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-   -   Doing A Line-Up For The Season, Or Match-by-Match? (http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=111615)

Cindysphinx 01-05-2007 08:41 AM

Doing A Line-Up For The Season, Or Match-by-Match?
 
I'm curious how various teams handle scheduling players to play league matches. I know some captains get the season schedule and do line-ups for all matches in the beginning. Others do the line-up match-by-match. Personally, I do the line-up four matches at a time so playes know when they're playing about 1 month ahead. I've never tried any other way.

Also, how do you handle cancellations by players once the schedule is released? Do you ever "pull" a player out of a line-up and sub someone else because you feel you need a stronger player for that match?

Just wondering what works and what doesn't . . .

spot 01-05-2007 08:46 AM

I think a week notice is plenty of time to give someone aobut the lineup. People can schedule themselves out of the lineup weeks in advance but there just doesn't seem to be any good reason to post a lineup a month out. Use the results of one match to decide what you want to do the next match.

raiden031 01-05-2007 08:48 AM

If my captain pulled me out of a lineup I would quit the team. Its one thing if you're on the college team but when you're playing 3.X tennis and its that important to win, I'd rather start my own team.

raiden031 01-05-2007 08:50 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by spot (Post 1151157)
I think a week notice is plenty of time to give someone aobut the lineup. People can schedule themselves out of the lineup weeks in advance but there just doesn't seem to be any good reason to post a lineup a month out. Use the results of one match to decide what you want to do the next match.

My lineup for the entire season has already been determined. I think my captain's goal is to give everyone equal playing time, while still doing her best to create pairings that promote winning.

Supernatural_Serve 01-05-2007 08:54 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Cindysphinx (Post 1151150)
Just wondering what works and what doesn't . . .

I think this is based on an up front discussion with the team ahead of time about the goals for the season. Especially concerning who wants to play with whom, is it win at all costs, how many team players, etc. How much is this purely the "captain's" team versus everyone's team, etc.

I've played on teams where the team was decided 3 days before the match but the pairings and court assignments are done at the final moment the team line-up is required both singles and doubles based on who "shows up" from the other team, throwing the weakest doubles pair on court 1 to hopefully win court 2 and 3, etc.

flash9 01-05-2007 09:05 AM

Managing your Team
 
Cindy,

I have been using TennisOne's FREE eTennisTeam for the past couple years and I really like how easy it makes managing my teams.

www.tennisone.com
www.tennisone.com/membership/team.php

Once I receive the schedule from the league coordinator I have all of my team email me back with dates they know they are unavailable. Everyone knows this might change, but from this I create a master playing schedule where everyone plays about the same amount of matches. Then I put the master schedule into TennisOne, as well as everyone’s availability and it then become the player’s reasonability to keep their availability up to date as the season progresses, and if they are unavailable to play a match they are scheduled for them to find their own replacement. This has worked extremely well and everyone has been very good about using this system. TennisOne can even automatically send email reminders to the team to remind everyone about the upcoming match, and can even send a confirmation to the opposing team captain if you have that information. TennisOne can also be used to schedule team practices.

There are two caveats to managing your team like I do.
1) Since I am creating a master schedule like I do, my first priority is equal playing time for everyone, so I do not even attempt to "stack" my team against the best teams in an effort to win the key matches, and I guess I could but I do not even try.
2) Since the players are reasonable to finding there subs if they can not play, you need to have players who are reasonable. I have been very lucky and have only had one player that could not get with the program, and luckily for me he choose to play on another team the next year, so I did not have to address the matter. :smile:

Good Luck

Gordie

tennis-n-sc 01-05-2007 09:07 AM

There are some good posts here and comments. I generally captain 2-3 teams a year. Once the roster is set, I tell everyone up front that we want to win and have fun, but having fun comes first. I also let them know that I will attempt to get everyone ample play time. I then ask for know absences during the season. I then put a line-up out a match at a time. I try to balance the line-up with strong players and weaker players and still try to win the card, but if we lose, we still have fun and no one is pressured to committ suicide if they don't win their match. I rarely have an issue with players and they tell me at season's end how much they enjoyed the experience. I never have a problem fielding a team with this philosphy. But I have the impression you take this much more seriously than I do. Hope it works for you, but I hope more importantly the season is fun for your roster members.

Geezer Guy 01-05-2007 11:23 AM

The captains I've played for usually put out a schedule every week that lists who's playing the next week, and a tentative schedule of who's playing the following couple of weeks. We're also encouraged to let the captain know in advance of any weeks we cannot play.

None of my captains have used any web-based software to manage/schedule the line-up's.

For those that use web-based software, I'd be interested to know if it's possible for a competing captain to look at your scheduled line-up ahead of time. Or, is it password protected somehow?

flash9 01-05-2007 11:44 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Geezer Guy (Post 1151411)
For those that use web-based software, I'd be interested to know if it's possible for a competing captain to look at your scheduled line-up ahead of time. Or, is it password protected somehow?

