Should Grading limits be changed in leagues

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matt_ward
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Should Grading limits be changed in leagues

Post by matt_ward » Thu Jan 13, 2011 3:12 pm

Hi All,

I am sure I'm not alone on this particular topic but I've been considering it awhile, I know alot of tournaments and Leagues have previously changed their grade policy i.e. made amendment to grading boundaries for the different Divisions.

For Example The reason I say this because the particular leagues I play in one in general Surrey Border League have grading limits for the following divisions are as follows:

Division One : Open

Division two: <181

Division three: < 156

Division four: < 141

Division five: < 126

Division six: < 116

What do other people think of this?

I think division three should be under 165, divison four 150, I think increasing these would give far better variety and more competition amongst players and clubs. This could also help people get a better number of games because with the new Gradng System and people being inflated I for one am 1 point to high under the current grade boundaries to be playing in division 3.

And people that are 155 or above are often to high for division three for there leagues but not quiet high enough for divison one and two to be regularly picked.

Matt. :D :D :D

PS: let me know your views.

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Joey Stewart
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Re: Should Grading limits be changed in leagues

Post by Joey Stewart » Thu Jan 13, 2011 3:29 pm

I dont think it is a good idea at all to restrict people playing in leagues. Some small lower division clubs are very much at risk of folding with lack of players. Further rules to restrict them makes it even harder to field teams - if they have any good players and are banned from using them.

The only time I think there should be a bit more inflexibility is in the cases of teams winning a lower division, refusing to take promotion and then preceeding to do the same thing the next year around.
Lose one queen and it is a disaster, Lose 1000 queens and it is just a statistic.

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Gareth Harley-Yeo
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Re: Should Grading limits be changed in leagues

Post by Gareth Harley-Yeo » Thu Jan 13, 2011 4:00 pm

Grading restrictions punish small clubs with low memberships. This is a stupid idea, probably created by a group of people from large clubs.

Sean Hewitt

Re: Should Grading limits be changed in leagues

Post by Sean Hewitt » Thu Jan 13, 2011 4:03 pm

Chess appears very good at making rules to prevent people from playing :-)

Alan Walton
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Re: Should Grading limits be changed in leagues

Post by Alan Walton » Thu Jan 13, 2011 4:08 pm

It does seem to be a very restrictive league, if you are graded 190 and all your friends are graded 100, you more or less cannot play for the same team, seems a bit idiotic to me

Matt, is there promotion and relegation between the leagues?

LozCooper

Re: Should Grading limits be changed in leagues

Post by LozCooper » Thu Jan 13, 2011 4:13 pm

It would certainly stop me from playing for my local clubs if they got relegated and would stop several of my club mates too. Mind you, if my grade was based on my performances in league chess I would be eligible for Division 2 :oops:

Andrew Bak
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Re: Should Grading limits be changed in leagues

Post by Andrew Bak » Thu Jan 13, 2011 4:14 pm

Forgive my ignorance, but what do these grading bands actually restrict? Do they restrict the average rating of the team or the highest rating of individual players?

Alex Holowczak
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Re: Should Grading limits be changed in leagues

Post by Alex Holowczak » Thu Jan 13, 2011 4:30 pm

How many other leagues are there in your area? I assume that Surrey has more than just this league. In which case, globally players aren't restricted. In Birmingham, it's generally the case that if your team doesn't play in one League, you can join another club just to play for a team in that League.

For example, around here, there's the Birmingham League, and depending on which side of Birmingham you live on, you might branch out into the Cannock League, Wolverhampton League, Leamington League, Dudley League, Worcestershire League, or Worcester & District League. Of those, the Dudley League has a limit on the highest individual grade you can have, and the Cannock League has a cap on the team of four. It's no great issue, as Dudley is a "top-up" league for Birmingham clubs. Birmingham is often the priority for those who enter the Dudley. Wolverhampton (or Staffordshire) is often the priority for those who enter Cannock. So there's not really a problem, because there are so many other leagues about, you're going to get as much chess as you want.

I don't know the structure in Surrey, so I'm not sure we can comment until we hear about whether Surrey has lots of other leagues. However, the boundaries do seem quite tight; the boundaries in the Cannock are 90 for the team apart, and 25 or 30 for the players in the Dudley. This is far less restrictive.

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Christopher Kreuzer
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Re: Should Grading limits be changed in leagues

Post by Christopher Kreuzer » Thu Jan 13, 2011 4:39 pm

Alex Holowczak wrote:I don't know the structure in Surrey, so I'm not sure we can comment until we hear about whether Surrey has lots of other leagues.
The excellent chingland website (which I pointed out a few months ago) has maps if you are ever unsure about the structure of league chess within a particular area:

http://mjh.orpheusweb.co.uk/chingland/surrey.htm

Depending on where Matt is exactly, some of the other county maps may be of interest.

