Playing out of turn on an unallowable extra ball

I was TD at a tourney recently. At the beginning of the tourney I made it clear that anyone playing out of turn would be DQ’d. We were using IFPA scoring 7,5,3,1 so the DQ’d player would receive a 1, not a zero. I also made it clear that every attempt had been made to turn off extra balls but that if we had missed any(there were over 30 pins in the tourney) and the player earned an extra ball it must be plunged.

So on an EM, player 2 earns an extra ball and nobody notices. Player 3 plunges that players EB. A few points were scored, but it was a house ball, ie no flips. I was called over to make a ruling. I ruled that the Player 3 is DQ’d. His argument was that since it was a house ball, it was no different from the player 2 plunging his own unallowable EB. The player argued for some time, but I stuck with my ruling since he did in fact play out of turn. Was this the proper ruling?

For what it’s worth I have made the exact same ruling in the past. It doesn’t matter how many points were scores – the player is DQ’ed the moment he or she plunges the ball. It’s a shitty situation because player lights can be hard to spot on older games.


I have a question on this for experienced TDs. Does the player who earned the extra ball have any culpability here? It was their job to plunge the extra ball and they failed to do that.

What if they said to the next player “your turn”. They have now invited someone else to DQ themselves. Does that change the ruling?

I understand that it is each player’s job to make sure they play the correct ball (and maybe it ends there). But it seems odd to punish one player and not the other when it takes two to make this mistake.

1 Like

Correct ruling based on the rules that are written, but mannnn is that a bummer situation.

1 Like

‘Slow clap’ for Steve :smiley:

Agreed. Had you declared that EBs were 100% turned off then an exception could be made. If a warning was issued then it’s on them

1 Like

Very thorough, thank you. :slight_smile:

it’ll prob teach that person it is your responsibility to check what player is up next on the game - some games it’s kinda hard to tell and if a Player light is out then that’s lame. As it’s also lame for a player to say, ‘you’re up’ when it’s their extra ball. I feel like in those instances a warning or something should be issued just so they also check that their ball is over.

Yup we had a player lose their game 7 in state champs this way.

1 Like

I had my say about all of this silliness in the MegaThread ™ that Steve referenced, but let’s take a moment to parse this particular incident presented by Chris. I would ask Chris which instruction was given first,the one about playing out of turn would be a DQ, or the one about any extra balls needed to be plunged away ?? Because the previous player clearly failed to plunge away his awarded EB before the next player proceeded to play out of turn! Gotta enforce all the rules, ya ? And was your exact wording that “if the player earned an extra ball it must be plunged” ?? or did you state that if a player earned an extra ball then they must be the one to plunge it ?? Either way, though, I’m not sure I see why the player needed to be DQ’ed for his “offense”. If you stated that EBs had to be plunged, then he did nothing wrong because he plunged it! Case closed.There was no turn involved here because the players were in between turns since EBs were off limits for the tournament, lol. If you stated that the player who earned the EB had to be the one to plunge it, then I would say give a warning to the previous player for abandoning their incomplete turn and move on.

I would note, too, that its thoroughly unsurprising that when a newcomer to the discussion enters, one of their first instincts is:

Yes, of course both players are equally culpable here. DQing both would be way more fair, but I still contend that there’s no need to ever DQ anyone for this common occurrence.

And THAT is why you hire Lefkoff & Partners LLC to represent you in all malfunction cases :smiley:

Remember this is the man who played out of turn at PAPA and didn’t get DQ’d. I’ve heard he has also turned water into wine.


Adam has never been to Dairy Queen shirts now on sale…

1 Like
1 Like

Ordinarily I’d suggest this is why you want to keep an eye on noobs, but someone in state didn’t tell the next player they earned an EB? Did the DQ person jump on the game before the previous player could plunge his EB, or did EB earner just space out? Was there any alcohol involved?

I would expect a certain level of professionalism at state level. Drink all you want, but please let me know if you earned an EB and I’m about to plunge it. Either way, negative karma points for the EB earner. DQer earned his DQ, but EB earner was an accomplice (at that level).

Correct ruling was made. It’s always the player’s responsibility to ensure they don’t commit a foul. If it’s ever unclear, ask.

It was on an EM, and the person playing hadn’t realized they earned an EB. So they walked off, and player 2 neglected to check that they were actually the active player and plunged and began playing and once points began to be scored realized their error.

Sadly this is extremely common. @PAPA_Doug how many times every Pinburgh do you have to make this ruling?

I should also point out I warned the entire group about this exact scenario not 45 minutes before this occurrence.

1 Like

My understanding from the description by the OP was that the offending player didn’t just plunge the EB, they got up and tried to play it. It just so happened that they never got to flip at the ball. The actions of the player are directly affecting the score of the other player - a plunge isn’t worthless.

The real issue to me here is that the offending player burnt the free skillful plunge the other player had earned. I mean, if this were on T2, this skillshot could have been why or why not jimbo made it to finals.

On the other hand, I’ve always liked it when a tournament says “Hey we turned off all the extras, but IF you get one, play it” - Though, I think its most appropriate for herb or papa qualifying, not finals.

It happened in one of my groups during Pinburgh 2015 when Roy Wils accidentally played an eb on Black Knight someone else earned. It was @bkerins who made that particular ruling, though.

So, yeah, it happens a fair amount. But you have to pay attention. I mean, it’s ok to feel a little bad for someone who makes that mistake, but it’s your own responsibility. There’s really no other way to put it than that.

Trying to rule “entrapment” or something like that gets into player intent, and I’m pretty sure the rules are trying to eliminate interpretation of player intent as much as possible and just sticking to the facts at hand. Someone can correct me if I’m wrong here.