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Four options for leagues for 2021 season

Bowling News


We already know that the 2021 season is highly unlikely to start in the first week of April as it traditionally does for some of our leagues. Yesterday we examined the extent of the problem with a potential shortfall of match dates of up 9 missing dates for some leagues. Anything later than an end of May start will present rearrangement conundrums for all our leagues apart from the Junior League. Yesterday's posting


Clubs have to understand that any change to the normal process is going to be messy - VERY messy. That cannot be avoided whatever solution you put in place. It will be messy for 2021 and will provide messy residue to be sorted out for 2022. If you start from accepting that point then you have a chance of providing some sort of competitive bowling for this year.


Trying to retain the format as normal is a non-starter. This is a one-off season that demands a one-off solution with special dispensation required on a number of fronts. Goodwill among your teams and good leadership by your Leagues is paramount in getting this resolved so that we can enjoy a good season of bowling. There is not a Do-Nothing option.


This exercise assumes that your League doesn't have enough weeks to complete a full season just using your normal playing dates. If that is the case then I believe that Leagues have up to four options to provide some sort of positive competition in the coming season.


Option 1 - Extend end of season date PROS: Easy to do; avoids clashes with other leagues

CONS: Unpopular with clubs and greenkeepers; not all clubs may agree to do


Option 2 - League rearranges outstanding fixtures into mid-week slots

PROS: Gets the job done; controlled by League

CONS: Probable clashes with other Leagues; bowler/team availability likely to be a problem


Option 3 - Let clubs rearrange outstanding fixtures between themselves

PROS: Will suit some to match their club programme better

CONS: Can introduce conflict between clubs; no central control; clashes with other leagues


Option 4 - Restructure the number of teams in each section to fit number of weeks available

PROS: Keeps things very tidy, one-off solution to a one-off season; option to return to previous format for 2022 season; avoids all the CONS of the other 3 options; controlled by League

CONS: Rearranging divisions will upset some teams; promotion and relegation issues to sort in a revamped structure; promotion and relegation issues to sort out at the end of a season of temporary divisions


The most appropriate solution may be different for different Leagues depending on their own circumstances and priorities. Anyone that can suggest any further solutions please feel free to do so. The Comments section below is designed for just that purpose.


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Something else which I think may need consideration is the format of a League. I am thinking here of a league such as the Huddersfield Vets which includes pairs matches in its format. Irrespective of a starting date this year I think that pairs matches pose additional difficulties in terms of social distancing, use of equipment and the number of bowlers on the green at any one time. Would it be prudent to think of a playing format, for this coming season, which does not involve pairs matches?

J'aime

Dont understand the logic in using neutral greens for a half-a-season of vets league fixtures. That would mean 31 greens to arrange every week for 13 weeks equals 403 greens to rearrange. For what benefit? Consensus seems to be taking us to a no promotion no relegation scenario which makes more sense to me.

J'aime

If we cannot run a full unaffected season then we should forget all about promotion and relegation for 2021 lets just get out there and play as many fixtures as possible.

J'aime

Membre inconnu
02 févr. 2021

the 5th option is good if we cant start until first week in july.but there would be problems over the venues,e,g, lockwood con v marsh utd A at lockwood con. perhaps appointing neutral greens might be the answer to that

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Membre inconnu
02 févr. 2021

i tend to agree with john,dont implement any promotion or relegation,it is as jeff said a one off situation,so the main aim of it should be just to get bowlers back on the greens.and move any team k.o.s to thursdays/friday,or indeed leave them out altogether,but then we would have certain clubs saying that the k.o.s entry fees are paid as part of the annual subs.then for 2022 revert back to the league structure and promotions and relegations as they stood at end of 2019 season.there will obviously be no space for running any ind or pairs comps

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