Revised February 2022
The League shall be called "The Slazenger South and Mid Cheshire Tennis League"
To provide and promote competitive Tennis on a League principle for clubs in South and Mid Cheshire and to arrange matches and tournaments, in accordance with the Rules of the Lawn Tennis Association.
The League shall be open to one or more teams from clubs in South and Mid Cheshire. Any club desirous of joining the League, or of entering an additional team or teams in the League, shall apply in writing to the League Secretary not later than 31 January. The acceptance of their application shall be subject to the approval of the Annual General Meeting. It is recommended that all clubs be affiliated to the Lawn Tennis Association, but this is not a condition of membership of the League. However, each club hosting home matches must have in place public liability insurance covering all of those courts on which matches will be played – a copy of which should be provided to the League Secretary prior to the season commencing.
Clubs desirous of withdrawing a team or teams from the League shall give notice in writing to the League Secretary before 31 January; otherwise they may be liable for the ensuing season’s subscriptions.
The annual subscriptions and fees to the League shall be decided upon at each Annual General Meeting. The amounts shall be remitted to the League Treasurer before 30 June. Any club not having paid its subscription by that date renders itself liable, on the decision of the Executive Committee, to having the whole season's fixtures declared void and its members refused entry to the League’s tournaments.
The Officers of the League shall be: President, Vice President/s, Chairman, Vice Chairman, League Secretary, League Treasurer, Summer Fixtures Secretary, Winter Fixtures Secretary and any other Officer as required, duly elected at the Annual General Meeting. The President and/or Vice President's will stay in office until they offer their resignation. All other Officers of the League shall retire annually, but shall be eligible for re-election.
7. Executive Committee
The Executive Committee shall comprise the Officers of the League All appointments are subject to a League being run. The Executive Committee may make bye-laws to govern any matter not legislated for in the rules of the League.
8. Disputes and Resolution Committee
The Dispute and Resolution Committee shall be comprised of three members of the Executive Committee and they are empowered to give an immediate ruling on all duties or appeals on any matter connected with the League and their decision is FINAL. All decisions made by this committee will be reported back to the Executive Committee.
9. Annual General Meeting
The Annual General Meeting shall be held in February each year and can be attended by any member of a League team. Each club represented shall be entitled to only one vote on matters relating to change of rules and constitution of the League. Votes by proxy are not permitted. Any proposals for change of rules must be submitted in writing to the League Secretary before 31 December.
The League Treasurer shall submit to the Annual General Meeting the Statement of Accounts of the League duly audited by one person elected at the previous Annual General Meeting.
11. Match Regulations (Summer League).
The following will govern play in all Summer League matches -
The Annual General Meeting shall decide if a Summer Ladies Doubles League, a Summer Men’s Doubles League and a Summer Mixed Doubles League (collectively referred to as “Leagues") shall be formed for each category. At the discretion of the Annual General Meeting any League may be divided into two or more divisions. The policy will be for a maximum of nine teams to constitute a League or division, as per an agreed plan. A system of promotion and relegation shall exist between divisions of a League, involving two teams in each case. Where a team has secured promotion from their division of the League, in accordance with this rule, but then subsequently withdraws its participation from the League, that promotion will then be awarded to the team finishing next in that lower division. Where a League/division comprises of 6 or less teams, then only one team will be promoted and only one team relegated). Any reconstruction of the League by the Annual General Meeting shall be based on the ranked order of the teams in the final League table, adjusted to take into account the promotions, relegations, additions and withdrawals previously agreed. If the Leagues/divisions constitution necessitates nine teams in a division the higher division(s) shall contain the highest number of teams. It is desirable to have divisions of eight teams for practical administration.
Teams will play home and away matches with every other team in the same League or division, but in the event of the number of teams in the League making this impracticable, the Annual General Meeting can instruct the League Secretary to modify this arrangement provided always that each team plays at least one match against every other team in the same league or division and that each team’s Home and Away matches are equally distributed.
Matches will be scheduled for Tuesday and Thursday evenings for Men’s and Ladies Leagues and for Sunday mornings for Mixed Doubles League. Clubs should inform the League Secretary of the number of courts available for play on each of these days and take into account the number of courts they will have available in deciding the number of teams which they will enter into the Leagues.
