See also our FAQs page.
Ask the Umpire Facebook group by International Umpire Mike Pegg
** rules interpretations (pre-2016 rules) | pdf | docx |
Petanque New Zealand
** rules and interpretations (2019-01) | pdf | PNZ website |
** See also: PNZ umpire training manual (2014) | pdf |
Petanque Federation of Australia
** documents page | website |
** There are a number of useful documents on the CEP’s Umpiring page, especially—
**** CEP Umpiring Guide | our archived copy (v1.3) |
**** CEP Umpiring Q&A | our archived copy (2020) |
** rules interpretations | HTML |
Welsh Petanque Association
** rules interpretation page | website |
** Introduction to the rules (2015) | Powerpoint |
** Code d’arbitrage | pdf |
** French umpires web page
In French documents, CNA stands for Commission Nationale d’Arbitrage (the French federation’s umpires committee). MAJ is mise à jour, “revision date”.
What is the ruling on leveling the piste before throwing?
It depends on what you’re asking about.
For grooming the terrain between ends, see
For the various rules about fixing holes see
/faqs/#filling_a_hole_by_hand and the following questions.
I have been told that you can’t put unused boules on the terrain. That is— if you are in the circle and have two unused boules, you can’t put them on the ground.
Jules says see this.
Hello, if a player receives an orange card and does not have a ball in her hand, will her teammates lose the ball?
No. The penalty in Article 35 is “Disqualification of the boule played or to be played, which is officially marked by an umpire presenting an orange card to the player at fault.” In the next mene (round, end) the umpire will disqualify one of the offending player’s boules before she plays it.
I’m always happy to answer questions here, but a better place to ask questions is on the Facebook “Petanque Q and A” (Question and Answer) forum.
If it is the last set (end, round, mene) and the umpire gives a player an orange card, and the player has no unplayed boules, and the ball that was thrown has gone out, what does he do here?
This is not a question about the rules of the game. It is an “umpire question” – a question about what an umpire will or should do in this situation. It is also a frequently-asked-question on “Ask the Umpire”. The question is usually put this way — “How long does a yellow card (or the penalty record of a player) last? For the game? For the entire competition?”
In most cases, the game is over and the umpire will do nothing more. That is, the umpire will wipe clean every player’s penalty record at the end of the game. HOWEVER… If the game is being held as part of a competition, an umpire may choose to keep a player’s penalty record until the end of the qualifying rounds of the competition, or indeed until the end of the entire competition. In that case, the umpire may disqualify the offending player’s first boule in the next game of the competition. But I think that that is quite rare.
I think that if you went to “Ask the Umpire” and asked the same question, Mike would probably say that it is entirely up to the umpire to do whatever he thinks appropriate.
Regarding the yellow and orange card laws of May 2017—
I stated this in my country, but they say
— why is there no such law on the global website, and
— you must have a reliable source.
Is there a site or place that can be named as a reliable source so that they can accept it? My reference is your good site
Go to our rules page,
The third link on that page is for English rules at FIPJP web site
Click on that link. It will take you to the FIPJP web site.
On the menu bar at the top, click on “RULES AND REGULATIONS” and then on “Petanque Rules”
Look at Article 35.
If you would prefer the French version of the rules, that is also available on the FIPJP web site. Note that the most recent version of the rules was adopted in 2020, not 2017.
By the way, what is your country?
You might find it convenient to carry a paper copy of the rules with you. If so, this is a handy way to do it.
Hello I read during the refereeing deadline that a time error is shown to all players once, and for the second time, the offending player gets an orange card. What happens to the time error for the second time?
For several years after this rule was introduced in 2016, the general agreement was that there is no “collective orange card”, so that a second violation of the 1-minute rule would cause the umpire to give an orange card only to the offending player. Recently, however, there seems to be a change, and some umpires at least have been giving a collective orange card (disqualifying a boule for each player on the team) for a second violation of the 1-minute rule. For more information, see
You did not understand what I meant In the three-person game, if a player makes a time-lapse error, all team members get a card. What happens if it happens again?
I think that I did understand your question. The answer is this—
— The first time that any player on the team exceeds the 1-minute time-limit, the umpire will give each player on the team a warning (a yellow card).
— The second time that it happens, many (but perhaps not all) umpires will disqualify one boule for each player (3 boules in all) and show each player on the team an orange card.
Again, for a more complete discussion of this question, see