Player and leader of TSB Dunkirk, Bertrand Cappelle returns to the accumulation of tournaments in France and the need to change the system.

"An excess of tournament combined with a lack of consultation"

Padel Magazine : What motivated your reaction? 

Bertrand cappelle : “I just wanted to say that at a time when our sport is developing at high speed, all goodwill must be encouraged. There is therefore no question here of arguing or putting anyone on trial., but simply to open a debate which remains latent in the corridors of tournaments.

I have 2 "caps", I am both a player and a club manager. At home we are lucky to have 3 beautiful structures over a radius of 10 km, the tournament offer that was offered last year was undoubtedly low compared to public demand.

An increase in this offer became inevitably necessary or even essential, in particular for the female public, young people but also players who are getting their start in the competition.

However by lack of consultation, lack of regulation ... we end up with a situation that can become problematic in the long term, for all those involved in our sport, if it is repeated… ”

Padel Magazine : So according to you, there would be an overload in terms of tournament programming?

Bertrand Cappelle: " Yes quite ! Let me take an example: from February 4 to 6, a P250 is organized in one of our 3 clubs, it finds itself "surrounded" by a P250 the day before and another P250 the next day, i.e. an offer of 3 P250s in 3 days on 2 clubs 5 kms apart. We certainly have an interesting pool of players, but it is of course in no way related to the proposed offer. We are an average city and not a large metropolis like PARIS or LYON ...

This offer is not consistent and neither the players nor the organizers will find their account. ” 

Padel Magazine : What do you think should be drawn as consequences?

Bertrand Cappelle: ”For me this leads to asking two main questions which are: first, how to adapt the offer so as not to tire the players or distort the value of the tournaments. And second, what follows: what values ​​to give to tournaments padel ? "

Adapt the offer without distorting the tournaments

Padel Magazine : So how do you adapt the offer?

Bertrand Cappelle: ”I say it and say it again dialogue between the various stakeholders (clubs and governing bodies) is essential when scheduling and it needs to be strengthened.

To regulate and adapt the offer, one avenue might be to give a tournament "credit" per club and per quarter. (ex: X P1000, X P500, X P250, X P100, XP25).

Credit which must of course be modulated according to regions, the pool of players and which should probably even be a little higher for private clubs than for associative clubs, because I am well aware that for private individuals it is an even greater financial windfall than for municipal clubs.

The aim of this measure would be to better distribute the tournaments in the different structures and allow players to attend several facilities and thus meet different opponents. ”

Padel Magazine : You mentioned the denaturing of tournaments, what do you mean by that? 

Bertrand cappelle : ”For various reasons (because they are played during the holidays, on weekdays or otherwise), 2 tournaments of the same category may have to present a completely different field. For example a P250 can have an average weight of the first 4 seeds of 600 and in another tournament an average weight of 2800. Suddenly sporting fairness is no longer really respected and this can lead to certain frustrations. ” 

”Re-categorization and re-establishment of prize money”

Padel Magazine : What, according to you, are the solutions to remedy this? 

Bertrand Cappelle:  ”There is never a miracle solution, but a first avenue to study might be to RE-CATEGORIZE the tournaments a posteriori whose table is not related to the category. For example a P250 which presents a level too low in terms of team weight of the first 4 or 8 seeds would be re-counted in P100 and conversely grant a bonus if the weight allows it.

Secondly, shouldn't we restore the obligation to give 250 euros in prize money for a P250 ...? Indeed an organizer no longer has much interest in homologating a P100 or a P25 since it costs the same to organize a P25 a P100 or a P250.

Restore the prize money in my opinion would relaunch the P100 and the P25 (even if it means reviewing the format) and would prevent many beginner players from ending up directly in P250 and to be "atomized" without taking any pleasure and even end up being definitely disgusted with the competition. “

Padel Magazine : In order to close this interview, what would be the different aspects to keep and improve so that the padel continues its expansion, without changing its nature?

Bertrand Cappelle: " The padel is booming, it's far from easy to master the ins and outs. All ideas and initiatives that can make it grow must obviously be supported. It is also necessary that each stakeholder, whether associative or private, find his place fully.

I think it goes through a strengthening of the dialogue between the various structures in the field. First between the organizing clubs but also with the governing bodies in order to increase responsiveness to the speed of growth of our sport.

It is also necessary be careful about the categorization of tournaments so as not to disgust people with competition (especially beginners), and be able to allow each club to keep this somewhat "event" side of tournaments who will make the padel will keep its festive and convivial side! “

Nasser Hoverini

Passionate about football, I discovered the padel in 2019. Since then, it's been crazy love with this sport to the point of abandoning my favorite sport.