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Dan
02-14-2011, 12:57 PM
OK, so im not going to outline Xu Xin here as a bad person as hes my second favourite player to Boll however. There is growing speculation over the internet that Xu Xin is serving illegally and he is gaining a huge advantage over his opponents. Especially in the deciding points of the sets. I have took two types of Xu Xin's serves from the most recent event he took part in, which he infact won. The Qatar Open 2011 :) Congrats Xu! Amazing!

Well heres my editing of the serves, what do you think everyone? Speculation true or false? Legal or Illegal? What did you put... Debate now.

Xu Xin vs Ma Long - Semi Final
Click image to enlarge its size

411
412
413
414


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sFB_p6ssJ-Y

Thanks to Youtuber: ttcountenance for the video footage

Dan
02-14-2011, 01:00 PM
Xu Xin vs Timo Boll - Final

416
418
415
417

damo
02-14-2011, 01:02 PM
great theard thanks for posting!!!

bFeee
02-14-2011, 01:08 PM
When Xu Xin vs Timo Boll in the final. The audience can not see the ball, but Timo Boll has full perspective, I think

caaa
02-14-2011, 01:17 PM
it is illegal, but the services of everyone else, except a few, are the same illegal

Bollforte94
02-14-2011, 01:21 PM
illegal, all in all xu xin has the most illegal serve
do the same thing with ma long and timo boll pls ;)

Justchill
02-14-2011, 01:25 PM
not illegal, hand is not obstructing movement...

StealthAsassin
02-14-2011, 01:29 PM
illegal serve at all i agree !!! i think the refs should have given some points to Timo!!!! But I think the refs had to make a desicion, so they let the game continue !!!

Terese
02-14-2011, 01:57 PM
true the hand or arm is not obstructing the ball but the body is and the way he has his body turned the ball is past the plane of his body which is VERY ILLEGAL!!!

VANS
02-14-2011, 01:57 PM
i dont know if the ball is invisible from timo's position but xu throw it backward instead of vertically upward. this gives him advantage in generating spin according to me

Astrotaz
02-14-2011, 01:58 PM
Please slice the couple of points agains Ma Long. The ones where Ma Long failed to read the spin and return in the net and off the table.

Astrotaz
02-14-2011, 02:03 PM
Here are the Rules directly from the Offical Laws book

2.6.1 Service shall start with the ball resting freely on the open palm of the server's
stationary free hand.

2.6.2 The server shall then project the ball near vertically upwards, without
imparting spin, so that it rises at least 16cm after leaving the palm of the free
hand and then falls without touching anything before being struck.

2.6.3 As the ball is falling the server shall strike it so that it touches first his court
and then, after passing over or around the net assembly, touches directly the
receiver's court; in doubles, the ball shall touch successively the right half
court of server and receiver.

2.6.4 From the start of service until it is struck, the ball shall be above the level of
the playing surface and behind the server's end line, and it shall not be hidden 2: The Laws of Table Tennis
Page 26 Handbook 2010-2011
from the receiver by the server or his doubles partner or by anything they
wear or carry.

2.6.5 As soon as the ball has been projected, the server’s free arm and hand shall
be removed from the space between the ball and the net.
The space between the ball and the net is defined by the ball, the net and its indefinite
upward extension.

2.6.6 It is the responsibility of the player to serve so that the umpire or the assistant
umpire can be satisfied that he complies with the requirements of the Laws,
and either may decide that a service is incorrect.

2.6.6.1 If either the umpire or the assistant umpire is not sure about the legality of
a service he may, on the first occasion in a match, interrupt play and warn
the server; but any subsequent service by that player or his doubles
partner which is not clearly legal shall be considered incorrect.

2.6.7 Exceptionally, the umpire may relax the requirements for a correct service
where he is satisfied that compliance is prevented by physical disability.

Carina
02-14-2011, 02:13 PM
Looks illegal to me. The rule states that the server should project the ball "near vertically upwards" and from the photos, we can clearly see he was throwing it backwards towards his body. Thanks Dan for posting this interesting thread!

Astrotaz
02-14-2011, 02:21 PM
You can also see Ma Long trying to bend around to view around Xu Xui's body

Astrotaz
02-14-2011, 02:24 PM
not illegal, hand is not obstructing movement...

This is not the deciding factor for the rule

Bollforte94
02-14-2011, 02:38 PM
the upper body makes the ball invisible => wrong serve ;)

nittakuhurricane2
02-14-2011, 02:50 PM
if his opponents couldnt see his serve...wouldnt they complain to the umpire?? just asking....

scylla24
02-14-2011, 03:08 PM
Yeah seriously, this is kind of a meaningless debate. From the videos we get this distant, straight on view, that is nothing like what Xu Xin's opponents see. Look at the Boll match. They are standing diagonally to each other, that makes it so that you have a way better view. And in the clips that Dan provided, you can see the ball when it contacts the paddle, which is the only real crucial thing that is needed. If it was so illegal, you can bet as hell Boll and his opponents would complain to the judges. Even the judges are probably partially bias against Chinese players, because as part of the ITTF they don't want Chinese to dominate, so they actively look for any chance to mark a serve as illegal.

People complain about Ma Lin's serve all the time, and yet Dan at least from his personal experience said it was completely visible.

scylla24
02-14-2011, 03:11 PM
i dont know if the ball is invisible from timo's position but xu throw it backward instead of vertically upward. this gives him advantage in generating spin according to me

Everyone throws it back a little. And as long as you throw it up from your palm, its really hard to get any spin.

Charlie
02-14-2011, 03:30 PM
as scylla said people have complained about ma lins serves for years and they must be legal for him to be doing them for so long and xu xins serves proberly were legal if you were in timos or ma longs position

cmhtbx
02-14-2011, 04:30 PM
that's why when Xu Xin vs Timo, the ref called a fault for Xu giving one point to Timo, still Xu is too good for everyone

UsakoKirei
02-14-2011, 04:36 PM
When Xu Xin vs Timo Boll in the final. The audience can not see the ball, but Timo Boll has full perspective, I think

i think bFeee's right. look at timo's position at the second scenario part3. its impossible that he cant see the serve :S.
you can turn the sides of the players to see it clearier.

micheal maze throws the ball backward very much.

what do you think ?

UsakoKirei
02-14-2011, 05:34 PM
someone clicked on illegal without leaving any comments >:(

thats way too strange and i dont like it xD !!!!

VANS
02-14-2011, 07:20 PM
Everyone throws it back a little. And as long as you throw it up from your palm, its really hard to get any spin.

xu throws back sooo obviuos and very very often. ai fukuhara throws the ball 1 meter upward in absolutelly verticall direction..so does vladi samsonov

in my club there are few 50+ years old guys who abuse that rule every time they serve. its stupid when a better player than you acts like a cheater

p.s. i think that when you throw the ball back its easier to produce spinny serve than the case you hit free falling ball

lgreggs
02-14-2011, 07:44 PM
It is difficult to tell from the angle in the pictures.

