Equitable distribution of team strengths within leagues

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Nick Grey
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Re: Equitable distribution of team strengths within leagues

Post by Nick Grey » Sun Jun 24, 2018 4:42 pm

We have entered a summer league at Battersea too.
Playing stronger players whether bottom of division 1 or top of division 2 has been different and best for not playing all the same opponents.
even playing in the County teams U180 and U160 I have played opponents not expected. For example a player graded 50.

The Minor Counties is interesting in getting a team out. But mainly some of the issues are getting enough captains and looks like we have got the volunteers in Kingston at least so well done all.

Richard Bates
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Re: Equitable distribution of team strengths within leagues

Post by Richard Bates » Sun Jun 24, 2018 6:12 pm

Generally if you are going for an “average grading” approach I think there should be a cap on the upper strength of player. Especially if there is an Open competition for stronger players to play in. There is an u150 team in the Summer league, for example, that appears to have a 206 and 89 player in the same team.

Generally I would think that appropriately sized divisions with promotion and relegation work best. Except possibly when distorted by paying players to play (particularly paying whole teams of players to play, as opposed to a small number to keep a team competitive, I think this is the best way to ensure even distribution of strength and therefore competitive/non-mismatch games for all). Although acknowledge that to some extent this is predicated on a certain degree of fluid movement of players between clubs - more likely in leagues with a relatively small geographic spread (in mileage terms or good transport links - or central venues)

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Joey Stewart
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Re: Equitable distribution of team strengths within leagues

Post by Joey Stewart » Mon Jun 25, 2018 9:49 pm

Does the idea of moving players around between teams to balance things up kind of make the assumption that everbody is mercenary and will willingly abandon any previous affiliations for the sake of getting some new games?
Lose one queen and it is a disaster, Lose 1000 queens and it is just a statistic.

Kevin Thurlow
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Re: Equitable distribution of team strengths within leagues

Post by Kevin Thurlow » Tue Jun 26, 2018 9:11 am

"Does the idea of moving players around between teams to balance things up kind of make the assumption that everbody is mercenary and will willingly abandon any previous affiliations for the sake of getting some new games?"

It does. I have played for Redhill for 50 years, and some years we are losing most matches (like this season), some years we are winning most. It tends to even out in time. The big problem with "average grade" competitions is that they don't necessarily create interesting games. We had one such match where the match result was close, (which is great), but only one game featured players graded within 20 points of each other.

Richard says,

"Generally if you are going for an “average grading” approach I think there should be a cap on the upper strength of player. Especially if there is an Open competition for stronger players to play in. There is an u150 team in the Summer league, for example, that appears to have a 206 and 89 player in the same team."

Well, yes. You can end up with one team having 6 x 150s, and the other, 4 x 200s and 2 x 50s!

Another issue is ungraded players - Surrey assigns numbers to ungraded players and if they get those wrong (and they have done so spectacularly on occasion), it messes up the competition. Average grading competitions are a useful addition, but no more.

If you have a league, someone is going to win and someone is going to lose. Forcing people to change teams to try to avoid that is just plain daft.

Richard Bates
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Re: Equitable distribution of team strengths within leagues

Post by Richard Bates » Tue Jun 26, 2018 9:36 am

Kevin Thurlow wrote:
Tue Jun 26, 2018 9:11 am
"Does the idea of moving players around between teams to balance things up kind of make the assumption that everbody is mercenary and will willingly abandon any previous affiliations for the sake of getting some new games?"
If you have a league, someone is going to win and someone is going to lose. Forcing people to change teams to try to avoid that is just plain daft.
That wasn’t remotely what I was suggesting. I was simply arguing that (excluding leagues where money has a seriously distorting effect on the competition - ie it is paid indiscriminately, and not just to make teams competitive) there will be some natural balancing as a result of people not wanting to regularly encounter large mismatches in opposition. (In addition of course to the effect of promotion and relegation). Most players, of course, will stick with the same clubs, but there will always be some who will move about in addition to new players who have no previous affiliation.

David Sedgwick
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Re: Equitable distribution of team strengths within leagues

Post by David Sedgwick » Tue Jun 26, 2018 10:57 am

Kevin Thurlow wrote:
Tue Jun 26, 2018 9:11 am
If you have a league, someone is going to win and someone is going to lose. Forcing people to change teams to try to avoid that is just plain daft.
Richard Bates wrote:
Tue Jun 26, 2018 9:36 am
That wasn’t remotely what I was suggesting.
I don't think that Kevin was intending to imply that YOU had suggested that.

I wasn't able to attend the Surrey AGM on Sunday 24th June, but I understand that there were moments of interest.

