Summary Of The Rules
The game of Petanque is played between
two teams of 1, 2 or 3 players. In singles or doubles each player uses 3 boules. In triples
each player use’s 2 boules.
The game begins by tossing a coin to decide who should be first to play and so have the right to place the small target ball, the jack.
The first player then traces on the ground a circle large enough to stand in (35cm - 50cm diameter) and throws the jack forward, a distance between 6 and 10 metres and at least 50cm from any obstruction or boundary. If it is thrown outside these distances or too close to the boundary the team has the right to try twice again, otherwise the opposing team have three attempts to do the same.
The first player of the team, who won the toss, or the preceding end, throws the first boule, as near the jack as possible, the players must be careful to keep their feet inside the circle and on the ground until the boule thrown touches the ground.
When the boule has stopped rolling, the first player of the opposing team throws their first boule from the same circle and must try to place their boule nearer to the jack than the opponents.
The act of trying to put one’s boule as near as possible to the jack is called ‘pointing’ they can also try, to knock the opponent’s boule out of contention and this is called ‘shooting'.
If they succeed in placing their boule nearer to the jack, it is then the turn of the opposing team to throw a boule to try to place their boule nearest to the jack. As long as a team has one of their boules nearest to the jack the players of the other team must try to get a better boule by ‘pointing’ or ‘shooting’ their boule.
When they have no more boules to play, it is the turn of the other team to throw their boules. When all the boules have been played, the team who has the boule nearest to the jack counts one point for each boule nearer the jack than his opponent’s nearest boule.
Another ‘end’ then commences in the same way as before, a player of the winning team traces a new circle, throws the jack and starts to play.
The game continues until one team has reached 13 points.
When the jack has been thrown, no obstacle, even the smallest stone, may be removed between the circle and the jack. A boule once played may not be moved unless it has passed over the boundary of the game or touched surrounding dead areas.
It may happen that two boules touch the jack or are at equal distance from it; then the players of each team play alternately until the point is won by one of the two teams.