UsakoKirei
02-14-2011, 07:47 PM
xu throws back sooo obviuos and very very often. ai fukuhara throws the ball 1 meter upward in absolutelly verticall direction..so does vladi samsonov

in my club there are few 50+ years old guys who abuse that rule every time they serve. its stupid when a better player than you acts like a cheater

p.s. i think that when you throw the ball back its easier to produce spinny serve than the case you hit free falling ball

the person of your picture. how does he serve ? i like michael maze very :) nice style etc. and his serves are unbelievible. special: throwing backward like no ones xD ;D

kaikaz
02-14-2011, 08:56 PM
My opinion: I think timo boll can see the service perfectly, but ma long cant because he is right handed. But in both situations its illegal. From the moment the ball is hidden, its illegal. This is for almost every chinese player btw. Look at wang liqin his serve. He hides the ball with his left arm. Ma lin probably doesnt throw the ball high enough.

The only 2 players that serve legal are timo boll and samsonov. They throw the ball enough, and they hit the ball in front of their body.

jyechen
02-14-2011, 10:13 PM
I know this is isolated, but from Timo's position in those photographs, he probably could see the ball. Xu Xin does make an effort to clear the arm atleast, though the ball is obscured by his body. This is nothing like with Tiago Apolonia, when Tiago deliberately left his tossing hand in front for an extended period of time.

scylla24
02-14-2011, 10:15 PM
xu throws back sooo obviuos and very very often. ai fukuhara throws the ball 1 meter upward in absolutelly verticall direction..so does vladi samsonov

in my club there are few 50+ years old guys who abuse that rule every time they serve. its stupid when a better player than you acts like a cheater

p.s. i think that when you throw the ball back its easier to produce spinny serve than the case you hit free falling ball

Yeah, but what is important is that almost everyone throws it back. Just about every one of Boll's serves, he throws it back a little. It just depends on how much.

You saying those 50+ year olds are abusing the rule, is kind of circular logic.... They aren't abusing the rule, if its not abuse. A good player takes advantage of all that they can within the rule, the fact that you choose not to, is your own decision.

Also, in regards to your p.s. it's basic physics, regardless of whether you throw it straight up, or throw it back, you aren't imparting really any spin on the ball at all. The whole point of forcing all players to throw the ball from a position where the ball is sitting on their open palm is so that they can't flick their wrist or anything and impart the ball with a spin on its own. When you simply throw it up, the ball has no spin whatsoever, regardless of whether its going straight up or a little back

scylla24
02-14-2011, 10:18 PM
My opinion: I think timo boll can see the service perfectly, but ma long cant because he is right handed. But in both situations its illegal. From the moment the ball is hidden, its illegal. This is for almost every chinese player btw. Look at wang liqin his serve. He hides the ball with his left arm. Ma lin probably doesnt throw the ball high enough.

The only 2 players that serve legal are timo boll and samsonov. They throw the ball enough, and they hit the ball in front of their body.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I__jJDdECZs

you should watch this video. It's a good camera angle. Wang Liqin's serve isn't even close to illegal in my opinion

kaikaz
02-14-2011, 10:37 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I__jJDdECZs

you should watch this video. It's a good camera angle. Wang Liqin's serve isn't even close to illegal in my opinion

the first serve he does at 52 seconds. His back is almost facing saive. When the ball drops you can see it goes down behind his shoulder which is not allowed. You have to be able to see the ball at all time I thought, I might be wrong tho.

What I meant with my first post was that you can really see the difference between wang liqin and vladimir samsonov. Samsonov throws the ball and immediately removes his arm and wang liqin removes it after he hits the ball, so you cant really see what spin is on the ball. But again I might be wrong.

Ajay
02-15-2011, 12:54 AM
Just some thoughts and observations.

XX's serves look better to the camera angle when he is serving on the near side of the table.

In a typical right hander against right hander scenario, the receiver normally stands at the far left of his table.

In a typical right hander against left hander scenario, when the left hander serves on the right side of his table, the right handed receiver will normally still stand in the left half of his table, BUT not as far left as in the previous scenario. This says (1) 'hidden-ess' is a relative matter, relative to the position of the receiver; (2) the receiver can do something to enhance his view of the serve. This makes it hard for the officials to judge if a serve is hidden from the receiver. Even if a serve is relatively common, it is possible for it to be difficult to be seen if the receiver stands at the wrong place.

Now check out where Wang Hao stood to receive XX's serves. He was standing mostly in the middle of the table. A few times he might even be slightly on the right side. This special treatment seems to be evidence that XX's serves are something different.

Lastly, Boll being a left hander, where he stood to receive XX serves, he should have a good view.

geotjakra
02-15-2011, 03:40 AM
This is a very good angle to see Xuxin's serves, they are from the English Open, and I think he is putting extra effort to keep them as legal as possible since they were being quite strict with the serve rule in that tournament:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=URiJQd6fxPc&feature=related

DaFaiGai
02-15-2011, 04:17 AM
Noooooooooooooooooooooooooooooot illegal.

He's been serving like this the entire time ._. only reason it is said to be illegal is cuz you guys don't think he could beat timo or ma long 4-0

It's visible to ma and timo but not to the audience because we're viewing from an upside angle.

hournikova17
02-15-2011, 05:13 AM
Scylla, I'm surprised you say that, because I think most would agree that you're the most intelligent poster on here. However, the ball travels about 2 feet backward, and Xu Xin's shoulder completely obstructs the view of the receiver. Timo is a great serve returner, and if he could see the contact point of this serve, it is not a difficult one to return. Timo isn't one to complain, and Ma Long couldn't call illegal serves on another Chinese player. I think all the professional players should be held to the highest standard of the rules.
I think the umpires didn't have the spine to call it on the important points, and that is why he was not called. This is the motion where he serves from at the crucial points of the match, and is definitely illegal. All of his other serves are legal however.

sunilcse04
02-15-2011, 06:50 AM
Looks like legal.. But Timo can object if the serve looks illegal. If the opponent and umpire feel that the serve is correct then we cannot simply debate over it :D !!
If Timo Boll can see the ball from one corner n not from another corner then according to rule book its quite LEGAL. The rule book does not specify any table position. If the opponent wants to see the ball then he has to move to another corner.. Seems like a game strategy!
So if Timo can see the ball from one side n not another side then its a risk Taken by Timo.. Xu can serve in any position as long as Ball can be seen from one side of the table :P !!

