TENNIS RULES ALERT
USTA Tennis Rules and Regulations Committee
New Recovery Rule
Adopted at 2012 Annual Meeting
What is the “Recovery Rule” and when does it apply?
The Recovery Rule is a new part of USTA Regulation
III.H. The purpose of the new rule is to
ensure that a minimum rest period of two hours is offered by a
tournament referee to a player who has just completed a singles match in
which a match format of 2 out of 3 standard tiebreak sets (or 3 out of 5
standard tiebreak sets) is used. The new Recovery Rule applies only between twosingles matches. Further, the new
Recovery Rule does NOT apply to short set matches, matches that play a
tiebreak in lieu of a final third set, or to any match indoors that lasts less
than 120 minutes.
When is this new rule effective?
The new Recovery Rule is now effective and should be
enforced at all USTA-sanctioned events featuring singles events in junior,
adult, senior, NRTP, and wheelchair divisions.
Can a player waive the 2-hour rest period?
Yes, the player who just completed a singles match is
allowed to waive the 2-hour rest period.
What does the Recovery Rule mean for tournament officials?
This new rule creates new responsibilities for tournament
officials with regards to scheduling matches, timing singles matches that are
played indoors, and monitoring compliance with the “new” minimum rest period
required to be offered between two singles matches. This new rule could plausibly impact the
choice of format selected by tournament organizers.
What does the Recovery Rule mean for tournament players?
This new rule provides added relief and recovery time for
singles players to promote player health and safety, as well as performance. All else equal, the new rule might result in
longer periods of time needed to complete singles tournaments.
Any questions? Email