As a captain, I can invite a player to join the team, they are assigned a temporary password, that they are to change once they login the first time. Once they are no longer on the team I can delete them from the team roster, and then even though they still have an account a TennisOne they will no longer be able to access my team information.
So, I think it would be hard, but not impossible for an opposing team captain to get access.

Cindysphinx 01-05-2007 11:56 AM

Very interesting comments. I was moved to ask the question because I just send out a long e-mail to the players spelling out the team's "policies," if you will.

As I mentioned, I do four matches at a time. That way I can make adjustments from what I learn after the first third of the season before I put out the next third.

I'm surprised how many captains schedule week-by-week. I would assume there would be a high potential for defaults if players couldn't make arrangements way ahead of time. If you told me today I had to play a match next Friday at 9 p.m., you'd be straight out of luck.

Then again, our league may be unusual in that matches are not one particular day a week (e.g. every Monday). Our matches can be any weeknight after 7 p.m. and any time on weekends, and our 12-match schedule will have us playing at least one match every day ofthe week. It's not like people can be expected to make themselves available for such a wacky schedule.

Here's a question: if a scheduled player says she can't play and your team schedules everyone evenly, do you try to find a make-up match for that player? Also, how do you handle court fees?

Again, I'm just being nosy . . .

tennis-n-sc 01-05-2007 12:34 PM

Cindy, where are you located? I can see that your league matches would be a nightmare to keep up with. Around here, all matches are on the same day or night of the week, unless they are make-up. Also, we do not have court fees. One of the reasons I don't schedule matches more than two matches out is that allows me some leeway in helping players that cna't make their regular match to get a make-up match in.

marcl65 01-05-2007 12:58 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Cindysphinx (Post 1151473)
I'm surprised how many captains schedule week-by-week. I would assume there would be a high potential for defaults if players couldn't make arrangements way ahead of time. If you told me today I had to play a match next Friday at 9 p.m., you'd be straight out of luck.

Me too. My last captain did it this way and we ended up defaulting 2 or 3 matches (2 singles, 3 doubles format) every other weekend because people would make other plans or something with their kids would pop up. And our matches were all on the weekends too! IMHO, going week to week forces players to basically leave every weekend open.

As a first time captain (i.e. not knowing any better) I made out a schedule for the entire season after getting input from all my players. Who gets matched up with whom I left until the actual match day since few of my players practice together. However, I think Cindy is on to something by going the 4 match at a time route.

Cindysphinx 01-05-2007 01:17 PM

I'm in mid-Atlantic. All of our matches are indoors. Captains get no say in when matches will be held, nor is it possible to re-schedule a match because indoor space won't be available. I currently have 14 players on the roster for a 3-doubles match format because I need to carry a big roster to avoid defaults. The league allows up to 18 in combo and 20 in mixed.

Marc, the very first time I captained, I did a full-season schedule. After a couple of weeks, players started cancelling on me ("My husband just surprised me with a trip to the Bahamas for my birthday!!" -- yes, this really happened). Then there was a big, sweaty scramble to find someone to sub in.

The other thing that started happening was my players started wanting to know their doubles partners well in advance so they could practice, so designating a group of players without assigning partners didn't please anyone either.

bruce nissenbaum 01-05-2007 01:23 PM

Once team roster and league schedule are set players are surveyed for unavailable dates. Then I 'rough draft' a master play schedule with equal play time as a goal but one which might match a more effective line-up against what I suspect might be stronger teams. Finally, a two week schedule is emailed each week confirming the upcoming match and setting the following week line-up. Doing this, I have an overall idea of who's available and how we might play while the distributed two-week scheduling allows for flexibility as player's plans and/or possible team needs may change as season progresses. This provides 10-12 days 'lead' time for scheduled players, gives time for partners to practice, and it also makes it easier to pre-arrange subs for any possible last minute needs. I try to find another opportunity for a player who misses a scheduled match for unfortunate reason or circumstance. (Last minute golf and/or softball conflicts don't count!! LOL) Works or Excel spreadsheet works fine. Finally, I do not 'pull' players once the line-ups are emailed.

cak 01-05-2007 01:55 PM

Our matches are like Cindy's, every week is different, but we try to make all home matches the same time and day. We send availability out for the season at the beginning, but if you become unavailable you should tell the captain as soon as possible. Sometimes you send in availability as "if you tell me three weeks or better in advance on this one I can get a carpool for my daughter, otherwise I can't make it." or "I can play the 7:15 slot, but not the 6pm slot." (Some of our matches have split starts, three at 6pm, the final two at 7:15). Then we send try to send out lineups two or three weeks ahead, but more if we have people that need notice. We tend to schedule by doubles teams, rather than coming up with a lineup and then deciding who gets to partner with who. I've seen captains pull people after the lineup was published to replace them with better players very occasionally, and it usually ended up being a major disaster. As for paying for courts, we play out of a club, so for us court time is free.