GECA
02-15-2011, 09:06 AM
Imho it's illegal.
But many serves are illegal,with few exceptions(Samsonov,Schlager,Monteiro).

kaikaz
02-15-2011, 10:14 AM
None of the pro players will complain to someone's serve. Nobody has ever done that before and it just shows you are not a pro if you do that, if you know what I mean. The referee's didnt call it because a referee is there to put the match to a good ending, they are there to count the points, call lets and thats it. They shouldnt be there to interrupt the game, so they dont call as many illegal serves as they should. There is one thing I know, if I was a referee, many serves would be illegal. And XX's serve was probably the most illegal of that tournament and I'm not a boll fan or something like that so I'm not saying this because boll lost.

off topic: if you watch the match par gerell vs schlager. You can see gerell is serving most of the time illegal, but not as much as xu xin and its the same serve. But where do you draw the line when a serve is illegal or not. For me its ok if you throw the ball a little bit backwards but you cant hide it with anything. Xu xin is throwing the ball almost horizontal and even a blind person can see he is hiding it with his shoulder/body.

scylla24
02-15-2011, 03:22 PM
Scylla, I'm surprised you say that, because I think most would agree that you're the most intelligent poster on here. However, the ball travels about 2 feet backward, and Xu Xin's shoulder completely obstructs the view of the receiver. Timo is a great serve returner, and if he could see the contact point of this serve, it is not a difficult one to return. Timo isn't one to complain, and Ma Long couldn't call illegal serves on another Chinese player. I think all the professional players should be held to the highest standard of the rules.
I think the umpires didn't have the spine to call it on the important points, and that is why he was not called. This is the motion where he serves from at the crucial points of the match, and is definitely illegal. All of his other serves are legal however.

haha wow.... I didn't realize my posts were looked in such positive light, well thank you. All I am saying is that its quite easy to pop the ball up from your palm and instill absolutely no spin to it even if you throw it back several feet. Especially when you consider the fact that professional serves are measured in the 100+ rotations per second. Even if by throwing it back a little it does rotate a little, its insignificant.

I can see where some people might complain in the case of the Ma Long match, because Ma Long is right handed. But for Boll, because they are both left handed players, they are standing completely diagonal from each other, and therefore I think Boll should have a perfectly fine view Xu Xin's serve.

Chinese players put so much wrist movement into their serves, and the movement is so fast, that even when you see the contact point, it can be hard to return. I have always felt that while Chinese players go to the limits of what is legal and illegal, they always allowed the opponent to see the moment the ball contacts the paddle. Ma Lin may remove his hand slowly, or have his body partially covering the ball at time he throws it up, but he always times it perfectly so that when the ball hits the paddle its in view of the opponent.

I mean how do you know Timo isn't one to complain. He is very humble, gracious, and seems like an all around nice guy, but that he was definitely getting frustrated towards the end of the match because he was getting pulverized. But even if he wasn't, if it was a close game, and Xu Xin honestly was breaking the rules, I don't see any reason why he would be reluctant to call someone out on breaking the rule. Someone who breaks a rule should be called out upon. That's not bad etiquette that's just following the rules.

hournikova17
02-16-2011, 05:07 AM
I just think the if the ittf is going to make a point to take away hiding the contact of serves, the professionals are the ones who should be held to the highest standards. I have seen little kids get called on illegal serves who probably can't help it. Professionals have enough services in their arsenal to know if the serve they are doing is illegal, then they should probably stay away from that serve for the rest of that match.
The players job isn't to enforce the rules...that is the sole duty of the umpire. Why have certified umpires if they're not their to enforce rules? Why would the ittf have the rule in the first place if they're not going to enforce it at the highest level.
The qatar open is not life or death. That is the place they should enforce it the most to let players know that illegal serves will be called, so don't bring those illegal serves to the world championships or you will be called. If they don't call them on the ittf pro tour, then it doesn't make a whole lot of sense to call them at the world championships either, because you need consistency throughout the officiating so the players can just focus on their play instead of rules.

kaikaz
02-16-2011, 11:41 AM
I just think the if the ittf is going to make a point to take away hiding the contact of serves, the professionals are the ones who should be held to the highest standards. I have seen little kids get called on illegal serves who probably can't help it. Professionals have enough services in their arsenal to know if the serve they are doing is illegal, then they should probably stay away from that serve for the rest of that match.
The players job isn't to enforce the rules...that is the sole duty of the umpire. Why have certified umpires if they're not their to enforce rules? Why would the ittf have the rule in the first place if they're not going to enforce it at the highest level.
The qatar open is not life or death. That is the place they should enforce it the most to let players know that illegal serves will be called, so don't bring those illegal serves to the world championships or you will be called. If they don't call them on the ittf pro tour, then it doesn't make a whole lot of sense to call them at the world championships either, because you need consistency throughout the officiating so the players can just focus on their play instead of rules.

I think we all know the referees are not good at all. If we all think about the match between ma long and michael maze.
Maze got a yellow card for taking too much time, even tho it was ma long who wasnt ready yet to receive the service.
In my opinion referees should be former table tennis players or current table tennis players, not from the highest level but at least they know what is happening. Some referees like the lady in the match between ma long and maze just didnt have a clue at all what table tennis was and she just ruined the game.

Ittf should make a rule about the serve which makes it very clear how to serve and stick to it. To be honest the rule about the serve is pretty clear, but still people are not following it. If you do this in my division which is not even close to this level and you tell your oponent you are serving behind your back or something like that then you get an answer like "we are not pro players, we can serve how we want" and you cant do much about it because we dont play with official referees.

Siegler
02-16-2011, 12:30 PM
Looks illegal to me. The rule states that the server should project the ball "near vertically upwards" and from the photos, we can clearly see he was throwing it backwards towards his body. Thanks Dan for posting this interesting thread!

Most umpires interpret that rule by saying "As long as the ball is traveling more distance vertically than horizontally, it is legal." Most umps allow you to throw the ball back to your body, as long as its visible and travels more distance vertically than horizontally.

Carina
02-16-2011, 02:22 PM
Most umpires interpret that rule by saying "As long as the ball is traveling more distance vertically than horizontally, it is legal." Most umps allow you to throw the ball back to your body, as long as its visible and travels more distance vertically than horizontally.

I see. It could well be the case in reality. Nonetheless, I would still say why have a rule in the first place if it is not meant to be enforced (and not stating clearly certain allowance is allowable if the server is throwing the ball within certain limits etc). The fact that we have generated so much discussion in this forum already shows the legality of that serve was questionable. Regarding the ability of the server to generate more spin if he throws it more towards the bat, it is in fact laws of physics. Gravity is of course the same, but there is a horizontal velocity in the motion coming towards the bat, which at contact, can generate slightly more spin. Try it. Anyway, if there is no extra benefit, why would Xu Xin throw it so much backwards in the first place. Furthermore, we can also see from the clip the ball actually does become visible again at the point of contact, i.e. the throwing back might not necessarily just be for hiding purposes.

Siegler
02-16-2011, 05:57 PM
I see. It could well be the case in reality. Nonetheless, I would still say why have a rule in the first place if it is not meant to be enforced (and not stating clearly certain allowance is allowable if the server is throwing the ball within certain limits etc). The fact that we have generated so much discussion in this forum already shows the legality of that serve was questionable. Regarding the ability of the server to generate more spin if he throws it more towards the bat, it is in fact laws of physics. Gravity is of course the same, but there is a horizontal velocity in the motion coming towards the bat, which at contact, can generate slightly more spin. Try it. Anyway, if there is no extra benefit, why would Xu Xin throw it so much backwards in the first place. Furthermore, we can also see from the clip the ball actually does become visible again at the point of contact, i.e. the throwing back might not necessarily just be for hiding purposes.

