On the board:

  • Black 1
  • Black 2
  • Joker (Black 3)
  • Black 4
  • Joker (Black 5)

On my rack:

  • Black 3
  • Black 5
  • Yellow 2

The play I want to make:
Swap out my Black 3 and Black 5 for the two Jokers & use them with my Yellow 2 as a run or set.

Is this legal?
Or since I am clearing two jokers, am I required to use two tiles (i.e. one for each joker)?

Sorry for the confusion (I am new at this)...

What my opponents are saying is that I can't use just one tile from my rack with the two jokers I cleared ... I must use two tiles from my rack (one for each joker).

  • Welcome to the site! Can you please clarify what you're asking - is it that you want to know if this sequence is legal? (looks legal to me; do you have a reason to think it's not?) Commented Feb 23, 2020 at 15:27
  • My opponents say that because I am buying two jokers I should be required to use two tiles (i.e. one for each joker)
    – Mike
    Commented Feb 23, 2020 at 15:52
  • Ok, I've edited this information verbatim into your question so it's actually a question. However it sounds like you are using one tile for each joker (Black 3 for one, Black 5 for the other), so when your opponents say this is illegal because you should use "one for each joker", what are they referring to? Note that you can and should edit your own question - people should be able to understand it without also reading this comments section. Commented Feb 23, 2020 at 19:20

2 Answers 2


I would say that it is legal since according to The Original Rummikub® rules a player must:

  • Play the joker on his/her current turn,
  • Make a new set, and
  • Must use at least one tile from his/her rack on that turn (just as on any other turn).

The Joker:
When a player retrieves a joker, the joker will once again have any value or color. However, a player who retrieves a joker must play the joker on his/her current turn to make a new set, and must also use at least one tile from his/her rack on that turn (just as on any other turn).


It may or may not be legal, depending on which rules you're using. Some rulesets require you to match a joker retrieved from the board with two tiles from your hand for the new meld -- prohibiting you from using both jokers from the board together with only one tile from your hand.

See the discussion of "Variations" under https://www.pagat.com/rummy/rummikub.html

A lot of confusion has been caused by the rule from the "Official Rummikub® Book" that says that when a melded joker is replaced it must immediately be used in a "new" meld. What restriction, if any, does this place on the way the retrieved joker has to be used? The rules supplied with various editions of Rummikub® sets have interpreted this rule in different ways.

  1. A still stricter interpretation, which seems to be preferred by many players, is that the joker must be reused in a new meld formed by combining it with two tiles from your hand. I have seen two sets of rules which support this view. The J W Spear & Sons rules (1988) say: "A joker that has been picked up in this manner must be used in that player's same turn, as part of a new set, along with tiles from his rack." The Pressman Toy Corp rules (1987, 1998) say even more explicitly: "A joker that has been replaced must be used in the player's same turn with 2 or more tiles from his rack to make a new set." But even this is ambiguous: it is not clear whether the new set can also contain tiles from the table. Some players allow this. For example: on the table is a set of four 4's and a run of blue 8-7-joker; in your hand you have two blue sixes and a blue three; you may substitute one blue 6 for the joker and make a new blue run of 6-joker-4-3, stealing the blue 4 from the set of 4's. The new run uses two tiles from your hand, along with the joker and one other tile from the table.
  • Thank you for your input ... we have the Pressman edition of the game ... this scenario has only come up once ... we may take a vote to see if we want this to be acceptable or not prior to playing in the future ...
    – Mike
    Commented Feb 23, 2020 at 17:31

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