For a few years I ran our interclub team (play for fun, scores are tossed, everyone eats lunch). We would send out lineups three months in advance, and then reminders a week in advance. Every week I needed to put in subs for folks that suddenly had other committments. If you were on the sub list you always got to play. I usually then had to start calling people not on the sub list.

couch 01-06-2007 08:30 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Cindysphinx (Post 1151150)
I'm curious how various teams handle scheduling players to play league matches. I know some captains get the season schedule and do line-ups for all matches in the beginning. Others do the line-up match-by-match. Personally, I do the line-up four matches at a time so playes know when they're playing about 1 month ahead. I've never tried any other way.

Also, how do you handle cancellations by players once the schedule is released? Do you ever "pull" a player out of a line-up and sub someone else because you feel you need a stronger player for that match?

Just wondering what works and what doesn't . . .

Haven't read all the responses but it depends on what your goals are for the season. If it's more "social" tennis then I know a lot of womens teams that will do a rotation or set the line-up for the whole season.

If you're in it to try and win every match then most of the time Captains (or coaches) will select the line-up on a week-to-week basis. If you are playing a weak team, put in weaker players. If you are playing a strong team, put in your stronger players.

Just depends on your and your teams' goals for the season.

marcl65 01-06-2007 10:57 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by couch (Post 1152888)
If you're in it to try and win every match then most of the time Captains (or coaches) will select the line-up on a week-to-week basis. If you are playing a weak team, put in weaker players. If you are playing a strong team, put in your stronger players.

Another approach I've seen, which I find tactically sound but somewhat unsportsmanlike, is to reverse your playing order when you're up against a superior team. That is, you play your #3 doubles in the #1 slot (sacrifice them), with the belief that your #1 & #2 players can beat the other team's #2 & #3 players.

couch 01-06-2007 06:06 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by marcl65 (Post 1153096)
Another approach I've seen, which I find tactically sound but somewhat unsportsmanlike, is to reverse your playing order when you're up against a superior team. That is, you play your #3 doubles in the #1 slot (sacrifice them), with the belief that your #1 & #2 players can beat the other team's #2 & #3 players.

Oh yeah, that stuff happens all the time. It's all about winning three courts. It doesn't matter which ones as long as you win three.

momwendy 01-06-2007 08:03 PM

I guess our women take things more seriously out here on the west coast.

At the beginning of the season we have a team meeting and discuss goals, uniforms (quite important, lol), and play time. We vote -- and it's usually for a competitive season, with a minimum of 2 matches guaranteed for each player.

At our club, we have team sign-ups, and then our club's coaches determine the A/B team rosters. "A" teams are always competitive and have the best players. B teams have the option of deciding competitive vs. social play. If only one team is in any rating level, they also determine competitive vs. social.

We use evite.com to coordinate availability. The BEST thing ever. It is in real-time, so updates appear immediately -- the whole team knows how many people are availabe, if their partners are available, and any last-minute drop-outs. It also helps with the food assignments. (We have to provide a food spread & wine for all home matches.)

We generally give 5 days notice for lineups. In the meantime, players can look on evite.com and get a pretty good idea of player availability by the number of rsvps.

We announce partnerships at the time of lineup -- 5 days out. But we wait until we get to the actual match to determine #1, #2, #3 lineups. We see who actually comes out from the other team to determine where we put everyone.

As the season progresses it becomes obvious who the stronger teams are -- and then the lineups are chosen accordingly. The short lead time also lets you put in players who happen to be playing well at any particular time. Players really do peak at different times during the season.

This, I guess, is the competitive route of things.....

couch 01-07-2007 09:01 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by momwendy (Post 1154089)
I guess our women take things more seriously out here on the west coast.

At the beginning of the season we have a team meeting and discuss goals, uniforms (quite important, lol), and play time. We vote -- and it's usually for a competitive season, with a minimum of 2 matches guaranteed for each player.

At our club, we have team sign-ups, and then our club's coaches determine the A/B team rosters. "A" teams are always competitive and have the best players. B teams have the option of deciding competitive vs. social play. If only one team is in any rating level, they also determine competitive vs. social.

We use evite.com to coordinate availability. The BEST thing ever. It is in real-time, so updates appear immediately -- the whole team knows how many people are availabe, if their partners are available, and any last-minute drop-outs. It also helps with the food assignments. (We have to provide a food spread & wine for all home matches.)

We generally give 5 days notice for lineups. In the meantime, players can look on evite.com and get a pretty good idea of player availability by the number of rsvps.

We announce partnerships at the time of lineup -- 5 days out. But we wait until we get to the actual match to determine #1, #2, #3 lineups. We see who actually comes out from the other team to determine where we put everyone.

As the season progresses it becomes obvious who the stronger teams are -- and then the lineups are chosen accordingly. The short lead time also lets you put in players who happen to be playing well at any particular time. Players really do peak at different times during the season.

This, I guess, is the competitive route of things.....

I think just about anywhere you'll find womens teams that are playing tennis for the competition and others that play more for the social aspect or "fun of it". I think some women would rather "play" a lot of matches than be on a competitive team that has the possibility to advance. That's why I said in the beginning your team captain has to "lay down the law" so to speak and tell everyone what the goals for the season are. If everyone agrees then no one should have anything to complain about. :)


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