I'm going to disagree. I believe there is a bit of over-exaggeration with how much spin you can add to the ball by throwing it towards your paddle. As said before, you must throw the ball more vertically than horizontally. With that being said, having a minimum of throwing the ball 6 inches does not leave a lot of room to have a large velocity in the horizontal direction. You always have to throw the ball at a higher vertical velocity because you're fighting gravity. Thus the velocity in the vertical direction will always exceed the velocity in the horizontal direction. I'm saying this not to say you're flat out wrong, but the amount of extra backspin you could potentially generate is almost negligible compared to throwing the ball higher.

I believe players throw the ball horizontally as a style to their serve, and not to generate more speed or spin. I know I do it because it feels very comfortable to me to throw the ball a little to me. I could be wrong though, maybe the pros see a big difference since their serves are really top notch.

kpthatsme
02-16-2011, 07:54 PM
Most likely illegal because its not a vertical toss, but we dont know if Timo would be able to see it cuz we dont see Timo's perspective...

Dave Cochrane
02-16-2011, 09:03 PM
I am an international umpire and i umpired at the english open a few weeks ago.
basically the important part that makes this serve illegal is that the law below is broken :
2.6.2 The server shall then project the ball near vertically upwards, without
imparting spin, so that it rises at least 16cm after leaving the palm of the free
hand and then falls without touching anything before being struck.
He does not throw the ball near vertically upwards so forget the slight obstruction of the ball later in the serve because the serve is already illegal before it gets to that point.
Please remember it isn't easy judging from the side as us umpires see a different angle to you the spectator.
A good international referee taught myself and some colleagues a useful tip to spot things like this even though our angle isn't too good.
Basically look where the hand starts as he throws the ball and then see where the ball is struck by the racket, you can clearly see at any angle Xu starts near the middle of the table yet strikes the ball very close to the side so without a doubt you can see the ball has been thrown backwards by looking at the starting point and finishing point where the ball is struck.
To be fair this useful tip may not have been communicated to some umpires, to be honest i only recently learnt it at the english open.
Illegal serving is always a hot topic amongst match officials and many players but to be honest i find at the elite level most players are perfectly legal with their serves as you cannot afford to risk losing any points by being faulted at that level. Some players will push the umpire to see what they can get away with but most are fine.

Dave Cochrane
02-16-2011, 09:12 PM
I think we all know the referees are not good at all. If we all think about the match between ma long and michael maze.
Maze got a yellow card for taking too much time, even tho it was ma long who wasnt ready yet to receive the service.
In my opinion referees should be former table tennis players or current table tennis players, not from the highest level but at least they know what is happening. Some referees like the lady in the match between ma long and maze just didnt have a clue at all what table tennis was and she just ruined the game.

Ittf should make a rule about the serve which makes it very clear how to serve and stick to it. To be honest the rule about the serve is pretty clear, but still people are not following it. If you do this in my division which is not even close to this level and you tell your oponent you are serving behind your back or something like that then you get an answer like "we are not pro players, we can serve how we want" and you cant do much about it because we dont play with official referees.

with all due respect all the international umpires i know have been playing table tennis for years and they are umpires NOT REFEREES, you have to understand in all sports you get inconsistency in standards of match officials.
The ITTF created a "Blue Badge" umpire status which is classed as the elite umpire, you will find these umpires at the best events and they do everything in uniform to each other which also includes presentation aspects also. These umpires get evaluated by highly trained assessors (one of them is the ITTF URC Chairman) and they must achieve certain standards regularly to keep the blue badge status.

scylla24
02-16-2011, 11:19 PM
That sounds good and all, frankly if you pick the rule apart piece by piece, and forgive me, I am in law school so it has become a habit, but you can make Xu Xin's serve entirely legal just based off the wordings of the rule. If the ITTF really wanted umpires to be super anal about it, they would have made the rules super super specific and not as vague as they are. For example:

2.6.2 The server shall then project the ball near vertically upwards, without
imparting spin, so that it rises at least 16cm after leaving the palm of the free
hand and then falls without touching anything before being struck.

This rule, that you have said is broken right from the beginning. Near vertically is a subjective measure. If the ball goes up more vertically than horizontally, then as far as the rule goes, Xu Xin's serve can be viewed as entirely legal. The rule could have said, player cannot project the ball more than 4 inches horizontally if they really wanted to nit pick.
2.6.4 From the start of service until it is struck, the ball shall be above the level of
the playing surface and behind the server's end line, and it shall not be hidden 2: The Laws of Table Tennis
Page 26 Handbook 2010-2011
from the receiver by the server or his doubles partner or by anything they
wear or carry.

This issue about hidden, is also quite subjective. Granted I didn't bother to read page 26 of the handbook. But as we talked about earlier, Xu Xin could do the same serve, but it would be significantly more visible for Boll, since he is a lefty and chooses to stand diagonally across from Xu Xin, than it would be for Ma Long standing at the left side. Does that mean that the same exact serve is legal and illegal depending on the situation? Could not Ma Long choose to stand to the far right like a left, even though he is a rightly? There is a lot of room there for movement within the rules. Because where the opponent chooses to stand or where he could stand is completely up in the air.

2.6.5 As soon as the ball has been projected, the server’s free arm and hand shall
be removed from the space between the ball and the net.
The space between the ball and the net is defined by the ball, the net and its indefinite
upward extension.

The words as soon as the ball has been projected, the server's free arm and hand shall be removed from the space between the ball and net. But it does not really state how quickly the arm and hand is to be removed. If a player began to remove his hand as soon as the ball as been projected, but just moves his hand slowly so that it only is completely gone the second before the ball contacts the paddle, is still completely within the confines of this rule.

It is because of these gray areas that we have this debate. I don't think the Chinese players are breaking any of the rules, they simply have read them in a way that is completely valid given the lack of specificity with the rules. And frankly, if the rules do have these gray areas, why wouldn't you take advantage of them as much as possible? Chinese players put more time and effort into their training, and part of that is putting more time into mastering their serves, and that should reap some benefits.

The fact is, in any popular sport, there is a lot of leeway within the rules, because everything is judged by humans, and not by a calculating computer. Refs in basketball, in football, baseball, depending on the situation often allow deviations from the rules, and just let the players play. In basketball, tons of fouls are purposely not called, not because the refs didn't see them, but because in a good heated game, you don't want to needlessly stop the action, or ruin the flow of the game. To make the rules super super specific and anal, and hence make the umpires super anal destroys the fluidity of the game, destroys the enjoyment of watching table tennis to some degree.

kaikaz
02-17-2011, 12:17 AM
with all due respect all the international umpires i know have been playing table tennis for years and they are umpires NOT REFEREES, you have to understand in all sports you get inconsistency in standards of match officials.
The ITTF created a "Blue Badge" umpire status which is classed as the elite umpire, you will find these umpires at the best events and they do everything in uniform to each other which also includes presentation aspects also. These umpires get evaluated by highly trained assessors (one of them is the ITTF URC Chairman) and they must achieve certain standards regularly to keep the blue badge status.

My apologies for saying, I shouldnt have said that.

But you have to agree with me that the lady umpire wasnt doing a good job in the match between maze and ma long right?

And why did the umpire said xu xin's serve was wrong 1 time even tho he throws the ball even worse afterwards? Thats what I mean with bad umpires, no offence to you.

herblord3
02-17-2011, 12:36 AM
its illegal indeed!!

