The Classic Game


About the Official Rules of the Hardbat Game

The Hardbat Game generally follows the rules established by USATT for the modern game. However, in order to recapture the style of the Classic Game as it was played in the1940s and 1950s, a few separate rules are necessary for the game and the equipment. The Hardbat Committee of the USATT has drawn up these rules. They apply to all Hardbat tournaments sanctioned by the USATT. They do not apply to international competitions (OPENs) unless stated otherwise in the tournament announcements. The rules are listed on the site.

The USCTTA wants to thank Dr. Scott Gordon, as chairman of the Hardbat Committee and as keeper of the web site, where he keeps the Official Rules, for guiding the efforts to establish and publish these rules.

An Overview of the Rules

Paddle: All wood. Symmetrical front-to-back. No carbon, acrylic, etc.

As of December 2005 certain preassembled rackets are also allowed:
  • Halex Competition 1000
  • Martin Kilpatrick Hurricane (5-ply)
  • Martin Kilpatrick Cyclone (3-ply)
  • Stiga Flash (T0001)
  • Stiga Classic 2 Player Set (T0501)
  • Ping Pong "Two Player Set" (T0505)
  • Ping Pong "One Star Racket" (T0005)
  • Sportcraft Trophy 2 Player Set (Model #19020)
Rubber Short pimples. No sponge. Identical rubber on forehand and backhand side, except for color. Color not restricted to red and black. Forehand and backhand side may be same color. Thin glue coat or glue sheet.

As of December 2005 only these rubber sheets are legal for hardbat play: (Updated July 22, 2008)
  • Leyland ("Hock" rubber)
  • Andro Classic
  • Butterfly Orthodox
  • Dunlop Barna Original
  • RITC "Dr Evil"
  • Hallmark MagicPips
  • Alphatool ATP (Reisman
  • TSP Millitall
  • Yasaka A-1-2
  • Yasaka Cobalt
Ball USATT approved 38mm and 40mm balls; 38mm ball preferred. Size selection up to the tournament director.
Service: Ball may not be hidden from opponent. No foot-stamping.
Game: Game to 21 points, change service every 5 points. (Same rules as before switch to 11 point games.)
Player: May switch paddle between games.
Clothing: Long pants, long-sleeved shirts, warmup suits, hats, and visors are permitted.