The French Tennis Federation has already done a lot of work to frame the padel explosion in France. But what else could we do to improve the conditions, the regulation of this sport and help it develop?

We will try to list the different ideas of clubs and players with the pros and cons.

1 / Homologate Mixed Tournaments

This is THE rule acclaimed by many players and padel clubs.

Advantage:

First, the padel is a sport perfectly suited for this type of competition. Many couples from elsewhere already participate in the mixed internal tournaments of the clubs. But it's not just couples. On the contrary. The National Padel Cup, the Padel Infinity Tour showed that there was a huge demand, a huge potential. The Open de France will also propose next September a big European competition of mixed paddle.

In addition, the ladies, who are unfortunately less numerous to practice the padel for the moment, could compete with the men in a more framed way with homologated tournaments.

The other advantage, especially for the big padel clubs, is the possibility to offer 2 homologated competitions at the same time, ladies or gentlemen, and to participate in addition to a mixed tournament.

Players play more, clubs have extra revenue and the FFT continues to rake in additional licensees.

The measure could be implemented in a very simple way by already using the tools put in place by the FFT.

A measure that does not cost one euro and that could benefit everyone.

Disadvantages:

The pairs will be at times unbalanced, but is this a real argument against the possibility of homologating mixed tournaments?

We do not really see any reason to deny clubs the opportunity to register mixed tournaments.

2 / Integrating ladies pairs into men's tournaments

Integrate pairs of ladies into men's tournaments, an idea that is sprouting up positively, but which is much more complicated than it seems in its implementation.

Starting observation: 3 big problems

=> First, there are very few ladies padel tournaments. And when the ladies tournaments are announced, it happens that these tournaments are postponed and even sometimes canceled because not enough players.

=> Then, when there are ladies tournaments, we often see the same players. There is no renewal, emulation and new confrontations. In short, difficult for these pairs ladies to motivate themselves permanently.

=> Finally, the differences in levels are very important between the top French 10 and other pairs ladies. But there are also very important gaps among 220 licensed ladies (against 1610 licensed in men)

How?

Let's use what works elsewhere. In squash, the French Squash Federation found itself faced with the same problem as the FFT concerning the ladies.

How to do when levels and rankings are not the same between ladies and gentlemen?

1/ Incorporate a multiplier for female pairs and so classify them in the gentlemen table.

For example: 1 ladies pair of 100 points would be equivalent to 300 points in men. (Remember that the more a pair has points, the less well it is ranked). The points they win will obviously count for the ladies ranking.

2 / Set up a quota system.

Basically, there could be more than one 1 / 4 pairs of ladies in a table gentlemen. For example, in an array of 16 pairs, you could only have 4 maximum pairs.

A solution that does not cost a euro there and whose implementation would be very well received.

Disadvantages:

Is playing with the men dangerous for the ladies? It is true that the game is faster for men at any level. If the ladies will be free to participate in men's tournaments and therefore to accept a faster game, there should not be injuries because of this system ...

The other disadvantage or great complication is the ranking of these pairs ladies in a table gentlemen. Because despite the coefficient, there could be aberrations. The solution is not so obvious.

Example: Audrey Casanova and Laura Clergue, the first French pair would then be considered the 6e pair at the gentlemen with this famous multiplier coefficient.

The idea then would be to apply a different multiplier coefficient depending on the ranking slices. Or to give a predefined ranking for each of the French pairs.

As we understand, the FFT will have a lot of work to do to imagine the right weighting method for women's rankings.

It will obviously be necessary to speak of "team weight" to avoid confusion.

3 / Further relax regulation on tournament packages

The goal is to give the Referee a few extra freedoms to accelerate or slow down the games by lengthening the game format. Is this a good idea?

Advantage:

In squash, one can make up to 4 matches / day for a homologated squash tournament.

However, the padel, which can be considered a little less physical than squash, can only be 3 max matches with the so-called traditional or classic formula (1 format), ie, 2 winning sets (with ad and 3e classic set). Knowing that in passing, we know that there are often light matches, especially in the group stage, because of the differences in levels that can be.

maybe adding one more game in the day with the traditional formula would be interesting for everyone.

Another variation: If the referees and players agree, maybe they should be allowed to choose the format for their matches.

Disadvantages:

Lengthening matches may be difficult for players, especially if long matches follow one another. We have seen him again recently at the Lyon Open where Gael Monfils himself explained that to link the matches were physically complicated.

It would also be a difficult barrier for people who are less physically prepared or older.

And then, that would mean that referees and players would have a lot of power. Is this the door open to abuse? There could be some.

Finally, the FFT is here to offer a framework with a precise regulation. The same rule for everyone is certainly more accurate.

