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Whose Call Is It Anyway?

Rules Refresh Stacie Townsend 06-27-2022

In the video below, featuring DJ Young-Mario Barrientos versus Gabriel Tardio-Rob Cassidy, there is a line call dispute, where Young makes a late line call against Cassidy’s shot. Tardio-Cassidy disputed saying the pickleball was in, which led to brief confusion with the referee (who admittedly did not see the ball land). So, whose line call stands?

Line calls in pickleball are made by the players on the court. Specifically, players make the line calls on their respective side of the court. That line call will generally stand unless there is a referee to appeal to. A referee will only overrule a line call if the referee clearly sees the pickleball land in/out. Also, to note, pickleball players should not question their opponents’ line calls. Their only source of appeal is to the referee (at any time prior to the next serve).

In the video above, Young called the ball out (even though it was a late call). Young’s call stands, despite any disagreement from Tardio and Cassidy. However, Tardio-Cassidy could appeal to the referee, which they did. As noted above, the referee did not see the pickleball, so Young’s call stands again, despite the appeal.

For more on line calls, check out Pickleball Line Call Rules – How to Make the Right Call. And, for a deeper breakdown on all of the rules of pickleball, check out Pickler’s Ultimate Guide to the Rules of Pickleball.

Have you had an interesting rules issue on the pickleball court? Send it to us at, so we can share with the rest of the pickleball community in a future newsletter.


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