Squash Glossary

How to Talk Squash

Two men playing squash
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Here are the most common terms and phrases you need to know in order to clearly communicate with other squash players:

american scoring - also called point-a-rally scoring, in which both the server and the receiver can score a point during a rally.

boast - a shot hit to the near sidewall before it hits the front wall.

carry - a ball that is not hit cleanly on the racquet; it touches the strings throughout the stroke.

counterdrop - a drop shot hit off of a preceding drop shot. Also called a re-drop.

crosscourt - a ball that goes to the opposite side of the court after striking the front wall.

doublehit - a ball that contacts the strings more than once during a stroke. Somewhat similar to a carry.

drive - a typical groundstroke, usually hit for good length.

drop - a shot hit short, usually not too high above the tin.

game - usually won by the first player to earn 9 points. Sometimes games are to 11 or 15 points, depending on the scoring system.

get - a difficult retrieval of an opponent's shot. Often heard in the complimentary phrase 'nice get.'

hot ball - when the squash ball has physically warmed up from being struck. It is bouncier in this state.

international scoring - only the server can score points in this system. Games are usually to 9 points.

kill - a hard-hit shot that ends a point definitively.

length - refers to hitting the ball into the back portion of the court so as to move the opponent back. That is good length.

let - a determination to replay a point in its entirety.

lob - a ball hit so that it travels high in the air after hitting the front wall.

nick - a ball that hits the crack between the floor and a wall once it bounces off the front wall. This is usually a winner.

no let - a determination that no obstruction or interference has occurred, and that a point should not be replayed.

rail - a ball hit for good length along a side wall.

re-drop - a drop shot hit off of a preceding drop shot. Also called a counterdrop.

return - this is the shot that comes after the serve. Also called a serve return.

reverse - a ball hit into the opposite side wall before it reaches the front wall.

serve - this shot begins every squash point.

service box - a square area marked on the court floor. It defines where the server must stand while serving.

short line - a line crossing the full width of the court floor. It marks the front of the service boxes.

stroke - a determination that interference has occurred and warrants awarding the rally to the interfered player.

the T - an area on the floor of the court where the short line intersects with the halfcourt line. It's often a good location from which a player can reach the opponent's next shot.

the tin - a barrier across the lower part of the front wall. All shots must contact the front wall above this barrier to be good.

volley - a ball struck in the air, before it bounces on the floor.