Please keep the forum protocol in mind when posting.

Tournament Operations » Post: Side event bracket logistics

Side event bracket logistics

June 5, 2015 09:40:47 PM

Mitja Bosnic
Judge (Level 2 (Judge Academy))

Europe - East

Side event bracket logistics

A lot more happens at a GP weekend than just the main event – at GP Utrecht, for example, there were also more than 1400 side events, the vast majority of which were 8-man events. This means plenty of brackets for the scorekeepers! I used a simple system to keep them in check. And while Utrecht may be an extreme example, I believe a good system would be useful for all GPs and other huge event days/weekends.

The background: every time a side event runs, the scorekeeper creates two copies of the playing bracket. The players fill one out during the tournament (I’ll call it the “dirty” copy), while we keep the other. When the players are done with the event, we copy the results neatly on the copy we kept (the “clean” copy) and give them together to the scorekeeper, who can then enter them into the computer.

When I was handed the task of organising these brackets, I wanted to create a system that was simple and intuitive (so it could be explained and/or handed off to another person), as well as efficient (so we didn’t use up too many judges for this task) and orderly (to prevent or at least reduce the number of mistakes). I had judges joining and leaving the team often, so I wanted the various steps to be independent of each other and easy to grasp. One caveat here is that the system uses a lot of room.

The first thing we did was sort the brackets by format and colour (another judge later suggested we also sort them by colour, which was really useful). When we had the piles ready, we placed them on the table so that the corresponding clean and dirty piles were next to each other. We placed all the piles turned sideways, which I will explain later. I recommend keeping the clean piles on the right side of the dirty piles, but this may change if you are left-handed. I also recommend putting all the Constructed piles on one side and the Limited piles on the other. After this was done, we sorted the brackets by their event number.


Example setup after initial sorting.

We then started filling out the clean brackets. To do this, you turn both the dirty and clean bracket right-side up, fill the clean one out and move to the next one. If your scorekeeper wants the events sorted by their event number, simply keep the piles separated for now. If they don’t care, you can put the brackets together (clean one on top) and put them on one pile.

As more brackets come in, they are placed sideway in their correct places within the correct pile. Brackets are turned right-side up as they are filled out. You can easily see where work can be done by the sideways-turned dirty brackets. As the day wears on and you have few clean brackets that need to be filled out left, you can find them easily since they are turned sideways.


Piles on the bench have not been insterted into their piles on the table yet.

Before you bring the completed piles back to the scorekeeper, they should be combined (if they weren’t combined as you filled them out). This is quick and easy to do, as the right-side up brackets on each clean pile should correspond perfectly to their pair on the dirty pile. After the initial rush (I had 2-3 judges helping me at the start) it should be quite feasible to have only one judge enter the new brackets as they come in.

Wow, this went on way longer than I expected it to, so here is a very brief version:
1) Sort the brackets by format, then by number.
2) Put the brackets on their correct place in the correct pile turned sideways.
3) As you fill out a clean bracket, turn both it and its dirty pair right-side up.
4) Combine the pairs before handing them to the scorekeeper.


Sideways and right-side up explained, as I realised it might not be quite clear what I meant.

Anyway, all feedback, comments, suggestions for improvement etc. would be most welcome! :)

June 6, 2015 06:13:15 PM

Julien Winter
Judge (Level 1 (Judge Academy)), Scorekeeper

France

Side event bracket logistics

Hey,

first of all, thanks to you and all the judges that helped on these events, who helped made our life easier with the unbelievable number of results that had to be entered.

the sorting by colour for the printed bracket, is usually meant so that we can give them to the SK that has them on his conputer, as it is faster to enter the result in 7 clics than recreating the event.
something that can also be done, if there's only one colour, is sorting them by hj: usually the hj of the public events will be the SK, and that's also a way to find which event is on which computer :)

June 8, 2015 05:58:05 PM

Claudio Martín Nieva Scarpatti
Judge (Level 2 (Judge Academy))

Hispanic America - South

Side event bracket logistics

Very interesting method. I have a couple questions about this, though.

- Why were two copies of each bracket needed? Wouldn't it have been possible to just hand the “dirty” copy to the scorekeeper to enter into the computer? It seems to me that you're making extra bookkeeping work for the judges involved.
- Was there any way to quickly identify in which table(s) of the side events area was each event located? With that many side events running in parallel, it can get a bit tricky to identify the right players for a given event in a short time. Especially given staff rotation in the team.

