Squash3: Three-player squash!
-- prepared by Beau Lebens,
game created by Beau Lebens, Daniel
Veryard and Daniel Kaars
Table Of Contents
- Rules Of The Game
- The "Toss"
- Game Order Selection
- Gameplay and Scoring
- Strategic Considerations
- 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.
- 1 x squash court
- 3 x "open-minded" squash players
- 3 x rackets
- 1 x squash ball (pro-series of course)
Rules Of The Game
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
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
- Up - Up
- Down - Down
- Up - Down
- Down - Up
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:
- The player who won the "toss" serves first
- Game Order determines who receives the serve (and
- Whoever is supposed to return a ball and fails to do so, loses
that point (points are not subtracted).
- Whoever hits a winning ball (i.e. the person returning their ball fails
to do so) wins a point, whether they served or not.
- When a player wins a point, they get the serve as well.
- Games are played to 9 points.
- 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.
- In the situation where there is no umpire available, players must keep track
of their own score.
- 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.
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.
- If you win the toss, the obvious choice for the person to return your ball
is the best player, this way, you won't have to return a difficult ball played
by them. The problem with this strategy, is that it obviously makes it harder
for you to hit "a winner". If you select the "weaker"player
as the person to return your ball, then you should have a better chance of
hitting a winner each time. Obviously this arrangement will mean that you
also have to return the ball of the "stronger" player, but if you
can do that, then this may be a better option.
- "Collusion" on the court can make an interesting game. To win
any point, a person needs to hit a ball, and have the next person fail to
return it. To "break" a winning cycle, the other 2 players on court
may decide that one of them will fail to return the other's ball, thus giving
one of them a point, and the serve, and at the same time "breaking the
serve" of the other player.
- Due to the obstruction rules, the 3rd player is a good place to put the
ball :) Since there can be no obstruction call if the 3rd player obstructs
the ball (unelss it is intentional), it is a good strategy to hit the ball
towards where they are, this is a simple case of returning the ball to where
it came from before you hit it. That way, the 3rd player will hopefully confuse
the other player, who is supposed to be returning the ball, and you may win
Photos of Squash3 being played
Photos coming soon...
Play safe, play hard, play in threes!
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