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IM Jack Rudd
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Re: Should Grading limits be changed in leagues

Post by IM Jack Rudd » Thu Jan 13, 2011 4:47 pm

I quite like the system that I've seen used in the Bristol League, which works something like this:

1. For each team a club has, it must nominate six distinct players as that team's squad. The average grade of a lower team's squad cannot exceed the average grade of a higher team's squad.
2. A player is allowed to play an unlimited number of times for the team he's a member of, or any higher team.
3. A player is allowed to play an unlimited number of times for any lower team, provided he does not exceed a Grading Threshold for the lower team's division. (Grading thresholds are calculated based on the previous season's division strengths.)
4. A player who is not registered in any particular squad may play for any of his club's teams.

It seemed to work well, and did the job it was brought in for (which was essentially to lower the number of defaulted games).

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Gavin Strachan
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Re: Should Grading limits be changed in leagues

Post by Gavin Strachan » Thu Jan 13, 2011 5:57 pm

If that was applied in the Essex League then at least two clubs I know of would struggle in div 2. Lawrence Trent played for Bishops Stortford v Southend in one year and David Haydon playing for Thurrock who almost got an IM norm at the London classic wouldn't get a game. Southend have a couple of 180's as well.

Richard Thursby
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Re: Should Grading limits be changed in leagues

Post by Richard Thursby » Thu Jan 13, 2011 6:51 pm

My only experience of playing grading limited competitions is at county level, although I have sat through discussions at more than one county AGM regarding changes to grading limited competitions. What is appropriate for one league in one season may not be appropriate elsewhere, and may not be appropriate the following season. Without knowing something about the membership of the clubs involved, one cannot make any meaningful comment about whether the grade boundaries are appropriate. A far more useful place to raise this question is with the league and club officials of the Surrey Border League.
Andrew Bak wrote:Forgive my ignorance, but what do these grading bands actually restrict? Do they restrict the average rating of the team or the highest rating of individual players?
Having downloaded and skimmed through the constitution, the grading limit is a bound on the grade any individual player may have.

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Re: Should Grading limits be changed in leagues

Post by Roger de Coverly » Thu Jan 13, 2011 8:37 pm

Joey Stewart wrote:I dont think it is a good idea at all to restrict people playing in leagues. Some small lower division clubs are very much at risk of folding with lack of players. Further rules to restrict them makes it even harder to field teams - if they have any good players and are banned from using them.
There are a number of forum members who play in the Surrey Border league who can explain the rules, my perspective is from the nearby leagues.

There's advantages and disadvantages. From the viewpoint of larger clubs, it makes it possible to offer twenty or more league games to lower rated players who want to play that many. This is simply because they can potentially play most matches for two or more teams from the same club. Where there's promotion and relegation it's usual to have restrictions on how many times a player can play for both a higher division team and a lower division team.

The disadvantage as some have pointed out is that the small club with just one or a handful of strong players has a dilemma as to which division to enter. Perhaps none of the Border clubs are particularly small. They do have a rule which allows players above the grading threshold to play provided they pre-notify the opposition. So if you want to field a 175 player in an under 160 competition, you can do so, but be aware that the opposition might bring along a 175 player as well.

Kevin Thurlow
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Re: Should Grading limits be changed in leagues

Post by Kevin Thurlow » Fri Jan 14, 2011 10:12 am

I don't like grading limits in leagues. They do tend to favour bigger clubs. There is also the problem of what you do with ungraded players. The Surrey League's bottom division was won by a team called Dulwich Plough a few years ago, who went something like 170, 170, 100, 90, etc. and they did operate with a very small squad. They were allowed to refuse promotion, so won again. One club (which it has to be said is a serial complainer about other people's behaviour, despite its own frequent failings) objected to this, so the competition turned into an under 125 division. Dulwich Plough left the league. Someone said at the AGM that the good players from DP could play for another club, which rather misses the point. You should be able to choose which club you play for! Another team dropped out when they had about three players graded 126 one season... There was a RP league, but that was grading restricted as well, (this time on average grade) so most clubs found it difficult to field teams. The whole competition has gone now. There is an open KO competition, but also a grading restricted KO competition, which gets hardly any entries. I have suggested making the lower KO event open to Division 3 teams and below, but not enough people agreed.
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Joey Stewart
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Re: Should Grading limits be changed in leagues

Post by Joey Stewart » Fri Jan 14, 2011 10:49 am

It sounds like Dulwich were not exactly the innocent party here, refusing promotion like that was bound to antagonise people so they brought the grade restrictions on themselves.

In the Gloucester league knockout we employ a handicap system based on the difference between average grades which works very well - nobody is restricted from playing but it just makes it harder to win a match if you bring out a big hit squad.
That would probably work quite well for leagues with big grading descrepencies between the top and bottom teams rather then an arbitary figure to block players from getting a game at all.
Lose one queen and it is a disaster, Lose 1000 queens and it is just a statistic.

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