Women’s County Championship – Average Points System Descends Into Farce… Again!

The “Average Points” system used to decide the Women’s County Championship looks like descending into farce again, as 2nd-placed Yorkshire appear to have been able to essentially forfeit their match against 3rd-placed Sussex, without suffering any penalty… and indeed may go on to win the Championship as a result, as detailed over on Women’s Cricket Blog.

Last year’s Championship ended in similar circumstances, with Kent actually being handed the trophy despite having theoretically two more games to play, which if they had lost would have handed the title to Surrey. (And bearing in mind that Kent would have been without their England players for the replays, there is every possibility that this is exactly what would have happened.)

2012 saw an even more bizarre situation, as Essex made it through to the “Grand Final” despite having won only two games… because they were the only completed games they played; though at least on that occasion poetic justice was served as Kent deservedly went on to take the title by winning the final.

The Average Point system was intended to even-out the vagaries of the English weather, which inevitably causes cancellations, the impact of which are magnified by such a short (8 game) season.

But like some sort of Alan Ayckbourn script writ-large, it has instead become the cause of a litany of ever more ridiculous outcomes; which inevitably look all the more laughable because of the complexities of such a system, when compared to JUST ADDING UP THE POINTS!

It must be hoped that when the Women’s Cricket Super League is introduced in 2016/17, this is one feature of the Women’s County Championship that is politely (or if necessary, impolitely) told it is no longer welcome around these parts!

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2 thoughts on “Women’s County Championship – Average Points System Descends Into Farce… Again!

  1. I think we need to acknowledge firstly that these are mostly amateur players, who might find it difficult to get time off work during the week at short notice. The deadline theoretically allows teams to re-arrange at weekends during the rest of the month, however the WCC takes place almost exclusively on club grounds, many of which are out of action once the last club match has taken place (up here the last day of men’s league matches is Saturday 12th, and I wouldn’t fancy my chances of finding any ground in the county to play any sort of game on from Monday 14th onwards). However I totally disagree with the average points system, which encourages teams near the top to not play, as they can then protect their average. If they turn up and the ground is slightly damp, you don’t need a rocket science degree to work out they’re going to milk that for all it’s worth and claim the ground is dangerous to play on. The competition needs to revert to a system whereby a low number of points (no more than the maximum of 8 you can get from a loss) is awarded for all cancelled matches, and the title is then decided on total points. I think the original reason for adopting the average points system was not the vagaries of the English weather, but the fact that Ireland, Scotland and Netherlands used to play only half the games of the other teams. It just never got changed once these teams started playing a full programme.

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  2. Pingback: OPINION: Will the Super League succeed where the County Championship has failed? | CRICKETher

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