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Singles League Overview

Questions About League?

If you have a question about a specific league division or your particular team, please contact singles@nysquash.com:

 

1. Organization

This season the league will be led by Mike Pepper, Nick Tatti, and Sam Roeca as League Chairs. Former League Chair Dov Kleiner and NY Squash President Cleve Miller will join them in the overall management of the league on the League Committee. Inquiries should be sent to league@nysquash.com.

 

2. Divisions and Eligibility

For years, NY Squash has used its own separate division eligibility system, which was different from the official US Squash system that is used throughout the US. This has caused problems when players from out of town register for NY Squash events, since they often register in the wrong division.

After careful discussions with NY-area club pros and US Squash, NY Squash is adopting the official US Squash system. 

 

DIVISION NEW, OFFICIAL ELIGIBILITY RATING OLD ELIGIBILITY RATING
3.0 2.99 and below below 3.5
3.5 below 3.5 below 4.0
4.0 below 4.0 below 4.5
4.5 below 4.5 below 5.0
5.0 below 5.0 below 5.5
5.5 below 5.5 below 6.0
Open open open

 

How this impacts the league

In general, because this change effects everyone equally, you will play with the same players against the same teams. There are changes though at the bottom and top of the divisions.

The 3.0 division splits in two

Basically, the old 3.0 division is cut in two: beginners (2.99 and below) have their own division (3.0), 2 whereas previously they played together with the 3.0 to 3.5 players (now in the 3.5 division). This is a positive change as it creates more competitive matches for newer players.

Note: there is concern among the club pros that, for the first year, we may not have enough eligible players and qualified captains for the new 3.0 division. If this is the case, we may need to be flexible and allow a few players over 3.0 in the 3.0 division, on a case-by-case basis, and working carefully together with the club pros. Ratings are so fluid at this ability level that players can jump from 2.9 to 3.1 after a single match, and we are confident that this flexibility, if required, will fortify the division and build a foundation for competitive beginner play that strengthens the NY squash community.

The top divisions consolidate

While this change splits the lowest level in two, it also, nominally, merges the top two divisions. However, we have not had a 5.5 division in several years, so this will create a 5.5 division and thus balance out divisions for the better. Some players in the Open division last year may choose to play in the new 5.5 this year, to play at a higher position on the team. The 5.5 division will operate as all other men’s divisions and field a four-man roster, and the Open division will continue to run with a three-man roster.

Impact on Women’s league

With the new eligibility system, the ratings/divisions look like this:

 

lAST YEAR'S DIVISIONS ELIGIBLE RATING THIS YEAR'S DIVISION ELIGIBLE RATING
W3.0 3.49 and below W3.5 3.49 and below
W3.5 - 4.0 below 4.5 W4.0 - 4.5 below 4.5
W4.5+ 4.5 and above W5.0+ 4.5 and above

 

As you can see, only the division names change. Because the rating groups are the same, the player cohort and teams will be similar to last year.

The W4.5+ division will field three players for a match and the others will field four. Please encourage players to sign up and play, as the social and competitive success of the Women’s league depends on good turnout at all levels.

Unrated player eligibility

Players with a US Squash rating of 1.5 (i.e. unrated) follow this process to define their divisions:

  • Any player without a US Squash rating will need to be assessed by his/her home club pro
  • The pro will determine the appropriate division and team for that player
  • There will be a probationary period of three matches
  • The player’s results will be assessed by the pro and NY Squash, and final determination of division will be provided after that assessment

Additionally, we ask that club pros monitor the true level of their 3.0 and 3.5 division players, who may have had a US Squash rating below 3.5 as of last April, but who have improved over the last six months and may now be more appropriately placed in the 4.0 division.

 

3. Rules and captain’s responsibilities

Rules are posted on the NY Squash website, and will be outlined in the Captain’s Meeting on October 4, (7:00 pm at the Princeton Club, drinks and food at 8:00 pm).

The Captain’s Meeting must be attended by either the captain or co-captain of every team because important regulations are outlined that allow the league to run smoothly for everyone. If neither can 3 attend, please let us know in advance.

 

4. Playing schedule and match nights

There have been minor modifications to the weekly schedule, which were made with two goals in mind:

  1. We need to balance the matches per night to make scheduling easier for the club pros. Last year the two largest divisions both played Thursdays and it made court reservations difficult for the club pros. This season, we’ve balanced out the match nights by division sizes.
  2. As much as possible, we wanted players to play on the same nights as in previous years. Because the division changed, the match nights changed as well, but in most cases teams play on the same night as last year. For example, last year the M4.5 division played Tuesdays, and this year those players and teams are in the M5.0, so we scheduled M 5.0 to play on Tuesdays. 

 

monday tuesday wednesday thursday
M3 M4.0 W4.0 - 4.5 W3.5
W5.0+ M5.0 M4.5 M3.5
MO      

 

Scheduling and Home vs. Away balance

Over the last few months we’ve developed a new scheduling software tool that is more agile and more reliable than the tool used previously. One of the many advantages of the new tool is that we can more carefully control the balance between Home matches and Away matches. This is a complicated process because many clubs have more than one team per division, some clubs have restricted or no home courts, and the number of teams varies each season. Basically, there are two approaches:

  1. Control the number of teams. This is the model that professional sports leagues successfully use, but since the number of league teams varies each season, we would have to use multiple byes to make this work. This would mean some teams would go weeks without playing and make court reservations difficult for pros.
  2. Focus on an overall 50% - 50% Home vs. Away balance, without having it be team specific. For example, your team will have roughly half of your overall matches at home, and half away, but you may play the same team at home for both meetings, or vice versa.

With feedback from captains and club pros, we concluded that the second option was better. As a result, we are confident that this season’s team schedules will have an improved Home vs. Away match balance.

 

Calendar

While still subject to change, the season calendar looks like this:

 

October 1 Teams must be registered
October 4 Captain's meeting (7:00 pm at the Princeton Club, 15 West 43rd Street)
October 16 Rosters must be submitted (minimum seven players, except Women's rosters)
October 23 Schedules published, captains and pros should book courts
November 6 League play begins
November 22 Deadline for paying League dues

 

There will be breaks for holiday weeks and the Tournament of Champions week, as usual.

Pool Play

We will not be using pool play this season, so the schedule will be published in full in October. This is partly due to the Home vs. Away balance outlined above, and it also creates far less stress on club pros to book courts based on a manually created schedule halfway through the season.

 

5. Playoffs and finals

Playoffs

This year we will use a knockout playoff format for all the divisions. The size of the draws will depend on division registration, but ideally 4, 6, or 8 teams will be included in playoffs. For the largest divisions, we will likely use a full 16 seed tournament format that may start earlier. We will communicate the format for each division, as well as dates, when we know division sizes.

Finals

Also, we’re happy to announce we are working on an innovative format for the league finals matches: we’ll be having a League Finals event on a Saturday with all division finals in held in one club. This allows us to assure that all finals are played on standard courts with no defects. Plus: beer.

 

6. Dues

Individual team dues are $225 per team (plus club dues), and are due by December 22. They can be paid on the NY Squash website. Your cooperation is very much appreciated.