League Rules

1 Match Scheduling

1.1 Arranging Matches

a) The home team captain will contact the opposing captain (and deputy if known) at least 2 weeks prior to the proposed match date. Two dates must be offered from the scheduled match week. Only Monday to Thursday may be offered initially. Fridays can be used only if no other dates are mutually acceptable and both captains agree. The visiting captain must accept or reject either of the proposed dates by the end of the following day.

b) If the visiting captain rejects both of the proposed dates, then the home team captain has the option of either claiming a default victory against the visiting team or offering a postponement.

c) If the visiting captain accepts one of the dates, then the match should be played as scheduled. However, if having agreed a scheduled date, either one of the team captains has to postpone the match, then the other team captain will have the option of either claiming a default victory against the other team or offering a postponement.

d) Any postponements must be communicated to the Division Director by email, with the opposing captain copied in.

e) The home team will cover the full cost of the match, including table hire and refreshments (snacks/sandwiches).

1.2 Postponements

a) Teams are only allowed to have 2 outstanding ‘postponed’ matches on their record at any one time.

b) If teams have more than 2 outstanding matches, then any further postponed match will not be permitted and that match will be recorded as a defaulted match where a team exceeds 2 outstanding matches. If both teams would exceed 2 outstanding matches, then the match will be recorded as defaulted on both sides.

c) If a postponement is agreed, both the home team and visiting team must inform the relevant Division Director.

d) An outstanding match will be counted against each team, irrespective of whether they are the team who required the postponement.

e) If a postponement is agreed, then the postponed match must be scheduled and played within one month of the end of the week it was scheduled to be played.

f) The home team must offer the visiting team a further 2 dates, at least 2 weeks prior to the proposed match date and should copy in the relevant division director into the email.

g) If the home team does not adhere to this, they will default the match. If the home team does adhere to this, then the visiting captain must accept either of the proposed dates by the end of the following day. If the visiting team does not accept one of the proposed dates, then they will default the match.

h) All matches must be completed within one month of the final league match week of the season.

1.3 Communications

a) The league requires that all team captains have in place a procedure to ensure that emails are responded to in a timely manner. If at any stage, a team has not responded to emails by the relevant deadline, the other team should contact the Division Director and Chair who will intervene.

b) If a team does not respond to emails, it is within the Committee’s discretion to call a default victory against that team for failure to adhere to the rules and associated deadlines.

1.4 Team Knockouts

a) Arranging team knockouts follows exactly the same rules as arranging matches above. The team listed first becomes the Home Team.

2 Matchday

2.1 Match start

a) At least 4 team players are expected to arrive at the venue by 6.30pm, 7.00pm at the latest. Failure to do so can result in the opposition claiming the match.

b) If any player is not at the venue prior to their designated frame being called to play, the opposing team may claim that frame.

c) Ordinarily, matches should be played with at least 6 players on each team. However, a team may field as few as 4 players for a match if it isn’t possible to field a full team. When fewer than 6 are playing, the opposition captain nominates players to fill in the gaps where the missing players would have played. Each player on the team may only play one extra frame in this manner. Therefore, if there are 4 players in the team, two will play an extra singles, and the remaining doubles is played by the final two players. If there are 5 on the team, then just 3 would play an extra frame. Teams will incur a 1 point penalty for fielding only 4 players (section 2.5), and individual player stats are not recorded for additional frames played.

d) Substitute players can be used in the Reverse Singles & Doubles, but they must be declared to the opposing captain before that round of matches commences.

2.2 Team sheets

a) Before the start of the match, the players for the first set of 6 singles are declared as follows:

  • The home team captain will write down their players to play in the first six singles frames, plus any substitutes that may appear in the match. If they have fewer than 6 players, they will leave position 6 empty on the scoresheet first, followed by 5 if required.
  • Then the away team captain will complete the same task.
  • Next, the home team captain will pick the players from the away team to complete any gaps in the sheet due to them being short on players.
  • Finally the away team captain does the same.

b) Before starting the second round of six singles frames, the procedure from 2.2 (a) is repeated. As per rule 2.3 (d) this does not need to wait for the completion of all of the first six frames.

c) On completion of all singles frames, the home team writes down their doubles pairings, followed by the away team captain. If either team is short on players, they leave gaps in the third pairing. Finally, the home team nominates player(s) from the away team to make up the final doubles pairing, followed by the away team completing the home teams doubles pairings.

d) Any substitutions for subsequent sections (reverse singles and doubles) to be notified to the opposing captain prior to the start of that section.

e) Scores will only be accepted on the officially provided scoresheets and full names must be provided at least once so it is clear to the Division Directors which team members are participating.