A player who plays in a League for a club must be a bona-fide member of that club or organisation, i.e. a player must pay a membership subscription and/or a match fee to do so. A player may not play for more than one club in the same category of League during any one season. This does not prevent a player who is a bona-fide member of two clubs playing for teams representing both clubs providing that the person does not play for both teams in the same category of League during the same season (e.g. a player could play in a men’s league for one club and in a mixed league for another club, but could not play in a men’s league for two clubs even if those club teams are in different divisions).
e) Every club which has two or more teams in a particular category of League shall, at least two weeks before playing their first match of the season, submit to the League Secretary a player nomination list. The player nomination list shall be prepared as follows: Clubs with two teams in any category of League must submit the names of the four players who shall only be eligible to play in that club’s first team. Clubs with three teams must also submit the names of the four players who shall be eligible for that club's second team. Clubs with four teams must also submit the names of four players who shall be eligible for that club’s third team, and so on. Failure to comply with this rule by the start of the season will result in each team from the Club in question being deducted two points. Any player may play above his/her nominated position, but no player may play below.
Each player on the nomination list must play for their nominated team at least once in the first four matches, else they would have to be removed from the nomination list and another player, who has played in the first four weeks nominated in their place. Two members of the Executive Committee will review the listings at this period.
Players may be re-nominated but shall not be allowed to play for the new team (if lower ranked) for a period of fourteen days from the receipt of such applications by the League Secretary. The names of players not on the current seasons nomination list may be inserted and the list adjusted accordingly, without the penalty being adopted
Matches are to be played on the days, as indicated in the League Fixture Booklet. A fixture may be played before the indicated date, with the prior agreement of the League Secretary and the competing team. If this is agreed, none of the players whose fixture has been moved may play for any other team on the date that their match was originally schedule for. Matches may only be postponed owing to bad weather, in which case the match must be replayed within twenty-one days of the date of the original fixture: at a date and time agreed by both teams, the Captain of the Home team to notify the League Secretary of the new date. In the event of inclement weather, if one team does not wish to play, the match is postponed. In the knockout competitions if the away team has travelled to the home teams venue and the match is then postponed owing to bad weather, the replayed match will then be switched to the venue of the team that had previously travelled.
Any request for an extension to the twenty-one days period for rearranging or completing a match should only be made in exceptional circumstances and must be made to the League Secretary, stating the reasons, within 24 hours of the original fixture and the opposing team must be notified that such a request has been made. On receipt of a request the League Secretary must immediately acquaint the League Chairman (or in their absence one other member of the Executive Committee) of the circumstances, and their joint decision of whether or not to grant the desired extension shall be final. Failure to comply with rule 11(f) and 11(g) will automatically result in the defaulting team forfeiting the match points.
It is the duty of both teams to turn up for play irrespective of the state of the weather, unless both team captains/secretaries have previously contacted each other and have both agreed that in their opinion no play would be possible.
If a match is commenced and not finished, the completed sets to stand and the remainder to be completed within twenty-one days of the date of the original fixture, in accordance with rule 11(f). In the case of incomplete sets the previous score and previous occupancy of the courts shall hold good, but reserves may be substituted should any of the original players be unable to play on the rearranged date
In an unfinished match where a match result has been determined then if both teams are in agreement, any unfinished sets are scored at 0-0. (If the teams are not in agreement please refer to rule (11) (i) above as to the basis upon which the match must be completed)
If a player is injured during a match, he/she must continue to play or concede the remaining sets/games. No substitutions are allowed. Unstarted sets must be conceded 6-0.
In the Ladies, Men’s and Mixed Doubles League teams will consist of two couples of ladies, men or one lady and one man respectively. Each couple will play two short sets against both opposing couples.
Each match will consist of eight sets
In the event of a set reaching the score of five games all, a further two games will be played. A final score of 6-6 in games will count as half a set to each team. See also rule 12.
All evening matches to commence at 6.00pm or 6.30pm and weekend matches at 10.00am. These times will be shown in the fixture list.
In the event of sponsorship being received, the league can specify the use of tennis balls for league matches from a designated manufacturer and penalties for failing to use such a ball will be 2 points deducted and the match awarded to the opposition.
Clubs to provide FOUR balls per court for each fixture.
By 30 June each year, clubs must send to the League Treasurer a copy of the club’s invoice(s) for the purchase of designated tennis balls for that year. Clubs failing to do so will be fined £20 (Twenty pounds).
Except where otherwise stated above, the rules of the Lawn Tennis Association will apply.
