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USA Pickleball Upholds De-Certification of JOOLA Gen 3 Paddles: A Setback for PPA and MLP Events

USA Pickleball upholds de-certification of JOOLA Gen 3 paddles

In a recent development surrounding the JOOLA Gen 3 paddle saga, USA Pickleball (USAP) has made an announcement that the submitted paddles did not meet the approved equipment standards. As a result, these paddles will not be included in the Approved Paddles List, and their absence is set to continue for the foreseeable future.

The removal of the JOOLA Gen 3 paddles from the list occurred on May 15, following JOOLA’s acknowledgment that they had mistakenly submitted the wrong paddles for certification back in November. This unfortunate turn of events means that players and enthusiasts will have to wait longer before these paddles can make a comeback.

The repercussions of this decision extend beyond mere equipment standards. It also has significant implications for upcoming events organized by the Professional Pickleball Association (PPA) and Major League Pickleball (MLP). In anticipation of the recent CIBC Texas Open powered by TIXR, the PPA took a proactive stance and banned the use of the JOOLA Gen 3 paddles for the event.

In an official statement, the PPA explained that the paddles failed to meet the necessary requirements set by USAP, and they are working closely with the United Pickleball Association (UPA) to establish improved processes to avoid such issues in the future. The statement also emphasized the importance of paddles being listed on USAP and passing the PPA’s testing protocols conducted by the independent laboratory, Pickle Pro Labs (PPL).

According to the PPA’s statement, being on the Approved Paddle List is currently a prerequisite for participation in United Pickleball Association events. If this requirement remains in place while the UPA develops its own set of paddle testing regulations, it means that the JOOLA Gen 3 paddles will not be available for use at PPA and MLP events.

With the unavailability of the newest JOOLA paddles in Texas, players sponsored by JOOLA had to resort to using either the Gen 2 models of their preferred paddles or versions of the paddles that were approved in September and bear similarities to the Gen 3s. These alternatives allowed the players to continue their participation in the CIBC Texas Open powered by TIXR.

Looking ahead, it seems that the players will have to rely on these substitute paddles for the upcoming Veolia Sacramento Open presented by Best Day Brewing and the following MLP D.C. event. While it may be disappointing for JOOLA and its signed players, they are determined to make the most of the situation and showcase their skills using the available equipment.

The de-certification of the JOOLA Gen 3 paddles serves as a reminder of the importance of adhering to equipment standards in the world of pickleball. It highlights the meticulous testing and certification processes that ensure fairness and maintain the integrity of the game. As players and manufacturers continue to innovate and introduce new paddle designs, it is crucial that they meet the necessary criteria to ensure a level playing field for all participants.

While the absence of the JOOLA Gen 3 paddles may be a setback for PPA and MLP events, it also presents an opportunity for other paddle manufacturers to step up and showcase their products. As the pickleball community eagerly awaits the resolution of this issue, it is a testament to the sport’s resilience and the dedication of its players and organizations to uphold the highest standards.

In conclusion, the de-certification of the JOOLA Gen 3 paddles by USA Pickleball has had a significant impact on the PPA and MLP events, leading to the exclusion of these paddles from the Approved Paddles List. However, the players and organizations involved are adapting to the situation and continuing to participate using alternative approved paddles. As the pickleball community navigates this temporary setback, it reaffirms the commitment to fair play and the pursuit of excellence in the sport.

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Written by Billy Pickles

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