View Full Version : The "Ladder" Concept

06-22-2005, 10:37 AM
It's that time of year again, and I volunteered to captain our company's billiards team for the city "Corporate Olympics" in September. As always, I'm sure I'll have 'way too many volunteers for a squad that will play a maximum of six players (ideally my top four players) total in three events.

In years past, we have held round-robin tournaments to select our representatives. In some cases I've felt that it did not produce a consistent result, perhaps due to variance in individual's play on a particular day.

With a full three months' notice, I'd like to explore the concept of a "ladder" system, similar to the tennis ladders adopted by recreational groups. The ladder will not only be a better measure of average ability, but it will also reward the players who are willing to participate regularly. I'm just a little uncertain of the details of running such a ladder, so I'm looking for suggestions from anyone who's done it before.

I expect to have eight to ten players on the ladder. I can perform an initial ranking based on known ability or past qualifications. I am also open to other (competitive) suggestions for initial ranking. If additional players want to join after the fact, they can start at the bottom of the ladder.

So how do the details work?

Can a player challenge anyone on the ladder, just the person immediately above them, two steps above, or what? If the #4 player challenges the #3 player and wins, I assume they switch places. If the #4 player loses, does he move down another notch, letting the #5 player pass him, or does he just maintain his position?

How often can you challenge? Should you have to accept one challenge from below for every challenge you deliver?

Keep in mind that I am looking to sort out rankings between 8 to 10 players in about 12 weeks, so the frequency of challenges must be geared to accomplish this.

Another nuance of this is that I will only have 3 or 4 female volunteers, and must choose two for the squad. Should I put them on the men's ladder, and just choose the two that make it highest, or create a separate system for ranking the women?

If there is an online resource that you feel is very helpful for organizing such a ladder, please recommend it to me.


06-22-2005, 11:06 AM
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06-22-2005, 06:33 PM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote SpiderMan:</font><hr> [ladder]<hr /></blockquote>round-robin held across the three months

06-23-2005, 08:14 AM
<blockquote><font class="small">Quote Alfie:</font><hr> <blockquote><font class="small">Quote SpiderMan:</font><hr> [ladder]<hr /></blockquote>round-robin held across the three months <hr /></blockquote>

The past three years' tournaments have been round-robin, but I don't think that would work over a 3-month time period. It's too confusing to the participants if I introduce new players after the start.

With a ladder, I can just require that anyone signing up later start at the bottom. That way, they realize they can get in anytime, but also that they'll have less time to climb the ladder to a position that puts them on the company squad. Also, early losses on a ladder don't eliminate anyone, and it may inspire them to practice and/or attend my weekly coaching sessions.

We don't have a lot of pool players at this company, other than myself and Sid V, so I'm hoping to get a crop started. This citywide competition occurs every year, and every year we have to scrape the bottom of the barrel to find players.

I want to try a ladder at least once. If it isn't an improvement, I'll go back to a short-time round-robin next year.