The Play. The game is played by one (singles) or two (doubles) players on a side. The winner of the toss has the choice of serving, receiving, or defending either court. The loser of the toss has the choice of the remaining options.
The game is started similarly to tennis, the service being from the right half-court into the half-court diagonally opposite.
The service, in singles, is always made from the right half-court when the server’s score is zero or even, and from the left half-court when his score is odd.
In doubles, the side beginning a game has only one out in its first service but in all subsequent half-innings each partner has an out. The first service of each inning is always made from the right court, the server alternating courts (right to left and left to right) until a handout is declared. The partner then serves from the court in which he was at the time of the out and alternates as above until another out has been declared.
On the receiving side there is no alternating of courts on the service, no player accepting two consecutive services.
The server and receiver must stand within their respective courts, both feet being in contact with the ground, until the bird is struck by the server. After the service is delivered, players may take any positions on their respective sides of the net.
One trial only is allowed on the serve and it must be made by an underhand stroke. If the receiving side successfully returns the bird before it touches the ground, then it is to be returned by the serving side, and so on, until a fault is made. If the fault is made by the servers an out is declared. If the receivers make a fault it counts as an ace, or point, for the serving side.
For women’s singles a game is eleven points; otherwise, the game is fifteen or twenty-one points, as agreed upon before play begins.