SCHLAGO
02-17-2011, 09:50 AM
IMO This serve is illegal because it is difficult for right handed players to see it

geotjakra
02-17-2011, 01:59 PM
Like anything in life, such as stopping completely behind the line on stop sign, or speeding through yellow light, It's legal when you get away with it, and it's not legal when you get penalized a point for it. A lot of the rules in TT seemed made to be broken, like the rubber tuning, and the service rule, there are tuners that can't be detected, and just having sweat/dirt accidentally ending on the rubber surface can actually be considered as a form of tuning, since it is now slightly altered from the way it came out from the approved factory. the wording in the rules are a bit too absolute, where no humans can throw the ball perfectly vertical, etc. Table Tennis like any other sport, need to be entertaining to be able to grow big and popular, so the rules needed to support this very important aspect of the game, if not it will soon get boring to watch, and the whole sport would just dwindle down even more to something on the sideline. I rather see points being fought hard by 2 great players, than being awarded so easily by an over-zealous rule crazy umpires.

Siegler
02-17-2011, 05:24 PM
Like anything in life, such as stopping completely behind the line on stop sign, or speeding through yellow light, It's legal when you get away with it, and it's not legal when you get penalized a point for it. A lot of the rules in TT seemed made to be broken, like the rubber tuning, and the service rule, there are tuners that can't be detected, and just having sweat/dirt accidentally ending on the rubber surface can actually be considered as a form of tuning, since it is now slightly altered from the way it came out from the approved factory. the wording in the rules are a bit too absolute, where no humans can throw the ball perfectly vertical, etc. Table Tennis like any other sport, need to be entertaining to be able to grow big and popular, so the rules needed to support this very important aspect of the game, if not it will soon get boring to watch, and the whole sport would just dwindle down even more to something on the sideline. I rather see points being fought hard by 2 great players, than being awarded so easily by an over-zealous rule crazy umpires.

I don't mean to sound so blunt, but this is wrong thinking in this situation. I would agree with you if the following situation were true:

Server, throws the ball from his finger tips, and while there is no noticeable sign that he is abusing this fact, the umpire calls fault. The ball, whether or not it was thrown from his palm or fingers, would not have changed at all. Unless the opponent or umpire clearly sees the server using his fingers to an advantage, the call is unjustified.

However, in this thread, this situation is very important to get right. The rule is there to specifically deny any server to hiding the ball. Whether it was intentional or not, the server gets a clear advantage by not showing the spin/speed of the ball as it comes off the racket. If an umpire were to call fault on a server in this situation, then the game changes from the server having an advantage of hiding the ball, to now the opponent can read the serve as it was intended by the rule change in 2000. Then the call is justified.

scylla24
02-17-2011, 06:05 PM
IMO This serve is illegal because it is difficult for right handed players to see it

By your own reasoning, that makes the question really ambiguous. The same serve done, would be legal in one situation and not in the other? just because your opponent chooses to stand at a different place? that seems illogical

geotjakra
02-18-2011, 11:05 AM
I don't mean to sound so blunt, but this is wrong thinking in this situation. I would agree with you if the following situation were true:

Server, throws the ball from his finger tips, and while there is no noticeable sign that he is abusing this fact, the umpire calls fault. The ball, whether or not it was thrown from his palm or fingers, would not have changed at all. Unless the opponent or umpire clearly sees the server using his fingers to an advantage, the call is unjustified.

However, in this thread, this situation is very important to get right. The rule is there to specifically deny any server to hiding the ball. Whether it was intentional or not, the server gets a clear advantage by not showing the spin/speed of the ball as it comes off the racket. If an umpire were to call fault on a server in this situation, then the game changes from the server having an advantage of hiding the ball, to now the opponent can read the serve as it was intended by the rule change in 2000. Then the call is justified.

What I am trying to say is that the serve rule and the rubber tuning rule need to be changed, these two rules are just impossible to enforce a 100%, rules are there to make things fair and even for everybody, but these two rules have been abused time and time again, so the only way to make it fair to everybody is that the rule needed to be modified to be more realistic to what is happening in the real game situation. It's a known fact, though nobody admit it blatantly that many players from the beginner level up to the very top tiers post-tuned their rubbers to perform better. And the serve thing remains a controversy and unnecessary point of debate since the time it was changed in 2000? I would suggest keep it simple,such as: "serve behind the white line, must be thrown up from an open palm to a height not less than 7 inches, as close to vertical as possible give an take 10 degrees. and make sure at the point of contact between the ball to the racket, it can be seen clearly by your opponent and the umpire".
And as for the tuning goes, just take away the whole "cannot be post altered bs" and just enforce strictly the maximum spong+rubber tickness and eveness of the surface, etc. No need to make a rule that cannot be easily, economically enforced. These are just my personal opinion, you are free to agree or disagree.

Once again I stress the important factor for this sport to grow in popularity to something like soccer or basketball, it needs to be entertaining or else, nobody want to watch it, and nobody want to play it anymore!!!!!

RIPPER
02-18-2011, 11:01 PM
This serve is definately illegal for two reasons, 1. the serve is not fully visible, pretty sure ITTF rules state that the ball must be fully visible from the moment the ball leaves the palm to the moment the ball has made contact with the bat and as contact is not fully seen it makes it hard to see how and what spin is on the ball, resulting in an error from a World no. 2 from a serve that slowly and easily drifts long, if I did that to Ma Long (if I could with the same amount of spin) but legally then the forehand loop would whip past me for a winner. 2. The second reason is simply because the serve is not thrown in a vertical straight line (sure your allowed some variance as you can't throw it perfect everytime) but Xu Xin throws it to himself causing a greater speed towards his bat; increasing friction on the rubber hence obviously increasing the amount of spin. However, there is a bigger picture at hand here. World wide there is a problem with illegal/legal serves and it comes down to the officials not being strict enough and simply letting serves pass as all the other umpires and officials are letting it pass too.

UsakoKirei
02-19-2011, 03:54 PM
is this service illegal too ? at 1:55 and 5:14



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dRja_YLdavE&feature=feedu


what do you think ?

zookato
02-20-2011, 11:30 PM
i dont know if the ball is invisible from timo's position but xu throw it backward instead of vertically upward. this gives him advantage in generating spin according to me.

Everyone throws it back a little. And as long as you throw it up from your palm, its really hard to get any spin.

Yeah, maybe!

Puma
02-24-2011, 07:55 AM
Well...

About the rules, I just wanted to say two things :
First, rules are more guidelines than enforceable laws 'stricto sensu' (it is said that umpires can relax requirements in certain particular cases, so I interpret that as "Rules are submitted to umpires interpretation").
Second, it is always possible to argue (ball is partly visible then people would say it is not when other would say yes but not completely...) especially about serves.

Regional (I mean local level) umpire in my club has explained to me his manner to enforce rules : as long as the player in fault gains no advantage of doing so, he got no penalty point.

About Xu Xin's serve, I can state without hesitation that it is borderline. I would say some are legal other perhaps less... well... as long as Umpries are so afraid to judge such issues at national level, it is difficult to say. I do not cast any vote, neutral option not found.

