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Don't Abolish the Last Chance ! -- Modify the Last Chance

Posted By: Bill Riles
Date: Sunday, 26 January 2014, at 2:01 p.m.

In Response To: Abolish the Last Chance ! (Bill Phipps)

From the perspectives of both player and director, there are reasonable arguments on either end of the Last Chance discussion. Whatever overall tournament format is used, I think it critical that each player continues to have at least a minimum of three matches in an ABT event.

I think the progressive Last Chance format well addresses many of these issues and is becoming considerably more popular. It allows those on bad runs to complete the ABT portion of their tournament on Saturday and to choose between side events, leaving early, playing the tourist, being the kibitzer, or not returning at all on Sunday.

The progressive format, in comparison to the fresh redraw format, rewards those that have won some matches and penalizes those that have won few or none. Some, doubtlessly, really like this and some really dislike this -- and one's perspective may vary from tournament to tournament with his/her performance. In the end, the progressive is rather balanced and fair -- likely rewarding about as many as it penalizes, to varying degrees, so probably a wash in that regard.

In the larger tournaments Last Chance equity is not insubstantial -- at times reaching 2K in the Open/Championship division. So, I think, it can be well worth the chase and effort.

Some have talked of the room night issue as it relates to the progressive vs. traditional Last Chance. It is really not that big an issue. Tournaments with many locals aren't getting room nights from the locals anyway, so it doesn't matter if they flush out Saturday. Tournaments with a much higher percentage of out of town players will not see many changing their flight plans either way.

So, in my opinion, have a progressive Last Chance with fresh Sunday side events -- such as jackpots, a DMP tourney, or speedgammon, as examples, that variously address the wishes, time availability, and travel plans of a wide cross-section of players.

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