What Is A Net Ball In Tennis?

What Is A Net Ball In Tennis

Don’t get confused with Net Ball you know. This is what Net ball in tennis means.

What is net ball in tennis? Net ball in tennis commonly refers to a let ball in tennis. A net ball in tennis entails a player serving a tennis ball that then touches the net and can either be consider not faulty when the ball enters the correct service court of the opponent of faulty when the ball touches outside the service court.

Since the ball gets over the net just as in volleyball, or can sometimes touch the net resulting in a penalty in some instances, some people refers to the game as net ball in tennis.

The Origin Of Net In Tennis And Let In Tennis

Debate on the word Let and Net is not uncommon in the field of tennis game. Let was originally known as “Lettian” in Latin language which meant to “hinder/obstruct” which later became shorted to “Let”. Besides, others argue that Let word is a short form of a French word “filet” meaning net in a tennis match. That is why “Let” and “Net” terms are often used interchangeably.

However, others argue that Let came from the word “letting” meaning to have another chance to strike a tennis ball during a fault when serving. So either way, it can be deduced the “Let” and “Net” can be used interchangeably to be the same thing.

Furthermore, in a net ball tennis, a tennis match when a serve hits the net and fails to enter the service court then it is considered as a fault and points can be deducted if the event is repeated twice resulting in a double fault

Net Ball In Tennis, Is Let Ball In Tennis

The two terms “Net” and “Let” are often used interchangeably in a tennis match. So, if you hear of net ball in tennis you should not be confused, since it implies let ball in tennis.

So, what is a let ball in tennis? A let ball in tennis is when a served tennis ball touches the net but still ends up in the correct service court. In such a case, there is no fault and the player who served is not to be penalized. Actually, a repeat of serve can be done.

On the contrary, if the let serve resulted in a tennis ball touching the net and finally landing on outside the service court then the let serve is considered a fault. Let serve fault often occurs during the first attempt of serving since the second attempt a player is likely to be more cautious.

Although in a few cases a double fault can occur. A double fault in tennis means that a fault has been committed twice and often consecutively. When a double fault happens when the serve is repeated, the serving player is penalized by being deducted some points while the receiver player tends to benefit.

Net Ball In Tennis Faults

Since we are now clear with the use of “Net” and “Let” in tennis, there are possible errors initiated by a player that can result in a fault. Find out more on what is a fault in tennis?

Generally, no punishment is imposed on the first fault but a consecutive double fault attracts penalty. According to International Tennis Federation rules,

The following are the let serve faults or net serve faults:

1 A tennis ball touches the net and does not clear, it is a fault.

2. A tennis ball touches the net and bounces off away from the service court, it is a fault

3. A tennis ball touches the net and bounces off into a service court, it is not a fault

4. Wrong positioning of a players foot to touch the baseline during a let serve, it is a fault

5. A player foot touches the side lines and center extension lines when initiating a let serve, it is a fault

6. A tennis server releases the tennis ball too early before the receiver is ready to receive, it is a fault

7. A serve is missed and the tennis ball is not hit at all, it is a fault

8. A serve occurs but the tennis ball hits the net post whichever the court the ball bounces to, it is a fault

9. A tennis ball serve gets over the net and before bouncing it hits the receiver or anything on the receiver such as clothe, it is a fault

Can The Ball Hit The Net In Tennis?

Yes. The ball can hit the net in tennis resulting in either a fault or no fault depending with the reaction of the ball after touching the net. Find out more on tennis serve rules such as ‘can the ball hit the net in tennis?

How Are Net Ball In Tennis Faults Detected?

Normally, a fault can easily be vivid by a referee, and other spectators. However, in rare cases a tennis ball can slightly shy off the net or perhaps touch the net in a manner that is not clear to human eyes. Let ball serve should not be mistaken for what is a volley in tennis.

In highly developed countries, professional tennis players play over nets that have sensors to help rule out possible human errors that can result in biasness when making a ruling during a match.

The sensor sends an alert even to a slightest touch of a ball to the net that perhaps human eye observation can result in a controversial debates. Example, in a tennis match of Djokovic Novak against Janowicz Jerzy in 2016 in the US, it was a sensor signal that alerted the presence of a fault during a let serve.

Amidst criticism and controversial thoughts concerning the net sensor, the sensor is still popular among top global tennis match games. The device is very sensitive to touch and instantly sends alerts to a control room from which a much slow video replay can be done for the players to see the fault if any.

Allowed Number Of Lets In Net Ball Tennis

You may wonder now, how many lets are allowed in tennis? Actually, there is no limit to the maximum or minimum number of lets you can serve as a player.

As long as the tennis ball touches any of the parts of a net and lands in the correct service court it is not a fault and you can repeat the serve as many times as possible.

However, in the instance the let serve causes a fault such as the ball touching the net and entering the wrong service court or perhaps not bouncing before touching a receiver it is a fault.

You only have another one extra chance to serve. If you commit double faults even during the second chance then you are penalized by point’s deduction.

Who Had The Most Serve For Net Ball In Tennis

Serena William had the most 4 consecutive let serves in tennis. The serve occurred in a tennis match in 2013 where Williams took victory over Morita Ayumi. Also, Di Wu, a Chinese player had the most let serves of 4 when he played against Anning in the year 2017 in a tennis match in China.

So far the maximum number of consecutive let serves ever achieved in an official tennis game is 4, probably it can be said to be a maximum let serve number.

However, there is no limit to a let serve as long as the let serve is not faulty, you can repeat your let serve as many times as you can. Although in most cases the probability of doing consecutive serves reduces with the number of serve since you can either serve correctly or enter a fault leading to being penalized.

Frequently Asked Question

When and where was tennis first played?

Tennis was first played in France in the 1870s as lawn tennis. Rules of lawn tennis were first created by the British in 1873. The first tennis match to be played in the USA was in 1884, credits to Mary Young, on Staten Island on baseball and cricket courts.


From the above discussion, it is clear that what is a net ball in tennis can be briefly described as a let ball in tennis. The term “Let” and “Net” can be used interchangeably in tennis game. Net ball in tennis means that a let serve tennis ball touches any section of the net and the aftermath of the ball can either be a fault or no fault. There is no limit to how many let serves are in tennis ball but so far, the maximum recorded let serves in tennis game history is 4.

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Brett Haber

My goal is simple: to immerse you in the world of tennis like never before. Whether it's analyzing the strategies of top players, delving into the history of the sport, or offering insightful commentary on current events, my words aim to entertain, inform, and ignite your own passion for tennis. Join me on this thrilling journey through the courts, and let's ace this adventure together!

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