Squash3: Three-player squash!

-- prepared by Beau Lebens, game created by Beau Lebens, Daniel Veryard and Daniel Kaars

Table Of Contents

  1. Background
  2. Requirements/Equipment
  3. Rules Of The Game
    1. The "Toss"
    2. Game Order Selection
    3. Gameplay and Scoring
  4. Strategic Considerations
  5. Photos of Squash3 being played


A group of friends and I had a regular squash game on Tuesdays, at lunch time. There was a large pool of people, with varying numbers turning up each week. After a couple months of this, the numbers basically died off and it ended up that there were 3 of us who always turned up, and most of the others didn't.

Obviously, squash is a 2-player game, so having 3 people meant that there was always one person off. This was ok, because it meant that they got a rest, or could be the umpire, or whatever, but we found that since we only had the court for an hour (on lunch-break and all) we didn't get enough games each, and didn't feel like we'd had a decent work-out when our hour was up.

What was born from this, was a wonderful innovation in the otherwise stable world of squash (racketball for you Yanks out there). We put all 3 of us on the court, made up some rules, and then bashed our way through the refining process to create Squash3.


Nothing spectacular, basically just 3 people, decked out to play a game of squash, and a court.

Rules Of The Game

The "Toss"

In a game of Squash3, there are obviously 3 players who will be contendiing for the starting serve during the "toss". Since most rackets are only equipped to provide a "heads/tails" style outcome, an improvisation is required.

2 players are to spin their rackets on the ground, one goes first, then the other. All players need to elect a combination from the following options (each is "unique")

The first racket is "tossed" and then the second. In the case of the fourth alternative being reached (i.e. no player selects the correct outcome) then the rackets are "tossed" again (until someone wins). Thus the first server is selected.

Game Order Selection

The winner of the "toss" gets to decide who will return their ball. This is a strategic decision, as it will effectively choose who that person plays against. The winner (Player 1) chooses who will return their ball (Player 2), and thus Player 3 will return Player 2's ball, and Player 1 will return Player 3's ball (see Figure 1.)

Player 1 --> Player 2 --> Player 3 --> Player 1 --> Player 2 --> Player 3 --> Player 1--> etc.

Figure 1. Game Order

Gameplay and Scoring

Due to the nature of the game, the scoring system has been modified to ensure that the game is fast, strategic and enjoyable. The following points will serve as a good guide to the scoring process:

  1. The player who won the "toss" serves first
  2. Game Order determines who receives the serve (and consecutive plays).
  3. Whoever is supposed to return a ball and fails to do so, loses that point (points are not subtracted).
  4. Whoever hits a winning ball (i.e. the person returning their ball fails to do so) wins a point, whether they served or not.
  5. When a player wins a point, they get the serve as well.
  6. Games are played to 9 points.
  7. A player must win by at least 2 points to finish a game, so a game at the score of 8-5-9 is not complete, since the player on 9 is not 2 points ahead of the player on 8.
  8. In the situation where there is no umpire available, players must keep track of their own score.
  9. The "3rd player" (i.e. the player not hitting or returning a ball at any point) does not count when determining an obstruction call. If the player who hits the ball gets in the way of the player returning, then the point is either played again, or the returning player gets the point (depending on the seriousness of the obstruction). If the 3rd player is in the way of the ball, they must attempt to move, but will not create an obstruction situation if they cannot.

Strategic Considerations

Because this is a new game, there is a need to consider new strategies to win! Here are a few thoughts you might take onto court for your next game of Squash3, to ensure that you come out on top of the pile.

Photos of Squash3 being played

Photos coming soon...

Play safe, play hard, play in threes!

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