THE OFFICIAL INTERNATIONAL RULES OF THE GAME OF PETANQUE
Article 1 – Composition of Teams
Pétanque is a sport in which:
– 3 players play against 3 players (triples) It can also be played by:
– 2 players against 2 players (doubles)
– 1 player against 1 player (singles)
In triples each player uses two boules.
In doubles and in singles each player uses three boules.
No other version of the game is allowed.
Article 2a – Characteristics of Approved Boules
Pétanque is played with boules which are approved by the F.I.P.J.P. and which conform to the following criteria:
(i) To be made of metal.
(ii) To have a diameter between 7.05cm (minimum) and 8cm (maximum).
(iii) To have a weight between 650 grams (minimum) and 800 grams (ma ximum). The trade mark of the manufacturer and the weight must be imprinted on the boules and must always be legible.
(iv) They must not be weighted or sand filled. As a general rule, the boules must not be tampered with in any way, nor altered or modified after machining by the approved manufacturer.
Re-tempering the boules in order to modify the hardness applied by the manufacturer is forbidden.
Nevertheless, the player’s name and forename or initials may be engraved on them, as well as various logos, initials and acronyms in accordance with the manufacturer’s specification
Article 2b – Penalties for Non-conforming Boules
A player guilty of breaking the above condition (iv) is immediately disqualified from the competition together with his or her team mate/s.
For boules said to be “tampered with” or “re-tempered” – the player risks withdrawal of his or her licence for a period as defined in the Code of Discipline, together with any other penalties imposed by his or her Association’s Disciplinary Committee.
If the boules have been borrowed and the owner is identified, the latter will be suspended for a period as determined by the Disciplinary Committee of the guilty player’s Association.
If a boule is not “tampered with” but worn, or defective in manufacture and is not passed by the controlling body or does not comply with the conditions in paragraphs (i), (ii) and (iii) above, the player must change it. He or she may also change the complete set.
Complaints relating to (i), (ii) or (iii) made by either team must be made before the game starts. All players should therefore ensure that their boules, and those of their opponents, comply with the above conditions.
Complaints relating to (iv) may be made between two ends at any time during the game. However, from the third end onwards, if a complaint made about the boules of an opponent is proved to be unfounded, the team or the player complaining will be penalised 3 points which will be added to the opponents score.
Where boules have had to be opened, the complainant becomes responsible. Notably, he or she will be made to reimburse the owner or replace the boules if they are found to be in order. Nevertheless under no circumstances can he or she be asked to pay damages or interest.
The Umpire or the Jury may, at any time, examine the boules of any player.
Article 2c – Approved Jacks
Jacks are made of wood, or of synthetic material which carry the maker’s mark and have secured confirmation by the F.I.P.J.P. that they comply exactly with the relevant specification.
Their diameter must be between 25mm (minimum) and 35mm (maximum).
Jacks may be painted any colour.
Article 3 – Licences
A licence must comply with the Administrative Rules of the F.I.P.J.P. and, in particular, it must bear a recent stamped photograph and the signature of the owner.
Before the start of a competition, each player must produce his or her licence. He or she must also produce it upon request by the Umpire, or by an opponent, unless it has been retained at registration.
Article 4 – Changing a Jack or Boule
It is forbidden for players to change a jack or boule during a game, except in the following cases:
(i) It cannot be found after a search time limited to 5 minutes.
(ii) It breaks, in which case the largest piece marks the position. If there are boules yet to be played it is immediately replaced, after measuring if necessary, by a boule or jack of diameter identical or similar to the broken one. From the following end, the player concerned may use a complete new set.
Article 5 – Terrain Regulations
The game of Pétanque is played on any ground. However, by a decision of the organising committee or the Umpire, the teams may be asked to play on a marked terrain. In this case, for National Championships and International Competitions, the minimum dimensions must be 4m wide and 15m long.
For other competitions the Associations may allow variations down to 12m x 3m.
If the terrain is surrounded by solid barriers these must be a minimum of 30 cm outside the dead ball line. The dead ball line will encircle the exterior of the terrain at a maximum distance of 4 metres.
These arrangements also apply to the area on which the finals are played.
The game is played up to 13 points, though leagues and qualifying heats may be played to 11 points.