June 8, 2015 06:24:30 PM

Mark Mc Govern
Judge (Level 2 (Judge Academy)), TLC

United Kingdom, Ireland, and South Africa

Side event bracket logistics

One copy of the bracket is for the players to fill in. The purpose of the second is to make the scorekeeper's entry easier. It's slow going to find the winner's name on the page, find it on the screen, and press the right button. You've to do that 7 times per ODE which adds up when you have who knows how many events to enter at the end of a long day at the GP.

So instead, a Judge takes the dirty copy and translates the results to the clean copy. However they write it differently on the clean copy. Rather than writing a name, they make an ‘X’ either above or below the line to signify the winner. eg:


Mark Mc Govern
_______________________
X
Claudio Martín Nieva Scarpatti

(hopefully that's readable!)



The scorekeeper doesn't need to know if it was 2-0 or 2-1. They only need to know who the winner is. The bracket is laid out exactly as it appears on the results entry screen, so the scorekeeper only needs to check they have the correct event open (easier if all the results sheets are in order) and then needs to know if it's the top name or the bottom. Then it's a quick “top top bottom top bottom bottom top” and the event is entered. It might even take just 7 key presses.

So yes, it does give the judge work to do, but at the end of the day you'll probably have judges with time to spare. Whereas at the VERY end of the day, you don't want to spend hours as a scorekeeper entering events.

June 8, 2015 08:39:53 PM

Christian Genz
Judge (Level 2 (Judge Academy)), Scorekeeper

United Kingdom, Ireland, and South Africa

Side event bracket logistics

And secondly what do you do if the dirty copy gets lost because a player just mindlessly takes it with him? then you have to find among your 1000 sideevents the correct one to print new brackets/enter the results…

June 8, 2015 09:45:57 PM

John Brian McCarthy
Forum Moderator
Judge (Level 3 (Judge Academy)), Grand Prix Head Judge

USA - Midatlantic

Side event bracket logistics

Originally posted by Christian Genz:

And secondly what do you do if the dirty copy gets lost because a player just mindlessly takes it with him? then you have to find among your 1000 sideevents the correct one to print new brackets/enter the results…

I've been to events where the winner trades the completed bracket for his or her prize. I don't think we had a single bracket disappear - it turns out that players are much more invested in the paperwork when it's their ticket to a free draft.

June 8, 2015 09:46:54 PM

Richard Drijvers
Judge (Uncertified)

BeNeLux

Side event bracket logistics

Lastly, you don't need to know which players are playing at which table.
If they want their prizes, they have to come to you WITH the bracket.
When things are winding down, you can easily see which brackets are still
outstanding.

-R.

2015-06-08 19:40 GMT+02:00 Christian Genz <

June 8, 2015 11:12:31 PM

Mitja Bosnic
Judge (Level 2 (Judge Academy))

Europe - East

Side event bracket logistics

Julien - agreed, the color sorting was very useful, it would have been a lot more complicated without it - especially figuring out which computer each pile belongs to.

Claudio - I'm pretty sure there was almost no way for us to find any given event short of calling it over the PA (and even that would probably have been about 50% likely to succeed) or simply walking around a lot. Fortunately, this is not really neccessary at any point of the day, except the very end, where you only have a few events left and are checking if you are missing any brackets, as well as how long the remaining events are likely to take - important for sending people to other events/areas, cleaning up, coordinating with scorekeepers etc.

June 9, 2015 12:53:01 AM

Christian Genz
Judge (Level 2 (Judge Academy)), Scorekeeper

United Kingdom, Ireland, and South Africa

Side event bracket logistics

True John but even the guys losing their semifinals need to hand in the bracket to get their prices und you have no way of making sure the bracket then finds its way back to the finalists that they can claim their prices later on. Sure it rarely happens but what do you want to do IF it happens? It's just way safer (and more convenient) to have a second copy at the judge station.

June 9, 2015 03:06:19 PM

Julien Winter
Judge (Level 1 (Judge Academy)), Scorekeeper

France

Side event bracket logistics

It is also a very tedious project, if you don't have the second copy with the judges, to find which event needs to be printed again when you have multiple computers taking registration and tens/hundreds of ODE running at the same time.

Still the process of letting players play and come back has one limitation, as we were using paper registration: if, due to sloppy handwriting by the players or poop-in-the-eye of the SK, the bracket has an error (incorrect player, very likely), it might be difficult to find back the table once the issue has been fixed, especially if you fire multiple at the same time :)