New Rules from 1st April

Partial amendments to the official international gateball rules have been approved by the World Gateball Union for application from 1 April 2015. The key updates are listed below:

  1. Any ball that passes through gate 1 will be successful. For example, if a ball passes through gate 1 and then goes out, it will score the gate and be considered an outball. Similarly any movement of balls that are touched by a ball passing gate 1 will be valid (although not considered a gate and touch).
  1. Any indirect movement of a ball by a gate or goal pole will be valid.  However, as in the current rules, the following will remain invalid:
  • When stroker or his stick comes into contact with the gate or goal pole.
  • When a ball that has not passed gate 1 hits the gate or goal pole.
  • When a stroked out ball hits gate or goal pole.
  1. A ball moved indirectly by hitting soil or grass with the stick will not be a stroking foul, but will be an invalid move.
  1. The right to a continuous stroke will now arise when the spark is made successfully (removing ‘all the stroker’s actions on sparking are completed’). This removes the current anomaly where if the stroker keeps his foot on the ball he can run out the clock.  The fouls will be adjusted accordingly.
  1. When resetting the balls for sparking, if the stroker touches the other ball when not stepping on his ball, this will become an invalid move not a foul.
  1. The result of any sparking foul will be that the stroker’s ball is will become an outball.
  1. When counting, the referee will now say ‘8 seconds, 9 seconds, 10 seconds’. If the player has not played by then, the referee will call ‘foul’.
  1. The game set call will now only be made by the chief referee near the middle of the court (not with the other officials).

McIlwraith Gateball Challenge

The McIlwraith Gateball Challenge held on 21 and 22 March was, as usual, a real challenge. It was a challenge for organisers and the home team, as several of our best players were not available to play or to assist on the day. The McIlwraith Croquet Club members stepped in and did a great job with the morning and afternoon teas and keeping the kettle on the boil. John Angus, one of the first to play Gateball at McIlwraith, joined us for the competition. There were 9 teams entered but only a few doubles teams.

The weather, as usual, was a challenge. We had a ‘stinking’ hot and humid morning on Saturday and then an incredible storm from 2.00 till 3.00 which darkened the sky, flooded all the courts, washed out play and sent the Gateball balls floating off towards the adjacent park. It left us with a trail of tree debris strewn across the courts which was a challenge to clean up. My car and some others were flooded. We all abandoned the McIlwraith courts which are otherwise known as “the duck pond”.

Play resumed under cloudy skies on Sunday and we soldiered on in challenging rain and drizzle throughout the day. No doubles competition was held. Southport won the McIlwraith Gateball Challenge antique pewter trophy and $120.00 to put a smile on their faces. Eildon came in second and McIlwraith a surprising third after all the drama of the day.