Club Championships 2017 – Rules


Closing date for entries         Sunday 23 April

Please ensure that you have completed and submitted your entry form and paid for your events no later than this date. Late entries cannot be accepted! Please pay online, using the entry form here.

Start of first round matches   Early in May

The first group stage will be published in the clubhouse towards the end of April. We will have strict completion dates for each round which will be highlighted on the tournament sheets. If you can’t play your match(es) by the completion date, you will forfeit them.

If you have any questions about the club tournaments, please don’t hesitate to contact:

  • Adult open tournament: Luke Swanson (
  • Veterans tournament: Nigel Thorpe (
  • Junior tournaments: Chris Barker (

Luke Swanson
Director of Tournaments

Participant responsibilities

You must be:

  1. Able to play on Finals Day (Saturday 16 September).
  2. Regularly contactable by e-mail.
  3. Able to book courts on the online booking system.
  4. Able to meet your match organisation and playing commitments (see the guidelines and completion dates for each round.)
  5. Ready to play at the agreed match start time.
  6. Able to supply new balls for a match.


  1. Matches are to be played on any booked court at the club.
  2. Group stage matches are one ‘very long set’, the first to 10 games. Only one court booking slot must be used and the results written up immediately by the winner after the match is completed.
  3. The winner of the group will have either won all their matches outright or be the player with the greatest net (won minus lost) number of games.
  4. All subsequent matches are first to two sets (tiebreak at 6 all), with a ten point championship tie-break, should the match be tied at one set each. The final will be played over the best of three tie-break sets.
  5. All matches are to be completed by the fixed completion dates. The only movement on this will be in exceptional circumstances. If you feel your match is affected by such circumstances, please contact the tournament director as soon as possible. Each case will be judged individually to come to a fair resolution. Holidays and injuries do not count as exceptional circumstances.

Guidelines for arranging matches

The following guidelines have been written to help facilitate participants to organise matches in the most fair, efficient and respectful manner. They are not rules, however. Should a referee need to make a judgment on how to progress in the tournament in the event of a match not being completed, the co-operation of each competitor will be taken into account.

  1. Each participant or a nominated representative from each pair, is responsible for contacting their opponent(s) in a timely manner – so as to utilise as much of the available time for a round as possible – at the start of each round offering at least 2 bookable evening and weekend court slots on different days.
  2. Each participant must respond yes / no to slots within two days and at the least offer two alternative slots.
  3. In the unlikely event that a mutually agreeable date cannot be found then the referee must be engaged by the players. This should be done at least a week prior to the deadline for a round to enable time for a resolution to be found.
  4. If it is the case that one party has tried to arrange a match and the other party has not responded or has been unable to play due to injury then a 10-0 result will be awarded. In the case where both parties try to play but were unable to do so by the deadline then a 0-0 result will be awarded.

Referee responsibilities

  1. If the referee is contacted because a mutually agreed date can’t be found then they will request that the participants explore options to re-arrange their schedule to accommodate. If a date still can’t be found then the referee will make a decision on who progresses, taking into account how well the competitors have followed the guidelines. Coin tosses will not be used to decide the result of a match.


  1. My opponent has booked a court with a surface I don’t like. Is that within the rules? Yes. Court time is at a premium, so all courts need to allowable.
  2. Must we play a tie-break instead of a third set? Yes. Court time is at a premium. Only the finals will be over 3 sets.
  3. What factors will the referee take into account if they get involved? Well, getting four particular people on a court at the same time is a challenge at the best of times, so whether the guidelines for arranging matches have been followed will be an important consideration.
  4. What happens if an opponent offers dates that I’ve already said I can’t do or at times when courts aren’t bookable? They are not fulfilling their responsibilities as a participant, so please politely make that clear to them and request alternatives.
  5. Two days to respond to an email?! I’m much too busy to do that! If you are not able to follow this guideline, then please consider whether entering a tournament with tight timelines such as this is something that you want to do. E-mail is the medium of communication favoured by the majority and if you enter the tournament then you have an obligation to arrange matches and respect the time of your opponents.
  6. I’m on holiday for two weeks and I’m not responding to e-mail while I’m away. That’s fair enough, however, you need to consider your tournament commitments and plan around it. Make sure you let your opponents know when you’ll be able to get back to them and / or plan and agree dates before you go. In doubles please ensure your partner can speak on your behalf.
  7. Why are the lower seeds not positioned randomly? There is a formula for ordering the seeds in a draw and that is what we have used. This is the most fair and consistent way of spreading out the seeds without question, and is used in most sports. In pro tennis this has been adapted as most tournaments are organised as knockouts, so seeds are playing, in close succession, a series of similarly structured events. This is not needed for our annual event.