2.3 Match play

a) All frames are played to World Rules.

b) The home team will referee one table, the away team will referee the second.

c) A lag is carried out at the start of every frame to determine which player will break.

d) Frames are played in order, as specified on the team sheet, on the first available table.

2.4 Doubles

a) Referees may introduce a shot clock where it is deemed that players are taking excessive time during visits; at the request of any participant of the frame. If the shot clock is used, pairings will be given one minute to confer followed by twenty seconds to play the shot. The referee will call the end the one minute conferring time. If the shot is not completed within one minute twenty seconds, the referee will award a standard foul to the opposing team.

b) Referees may award standard fouls where players are clearly and repeatedly attempting to influence the next shot following their visit. Players should step away from the table after their shots and not breach coaching rules.

2.5 Result scoring

a) In calculating the final score, each frame is worth one, resulting in the match being best of fifteen.

b) Completed scoresheets submitted via the website by the winning team captain to the appropriate division director (copied to the other captain) by the end of the following week or a zero score will be entered.

c) Points are allocated to teams based on the following:

  1. Win (13+ frames) – 5 points.
  2. Win (10 to 12 frames) – 4 points.
  3. Win (8 or 9 frames) – 3 points.
  4. Loss by 1 frames (i.e. score of 7-8) – 1 point.
  5. Default – 4 points awarded to the non-defaulting team as a 10-0 win, with 2 points deducted from the defaulting team.
  6. Any team playing with 4 players will incur a one point penalty in addition to, and regardless of the result.

3 League placements

3.1 Singles rankings

a) To qualify for the league averages trophies, a player must have participated in at least 75% of the matches played.

b) Singles rankings will be based on total singles frames won in league play. (Doubles frames in league matches and singles frames in Team KO matches are not included.)

c) Ties for singles rankings will be broken by percentage of frames won.

3.2 Team rankings

a) League positions are determined by the total number of points won from matches in league play only.

b) In a situation where two or more teams have scored the same number of points at the end of the season, the position where the team will finish will be determined, in order, by:

  1. Number of matches won
  2. Total number of frames won
  3. One off play-off match to league format

3.3 Relegation and promotion

a) At the end of a season with two divisions, the 2 teams with the lowest number of points in the 1st division will be relegated.

b) At the end of a season, the 2 teams with the highest placement in the 2nd division will be promoted.

c) If 1 team withdraws from division 1 during the course of the season, they will be given a zero score (see section 4.2) and count as 1 of the 2 teams to be relegated.

d) Prior to the start of the new season, the Committee has the discretion to promote additional teams from division 2 to prevent imbalance.

4 Registering teams

4.1 Registration

a) Teams must register their interest to take part in a season prior to the start of that season.

b) Invoices for league fees will be sent out in due course after the start of the season. These should be paid promptly otherwise the committee may eject the team from the league.

4.2 Withdrawal

a) Where a team withdraws from the league during the season, they should do this by written notice to the League Chair and Division Director.

b) Regarding the results of matches that have been completed by the withdrawing team, the committee will treat the removal of those results on a case-by-case basis to ensure the fairest outcome. As a general rule:

  • Where a team has yet to play every other team in the division then all match results involving the withdrawn team will be deleted; and the incomplete fixtures removed from schedules.
  • Where a team has managed to play every other team at least once in the division, the results from the first time each team was played will stand. Any results from the teams playing a second time will be deleted, and any incomplete fixtures removed from schedules.

5 Registering players

5.1 Registration

a) Players are registered by providing full names to the committee. Ideally this is via the online form but emails/texts are also permissible.

b) All players a team wishes to play for their team during a season must be registered with the league in advance of the player participating in their first match.

c) If a team plays an unregistered player in a match, any frames that player is involved in (singles and doubles) will be awarded to the opposing team.

d) A player once registered for one team is not allowed to play for another team during that season, except in the case where its team withdraws and its results are disregarded.

6 Committee Rulings

6.1 Committee Discretion

a) The league rules are designed to provide a clear and comprehensive framework and it is also expected that teams will play to the spirit of the game. Where the Committee consider that this has not been done, or in the event that there is no defined rule on a specific matter raised, the Committee will aim to consider all circumstances and apply consistency and fairness for all.

Ultimately, in order to facilitate matters, such decisions are at the Committee’s discretion and are final.