Rally Scoring

Nine of our players went to a DUPR rating session run by coach Michal Cicvak at the
John Charles Centre for Sport, Leeds. DUPR is the major pickleball rating service that is used by most tournament organisers to assign players to the correct level-based groups for their events. For many of us this was the first time we had to get our heads round the old badminton scoring system where you only win points when you are serving that is still used by most tournaments.

Rally scoring is used in many recreational groups these days, partly because most people find it simpler but mainly because games tend to take less time when there is pressure on courts due to high numbers of players. We use rally scoring in our matchplay sessions because the seeding system we use for allocating players to games is based upon game point averages rather than games won or lost. To this end we have adoptedĀ  the rally scoring system that is gaining popularity in some tournaments and many commentators claim will become the norm over the next couple of years. The game that pickleball originally based its scoring on, badminton, moved to rally scoring in 2006. Squash followed 3 years later in 2009. They both did for the same reasons, to make the sport more attractive to spectators and TV viewers. Pickleball is predicted to come to the same conclusion, sooner or later.

The doubles rally scoring system we have adopted is explained on the Pickleball News web site Rally Scoring For Doubles Pickleball.

Rule change for 2024

Carries or scoop shots are no longer allowed, so these are now faults and lose the rally. In my squash days this was described as an egg and spoon! However, unlike I think every other racket game, double hits are still not faults in pickleball as long as both contacts with the paddle are in the smooth execution of the same stroke and unintentional. I’ve notice that some if not most of us occasionally have double hits. In my case it is usually because I haven’t middled the shot and the ball clips the guard strip. This is almost impossible to do deliberately and doesn’t seem to make any difference to the shot. If it is one continuous stroke – no fault.