Be mindful of the snakes in the grass
My captain "Diana" had a smackdown yesterday. Here's what happened.
The day before the match, opposing captain "Sarah" emailed Diana to say Sarah was short a doubles player. Diana replied that she had all six players available. Sarah said she would keep looking for a player.
The day of the match, Diana (having been counseled by me and others to pin Sarah down and get everything in writing) wrote to Sarah again to ask whether Sarah had six players. Diana again assured Sarah that she had six players. Sarah replied that "we are defaulting Doubles Three."
Diana wrote to our team and told us Sarah was defaulting Court Three and the Court Three players didn't need to come.
Diana and her three teammates played Sarah's team and won Doubles One and Doubles Two. When Diana and Sarah went to sign scorecards, Sarah said, "I saw one of your Court Three players here, but I didn't see the other one. Since she didn't come, it's a double default." Diana hit the roof, but the league coordinator agreed with Sarah.
I say that is about the most low-down, sneaky, devious, deceptive stunt I have seen a captain pull.
If you know ahead of time you are short on players, it is OK to check with the other captain to see if she has six.
It is OK (but not great) to say nothing and make sure the other captain really did have six.
It is also OK to give notice of a default so that players don't spend time and money coming to a match that isn't going to happen.
What is not OK is to lure your opposing captain into not sending her players by specifically saying that you are defaulting a court. What possible legitimate reason is there to raise the issue of the default at all if you are going to insist that the opponents show up?
Had I been in Sarah's shoes, there is simply no way I would seek or accept a double-default under these circumstances. I don't take wins through trickery.
Sarah is on my short list of Captains Who Will Not Be Extended Any Accommodations Or Courtesies.
-- Random Error Generator, Version 4.0
-- Master Moonballer