Has the balance been found by the FFT with the current match formulas? Perhaps.

For you to say.

4 / Treatment of private and municipal structures tied

Private paddle clubs that are then eligible for TFF must be able to benefit from the same support as the municipal club.

Indeed, we observe that some private claim to be confronted with unfair competition.

First, because municipal clubs are often financially supported by municipalities and sometimes regions. And then, the FFT league helps at times more the municipal club than the private club.

When a league offers to financially support a padel project, it can not distinguish the municipal club from a private club that will be later qualified. There must be perfect equality.

It should be noted, however, that many leagues play the game of equal treatment, starting with the Lyonnaise league, which now has 7 padel clubs.

5 / Allow the referee to participate in the tournament

Strangely enough, the rules prohibit the referee from participating in his tournament. We can see the objective. But is not it a bit harsh? Especially that it often happens that the Referee is himself a player and therefore the first applicant to his own tournament.

And then, this indirectly implies that the referee's referee's partner has to look for another partner. (Which does not matter, of course). But this regulation can annoy the first concerned: The judges referees / players.

Why not relax this part of the regulation?

6 / A padel diploma

We will soon propose the interview of Jean WALLACH, President of the league of Lyon and vice president of the FFT in charge of training and the thorny issue of padel training.

Today, you have to have the state tennis certificate to be padel teacher ... Now, many padel players have all the qualifications to train.

Of course, this is not an FFT problem, but a much more general problem, since it is the Ministry of Sports that certifies the diplomas.

Equivalences, a solution?

Since the September 1er 2009, the ENIC-NARIC France center has adopted a comparative approach to the processing of applications for recognition of foreign degree holders and, when the study of the file permits, issues a certificate of comparability for a diploma obtained at the foreigner who evaluates the diploma submitted in relation to the French system.

In Europe, equivalences are legion. France must accept and authorize that a French who has obtained a diploma in Spain can teach in France.

But here too, the FFT does not have all the cards even more on this issue that goes beyond the simple framework of tennis.

The FFT works the CQP facilitator

However, the FFT is working on another way to get around this French-French problem:

The CQP animator. This animator there would animate all the sports (Tennis, Padel, Beach tennis). This degree would also be more flexible than the current AMT. But we will come back to this topic soon.

7 / Prize money for padel tournaments categories

There are 4 types of tournaments: the P100, P250 P500 and P1000.

From p250, mandatory prize money at the minimum height of the numbering of the chosen category.

Is this a good thing?

Advantage:

The formula seems to take everywhere in France.

Many clubs already offer P1000. We can even say that France is ambitious with its financial endowments. Big tournaments bring back good players including Spanish players.

For the players, it is a formula obviously very interesting, especially for the best who suddenly move.

Disadvantages:

Note that the prize money (P500 and P1000) benefit more Spanish than French players. If it has the merit of raising the level of the tournament, one might wonder if this prize money rule would not be double-edged.

Moreover, the winners are often players who are not part of the economic life of the French paddle. Of course, this is a trend. Should we leave things that way?

Then these tournaments (P500 and P1000) are expensive for clubs. Is it so interesting for them?

A little early perhaps to take stock of these categories of tournaments.

8 / French championships in outdoor possible?

The French Paddle Championships are always indoor. Over the last two years, the championships have been held at Padel Club Lyon (Padel Central) and Padel Attitude. The next ones will take place at the BIG IV. 3 indoors clubs.

Why are the French Padel Championships still indoor?

Advantages :

For reasons certainly of organization. In case of rain, what do we do? France has an increasingly important indoor park.

Disadvantages:

Yet there are many stages of the World Padel Tour in outdoor. And for outdoor clubs and players specialized in outdoor, it's not necessarily fair. Because playing indoor and outdoor, it's not at all the same thing. Outdoor players would always be at a disadvantage?

9 / Increase the minimum height to homologate a club?

Today, it is enough to have 6 meters of height for an indoor club to qualify or affiliate his padel club. Is it sufficient ?

Advantage:

All padel clubs are almost certain to be homologable and will be able to offer padel tournaments, license padel players, etc. For the democratization of sport, it is a very good thing certainly.

Drawbacks :

To make the competition, the 6 meters of height limit the game padel and one can even consider that this height privileges the tennis players ... Given the explosion of the padel, should not we push this height to 7,5 meters. ? This would force new projects to be beyond this height.

Clubs having already been authorized or affiliated and having a height of less than 7,5 meters shall not be affected by these possible new provisions.

Franck Binisti - Padel Magazine

Franck Binisti

Franck Binisti discovers the padel at the Pyramid Club in 2009 in the Paris region. Since then padel is part of his life. You often see him touring France by going to cover the big French paddle events.