It’s been a while since I wrote an article about the EC. Perhaps the EC felt that nobody is now watching them. How else do you explain some of the things that are happening. EC sent out a message that “teams must collect playoff balls from the President’s house”. The directive further stated that the balls must be picked by Thursday before 5 pm.  It appears the EC feels that the league is doing us a favor by giving us match balls. Shouldn’t the EC try to implement a system that does not significantly inconvenience teams?  I spoke to at least 3 other teams about this, and none of them were happy about this and were struggling to find a way to abide by this directive. A fair, and more respectful, approach would have been for the President to not have all the balls at his place alone and divide out the balls amongst other EC members and those who regularly umpire. This could have been done a couple of weeks ago in anticipation for the playoffs. This way, these members could have met team representatives at mutually convenient locations, or could have brought the balls on game day to the fields. This is something the league should think about for the next round, and beyond.

The second issue I would like to highlight is regarding how the EC handled the entire “long weekend playoff” issue. Back in February/March, EC sent out a calendar with events on various dates such as when the umpiring seminar will be, when the season will start, etc. In it, if you looked at the Labor Day weekend dates, you could see “Playoffs 1st Round”. You would only have noticed this, if you looked at the labor day weekend dates on the calendar. I ask, how many people in February/March would have paid that much attention to this? And is this the best way to communicate such a significant change as to when playoffs will be conducted? The league sent no email or posted on the WCL fb page that the playoffs will begin this long weekend. Was the EC hoping that people just wouldn’t notice and when the playoffs come, they can simply claim that “we told you so back in March. Why are you complaining now?” The explanation the EC gave was that “we highlighted this in the Captain’s meeting”. Is that enough? On the one hand the President claims that “we don’t do anything without first consulting the membership” and then goes on to make this change without even discussing this issue either at the AGM or on the FB forum to get people’s input before making a decision. This stealth decision leads me to believe that the EC knew that a majority of the teams would not approve of such a move, thus made the decision without seeking this input. The result? Teams that have worked hard all season to make the playoffs might not be able to play their best players because people have family commitments. Not all wives and kids are going to be okay with their husbands/dads playing on a long weekend. If a team loses because it couldn’t field its best players, it somewhat de-legitimizes the playoffs. Is that what the league wants for its signature tournament? I wonder how legitimate the US Elections would be considered if all of a sudden the dates were changes to a long weekend?

And finally, I want to highlight one issue that has been a topic of conversation as well: The result and aftermath of the Virginia-Cosmos game. This is the game where the player list for Virginia included a name of a player who wasn’t playing, and did not include the name of a player who played instead. By all accounts, it appears to be an honest mistake by VCC who inadvertently ticked the wrong name. I do not believe they had any intention to do this on purpose. The team went on to win by a huge margin. However, Cosmos protested and the EC, upon deliberation, ruled in Cosmos’ favor and Virginia ended up forfeiting the game, and all the points associated with it. However, the EC allowed Virginia players, who played, to get credit for the game. Rule 1.c.VI.b under “Players” in the WCL Playing Condition states that “the Offending Team shall forfeit all the points and statistics accrued from that game.” The word “statistics” applies to giving player credit for the game. By giving credit to Virginia players for this game, the WCL EC violated its written rule. Next time, another team ends up forfeiting a game, for whatever reason, they will demand that their players get credit for the game, as now a precedent has been set. Please understand, my issue isn’t with Virginia players getting credit. I’m happy for them. My objective is to point out that the EC violated its own written rule and in the future other teams too will demand same consideration.

The EC should not think that it is above the rule of law and can do whatever it wishes. It is answerable to the membership and must take decisions that are according to the rules and come up with changes to the rules that are in the best interest of the membership. When it takes decisions such as playing a playoff game on the long weekend, it should first discuss it with the membership and if it sees significant support for the initiative, then take that initiative forward. The EC should know, that they are being watched and are answerable for the decisions they make. It needs to be transparent, and take the membership’s views on key issues BEFORE implementing changes.


 

2 Comments

  1. od says:

    Well written article. I am sure this is going to rub some of the EC members the wrong way! Would have been nice if you had included some of the issues only affecting the “neglected children” aka D1 and D2. Recently one of the EC members posted on facebook about PD standings and how close the race was for PD playoffs – what about other divisions Mr. EC???? Remember – The WCL is made up of all three divisions. Do they all not pay the same fees? Should they all not receive the same attention – specially from the people who are managing the league??

  2. od says:

    haha.. Facebook bashing has already started from the EC!!!! VCC and playoff balls issues are very valid points, but ohh.. well, our so called WCL GODS are always right – how in the world can they do anything wrong? I agree with you that the VCC player in question should not be awarded that particular game. Instead of accepting the mistake Mr. President says ” I know why you are raising this point? One player will not have influence on your game so relax” – really????

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