Winter League 2019/2020

Winter League 2019/2020

13 Oct 2019 - 6 Mar 2020



Sponsored by Liam O’Riain’s Pub, Ballina

This year marks the 10th year of the present Winter League set-up. The old Winter League was amalgamated with the Townland Cup in 2010 to create the present style which mirrors the Pro 14 league set-up. To mark the occasion, I have put together a Winter League Quiz (click the link to view quiz). There are nine questions of one point each to test your memories plus one question worth five points to test your ability to predict. Please take the time to complete the quiz and you’ll have a chance for a very nice prize on the final prize-giving night. To save paper, highlight your correct answers or delete wrong answers and send them to [email protected]. The DEADLINE is this Sunday, 13 October at 5:59pm just before the start of our first two matches!! The quiz is available by clicking the link above.

One answer sheet per player and open only to WL players and subs. A tie-break will be used in case of a draw.


This is a team event (doubles) that runs in a league format over six months. Teams will have matches fortnightly on Sundays (6pm), Tuesdays (7:30pm & 9pm), Thursdays (7:30pm & 9pm), and Fridays (7:30pm only). There will be two breaks:

27 Oct – 2 Nov; 1 Dec – 4 Jan; Subbing is allowed though discouraged


FINALS: Friday, 6 March 2020 (to be confirmed)

Entry fee: 10 Euro

The REVISED draw and schedule are shown in the embedded document below. It can be slow to load depending on bandwidth.

Click here for the  SUBSTITUTION LIST.

Winter League Rules 2019/2020

  • FEE: 10 Euro per person
  • PLAYING FORMAT: A Team Match shall consist of two doubles matches.
  • PAIRINGS: There are two Pairings. Players 1 & 2 play each other; Players 3 & 4 play each other.
  • SCORING: Matches will always be First to 12 Games (Tie-break at 11-All) but Pairings that use either one or two substitutes can only get a maximum of 9 games added to their team’s score. Team Captains must complete a Score Sheet at the conclusion of each match. (A permanent replacement is not considered as a substitute)
  • QUALIFICATION FOR THE KNOCK-OUT STAGES: The top four teams will go through to the Semi-finals of the Winter League Cup. The First-placed team will play the Fourth-placed team; the Second-placed team will play the Third-placed team. In the event of two teams being level on points, the winner of the match between the two teams shall be deemed to be placed higher. If that match had ended in a draw, then the Winner of the Player1/Player2 match shall be deemed to be placed higher. If that was drawn, the team with the fewer subs over the course of the WL shall be deemed higher.
  • The 5th & 6th teams will go through to Winter League Plate Final. Rules as above for teams on equal points.
  • SCORING IN THE KNOCK-OUT STAGES: Each match will consist of the best of 3 tie-break sets. If one team wins the first two sets you DO NOT PLAY THE THIRD SET. The team with the most sets won will advance. If sets are equal, then Players 2 & 3 from each team will play a Championship Tie-Break (first to 10 points) to determine the winner.
  • WHAT TO BRING: Each player needs to bring a new ball and a light token for each match (except Finals).
  • SUBSTITUTIONS: Players make their own substitutions. The Substitution List and the correct Substitution Procedure is held by the Team Captain and can be viewed on this web site after the draw has been done. If the Substitution Procedure is not correctly followed, a three-point penalty will be applied to the team. It is essential that the captain knows who the substitute will be. In the knock out stage, follow the usual substitution rules as well as the following restrictions. Choose a sub…
    • League Semi-Finals – from the bottom three teams or go to a lower Section.
    • Plate Finals – from teams that were knocked out of the Semis, the bottom team or go to a lower Section.
    • League Finals – from any other team. However, substitutions must be approved by the Selector’s Committee with the aim that a team should not be strengthened by the use of a substitute (the Committee may ignore Substitution List rankings).
  • INJURIES: If a player is injured and has to drop out, the Selector’s Committee will consider finding a permanent replacement.
  • If a match has to be abandoned due to an injury to a player, the opposing team takes full points and the injured player’s team keeps the number of points it had acquired up to the time of the injury.
  • MATCH SCHEDULE – No walkovers. All matches must be played as scheduled.  Inclement weather is generally the only legitimate reason for rescheduling a match (see Rule 13). However, opposing captains may ask Alan Williamson, the Competition Organiser, to authorise the rescheduling of a match. Offering to play the match outside of the prime weekday 7:30pm and 9pm slots, as well as a high percentage of player unavailability will be important factors in authorising a change. If this rule is not correctly followed, a 3-point penalty will be applied to each team. However, when the Knock-out Stage is reached, Semi-finals can be rearranged once both captains agree. Rearranged matches must be played before the Final and the Competition Organiser must be informed and agree to the changes.
  • INCLEMENT WEATHER OR SLIPPERY, FROSTY COURTS: The two Team Captains will decide whether conditions make a match unplayable. It is strongly advised that matches are not postponed without the two full teams going down to the club. If it is decided that a match must be postponed, then the match must be played by 11pm the following Saturday. Captains, with all eight players present, should agree a time and book the two courts. If team captains and their teams decide that they wish to play a match but that the match has to be abandoned due to a deterioration in the weather conditions and the courts become unsafe, the score of the match will be picked up from where it was left off when the match is played out.
  • ISSUES: The Selectors’ Committee will make the final decision on any issues that arise in the course of the Winter League.

Many Thanks to our Competition Organiser, Alan Williamson.

Liam O'Riain's