Last note : I do not know well all top players way of thinking but I would certainly not complain about an opponent's serve. That's Umpires' job, not mine. I do not want to seem complaining or needing such points to achieve victory. My father always said : Only losers complain.

cmetsbeltran15
02-24-2011, 10:24 PM
Even if its not hidden from the opponents point of view, it surely isn't nearly vertical.

penholder's advocate
02-25-2011, 02:28 AM
Dear freinds.

In my point of view, Xuxin tossed backward and tried to increase ball impact. but this is obviously illegal.

kaikaz
02-27-2011, 08:56 PM
Well...

About the rules, I just wanted to say two things :
First, rules are more guidelines than enforceable laws 'stricto sensu' (it is said that umpires can relax requirements in certain particular cases, so I interpret that as "Rules are submitted to umpires interpretation").
Second, it is always possible to argue (ball is partly visible then people would say it is not when other would say yes but not completely...) especially about serves.

Regional (I mean local level) umpire in my club has explained to me his manner to enforce rules : as long as the player in fault gains no advantage of doing so, he got no penalty point.

About Xu Xin's serve, I can state without hesitation that it is borderline. I would say some are legal other perhaps less... well... as long as Umpries are so afraid to judge such issues at national level, it is difficult to say. I do not cast any vote, neutral option not found.

Last note : I do not know well all top players way of thinking but I would certainly not complain about an opponent's serve. That's Umpires' job, not mine. I do not want to seem complaining or needing such points to achieve victory. My father always said : Only losers complain.

If you play vs someone with a very decent serve and he hides it like xu xin, and your returns keep popping up or going in the net because you cant see the ball, you should complain and thats not a loser thing at all. Tabletennis is about making points not by hiding the serve so you cant see what spin is on the ball tbh.

jmillsy2
03-01-2011, 03:38 PM
I think his serves are mostly legal, but sometimes an illegal one finds its way in there. It could be accidental, but I doubt it and the Chinese coaches and players should know better. They are the best in the world by far. Why do they need to use illegal serves too? They know they can beat everyone normally, especially xu xin who's never lost to timo boll, so what's the point?

ttdaily_jek
03-01-2011, 03:53 PM
I think it's illegal. But why is it that timo and ma long are not complaining about this if it is?maybe timo and ma long can see the ball clearly from there position. So they just let the game continue.

kharlitos892
03-06-2011, 01:13 AM
xu xin serve can't be illegal... if it is illegal then why is it that some other players to it as will...? not only xu xin serves like that...

RobinTT91
03-06-2011, 10:56 PM
Dear freinds.

In my point of view, Xuxin tossed backward and tried to increase ball impact. but this is obviously illegal.

I would say exactly the same :)

RPBguy
03-11-2011, 05:20 PM
for the people who's playing right handed its very difficult to see the ball. but for the guys who's left handed they have a clear view on the ball.

Communist101
03-11-2011, 09:55 PM
He can make the serve really spinny that way.

malong1
03-14-2011, 06:20 AM
Here are the Rules directly from the Offical Laws book

2.6.4 From the start of service until it is struck, the ball shall be above the level of the playing surface and behind the server's end line, and it shall not be hidden 2: The Laws of Table Tennis
Page 26 Handbook 2010-2011
from the receiver by the server or his doubles partner or by anything they
wear or carry.



I think before we can determine if Xu Xin's serve is illegal, we need to have this defined: "And it shall not be hidden"

Hidden from what? The opponent? What if the opponent can see it, but an ump can't?

Xu Xin's arm is definitely not hiding anything, it's his body.

I assume that Timo can see the ball even though the camera can't.. but not too sure.

RobinTT91
03-14-2011, 01:08 PM
2.06.02 The server shall then project the ball near vertically upwards, without imparting spin, so that it rises at least 16cm after leaving the palm of the free hand and then falls without touching anything before being struck.

That's not, what Xu Xin was doing here. He throw the ball right into his body and not vertically upwards !

iTT
03-17-2011, 09:01 PM
Well yes it is illegal but:
1) It is up to the umpires to point it out if they think it gives Xu an unfair advantage.
2) I'm sure his opposition would point it out if he thinks it was an illegal serve.

So really there is nothing to complain about unless you hear it from the Umpire or his Opponent.

kaikaz
03-18-2011, 02:56 AM
I think before we can determine if Xu Xin's serve is illegal, we need to have this defined: "And it shall not be hidden"

Hidden from what? The opponent? What if the opponent can see it, but an ump can't?

Xu Xin's arm is definitely not hiding anything, it's his body.

I assume that Timo can see the ball even though the camera can't.. but not too sure.

His arm is maybe not hiding the ball but his body is like you said yourself so he is hiding it? doesnt really matter how you hide it. If I manage to hide the ball with my left foot im sure it will be illegal.

You assume that timo can see the ball, but obviously he cant always see the ball because the ball is popping up very high sometimes.

malong1
03-18-2011, 03:57 AM
I know.. what I meant was, can Xu's serve appear "not hidden" to an umpire, but to his opponent it is hidden?

And the reverse can his serve be "not hidden" to the opponent, but to an umpire it appears hidden?

Also, if Timo can't see it at all times, why doesn't he complain? I sure would, if I'm playing at the Pro level...

UpSideDownCarl
03-18-2011, 02:10 PM
In Quatar, in the match with Timo, in the finals, right at the beginning, a let is called and Xu Xin is warned about his serve. In his second round of serves, he is faulted and a point is taken from him. After that the umpire of the match leaves Xu Xin alone even though he does not really change much about how he is serving. The announcers make a big deal about how he is throwing the ball, which is part of how he is hiding the ball, but, he is hiding the ball. There are places you can see that he is not. And places you can see that he is. And if you look at Timo while he Xu is serving, there are places where he is looking as though he is trying to see around a corner.

The umpire called two of Xu's serves illegal--a warning and a fault--but did not do much when it counted in the match to change the flow of the match. Those serves are illegal on many counts. They are hidden, the toss is not going even close to straight up. He might not even be presenting the ball before the toss some of the time:I think he sometimes cups his fingers around the ball when getting ready to toss and sometimes he has his wrist in between himself and the opponent hiding the ball. And with that, when he is on the far side of the table, if the camera cannot see the ball before he tosses it, then the player definitely cannot because the camera is higher than the player. He does not do that all the time, but sometimes before he tosses, it looks like the serve might already be illegal because of how he is holding the ball and not showing it.

UpSideDownCarl
03-25-2011, 01:44 PM
By the way, I want to go on record saying, despite what I said about his serve above, I love the way Xu Xin plays. I love watching him play.

sidthelefty
03-26-2011, 04:48 PM
i think some of his serves are illegal.but i think its the umpires fault for not calling all the illegal serves being played.nevertheless xu xin is great! :p

perniciousnc
03-30-2011, 10:13 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E491Wc-pguw&feature=related

tell me whose forehand serve here is legal? Whose service has vertical throw? ppl needa use ur brain, if u throw higher, then the curve is less. wt rules do u wanna set? difference between the throwing point n hitting point?

waldner, Michael Maze, Ma Long, Schlagar, Samsonov, Kong Linghui...

