Dear Racquetball Family,
The IRF sends greetings to everyone and would like to clarify scoring for the remainder of 2022.
Rally scoring (in other words a point scored on every rally won) applies in all of the below:
For the World Games in Birmingham, USA (16 men and 16 women, singles only):
The same scoring will be used as the individual competition at PARC in Bolivia — Best of 5 games, with the first four games to 15 points and a tiebreaker game if necessary to 11 points, with just that tie-breaking fifth game winning by 2 points. The difference with the World Games is that with the single elimination format and only 32 competing, matches that are too short would not provide the international exposure desired for Racquetball.
For the IRF World Championships and IRF World Junior Championships, the scoring will be best of 5 games to 11 points, all games won by 2 points.
For those who would like more background, please continue reading:
Racquetball, along with many other sports, has the opportunity to provide support to and cooperation with international sports organizations such as the IOC and Panam Sports that make decisions on inclusion of various sports in premier high-level events like the Pan American Games.
The desire is that racquetball matches should be exciting, fast-moving, not overly long, and easily understood by spectators, both live and later on the Olympic Channel, YouTube, et al. Very lengthy racquetball matches can seem endless to new and casual spectators. When we lose spectators, the future of our sport is in jeopardy.
Additionally, a number of other factors that are well known to experienced tournament directors must be considered, such as length of the tournament in days; available courts; number and types of divisions offered; duration of matches; number of countries and athletes participating; being able to offer both individual and team competitions at each event, etc. Matches shorter in length can open up potential opportunities for improved tournaments experiences.
Adjustments to scoring approaches may seem to many to be a “moving target,” and we appreciate the patience of the international racquetball community as we find just the right balance.
In this year of change and transition, the IRF Technical Committee and the IRF Board of Directors are dedicated to identifying the best equation for success as we work to ensure that Racquetball will be included and competed for many years to come!