New systems introduced in junior football competitions

Published on Monday, March 25, 2024

The NFNL has introduced a new tie-break system across all competitive junior competitions for season 2024. 

In a bid to further enhance fairness and competitiveness across junior competitions within the NFNL, a new ladder and tie-break system has been introduced for the 2024 season. This new system aims to provide a fairer method for determining ladder positions in the event of teams finishing with identical win-loss match ratios.  

The system, which has been implemented for several years in neighbourhood leagues, aims to disincentive winning by large margins, and encourages coaches to equalise participation and time spent on the field for participants. 

In particular, the system:

– Promotes greater player movement in positions across the ground.
– Encourages rotation of players and improved game time for players which benefits player retention.
– Allows more freedom and flexibility when teams are moved up or down after round 4, as margins and percentages are no longer. 

Under the revised rules, all junior ladders will now be based solely on win-loss match ratio percentage from games played within each respective division. Notably, there will be no consideration given to points for or against percentages in junior competitions. 

In the event that teams are tied on the same match ratio percentage after the home and away season, the following tie-break system will be implemented to establish ladder positions: 

Two Team Tie-Break System: 

Match Ratio: The team with the superior match ratio percentage will be placed higher on the ladder. 

Win-Loss Record of Head-to-Head Competition: If the match ratio percentages are still identical, the team with the better win-loss record in head-to-head competition between the tied teams will be favoured. 

Points Against/Conceded in Head-to-Head Games: Should the tie persist, the team with fewer points against or conceded in head-to-head games between the tied teams will be given precedence. 

Win-Loss Record Against Highest Common Opponent: If necessary, the win-loss record against the highest common opponent will be considered, proceeding downwards if needed. 

Average Points Against: Finally, if all previous tie-breakers fail to separate the teams, the average points against will be used to determine the final ladder position. 

Three Team (or more) Tie-Break System : 

Best Winning Percentage of Games Played Among Tied Teams: The team with the highest winning percentage of games played among the tied teams will be placed highest on the ladder. 

Points Against in Head-to-Head Games: If required, the points against in head-to-head games between the tied teams will be taken into account. 

Record Against Highest Common Opponent: Following that, the record against the highest common opponent will be considered. 

Average Points Against: Finally, the average points against will be utilised to finalize the ladder positions if the tie persists. 

NFNL CEO Martin Stillman provided the following comments regarding the updated system.

“Our goal is to continuously improve the quality of our competitions and provide the best possible experience for our junior participants,” he said.

“By implementing this new system, we’re prioritising fairness and integrity, which are fundamental values of the NFNL.

“We’re excited to see how the new ladder and tie-break system will unfold throughout the season, we believe it will contribute to a more exciting and equitable competition for all involved.” 

More information can be found here – NFNL By-Laws. 

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