STOP BEING IGNORANT, ittf can define legal or not however they want it. it's just a definition, lets say the definition is like the ones wt u guys mentioned. no vertical toss. then everyone has illegal services.

the important thing is not the legal or illegal services
the important thing is tat xuxin has NOT CHEATED <=== tat's the point
n actually he has been cheated by ittf, because ittf only punished xuxin, but not MAZE, SCHLAGAR, SAMSONOV.. ive seen them punishing Ma Long and Zhang jike, dunno if i missed any.

but u see the trend. it's ITTF CHEATING by not enforcing the rule on everyone (being unfair) xuxin has NOT CHEATED just a normal player.

plssss, stopppp being ignorant.... thanks

markog99
03-30-2011, 01:46 PM
Everyone throws it back a little. And as long as you throw it up from your palm, its really hard to get any spin.

but to get the spin you need a lot of wrist,the throw doesnt matter,but when you throw it higher then you get a little more spin.Xu is one of my favourite players but his serve there IS ILLEGAL because the throw is vertical and by the rules that is FORBIDDEN.

scylla24
03-30-2011, 09:32 PM
but to get the spin you need a lot of wrist,the throw doesnt matter,but when you throw it higher then you get a little more spin.Xu is one of my favourite players but his serve there IS ILLEGAL because the throw is vertical and by the rules that is FORBIDDEN.

I don't get what you are saying.... you seem to be saying that it is forbidden because the throw is vertical? If that is what you are saying, then I think you are missing what I was saying, and just don't get what the rule says in general. The rules say the throw should be mostly vertical. There is nothing wrong with throwing it as high as you want.... it is not forbidden, unlike what you have stated. Some times Ma Lin and Ai Fukahara throw it up more than 10 feet in the air. There is nothing wrong with that, and it can help add some spin to the serve, though really I bet the added spin is negligible.

scylla24
03-30-2011, 09:35 PM
I think his serves are mostly legal, but sometimes an illegal one finds its way in there. It could be accidental, but I doubt it and the Chinese coaches and players should know better. They are the best in the world by far. Why do they need to use illegal serves too? They know they can beat everyone normally, especially xu xin who's never lost to timo boll, so what's the point?

The Chinese coaches should know better? I don't agree with that. The Chinese players train the most of any country, and they put a lot of work on their serves, and its why they are able to walk the line between what is legal and what is not the best, and why they have generally the best serves in the world. To follow your argument, they should dumb down their play, just because they already are better, sounds like a pretty flimsy reason to me. You want to be the best player you can be, and that means taking into account everything, and improving every aspect of your game to its utmost, and the serve is no exception.

YosuaYosan
04-08-2011, 03:22 PM
lately ive heard that it is concluded that the serve is illegal.

domacc
04-24-2011, 10:51 PM
At serve ball must be visible all the time. Here is invisible for a moment and it is enough to say it is illegal. :)

YosuaYosan
04-25-2011, 03:51 AM
Still, it is the camera angle we are viewing, not Timo's.
Therefore its still arguable.

cjordan-t64
05-01-2011, 07:47 PM
ye thats true maybe timo can see the ball all the time but the camera have a different angle so its arguable!!!

azlan
05-02-2011, 08:58 AM
I think none of the shots were taken from the receiver's view. From where the camera was, it did look suspect. But if I am playing against him, I can safely say that I would be able to see the ball at all times.

kokott
07-01-2011, 03:00 PM
it´s not legal :)

Rhydian
07-01-2011, 03:14 PM
I think that for Ma Long, the serve appears to be illegal because Ma Long can't see the ball I presume.
But for Timo Boll, I presume that the serve is right because Timo has a good perspective.
My opinion :D

MrRothhaendle
07-07-2011, 07:28 PM
Lefties are happy to see the ball, because of their different perspective
Right handers are disadvantaged

But generally I assume it's an illegal serve

YosuaYosan
07-08-2011, 10:55 AM
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comeglan
08-13-2011, 01:10 AM
true the hand or arm is not obstructing the ball but the body is and the way he has his body turned the ball is past the plane of his body which is VERY ILLEGAL!!!

True, but all the pros serve like that. You see Michael Maze's serve?!

YosuaYosan
08-13-2011, 02:08 AM
@Comeglan
I think he covers the ball with his body, but I don't see how the opponent got too much trouble from it..

moriguchi2
08-15-2011, 08:11 PM
this just shows you how carefree HIGHEST LEVEL INTERNATIONAL umpires are when looking for illegal services. ittf needs to have umpires sit where they can tell if the service is being hidden or not. Many of the chinese services have gotten away will illegal services because no one has told them they are illegal

veloce150
08-17-2011, 07:16 PM
legal ....serve because anyone have a individual serve skill as long as you throw up the ball 6 inch high...or higher...

king_of_spin
08-21-2011, 04:40 PM
Every pro's serve is "illegal" then. Some umpires + rules are so stupid. NO ONE that is a pro player throws the ball 'vertically upwards,' especially the men. Only some girls do that.

Michal_Z
08-21-2011, 05:29 PM
Oki, I asked my friend Martin Gumáň today I made interview that is here (http://www.tabletennisdaily.co.uk/forum/showthread.php?1324)..
I asked him about this topic, he wrote me: "It is completelly illegal! 100%! "
So - when a pro says this, it has some plausibility.. ;)

Der_Echte
09-13-2011, 04:45 PM
Yes, I am new to THIS TT forum, but not new to TT forums.

Someone please tell me why this is the most active topic of the entire forum's history.

It can't be the Bots, they don't post. :)

Dan
09-13-2011, 05:55 PM
Yes, I am new to THIS TT forum, but not new to TT forums.

Someone please tell me why this is the most active topic of the entire forum's history.

It can't be the Bots, they don't post. :)

Yeah good point there. Its because i made a video on youtube of this thread and it was a big hit and all traffic was diverted to this thread. Ifs a shame i dont have that channel anymore :-(

I think the chinese super league thread will soon take over.

Sent from my Samsung Galaxy S2 using tapatalk

kelvin
09-22-2011, 04:45 AM
Em thích XUXIN lẮm !
I like xuxin

rodderz
09-27-2011, 01:17 AM
this just shows you how carefree HIGHEST LEVEL INTERNATIONAL umpires are when looking for illegal services. ittf needs to have umpires sit where they can tell if the service is being hidden or not. Many of the chinese services have gotten away will illegal services because no one has told them they are illegal yes its more to do witha slack attitude with pros that leads to illegal serves from the highest level down, some allowence is made for near vertical but you can't toss it backward /sideways/behind your body and then say its legal, the rule dosn't say because everyone else does it therfore its legal,

Matt Hetherington
09-27-2011, 01:27 AM
Rodney? :P

Mr. RicharD
09-27-2011, 05:45 AM
I've said this before, but this angle of shooting the sport is terrible for detail oriented study. The reason is because telephoto lenses greatly affect distance and skew it tremendously. So perspective and depth are really hard to judge what could be 30 degrees could actually be 45-60 degree angles and what could be 4 feet could actually be 10 feet. So you can see where I'm coming from. Xu Xin imo doesn't have an illegal service because for a lefty or righty as long as they are towards the middle or right side of the table they will see the ball clearly.

