How much does it cost to join the ladder?


Nothing.  The ladder is free of charge and open to the public.  To play indoors, you receive discounted rates from Hockessin Indoor Tennis, Elkton Indoor Tennis and Delcastle Tennis Center.  The rate is $20 per person for 1.5 hours if playing singles.  The cost is $18.75 per person if playing doubles.  You do not need to be a member of the participating clubs to play in their facility as long as it is an official ladder match.


How do I sign up for the ladder?


It’s very easy, go here, fill out the form and submit it.  That’s all you need to do.


How does the ladder work?


To start, go here and read the rules.  It provides lots of good information.


What's types of tennis are included:


Men's Singles, Women's Singles, Men's Doubles, Women's Doubles and Mixed Doubles.


Can I let people know I'm seeking a doubles partner?


Yes, go here and fill out the appropriate form.  You can specify if you're looking for a mixed or regular partner (or both).


How do I make a challenge?


Simply go to the rankings page and select the rankings link for this year.  You’ll see it down under the heading “Rankings:”  Find a player or doubles team and make a challenge.  The contact information is provided.


What if I’m busy and can’t play when someone wants me to?


Everybody’s lives are very busy with work, USTA Tennis, vacations, family events, school, etc.  The expectation is that challengers will understand this and work with whoever is challenged to find a date suitable for both players even if it’s a few weeks out.  The expectation is that if you are challenged, you’ll set up a date/time (even if in the future) that’s workable.  A challenger can always move on to another player if they choose, but if a player refuses or cannot set a date, the individual challenged will be defaulted.  Be sure to communicate with each other before concluding a default is in order.  All concerns should be reported to tennis@delawaretennisladder.com.


What happens if a person never responds to challenges?


Try connecting with them using a different method than you tried the first time.  Email sometimes does not make it due to spam filters.  Give a call, but please try and reach out another way.  If no methods work, you can report it to tennis@delawaretennisladder.com.  Each situation will be investigated to find out from the other person what happened.  Sometimes people are away on a trip, on vacation, etc.


What if I see an error on the web site after an update, or with any of the information provided to the site?


It is very important and encouraged that mistakes made be brought to my attention so the integrity of the ladder is sustained.  Mistakes are made (more than we’d probably like), but it’s the players that report the issues they see helps keep everything accurate.  Just email concerns to tennis@delawaretennisladder.com.  You can expect errors to be made and sharing what you spot is very much appreciated.


Where do I have to play?


You can play on any courts you want.  To locate courts, you can go to the links page and select one of the two links that show courts in the area.  They are not completely updated, but it’s a good start if you are not sure.


How do I report results of a match?


Go to the results page.  Near the top of the page is a form to fill out to report scores.


When do matches need to be reported?


They should be reported as soon as possible after a match, but not later than Sunday evening of each week.   Matches reported late may not be counted.  Rankings are rearranged based upon the date of a match.  The earliest entries on a day get recorded first regardless of when the match was played.  This is an incentive to report scores ASAP after a match.


Who supplies the balls for a match?


Both players (or teams if doubles) bring a new can of balls.  One of the cans is opened during the match. The winner of the match takes the new can of balls, the opponent takes the used can.


What if I’m injured and can’t play?


Send an email to tennis@delawaretennisladder.com stating your injured.  You will be marked as injured on the roster so people do not call during that period.  Once you are better, email the same address indicating the injury is gone.  The site will be updated to reflect that.


What happens if I never play?


The desire is to have everyone play as much as they can.  Each summer season, a “freefall” or "freefalls" will be implemented where all players who have not played a match will be dropped below all players that have played matches.  That date will be announced in advance.


What happens if there is a dispute?


Fortunately, there have been very few disputes over the years.  The conduct of the players has almost always been at a high standard.  If any dispute arises, please check the rules first, and if that does not resolve the problem, email the concern to tennis@delawaretennisladder.com.


What if I have a suggestion to improve the ladder?


The emails received over the years have resulted in many changes and improvements.  If you have ideas/suggestions, they will all be evaluated.  Send your ideas to: tennis@delawaretennisladder.com.


What process is used to merge the Summer and Winter rankings?


1.  First, the names of the players/teams from the summer ladder are listed in a spreadsheet in rank order.  A calculation is done for each player/team by taking the total number of players/teams minus that person's/team's rank +1.  So, for 20 players/teams, the calculated value of the 1st placed player/team will be 20 (i.e. 20-1+1).   The 5th placed player's/team's calculation will be 16 (i.e. 20-5+1).  This value is calculated for each player/team.


2.  Once this calculation is established for each player/team, a percentage is calculated by taking the value obtained in step 1 for player/team divided by the total number of players/teams and then multiply by 100.  So, the 1st placed player's/team's calculation will be 20/20*100 which is 100 percent.  The 5th placed player's/team's calculation will be 16/20*100 which comes to 80 percent.  The lowest ranked player's/team's calculation in this example will be 1/20*100 which comes to 5 percent.  The resulting value is a percentage from the top of the rankings for a given player/team.


3.  The same set of calculations is performed for the winter ladder results.


4.  The resulting calculations from the summer ladder are merged into the resulting calculations from the winter ladder.  The merge is done in the order of calculated percentage.  If a person/team played in both seasons (summer and winter), the highest calculated value of the two is retained and used.


5.  If two players/teams end up with the same calculated value, the summer ladder ranking will take precedence.  This is because the summer ladder is much larger, and many cannot play in the winter.  So, the priority is given to the summer ladder results.


There are many ways this probably could be calculated, but this is the method used.  The idea was to come up with something that is calculated and not subject to interpretation.