to play it. There is some contact. But it is more of the pace and the placement of the shot that prevented her from making a good return more than the interference. So the decision is No Let.
Call of the Week 8.20.20

What is your call?
100 
Call of the Week 8.20.20
The challenge in this situation is deciding between Momen’s ability to hit the ball from his position, and Farag’s proximity and position when Momen is ready to strike the ball. In this case the ball is heading towards the center of the court, tight to Momen’s body which compacts his swing. As a result Farag does not prevent Momen’s back swing. Because of the close proximity and the swing being held by Momen for fear of hitting Farag. Although the ball hits Momen the play had already stopped prior to that as he held his swing. The decision is a let.
Call of the Week 8.13.20

What is your call?
86 
Call of the Week 8.13.20
What we want to focus on here is Gohar’s position and more importantly where she places her shot. She hits her shot from the service box area that lands in the location where she is playing from. Welily is coming from the center court, so her only access to the ball is directly from where Gohar is standing. Therefore she is penalized with a stroke.
Call of the Week 8.06.20

What is your call?
126 
Call of the Week 8.06.20 Answer & Explanation
Contact does not equal a let.  Abouelghar makes a shot that does not end up where he intended. This forces him to clear far away from his shot in the middle of the court. He anticipates where the shot is going, but takes a pass more towards Willstrop then to where the ball is. The ball ends up in the back corner another is enough space for him to go directly to the ball without incurring significant interference. So the decision is no let.

 

Call of the Week 7.30.20

What is your call?
87 
Call of the Week 7.30.20 Answer & Explanation
Watch how Blatchford anticipates Sobhy’s shot and the quick reactions of both players. You can see here that Blatchford demonstrates the definition of making every possible effort to get out go the way. So it comes down to can Sobhy reach the ball and make a good return? Sobhy was caught off guard and by the time she draws her racquet back the ball is well past her with no interference. So the decision is no let.

 

Call of the Week 7.24.20

What is your call?
109 
Call of the Week 7.24.20 Answer & Explanation
Women makes a good shot but when Au moves to play it, he knocks Momen’s racquet out of his hand. Momen is one of the great characters of the game as he moves to play the ball with his hand. The rules say, if a non- striker drops the racquet because of contact during the strikers effort to reach the ball a player may request a let. So the decision is a let and this let occurs the moment Momen drops his racquet.

 

Call of the Week 7.17.20

What is your call?
70 
Call of the Week 7.17.20 Answer & Explanation
In this situation Sherbini is attempting to hit a straight drive down the forehand side. Unfortunately her shot hits the side wall first and comes to the middle of the court. Both players are moving but David can not pull her racquet back because Sherbini is not out of the way. Because it’s Sherbini’s shot and inability to get adequately out of the way when David is ready to play, she is penalized with a stroke.

 

 

Call of the Week 7.10.20

What is your call?
80 
Call of the Week 7.10.20 Answer & Explanation
When you have two players moving at a high rate of speed in a tight area there can just be a little bit of traffic. In this case Coll hits a good first shot but it’s not a clear winner. Elshorbagy anticipates it early and that shortens the time and opportunity Coll has to  get out of the way. With both players moving correctly and the ball still staying away from Coll and yet some distance from ElShorbagy, the decision is a Let.

 

Call of the Week 7.03.20

What is your call?
143 
Call of the Week 7.03.20 Answer & Explanation

In this example look at two movements as two shots occur in succession. Firstly, watch as Perry  hits the ball and moves directly to the center and provides enough access. The next time she moves in she’s a little more off balance and after she strikes the ball she moves directly into the path of Elaraby. Because of her shot selection, execution and movement off the ball she is solely responsible for the stoppage of play and is therefore penalized with a stroke.

 

Call of the Week 6.26.20

What is your call?
150 
Call of the Week 6.18.20 Answer & Explanation

Sometimes officials can overthink what they see which can lead to an incorrect outcome. We are going to break down this point to better understand how a difficult decision can be made easier by just understanding the order and the way things happen. This is how to fairly apply the rules. First understand that a let stops play. It is evident Gawad was under pressure and he anticipates a shot down the forehand side. Unfortunately he guesses wrong and the ball goes quickly past him on the backhand side, and it is well past him before he is able to play it. This is where the play stops. There is some discussion about whether Gawad could have moved to play the ball in the back of the court but there is no interference and he makes no attempt to do so. If you listen clearly and closely to Gawad’s reasoning for asking for a let, his intention was to volley it. This again identifies when play stops. Simply put, at the time Gawad asked for a let, he is not able to make a good return and there is no interference to the ball, so the decision is no let.

 

Call of the Week 6.18.20

What is your call?
194 
Call of the Week 6.18.20 Answer & Explanation

 

Call of the Week 6.12.20

What is your call?
177 
Call of the Week 6.12.20 Answer & Explanation
In this instance we ask ourselves a few questions. Was Gawad making every effort to get out of the way, is Rosner able to strike the ball and make a good return, does he have access to the whole front wall, and is there a reasonable fear of injury? As play progresses we see Gawad moving towards the side wall, and as the ball comes back Rosner is late on the ball and so his only option would be to hit the ball into the sidewall. If the ball hits the sidewall or any other wall before the front wall a let is allowed. There may be a question as to if it was a winning shot, but given Gawad’s position and his ability to move to the ball it was determined that would be incorrect so the decision in this case is a let.