And to those of you who think it's unfair for him to serve this way you have to understand that everything he does to a righty player can be done to him. It is COMPLETELY fair for him to serve this way because it adds to the deceptiveness of the serve. He has no more advantage than a righty player because every angle he has a righty would also have.

Also the rule is for the ball only. If he covers the swing of his paddle that is legal; he need only show the ball at all times which I would say is easily seen from the perspective of the opponent.

And for those of you who want to argue about righty's being disadvantaged there is only one thing disadvantaged for a righty and that is that you will have less lefty's to play against and practice against, but either than that there is no more advantage for them in a game than you because you equally have the same angles and tactics that they have. And I've said it many times when standing at the ready against a lefty service stand closer to the middle of the table to allow yourself room to grab the wide forehand service and also to see the paddle swing easier. If you stand toward the left it will be much harder to see the swing and you may be one of those people who complain that the service is illegal when in fact it is technically legal you just didn't see the swing on the ball and that made you misguess the service.

I seriously write novels in this forum, but I hope it gets my points across :S

patrick123456
10-03-2011, 03:51 PM
The camera did not get the ball's image but the opponent can see it........the camera is just too far

sugengz
10-28-2011, 10:20 AM
Xuxin have advantage as Lefty players... as well as disadvantage when receiving serve from Right-handed player...

pingpongnz
11-06-2011, 09:36 PM
Its Illegal I believe. Great thread!

dragonjohn55
11-10-2011, 01:08 AM
People complain about Ma Lin's serve all the time, and yet Dan at least from his personal experience said it was completely visible. but we have him a chance to adjust

NTclub
03-01-2012, 12:48 AM
Xu Xin is legal. ITTF guide book defines that "nearly vertical" is within 45 degree to a vertical line.
This site explains why Xu Xin is legal in detail.
The communication board of NT club
http://sports.geocities.jp/nttabletennisuclub/topics.html

TTFan01
05-16-2012, 09:32 AM
Sure you can't see the ball when he hits it, but you can't blame one person when almost everyone in the world hides they're serve

zachkinjo
05-16-2012, 09:02 PM
Everyone always moves it bit, I guess it's up to the umpire really

xu xin lover
05-19-2012, 08:34 PM
i say legal but i think michael maze his serve is illegal
watch at it very good

Aussieron50
05-20-2012, 08:51 AM
You can also see Ma Long trying to bend around to view around Xu Xui's body I agree I think because Xu Xin is a left handed and Ma Long is standing where a right handed person should be standing makes it difficult to see but Timo Boll is another left hander and is in position to see the serve correctly , its also unusual the way he faces away from the table to start his serve .

trevo1
05-20-2012, 10:28 AM
thanks for posting

iLov4X
07-06-2012, 10:28 AM
when his blade touch the ball his body didnt hide the ball...

Coach Paul
08-25-2012, 11:59 PM
From the point of view of the one taking the video it looks definitely illegal.Xu xin is left handed so at some point the serve will be hidden from view if it is taken on the extreme left hand side. But the fact remains that his opponents are as professional as he is that they could easily call the umpires attention if they feel like being cheated but they did not.

Mr. RicharD
08-26-2012, 03:09 AM
No professional player returning service is going to stand to the extreme left or right against an opposite handed player because that gives the server an advantage. The most common stance is somewhere around the 3/4 table mark and it's always best to make sure you can see the service.

While the rule stands that it should be to the point of view of the player it's very often only the point of view of the umpire/assistant umpire that matters. As we've seen at London Umpires are starting to really grab a hold of illegal serves, but for the most part I saw some pretty bad calls because they view the clause referring to a service being satisfactory to the umpire over the rest of the rule. Most of these umpires in my opinion must have some pretty bad depth perception because they clearly don't understand the rule by definition and its intentions.

However I do believe more umpires need to be strict about these service calls and they should be equal about their calls. If both players are serving illegally then fault or warn both. I'm tired of seeing some umpires fault certain players, but hold a blind eye to others for some reason.

stix4bruce
10-23-2012, 10:31 AM
think its ok

Arne
10-23-2012, 10:55 AM
Illegal, body is obstructing view on the ball

XIII
10-24-2012, 09:48 AM
What a shame! My favorite player in Table Tennis has served illegally? :eek:

SpinQuark
06-12-2013, 11:58 PM
I say it is illegal because the ball is being hidden. There is no justification for serving this way except to attempt to hide the ball. I rather think Ma Long's serve is better and not hidden and he is supposed to be one of the best servers in the world. Perhaps we can see some video of his serve on this thread.

I also think ITTF have a problem with the rules here. There is no umpire in a suitable position to judge or determine whether the ball is hidden from the receiver at the point of contact. The only person in a position to tell is the receiver. However the receiver has no rights to challenge the serve. I also think the server will not always notice if only the occasional serve is fully hidden.

HLDang
06-13-2013, 12:46 AM
Only reason I say it is still a legal serve is that we are not in Ma Long or Timo Boll's position. Pretty sure if it was illegal, they would point it out... All about point of view is all I can say.

alexand312z
06-13-2013, 03:40 PM
I think it's normal and legal serve

Samuraisam 3467
06-14-2013, 08:00 PM
i dont know where i heard it but i remember someone saying you cant hide the ball but can until the contact of the ball so you can throw the ball and cover it but when it makes contact with your bat it has to be visible

mahomedy13
04-20-2014, 01:28 PM
From the opponents position,I think the ball is visible.
However,because the camera is at an angle,it cannot see the ball as Xu's arm is blocking the camera.

Mr. RicharD
04-21-2014, 01:09 PM
It's tough to do a video analysis and photo analysis from this angle. As someone who does livestream footage I know that the angle from the camera can be deceptive. For instance the two standing rules in service are that the service must be visible to the opponent/umpires satisfaction and the hand must exit the space between the ball and net indefinitely upward after the toss.

The problem with this is that once the ball falls below head height it's perfectly legal for you to bend your body and head over the ball when contacting the ball so long as the opponent/umpire is satisfied it does not restrict view from the opponent. This means that to us and the live audience it's perfectly legal to hide the ball from our view. I've seen services many times look illegal on camera, but when I myself an standing behind the opponent I can see the service fine. It's all about perspective. This is also the main reason why players in a righty lefty situation stand more toward the middle of the table to better see the contact of the ball.

However I'd also like to point out that I have no doubt that Xu Xin's service has been illegal but to someone like Ma Long it's pretty hard to deceive one of your practice partners.

Amayzde
04-21-2014, 08:42 PM
The contact point is visible for the players but he is throwing it too much towards him making the serve illegal but most umpires dot really care about this

braithey
04-22-2014, 10:27 AM
Well done Dan, illegal serve no question. Ball is not thrown near vertical and he masks bat/ball contact with his body. We discussed the same issue with Wang Hao some time ago. Both of these points are not called into question by where his opponent stands. This is a deliberate action to gain an unfair advantage in my opinion. Like you I do not blame Xu Xin but I believe it is the responsibility of the officials to ensure the game is played correctly.