Special Circumstances

As mentioned previously, the scoresheet can be a useful tool for umpires and referees to be able to follow (and re-create, if necessary) the development of a match. This means that, in addition to servers, receivers, and the scoring sequence, any unusual events must be recorded as well. For example, if a player is warned and/or faulted, if there is an injury, or if play is suspended for any reason (such as a power outage), these must be documented on the scoresheet.
The documentation of most events will consist of two parts:

  • an abbreviation (a capital letter) recorded within the scoring rows to identify what happened, with which player, at which point in the game
  • a note at the bottom of the scoresheet (or the back, if more space is needed), explaining in detail what happened

The most common situations that need to be documented (along with their abbreviations) are:

  • W – player warned for misconduct (yellow card)
  • F – player faulted for misconduct (red card)
  • I – player injured
  • R – referee called on court (usually together with “F” or “I”)
  • S – play suspended for any reason

If any of these situations occur, they should be noted on the scoresheet, in a separate column (on the appropriate line if a player is involved), at the point in the game when they happened. For example, in the singles match below, if Player Y is warned for delaying the game when Player X is about to serve at 10-9, the umpire would write “W” in the next available space for Player Y, as below:

If Player Y then wins the rally, the score will go in the following space, as below:

If this game continues, and Player Y again attempts to delay the game and is faulted, it would be recorded as below. The umpire would write “F” in the next space, along with “R”, since the referee must be called when a red card is issued. At this point, the new score of 15 for Player X is recorded in the next available space.

In a doubles match, the incidents would have to reflect which player was involved, if any. For example, in the doubles match below, Player A was warned for arguing with the line judge, so the W should go on Player A’s line.

If the game continues, and at point 12, Player C dives for the shuttle and ends up bleeding from a scraped knee, the umpire would record “I” for injury on Player C’s line, along with “R” for referee. The referee would come on court, and probably call the tournament physician, as play cannot proceed if a player is bleeding. (Also, the umpire should start his/her stopwatch to record how long play was delayed.)
At the end of the match, the umpire would add the details in a note at the bottom (or back) of the scoresheet. For example:
Singles match above:

  • W: Player Y was warned for delaying the game.
  • F: Player Y was faulted for delaying the game, and referee was called on court.

Doubles match above:

  • W: Player A was warned for trying to influence the line judge.
  • I: Player C scraped her knee when diving for the shuttle. Referee was called on court. Game delayed for 3 minutes 34 seconds.

There are also two more serious entries that can be made on the scoresheet:

  • Ret - player retired
  • Dis - player disqualified (black card)

These would also require the appropriate explanatory notes to be made at the bottom of the scoresheet. In addition, these require more specific procedures during the match. For example, in the case of a player who does not wish to continue, the umpire will need to ask, “Are you retiring?” In the case of disqualification, this can only be decided by the referee, although it is the umpire who will make the formal announcement. For more details on the appropriate procedures in each case, consult the ITTO. The main emphasis here is on documenting these incidents on the scoresheet.

For example, in the case of our doubles match above, if Player C continues for a few more points, but it turns out that her knee injury was more serious and she eventually retires, the notes on the scoresheet would look like this:

The final score at the top of the scoresheet would reflect Player C’s retirement, as well as the final status, as such:

The procedure would be similar in the case of recording a disqualification.