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View Full Version : Tennis League Idea - Opinions?


mrcalon
07-26-2009, 10:17 PM
I've got an idea in mind for a tennis match making system. The system would work under the same premise as the match making system of online chess servers. It will utilize the ELO scoring system, and a website will be maintained for it.

The system would work as follows:
-Players start with X number of rating points.
-To find a match, players will post an online "seek" on a website for all other members to see, which is basically an open invitation to the population for a match. The seek will include information such as date/time, general area/specific tennis court, opponent rating range being sought
-Interested opponents will respond to the seek, and the original seeker then confirms the match with a chosen repondent. Upon completion of the match, the winner reports the score. Winner's rating points increase, loser's points will decrease.

I think this system is useful because it addresses a couple problems with general ladders and "hitlists"
-removes the burden/shyness factor of asking specific players for matches
-addresses inherent need of tennis players to be rated and compared with others. Players will be motivated to seek and respond to matches in order to improve their ratings. Higher level players won't mind playing weaker players because it will allow them to hoard points.

In addition such a system is flexible, even moreso than flex leagues because no real commitment is required from players. They basically seek and respond at their convenience.

That's a general overview. Do you folks think such an idea would fly? I'm thinking of suggesting it to the local tennis body which already has an ELO rating in place and a fairly large membership of players.

Cindysphinx
07-27-2009, 04:17 AM
I think it is a sound idea.

One suggestion/question: Will there be a way for members to see the "seek" without visiting the site?

One potential problem would be if people only check in on the site every few days. By the time anyone sees a particular "seek," the time may have passed. But if everyone receives an e-mail of every "seek," you have a better chance of getting a match scheduled. If people post "seeks" and nothing ever comes of it, I imagine the site would tank quickly.

Personally, I have never had success with tennis ladders because most people want to play nights/weekends, and these are the least convenient times for me.

conditionZero
07-27-2009, 04:38 AM
Someone once posted a link on here to a website that matched up tennis players. I can't remember what it was or where, but it was well established in a particular area. Basically, you set the time and place and then send out a "challenge". You can challenge one or a hundred (or more) people, and once someone accepts it the challenge is cancelled. The challenges, I believe, are send via email. I don't believe there is any scoring system, but it would not be difficult to incorporate one.

I definitely wish we had a system like that in my area. Does anyone know what website I'm talking about?

zebano
07-27-2009, 06:42 AM
How will you address the issue of margin of victory? Chess has three results: win, loss, draw and while tennis really only has win & loss, will you be treating a double bagel the same as a 6-4; 4-6; 6-4 hard fought match between equally skilled opponents?

Wizard of id
07-27-2009, 07:23 AM
How will you address the issue of margin of victory? Chess has three results: win, loss, draw and while tennis really only has win & loss, will you be treating a double bagel the same as a 6-4; 4-6; 6-4 hard fought match between equally skilled opponents?

The least of the OP's problems. Elo-type ratings systems can easily take margins of victory into account. There are many such systems for many sports and games out there, and he can learn a lot of lessons from them.

It seems like a sound idea, which will probably need some fine-tuning as it goes along to keep people happy and ensure people get as many competitive games they want. Good luck with getting the site in place!

conditionZero
07-27-2009, 07:41 AM
In what area will you be trying this?

mrcalon
07-27-2009, 08:07 AM
Thanks for the feedback folks. I'll be sending the suggestion to my area's equivalent of the USTA. They run all the tournaments (4.0-Open) in the region, and already have a database of all competitive players and ELO ratings compiled and posted on their website. The database is updated based on tournament results. I'm not sure yet about any of the details (e.g. possible text messaging, ELO permutations etc..). For now I'm hoping that they at least consider the idea because they're in the best position to implement it with their existing infrastructure. More interested in getting matches than making $ off the idea.

If they don't do it I may start it from scratch. Might be hard to get it going though because I don't exactly live in a tennis hotbed :)

mrcalon
07-27-2009, 08:08 AM
In what area will you be trying this?

Western Canada

UnforcedError
07-27-2009, 08:46 AM
I've always like the idea of an ELO type rating system for tennis. People might even take more pride in their rating instead of working hard to maintain a specific NTRP so they can play in a league.

gameboy
07-28-2009, 12:50 PM
This site does pretty much what you described...

http://www.tennistour.org/

RoddickAce
07-28-2009, 12:52 PM
That's a pretty cool idea.