Rule 2.4.7: The covering material should be used as it has been authorised by the ITTF without any physical, chemical or other treatment, changing or modifying playing properties, friction, outlook, colour, structure, surface, etc.
ITTF’s Firm Position as of 1 January 2009
The ITTF will test rackets at all ITTF events. The racket testing protocols will constantly improve in order to be ready to detect all illegal activities. A racket that passes the test today may not pass the test tomorrow because the testing devices are constantly being upgraded. Players should not worry as long as their racket is legal and meets the ITTF criteria.
The ITTF will test for all elements of the ITTF rules relating to rackets and racket coverings such as flatness, consistency, thickness, glossiness, VOC presence, additives
presence (Boosters and Tuners and other additives), stretching of the rubber after approval, etc. The limit allowable for VOC emissions will be fixed at a much lower tolerance level on the detection devices detecting VOCs.
The Enez device will continue to be used to detect VOCs, in addition new devices will be employed to detect much lower levels of VOCs as well as the presence of other compounds found in additives. As of 1 July 2009, the ITTF will conduct ONLY AFTERTHE-MATCH racket tests, with punitive consequences for failed tests. There will be the possibility of a pre-match voluntary test according to the Racket Control procedures.
ADVICE TO PLAYERS:
Do not add anything to you racket.
If you suspect the presence of VOCs in your racket covering air it for 72 hours out of the packaging before using (and remove the protective plastic sheet if any).
Use only water-based glues or VOC-free Pressure Sensitive Adhesive sheets (PSA).
Only clean your racket with water, do not use any other substances.
Adding natural substances such as oils, etc., is illegal and shall be detected.
Do not stretch your rubber; you must use the racket covering as it has been approved by the ITTF and as it comes from the producer.
Be very careful with the thickness level of your racket covering. Make sure you do not exceed 4mm including the layer or layers of glue. You should use a thin layer of glue to avoid exceeding the thickness limit. Make sure the surface is flat and does not bulge.
Sometimes the racket covering is too thick from the factory. It is your responsibility not to use it.