J T Melsom
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Re: Equitable distribution of team strengths within leagues

Post by J T Melsom » Tue Jun 26, 2018 11:49 am

Of course for many outside the metropolitan areas, you simply play for your local club and if its the best run club, you tend to put up with being on a lower board than you might find challenging unless there are seriously compelling reasons to go elsewhere. My club gained a player from Aylesbury many years back as he had a clash of activities on their club night, and we lost a junior because his father had a change in circumstances which similarly affected our club nights. Some members have in the past taken out a second membership at Bourne End because they play over in Berkshire as well being that much closer to the county boundary, but I suspect we are more likely to lose players to London based competitions soon, being stronger chess and more compatible with commuting patterns.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: Equitable distribution of team strengths within leagues

Post by Roger de Coverly » Tue Jun 26, 2018 12:08 pm

J T Melsom wrote:
Tue Jun 26, 2018 11:49 am
but I suspect we are more likely to lose players to London based competitions soon, being stronger chess and more compatible with commuting patterns.
Once players escape to the world of finishing a game on the night, they can be reluctant to return to the land of adjudications and adjournments. But then I'm not sure of the current status of London based competitions as to which of them have entirely abolished half games or multiple session chess.

Kevin Thurlow
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Re: Equitable distribution of team strengths within leagues

Post by Kevin Thurlow » Tue Jun 26, 2018 12:16 pm

"If you have a league, someone is going to win and someone is going to lose. Forcing people to change teams to try to avoid that is just plain daft.
Richard Bates wrote: ↑
Tue Jun 26, 2018 9:36 am
That wasn’t remotely what I was suggesting.
I don't think that Kevin was intending to imply that YOU had suggested that.

I wasn't able to attend the Surrey AGM on Sunday 24th June, but I understand that there were moments of interest."

Absolutely - Whenever Richard makes a point, it is sensible!

David has me intrigued, although obviously I wasn't intrigued enough in advance to attend the meeting. I have had enough of meetings about chess, and I'm not picking on Surrey here, plenty of others are equally bad.

J T Melsom
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Re: Equitable distribution of team strengths within leagues

Post by J T Melsom » Tue Jun 26, 2018 12:18 pm

Roger

Both the LPCSL ( clubs now have more relaxed eligibility then historically) and the Central London League use incremental finishes and especially the latter contains players of decent strength in a depth not available in county chess. It did hypothetically cross my mind some years back as to whether a High Wycombe team might form to play in London, but the convenience of London chess does create a real not a theoretical problem for the club next year.

NickFaulks
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Re: Equitable distribution of team strengths within leagues

Post by NickFaulks » Tue Jun 26, 2018 8:35 pm

J T Melsom wrote:
Tue Jun 26, 2018 12:18 pm
Both the LPCSL .... and the Central London League use incremental finishes and especially the latter contains players of decent strength in a depth not available in county chess.
There is a significant and increasing pool of players who will not accept adjournments / adjudications, but also want no part of the nonsense which seems inextricable from guillotine finishes. One day it will be impossible to ignore them.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: Equitable distribution of team strengths within leagues

Post by Roger de Coverly » Tue Jun 26, 2018 10:14 pm

NickFaulks wrote:
Tue Jun 26, 2018 8:35 pm
but also want no part of the nonsense which seems inextricable from guillotine finishes.
10 second increments seem to work reasonably well as a means of regulating a three hour session. The default move rate being 80 minutes with 10 second increments. If matches start late or have to finish early, adjusting this to 75 10, 70 10 or 65 10 doesn't introduce any new principles.

The potential challenge is as to what would happen if someone tried to win Rook and Bishop against Rook or similar in premises where there was a distinct closure time. The clock can assist, if needed, as the newer DGTs always count regardless of whether they need to.

It's relatively stress free to play without an intermediate time control. All you have to worry about is to speed up when or if, you get down to the last five minutes.

NickFaulks
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Re: Equitable distribution of team strengths within leagues

Post by NickFaulks » Tue Jun 26, 2018 10:59 pm

Roger de Coverly wrote:
Tue Jun 26, 2018 10:14 pm
It's relatively stress free to play without an intermediate time control.
In the context of a quickish, typically evening, game with a brief increment, I agree completely. I have never been reconciled to G/90 +30", even aside from the obvious bladder control issues. For one game per day it is unnecessary and for two it doesn't work.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: Equitable distribution of team strengths within leagues

Post by Roger de Coverly » Tue Jun 26, 2018 11:07 pm

NickFaulks wrote:
Tue Jun 26, 2018 10:59 pm
For one game per day it is unnecessary and for two it doesn't work.
The problem with going below 30 seconds is that players don't have to keep score, potentially creating more work for arbiters. It was the e2e4 organisation that first introduced 90 30 weekend tournaments to the UK.

In practice it worked reasonably well, although it was necessary to accept that all or some of the afternoon round could have to be postponed if there were overrunning games from the morning session.

J T Melsom
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Re: Equitable distribution of team strengths within leagues

Post by J T Melsom » Wed Jun 27, 2018 1:08 am

Roger, this is why it is hard to take your valid criticisms seriously. You and Nick Faulks have hijacked the thread to have a pet debate. Are you happy with the rules in Bucks. Are you happy with the rules in Berks. Are you deterred from playing chess anywhere close to you and what are you doing about it?

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