 

 

Call of the Week 6.5.20

What is your call?
239 
Call of the Week 6.5.20 Answer & Explanation

We are often asked questions about incidents that involve the ball hitting the front / side-wall nick and second attampts to hit the ball. In this instance King positions herself on the backhand however the ball hits the side-wall nick and moves to the opposite side. Because she makes no effort to hit the ball she is entitled to her space t hit it and make a good return. In this case King’s swing is prevented when she draws her racket back and she makes contact with her opponent. Because of that the decision is a Stroke.

 

Call of the Week 5.29.20

What is your call?
226 
Call of the Week 5.29.20 Answer & Explanation

This example gives us some specific things to look for when interference occurs. Watch as El Torky hits a good shot, it goes down the right hand wall and she moves immediately to her left as opposed to going towards the T. Then watch Gohar move forward towards her opponent instead of towards the ball when there is ample space for her to go through and play the shot. The rule we are looking at is that if the striker has direct access but instead took an indirect line to the ball and then requested a let for interference a no let is allowed. The decision here is No Let.

 

 

Call of the Week 5.21.20

What is your call?
265 
Call of the Week 5.21.20 Answer & Explanation

This call is important as it comes late in the match at 9-6 in the 5thgame although that should not impact any decisions. In this example, we need to determine why play stopped and if a penalty should be applied. From the back it appears that El Shorbagy has cleared out of the way and that there is enough space for Dessouky to hit the ball. However, the overhead angle gives another view that helps us to make the decision. El Shorbagy is hitting the ball towards the middle of the court and Dessouky is impeded in his ability to move forward. Because of El Shorbagy’s movement Dessouky is unable to hit the ball and therefore a Stroke decision is given.

 

 

 

Call of the Week 5.15.20

What is your call?
256 
Call of the Week 5.15.20 Answer & Explanation

At the professional level a lot of emphasis is put on minimizing stoppages allowing play to be continuous. Sometimes decisions are made to encourage players to play through interference. According to the rules minimal interference is such that it does not prevent the striker from seeing or getting to the ball to make a good return and a no let is allowed. When we look at the overhead here we are going to see two things. There is slight contact but there is ample space to hit the ball. Therefore, we want to encourage El Sherbini to go through and continue the rally. Hence a No Let is the decision.

 

Doubles Call of the Week 5.11.20

What is your call?
159 
Doubles Call of the Week 5.11.20 Answer & Explanation

Clearing in hardball doubles can be challenging. The ball is faster than singles and a player has to worry about two opponents instead of one. In this example, Nathan Dugan on the right wall in black plays a shot back towards himself. Although he has cleared to the side wall enough to for a ball to be played to the front wall, he has not done so quickly enough to all his opponent Mark Price to take a safe swing. Therefore, the call is point for the team in white.

 

 

Call of the Week 5.8.20

What is your call?
263 
Call of the Week 5.8.20 Answer & Explanation

This clip highlights two principles on which the rules are based – safety and fair play. As an official sometimes things happen that are out of the ordinary on the court. In this case we must deal with both players positions on the court at the end of the rally but we must also account for the state of Gaultier’s racket and the condition that it is in. Listen to the sound of the strings breaking and to the reaction of the commentators of SquashTV.
In the end the question becomes – which is more important, the application of the rules or the foundation in which they are based? In this case the decision is a Let as it represents a fair outcome of the rally and is in the spirit in which the game is played.

 

Call of the Week 5.1.20

What is your call?
336 
Call of the Week 5.1.20 Answer & Explanation
This point shows the importance of the video referee in the professional game, especially when the game is on the line. As play develops Golan (in black) is stretching his opponent from corner to corner. The rule being reviewed is that even though there is interference, Soliman (in yellow) must still be able to make a good return. Look carefully at where the ball bounces both on the first and second bounce. Soliman would not have been able to make a good return and therefore the decision is no let.

 

Call of the Week 4.24.20

What is your call?
387 
Call of the Week 4.24.20 Answer & Explanation
YES LET

This point focuses on the outgoing player after they strike the ball. After a player hits the ball, they must provide access to their opponent. In this clip, El Shorbagy hits the ball to the front and Farag moves to the side of him to return. El Shorbagy then moves to the center and he hits the ball and holds his position firmly – setting his right foot in the path of Farag –  and does not attempt to clear. This causes contact with his opponent who is trying to get to the ball on what would have been a difficult shot to return. This interference is difficult to see from the usual camera angle but the overhead camera shows it more clearly. Therefore, the decision is yes let.

 

Call of the Week 4.17.20

What is your call?
298 
Call of the Week 4.17.20 Answer & Explanation
YES LET

This decision focuses on player movement both on and off the ball. Sherbini hits a good shot to the front court along the wall. Tayeb is stretched trying to reach it. The issue is that as Sherbini is moving away from the ball after she strikes it, she moves directly to the center of the court and does not turn her body to allow access to her opponent. Therefore the decision is a let.

 

Call of the Week 4.10.20

What is your call?
310 
Call of the Week 4.10.20 Answer & Explanation

NO LET

Referees look at 3 things when making a decision; the incoming player, the outgoing player and the ball. This decision involves all three.

Coll hits a cross court shot but leaves it loose in the middle of the court. Dessouky is in a position to volley and takes a step forward to do so. He drives the ball to the back of the court where the first bounce is just beyond the back of the service box. The second bounce is at the back glass. Once Dessouky makes contact he makes every effort to clear. To retrieve the ball, Coll chooses a path that is in front of his opponent, but the ball is going to the back. By the time Coll would have been able to hit the ball, it is past him and then bounces twice towards the back of the court. Coll would therefore not have been able to retrieve the ball and the decision is No Let.