Gainsborough Evening Tennis League Rules
(Revised – March 2019)
1. The league shall be divided into divisions. Normal promotion and relegation to be applied, i.e. with 1 team up and down as appropriate. Each team in each division to play every other team in that division on a home and away basis.
Any further changes resulting in withdrawals and new admissions shall be decided at the AGM.
2. Each team shall field a side of three couples for each match. The decision as to the mix, if any, between male and female players making up this side shall remain with the team. Each couple is required to play three sets, therefore making a total of nine sets in the match. The home team shall provide liquid refreshments for the visiting team.
3. A club fielding more than one side must nominate teams in ranking order. Clubs should stipulate in writing, to the league secretary, prior to the commencement of the season, a minimum of six players eligible to play for each nominated team. The league secretary will distribute a list of all names of “nominated players” to each appointed team captain within the league. Should a captain be unable to raise six of the named team, players from a lower ranked team may be used. A player who plays for a lower ranked team can play for a higher team four times and still play for the lower team. If they play more than four times they must then stay in the higher team.
There will be no restrictions on junior members, under 16 on April 1, playing up and down between club teams, provided names are submitted to the Secretary before the start of the season.
Players are only allowed to play for one club in the Gainsborough Evening League during a season with the only exception to this rule being in the event of a change in personal circumstances. This exception would be at the discretion of the committee.
4. Each match shall comprise of nine sets, each couple playing one set against each of the opposing couples. Each set shall comprise of 13 games. If games reach six all, the LTA tie-break will be used to decide the winner of that rubber. This also applies to cup matches. However, if both captains agree prior to the commencement of the match, the number of games in each set may be reduced, i.e. a set may be deemed complete if one couple has at least won seven games. Once a match has commenced, If as a result of bad light, failing floodlights, or weather conditions, play has to be stopped, unless otherwise agreed by both team captains, the stoppage time is limited to a maximum 20 minutes before play must re-commence. Following the stoppage time if conditions have not improved, and it is not possible to play nine sets, then the match shall be deemed complete only if one side has won five sets. The ‘Set Percentage’ will still be worked out on the 9 sets that should be played (see Rule 11). If a match is abandoned before either side has won five sets the match is to be deemed void and must be replayed (see Rule 6). If the match is not replayed, the sets completed do not count towards the set percentage at the end of the season and, no points shall be awarded unless otherwise agreed by the committee.
5. All matches shall commence at 6.30pm unless an earlier time has been agreed by representatives of both sides. If part of a team arrives later than 6.45 , they will forfeit the first rubber the late arriving pair would have played
6. A fixture shall be played on the home night of the home team in the week allotted. No match to be cancelled other than for weather or committee approval. The home side may cancel a fixture up to three hours prior to its commencement if the reason is prevailing weather conditions. In this case the fixture may then be played on a mutually agreed date. If a fixture is abandoned before completion, the fixture will be replayed on a mutually agreed date one team turning up with only two pairs; will automatically concede three sets in the overall result. Both teams turning up with only two pairs will result in the match being deemed void and must be replayed. If a club is unwilling or unable to replay and concedes a match, two points will be deducted from their points’ score, with two points and five sets awarded to the opposing team.
7. Fixtures may be re-arranged if both teams agree.
8. Where there are three courts in operation, no couple should play more than one match on each court.
9. A team shall be awarded two points for a win. In other cases rule 6 applies.
10. A completed match card signed by the winning captain must be forwarded to the Secretary immediately after the completion of the fixture by the home club.
11. League position shall be decided on a point basis. In the event of teams holding equal points, the higher position shall be awarded to the team having the best set percentage, i.e. sets won expressed as a percentage of the total that should have been played (i.e. 126). If a position arises in a promotion or relegation situation teams have identical points and set percentages the teams shall play off.
12. The fixture list shall be drawn up by the Secretary. Where a club has two or more teams in the same division, as far as practicable, those teams will not be scheduled to play against one other during the final two fixtures of the season. Any re-scheduling of fixtures should take account of this requirement.
13. The knockout competitions shall be organised. One to include teams from the first division and 1st half of the second division, the other to include teams from the 2nd half of the second division and third division. Teams not wishing to enter these competitions must notify the Secretary at the AGM. These competitions will be on a handicap basis. Each team will be given a score to add to their game tally. The result will be on the games won, not sets. The match must be completed; each pair must play 13 games against each other pair, giving a total of 117 games. A team’s handicap will remain with it throughout. An example is shown below:
Epworth (8) The games scored may be Epworth 76 games
V (to this add 8 = 84 games)
Haxey (28) Haxey may have 41 games
(to this add 28 = 69 games)
The winner of the above match would be Epworth with 84 games to 69.
The handicap each team will be given will be decided by members of the committee prior to the commencement of the season. Any new team to the season will be given a handicap, based on the average handicap figure of each team competing in the relevant tournament (however, the handicap figure for the new team will be capped at 20). The result of any match not completed will be decided by the committee. The finals of the Knockout competitions will be organised by the committee. Players appearing in the finals must have played at least 4 league matches.
14. The management committee, elected at each AGM, shall be comprised of a Chairperson, Secretary, Treasurer, and three other members.
15. Each team shall be required to pay an annual subscription to the league. The amount for each season shall be decided at the AGM.
16. The AGM shall be held in March. The meeting of the business shall be: Minutes of the last meeting, Secretary’s report, Treasurer’s report, election of officials, subscriptions, amendments to the rules and election to and composition of the league. All clubs wishing to enter a team or teams in the forthcoming season must have a representative present at the AGM. Failure to do so will mean exclusion from the league.
17. Propositions to amend rules must be submitted in writing to the Secretary no less than 14 days prior to the AGM.
18. Each team shall be allowed only one vote on all propositions put forward at the AGM.
19. The decision of the management committee shall be final in any dispute relating to the league.