Tips on Service Judging

Following are some of the most important abilities for service judges. They must be able to:

  • Accurately analyse the complete service action for each serve in a match.
  • Judge each serve independently, only calling faults that occur, and not calling a fault on a legal serve because…
    • an actual fault was not called previously,
    • they have decided to fault every flick serve,
    • they think calling a fault early in the match lets the players know they mean business,
    • the receiver has complained that the server is fault serving,
    • the server has complained that the opposition is fault serving, and this is an easy way to punish him/her,
    • they have heard that “X” player always faults
    • they suppose that “X” player never faults
    • or for any other reason other than a genuine fault according to the Laws of Badminton!
  • Discern what is part of a player’s preparation to serve versus the service itself.
  • Ignore all outside influences, such as the server’s opponents, the coaches, the spectators, and photographers or TV cameras close to them, etc.
  • Make consistently correct decisions throughout the match, from the very first serve to the very last one.
  • Work closely with the umpire, and be available to assist the umpire at all times.

Here are a few tips for a service judging technique that will project professionalism and inspire confidence:

  • Always look interested and involved in the match.
    • Sit upright in your chair, with your hands comfortably on your legs, palms down.
    • Do not cross your legs (although it is acceptable for female service judges wearing skirts to cross their ankles).
    • Shift position slightly when the service changes from one side to the other so that it looks like your focus is now on the new server.
  • Look at each serve from the moment the server takes up position, and be aware when the receiver is ready.
  • Concentrate on all service aspects until after the serve is delivered.
  • Looking at the big picture may help you analyse the different aspects (height, angle, stroke, feet, etc.).