How to play | TamBurello

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“All you need to know about how to play; teams, court size, serving, scoring and formations.”


Each team fields 3 players (3 vs. 3) but can have more players on the bench.

Court dimensions

The court is rectangular in shape (34m x 16m) with a halfway line separating the two sides.


Every point begins with a serve and each team takes it in turns to serve for a game (more about games in ‘Scoring’). The server can begin play from anywhere behind the baseline. The only stipulation is that the ball must go over the opposition’s service line which runs parallel to the halfway line at a distance of 2 metres. If a fault is made on the first service attempt the serving team will lose a point (there is no second serve).

How to score

When comparing to Tennis scoring there is only a single ‘set’ in TamBurello. The set, or match, is a best of 25 meaning the first team to reach 13 games wins the match (if the match reaches 12-all then there is only one advantage played before match point/sudden death). It takes a minimum of four points to win each game and the games are scored, 15, 30, 40 and game point. There are many ways for a team to win a point, for example, the ball bounces twice in the opposition half, or the ball is hit out of the boundaries of play. Should the ball touch the halfway line then this is considered to be out and a point is awarded to the opposition team.


Like with all sports there are many different formations that can be adopted, typically teams use one of two different formations, a triangle or a pivot formation. The triangle formation is made up of a centre player (who is closer to the base line) and two side players (who are much more attacking focused by being closer to the opposition/centre line). The centre player’s objective is to find the oppositions weaknesses and build the points, which in turn creates opportunities for the two side players to attack. In comparison, the pivot formation is geared towards giving each player ownership of their 1/3rd of the court, meaning that they need to cover both the front and back. To effectively cover the court teams need to work together and pivot appropriately to where the ball has been hit.

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