League results must be entered into the online scoring system or telephoned/emailed to the appropriate results administrator within SEVEN days of the scheduled match date as indicated in the booklet. Failure to do so will result in the responsible team having two points deducted from their points total. It is the home team captain’s responsibility to ensure scores are correctly updated and that the names of the players are included in the entry of the result In the event of a dispute over the score of the match, the home team captain will be expected to send the appropriate scorecard to the appropriate results administrator for verification. Failure to do so will result in an automatic deduction of two points from the home team’s point total. In knockout matches it becomes the winning team’s responsibility to notify the Summer Fixtures Secretary of the result within the required seven days. Any falsification of results involving collusion between the two opposing captains will result in the relegation of both teams. If a team is unable to be relegated, then points deduction decided by the Executive Committee will apply
In the event of a drawn game in Knockout competitions, no replay will take place. The number of games won will decide the match. If the number of games won is equal, the away team will be declared the winner. Players will ineligible to play for one club in a cup competition as a result of having played for another club in an earlier round.
Any new team entering a category of the League shall start in the lowest division of that category of League.
If any player is not present and ready to play half an hour after play is scheduled to start, then the opposing team may claim the first two sets in which that player should have played at 6-0. If a player is not present one hour after play is scheduled to start, then the opposing team may claim all the sets in which that player should have played at 6-0.
CONCEDED MATCHES. A team, which concedes a match, will forfeit four points and the match, on the first occasion, six points and the match on the second occasion and six points and the match on subsequent occasions. When there is a problem i.e. shortage of players, a team may turn up with only two players and a legitimate half-match will take place. The opposing team should be given notice of this, if possible. All conceded matches will be investigated by the Disputes and Resolution Committee.
All players must play in appropriate tennis attire and not in any other sports clothing (e g. football kit). Training shoes must not be worn as they can damage a court’s surface. A visiting team must play on the courts provided by the home team, whatever the surface may be.
FOOT FAULTS. It is legitimate to draw the server’s attention to this at the changeover, at the end of the service game. It should then be accepted with good grace and enacted upon. If not, the foot fault must be ‘called’ by the receiver’s partner.
MISCONDUCT. Players are expected to conduct themselves in a proper, fair and reasonable manner and to follow the LTA Code of Conduct on Fair Play at all times. The use of offensive language and behaviour in matches must be reported to the League Secretary in writing and will then be discussed by the Disputes and Resolution Committee. The Disputes and Resolution Committee reserves the right to take whatever action it considers to be appropriate and their decision is FINAL.
12. Awarding of Points
Eight sets constitute a match. The team winning the most number of sets (including half sets) via rule 11(n) shall be deemed the winner of the match and awarded two points. A score of four sets all (including half sets) will count as a drawn match for which each team will be awarded one point. No points will be awarded to a team losing a match.
13. League Tables
A team's position in the League tables shall be determined by the number of points won. In the event of two or more teams obtaining the same number of points, placing will be determined by the number of sets won. In the event of two or more teams obtaining the same number of points and sets the Executive Committee shall arrange a play-off between the teams concerned should the teams be level at the top or bottom places in the final League tables. Any such play-off shall be on neutral courts.
14. Appeals and Disputes
All disputes or appeals on matters affecting League matches must be submitted to the League Secretary, in writing, within 48 hours of the match being played. The opposing team captain or secretary must be informed of the intention to lodge a complaint. These will be dealt by the Disputes and Resolution Committee and they will inform all parties and the Executive Committee of their decision, which will be final.
League tournaments, competitions etc. may be arranged as agreed at the Annual General Meeting. Competition officials will be appointed where necessary. A team may choose to withdraw from a knockout competition before the draw is made.
16. Cups and Trophies
Clubs are responsible for the safe custody of cups or trophies, which they may have won. Individual winners of any Tournament Cups and trophies are similarly responsible for the safe custody of the same. Club Secretaries and Tournament winners are responsible for the engraving of cups and trophies, the cost of which may be reclaimed from the League Treasurer. All cups and trophies are the property of the League and cannot be won outright. They must be returned to the League Secretary or Knockout Secretary before 31 August each year, in a dean state, engraved and in good order. The Executive Committee reserves the right to charge clubs for any repairs or the cleaning of the returned trophies.
in the absence at any time of the League Secretary or if for any reason this person cannot be contacted, the League Chairman or Vice Chairman shall deputise. This is particularly relevant in rules 11(f), 11(g) and 14.