I prefer self-reffed games, without the involvement of referees. What about you? I also think that this builds character, and could in the long run improve any Olympic chances? I think a wonderful component of the wanna-be Olympic sport Ultimate Frisbee, is that games are reffed by the players themselves - and no umpire.
Personally I like reffed games for the purpose of having another set of eyes to make sure a call is correct. I have stood on the court and every person has seen a ball differently meaning one out by a mile, one barely in, one barely out, one no dought it was in. a ball moving quickly while you are trying to function at a high level can be miss seen. now that said I play all the time without a ref and the majority of people agree on calls etc. final thought I do not think ref or not gives any more or less hope for pickleball in the olympics as every Olympic sport has a ref or judge in order to promote the most fairness as judges come from different countries etc. in fact I believe the opposite that withought a ref it will never make the Olympics.
Referees are a very important piece to bringing validity and respect to our growing sport. I have played from level 3.5 (in the beginning) all the way up to pro level. At the pro level referees are a very important piece to the game. The stakes are high- money on the line, ratings and rankings are affected by wins and losses, people are competitive and ramped up to win. The points are fast, the skill level is high and there is a lot going on with stacking etc. Having someone there to run the show, mediate and pay attention to the details like foot faults at kitchen is imperative! A kitchen fault or serving or receiving in the wrong place can totally change the momentum of a game. We can’t really see or calls a lot of things effectively when we are in the heat of the battle.
In a more relaxed local non sanctioned tournament I don’t see the need for a ref. But for anything that could effect your rating I think that referees are needed.
I prefer playing with refs especially in high stakes matches. It is really difficult to keep up with everything happening in a match. And as Suzee said above, it adds validity to the match by having another set of eyes with line calls and kitchen faults.
Another thing is personally, I tend to perform better with refs and line judges. I feel that i have a few less things to worry about and I can focus more in making my shots and won’t have to worry about calls and the score.